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.
This model was an obvious take on the Hofner Beatle Bass from the same era, but a 6 string version. It is an extremely well made guitar (compared to the similar models that were coming from Japan at the time). The components look very similar to most VOX models of that era.
This model was available in 2 pickup configuration, 3-way switch, volume and tone with a Bigsby style tremolo. I have only seen this one model in Sunburst, and a very impressive and detailed Sunburst it is with a wonderfully contrasting white binding everywhere!
7 thoughts on “Back Catalog Memories: 1960’s Espana Violin Electric Guitar”
It’s gorgeous! The sunburst finish is well done, and the binding really does jump right out at you. That headstock is wonderful all by itself. Don’t know what wood you’d use, but with that classical stringed instrument shape, it should produce an interesting tone. Maybe wonderful, maybe just “interesting.” Probably not enough volume via the f-holes to qualify as a true acoustic-electric, but the tone should be interesting, nonetheless. I’m no acoustic engineer or guitar builder, so I claim no expertise about tone. I also claim no expertise about building such an instrument, but it looks to my uneducated eye like it would be costly to produce. Hollow-bodies are generally more costly to make than solid-bodies, and this particular hollow-body has that slightly arched top and those violin-inspired counter-radius curves in the mid-section that suggest “expensive” to me. Toss in the f-holes and a Bigsby, and while it might well be worth producing for Eastwood’s upper-end or upper-market customers, I think it will be well outside the “affordable” range that I usually associate with Eastwood instruments.
It would be nice to know if the pickups are actual humbuckers, which seems unlikely, since Gibson’s patent was still in effect and various Japanese made single coils made to look like humbuckers.
The neck joint is particularly interesting as it’s made like a glue-in even though it’s a “bolt” neck. Setting the neck would be easy if an owner wanted to do it.
^^^^^ Thank you, Mr Guitar Builder for your expertise. Nowhere does Eastwood imply they are
making, or intending to make one of these. Mr. Robinson can figure out the costs on his own,
he doesnt need your help.
Is it for sale and how much Thanks
Beautiful instrument. Very shiny. Looks like fun.
I remember the Espana brand from the ’60’s, but on acoustic guitars. This one is cool–it has “Made in Italy” on it, and from the headstock shape and the tremolo, it appears to be made by Eko, who also made the majority of the Vox guitars that made it into the US. The bridge and pickups don’t look like anything I’ve seen on a Vox, but you never know…The tuners appear to be Van Ghents, which also turn up on Burns guitars from the UK and on some early-to-mid-’60’s Guilds.
Looks great but I suppose you would have to pay a great price for one too. I’m going to keep searching on Ebay for a deal on one of the not-so-well-made Japanese ones. Mainly getting it for looks anyway. Cool guitar to have for an old Beatlemaniac.