Back Catalog Memories: EKO Guitars

Vintage EKO Barracuda Electric Guitar & Bass (Set)

I’ve been running www.myrareguitars.com since about 1997. Before that I was doing it with pen and paper. Recently I discovered a file folder on my backup drive with TONS of photos containing just about every guitar I’d ever bought and sold over the years. Looking at these photos have stirred up some memories. Here is another story with some photos (to the best of my deteriorating memory) from the Back Catalog of myRareGuitars.

Checking Out a Mystery Epiphone Guitar

Mystery Ephiphone Guitar: Prototype or Custom Build?

A couple of months ago, I received a call from a friend who runs a drum shop in Southern Illinois. He’d taken in a guitar on trade-a semi-hollow electric Epiphone was as much as he could tell me-and he needed help figuring out exactly what it was. Always up for a good guitar mystery, I eagerly accepted his request for help, and as I waited for the guitar to arrive, I began to speculate on what it might be. Maybe it was an MIJ thinline, or even a 60s Casino, ala John Lennon. My excitement grew.

Beware of Substitutions (Vintage 1983 Kramer Focus K4000 Electric Guitar)

Vintage 1983 Kramer Focus K4000 Electric Guitar

I love ironies, those unexpected little twists and turns that make you smile. And, if there’s a guitar story that’s full of more irony than that of Kramers guitars, I don’t know about it. That’s why I love guitars like this 1983 Kramer Focus K4000. It’s a knock-off of a Kramer guitar, but a copy [...]

Coincidences & Satellites (Vintage 1967 TeleStar Professional Sparkle 5002 Electric Guitar)

Vintage 1967 TeleStar Professional Sparkle 5002 Electric Guitar

Over many years of writing about and photographing guitars, I’ve had numerous occasion to take pictures of guitars “on location.” That means packing up rather bulky photographic gear—cameras, tripods, lights, backdrops—and voyaging near and far. Sometimes this took place at a vintage guitar shop, sometimes at a collector’s place. When it came to the subject of TeleStar guitars, I got to combine both.

I Get Around (Vintage 1967 Gretsch Corvette 6135 Electric Guitar)

Vintage 1967 Gretsch Corvette 6135 Electric Guitar

Get around round round I get around/I’m a real cool head/Get around round round I get around/I’m makin’ real good bread. Back in the day, The Beach Boys were often pictured with what was sort of their “band car,” a Chevy Corvette Stingray. There was some spiritual force that inextricably linked hot rods and guitars back in the early to mid-1960s. Rock and roll and Big Daddy Roth kind of went together. Just ask Billy Gibbons. Or just consider this 1967 Gretsch Corvette 6135.

Back Catalog Memories: 1960′s EKO Cobra Guitars

Vintage 1960's EKO Cobra 6-String Electric Guitar (Red)

EKO was an Italian manufacturer located in Recanati, Italy. Their products include classical guitars, 12-string guitars, arch top guitars, electric guitars and acoustic bass guitars. EKO guitars gained high popularity during the rock’n'roll craze of 1960s, becoming the largest guitar exporter in Europe. Their electric models were often highly ornamented with pearl, featured 3 or 4 pickups and recognizable “rocker” switches for pickup selection. The acoustic models were popular in country and folk rock bands of the late ’60s.

Everybody knows there’s no basement at the Alamo! (Vintage 1964 Alamo Titan Mark II Electric Guitar)

Vintage 1964 Alamo Titan Mark II Electric Guitar

As I’ve said many times, one of the privileges of writing about off-beat guitars is that I get to do detective work and, when I’m lucky (and in time!), talk to someone who had a direct hand in bringing us the guitars in question. I had to dig hard to uncover something about Alamo guitars and I was both lucky and luckily in time with this story!

Matsumoku’s Atak Gains The Ad-Vantage (Vintage 1984 Quest Atak-6 MK II Electric Guitar)

Vintage 1984 Quest Atak-6 MK II Electric Guitar

I count myself among the many of you who have discovered just how good guitars made by the Matsumoku factory in Matsumoto City, Japan, really are. Or were. They still exist as artifacts but have not been made more than two decades now.

From the Temple of Doom (I): Koob, Albert, Patricia, and Adeline

1966 Kapa Continental 12-String

Imagine someone telling you about an old-time music store that had a huge stash of unsold guitars from the 1960s, plus some guitar effects from the ‘70s lying around in its upper floors in Newark, NJ. Well, you can bet it didn’t take long for me to beat a path to the door of Newark Music City (calm down; this was a long time ago and, while the company still exists, it’s long gone from Newark). Even though I was late in the game, there were still unmined treasures to be had. A real Temple of Doom!

George Harrison Gretsch Duo Jet G6128T-GH Tribute Guitar

George Harrison and his Gretsch G6128T Duo Jet guitar

If you somehow missed this story at Winter NAMM 2011…well…it’s time you heard about the George Harrison Tribute Duo Jet from Gretsch Guitars. They have made one of the most awesome replica guitars you’ll ever see. It is limited to a run of 60, and it will be available in May 2011 with an MSRP of $20,000.