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Gretsch 6109 Twist

21 March 2011 No Comment
6109-TwistIf ever there was an example proving that marketing gimmicks don't necessarily equal good products, it would be the Gretsch 6109 Twist. The 6109 Twist was part of Gretsch's second-generation Corvette family, designed to be a less expensive alternative to Gibson and Fender solid-body electrics. But the guitar, along with its two siblings - the 6110 Twist in the 6106 Princess - were built simply on the idea of taking an already terrible instrument and trying to sell it with a new look.

First generation Corvettes were designed with unsculpted bodies, huge pick guards, and a rectangular truss rod cover next to the pickguard. Because Gretsch insisted on a true solid-body with no routed hollows, these guitars were extremely heavy and clumsy to play. The second-generation Corvettes simply tried to make the package more attractive, expecting that it would produce more customers. Unfortunately, the idea failed and the line only lasted two years.

As for the Twist, it got its name from the peppermint twist fad of the early 1960s. The body was bright red while the peppermint effect was achieved by using a white and red candy-striped pickguard. Even by 1960s standards the Twist was a stretch toward ugly.

The mechanics were the same, including the single HiLoTron and the hardware, but for some reason Gretsch included their revolutionary "Tone Twister" device which allegedly added vibrato by causing strings to vibrate between the tail piece and bridge. Unfortunately, all it did was break the strings. Once word got out of the defect, Gretsch began offering the option of substituting the Tone Twister with a Burns Vibrato.

One final note to the sad 6109 story: a small handful of Twists were painted yellow but with the same candy-striped pick guard. These particular guitars are very rare, and valuable for that matter, since so few were made.

Shopping Results for: Gretsch 6109 Twist Archtop Electric




Vintage 1960s Gretsch Model 6109 Twist Electric Guitar Covevette Circa 1962
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1961 Gretsch Peppermint Twist 6109 Guitar
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