Buy George Harrison’s ‘Rocky’ Fender Guitar

Fender Guitars has a custom shop that replicates some of their old and most famous models exactly.

One of their latest projects is George Harrison’s legendary hand-painted Fender Stratocaster called ‘Rocky’:

The original ‘Rocky’ was a pale blue 1961 Strat that, sometime in 1967, was creatively decorated by George using dayglo poster paints and nail polish.

You can find out more about ‘Rocky’ here.

Can’t see any prices mentioned on the Fender website, but I guess if you have to ask the price you can’t afford it!

This replica certainly looks amazing, and because it is strictly limited it is a guitar that will definitely be an investment as it will only go up in value. And it is a beautiful work of art to boot.

Back in January Fender displayed a couple of early versions of these replicas as a teaser. They are now for sale. Turns out there are just 100 available……

Two New Videos – One From Paul, One From George

Got home to find a press release from the George Harrison official site today announcing a new iPad app to be launched on February 23. It’ll bring a wide selection pictures, sounds and information about guitars from the George Harrison collection. Here’s the release:

Bandwdth Publishing, in conjunction with the George Harrison Estate, announces the release of a special iPad app celebrating the guitarist and his historical guitar collection. The Guitar Collection: George Harrison iPad app will be released through iTunes on February 23, two days before George’s birthdate.

The release continues:

The app brings George Harrison’s private guitar collection to life through photographs, detailed descriptions, audio, and video footage. For the first time, with the help of unique 360° imaging by photographer Steven Sebring, fans can see the scratches, dings, and worn threads on the guitars as if they were themselves holding the instruments.

Fans will be able to examine Harrison’s private guitar collection, through personal audio recordings from Harrison himself as he introduces many of the guitars and plays sections of songs.

The history of each guitar is laid out in great detail; including the origin of the guitar, when and how it became part of Harrison’s collection, modifications he made to it and why each was so important in creating his distinctive sound. Songs from his catalogue are organized by the guitars used on each track, which allows the user to appreciate the personalities of each instrument.

The video section of the app contains footage of Ben Harper, Josh Homme, Mike Campbell, and Dhani Harrison each playing and showcasing the guitars and exploring their feel and tone. In addition, Conan O’Brien and Dhani discuss what make these guitars so exceptional. Also in this section, guitar great Gary Moore shares his views on what made George Harrison such a distinctive and influential guitar player.

The app will sell for US$9.99 at the Apple App Store.

Also…….

Amazon has uploaded a video of Paul McCartney’s photo shoot for the cover images of his new CD and LP “Kisses On The Bottom”. It uses the song “My Valentine” as background. I’m not sure how long it has been up – but I only just saw it today so thought I’d pass it on. Paul was photographed by his daughter Mary McCartney for the album sleeve and she makes a very brief appearance:

Amazon – Kisses on the Bottom video

The Ole Black Gretsch – An Update

Just after Christmas I posted that the Gretsch guitar company was flagging they’d soon be releasing a very special, exact recreation of the guitar George Harrison owned back in the early Liverpool Cavern days of the Beatles the Ole Black Gretsch.

Its time for an update because Gretsch have announced that a faithful, limited edition replica is now for sale – for a cool US$20,000……

The guitar is a Gretsch Duo Jet that George purchased back in 1961 for £90.00:

Gretsch guitars in the United States has measured every dimension, every detail right down to the scratches and dings and even the rust on the metal of the pick-ups so that each of the limited edition of just sixty guitars is accurate in every respect.

There’s much more information and background at: http://www.gretschguitars.com/features/georgeharrison

George Harrison – The Ole Black Gretsch

The Gretsch guitar site has been running an interesting teaser video for a couple of weeks now….The advertising spiel goes something like this:

“Gretsch is pleased to announce the GEORGE HARRISON product “teaser” that will grace their homepage website beginning at midnight, December 9, 2010. By clicking on the “watch video” icon, George will narrate a brief story about his “ole black Gretsch”. There’s no doubt it will cause a major stir in the global marketplace. Want to know more about this project? Please keep checking back on the website as it will be updated over time…”

Seems like there’s to be a new line of reproduction George Harrison “Duo Jet” model guitars – which was his very first decent axe, purchased second-hand back in 1961.

You can read more about this guitar here. According to this site the “friend” to whom George gave the Gretsch (and who subsequently gave it back to him years later) was none other than Klaus Voormann.

Another great source I have is a really interesting book by Andy Babiuk called “Beatles Gear – All The Fab Four’s Instruments, From Stage to Studio“, which came out in 2001.

This book goes into a lot more detail about Harrison and his guitars. After 1961 he went on to purchase other Gretsch models notably the “Chet Atkins Country Gentleman” – George owned two, and the “Chet Atkins Tessessean“.  His profile helped greatly in continuing the brand’s fame in the 1960’s.

Here are some shots of George with that first, now legendary “Duo Jet” guitar:

And probably most notably it makes an appearance on the cover of his 1987 solo album “Cloud Nine”:

The Ole Black Gretsch is featured with Harrison in all the  photos used in the “Cloud Nine”  CD booklet too. I guess we know now that we have Klaus Voormann to thank for re-uniting the pair.

How famous is the Gretsch “Duo Jet”? It even turned up as one of the instrument choices for buyers of The Beatles “Rockband” console game:

How many kids playing “Rockband” today would know they’re “strumming” away on a stylised version of a 1957 model guitar that a young George Harrison purchased in 1961 second-hand from a Liverpool sailor?