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Gretsch! Yeh. Brilliant drums, Catalina through to BroadKaster, you can't go wrong. Vintage Gretsch though? Try and find one! Then be prepared to empty your bank account! What's even more worrying about old Gretsch is sometimes they're turkies and you can't get a good sound out of them! Well this is the former. The boss heard this thing and had to have it! In his opinion, this is the best sounding kit in the shop! That's quite a controversial assertion as, firstly, we have some real tasty gear in right now, and secondly, it's not a Ludwig! Although, it is a Gretsch, so we shouldn't be too surprised.
"Jasper shells!" That's what you hear banged on about isn't it? "Gretsch Round Badge!" That's another one. It's not hard to see why these tubs have their reputation. The Gum/Maple, 6 ply shells have a brilliant rounded sound to them - that vintage American boom but with a bit more of a solid, thicker bottom to it. Great hardware as is to be expected from Gretsch. This kit certainly has a mysterious past too. The Satin Mahogany stain is an after market finish and the resonant mufflers of the toms have been removed and plugged. This is also true of the tom holder. Initially we thought this could've been a Rock 'n Roll Outfit without it's second rack tom but because there was a consolette rail on the bass drum at some point, it is more likely that it was a Name Band Outfit but ordered with a 12" instead of a 13". Regardless, it looks beautiful and sounds even better.
The overall condition of this kit is very good. We reckon this is a player's kit, even though it's so tidy, purely because of the finish and the hardware mods - although, it's worth pointing out that both the stain and the plugs have been done to a very high standard and neither detract from the aesthetics of the kit. Original hoops, claws, etc., this is a solid vintage kit, which can't be said too often about vintage kits! Those classic 30 degree bearing edges are really tidy too - no wonder this thing is throwing out that 'Great Gretsch Sound'! This thing is brilliant. Before we go any further, we must point out that:
In a nutshell, the following items are all included in the sale…
Now to the nitty-gritty, the Devil is in the detail, so they say…
Brilliant condition. Nothing much to speak of; as mentioned previously, the resonant damper has been removed and then the holes have been plugged but it's been done so well that it's almost not worth mentioning. There's a bit of general gigwear, the odd scuff and ding, mainly the hardware though. The diamond mounting plate has been partially removed and replaced with a '60s Ludwig tom mount - certainly more useful than the original spade mount! Silver Sealer tidy, along with the internal paper tag! Couple of dings inside the shell. These drums have a brilliant old smell on the inside of them. If you like that kind of thing... Don't judge us!
Again, this is in the same great condition as the rack tom. Legs are modern.
Very good condition again. Although, the hoops have seen better days. They used to be black but they have been painted a matte brown, the inlay has been replaced with gold sparkle ribbon and there's plenty of dings and wear to see. We don't like messing around with drums though, we consider ourselves a conduit, to pass these legendary musical instruments from one drummer to another. You get 'em how we get 'em! Plus the finish on the hoops actually suit it. The cymbal arm is modern. Again, the hardware shows the age more than the shells but there's still nothing major to discuss.
We don't see many of these at all. And from the price tags that Round Badge Gretsch can sometimes command, neither does anyone else! This kit is very well put together, distinctly modern in the face of all the popular formulas at the time: 3 ply? No, 6! Triple flanged hoops? No! Die Cast! It's like Gretsch could predict the future and looking at this kit, maybe that's why they're still at the top of the table today. The mufflers are all smooth to operate, not that you'd want to shut down any of that tone! Beautiful looking, beautiful sounding, robust build - fantastic drums.
More pictures available on request.
Clearly an investment for a serious player/collector, we wouldn’t be surprised if it ends up out of the country. If you are an overseas buyer interested in this beautiful piece of drum history, please use our contact page to get in touch to enquire about shipping costs.