This limited-edition guitar pays homage to the very first Gretsch guitar created for Chet Atkins.
Chet Atkins wanted an endorsement model, and his opportunity came in 1954 when he met Jimmie Webster, a guitarist known for developing the double-handed fingerboard-tapping style later refined by such artists as Stanley Jordan and Eddie Van Halen. Webster's day job was sales rep and product demonstrator for Gretsch, and on a trip to a Nashville Gretsch dealer, he tried to talk Chet into playing a Gretsch guitar. As Chet enumerated what he did not like about Gretsches (including lack of sustain), a new Gretsch Chet Atkins signature model began to take form.
In addition to his sales duties, Webster had a hand in designing many Gretsch models in the mid-1950s, and he let his imagination go wild with Chet's model. At at time when guitars sported either a natural or sunburst finish, the proposed model that Gretsch showed Chet in 1954 came as something of a shock. Webster played up Chet's country artistry with western-themed ornamentation, including a steer's head on the headstock, fingerboard inlays engraved with cows and cactus figures, a pickguard sporting a wooden signpost with Chet's signature, and a large letter G branded into the top.
This model also featured a western belt buckle tailpiece, which has been faithfully recreated here. Chet's original special-order model is on display in the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, and our in-house luthier worked with Gretsch for precise measurements of the guitar.
Limited to 36 pieces. Includes a period-appropriate cowboy case with tooled leather details.
Vintage Orange Stain
Pickups (Neck) TV-Jones T-Armond Gold
Pickups (Bridge) TV-Jones T-Armond Gold
Bridge Synchro-Sonic Gold
Tailpiece G-Cutout with western buckle
Controls #1 3Vol.(M+N+B), Master Tone, PU Selector