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Danelectro's Retro Heritage

On a few of my songs, I feature a U-1 Danelectro guitar. Why?

This guitar is the first one I've ever noodled around on. It's been in my family since the 1950's. It has a no kidding Gillette lipstick tube that contains the magnet, which creates the electric signal that goes to the amp. It's so rare, it has only one pickup. Still, the street value is like $200 bucks.


When I was a kid, I used to noodle around with it in our house. The strings where smooth wound as compared to the more rough wound strings today.


Gems like these are an American heritage. Nathan Daniel, who used to make amplifiers for Epiphone, came out of New Jersey, where I grew up. His amps were so good, that Sears asked him to start making guitars. And he did. The guitars were cheap, and made from plywood and masonite. Entry level guitars.


But many rock Gods loved how they sounded. They were unique. In some ways superior to the Gibson Les Paul, and Fender Stratocaster because they were light weight and jangly. Danelectro featured on WHO and Led Zeppelin albums.

And, of course, who doesn't need an awesome sounding jangly guitar. The major problem was output. The low resistance in the pickup, made the guitar low volume, so anyone who used it needed to crank up the volume.


The best part of Danelectro has nothing to do with sound, or volume. It has to do with looks.


Danelectro's look is built on 1950's cars! No kidding. The design reminds us of older, more classic years when people wore tuxedo's to dinner.


This one is the one I used on a handful of songs on the Bait & Switch CD. It used to belong to my mom. So, it is a no kidding old school guitar from the rock 'n' roll era.


Today, Danelectro has not only returned to making guitars, but has continued making some of the world's best guitar pedals. I am a big fan. I always have been.


But under lying all of that, I no longer use gear from any other country. I use only American made equipment. Rock's heritage started in the U.S.A. I feel it should stay that way.



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