Egmond also made high quality instruments, the Egmond 2 and 3, 2V and 3V. They had 2 or 3 pickups, as the number states. 2V and 3V (V=vinyl covered body) had the body shape of a Fender Jaguar or Fender Jazzmaster. Later the Egmond 2 and 3 got the name Egmond Thunder, and the Egmond 2V and 3V got the name Egmond Typhoon. A more advanced and luxury guitar, with the same body shape as the 2V and 3V, was the Egmond Tempest. Here is a fine example of the Egmond Thunder.
Here are two examples of the Japanese made EPI Crestwood from the early 1970’s. The Epiphone ET Series guitars were solidbody guitars produced from 1970-1978 at the Matsumoku plant in Japan. In 1970, the decision was made to close down Kalamazoo production of Epiphones in favor of building them overseas in Japan. Epiphone decided to offer a new line of Japanese-built Epiphones that had more in common with other Japanese copies than previous Epiphone products.
I confess I’ve not spent much of my life ice skating. Oh, I’ve been to ice skating rinks, but I don’t know, going around in circles on sore ankles just never turned me on. And there was always that queer, loud, ballparkish organ music in the foreground, if you’re lucky (or not), played by a live organist. I might have felt differently if the musician had been a guitarist. Or, rather, a Guitorganist!
If you Google this brand, 95% of the info is about acoustic guitars. But here is a very cool example of one of their electrics. Espana was a brand used by Buegeleisen & Jacobson of New York City, who imported guitars from Italy in the 1960’s. Although not this model, It appears these same guitars were imported into UK with the VOX brand.
Growing up outside Toronto in the early 1970’s, El Degas was a very popular brand in most guitar shops. Made in Japan, the quality was great, the price was right, but that is about all we know about them. The internet is surprisingly thin on threads to the origins of El Degas. I’ll take some educated guesses from owning a few.
Among the popular performers of Hawaiian (and most other types of) music on the Vaudeville music hall circuit was Roy Smeck (1900-1994). Smeck was a talented instrumentalist who played guitar, banjo, ukulele, and lap steel guitar, earning the sobriquet “Wizard of the Strings.” Smeck made quite a few recordings and starred in part of the first “sound on disk” movie that was released in 1926. Like many other performers, Smeck endorsed a number of instruments by various manufacturers over the years, but is probably best known for the line of Harmonies introduced in 1927 with the pear-shaped Vita-Uke. Smeck’s name would be associated with Harmony instruments until near the end of the company’s run in 1973.
There was a period in time about 12 months before the official birth of Eastwood Guitars, where www.myrareguitars.com was selling more NEW guitars than Vintage Guitars. From 1999-2002, MRG was a dealer for Dipinto Guitars, Burns UK, EKO, Italia, Tokai and many others. One of the brands at that time was STARS. STARS? I know, never heard of it. Maybe it lasted for only 18 months at best, but they put out a Brian May copy that was WAY better than most people expected, at a price that was unbeatable, around $599.
As much as I would like to, I can’t really shed a lot of light on this brand. What we do know, is they were from Japan, mid 60’s to early 70’s. All the typical copy-era models that you would see from Teisco and a handful of other brands. Slightly better than average quality, similar to the Domino guitars. So, likely an American importer that found a niche and filled it for as long as he/she could. Rather than ramble on about it, I’ll simply offer up a bunch of photos so you can let your imagination run wild!