Courtesy of Gretsch.com 2013 marked Gretsch’s 130th Anniversary – a milestone that has been celebrated with a wide variety of activities and events throughout the year. Below is a look at some of the celebrations that have made this anniversary so spectacular! Announcing The Celebration To ignite the celebration, Fred Gretsch sent out a message to the music world, inviting everyone to join the entire Gretsch family in celebrating their 130th year in the business. “When my great-grandfather, Friedrich Gretsch, opened his instrument-making shop in Brooklyn, N.Y., back in 1883, he couldn’t know that he was establishing a musical dynasty that has continued over four generations,” said Fred Gretsch. In January at the 2013 NAMM show in Anaheim, Calif., the Gretsch Custom Shop launched the beautiful G6118T 130th Anniversary model guitar. It turned out to be a gorgeous instrument, with a high-gloss nitrocellulose lacquer finish in Metallic Gold on the top and Black on the back and sides. The guitar also boasted multiple silver-sparkle bindings. The anniversary guitars were made even more special by the addition of a badge that boldly announced the company’s 130th year as a manufacturer. “It’s a striking design and I’m proud to see it on our instruments,” Gretsch said at the time.
Several Gretsch fans, friends, family members and business associates converged on Randy Wood’s Pickin’ Parlor in Bloomingdale, Ga., earlier this month to celebrate the company’s 130th anniversary. But the March 4 party was also celebrating the wedding anniversary of Fred and Dinah Gretsch, marking a truly joyous event. A few artists were on hand, as well. The husband-and-wife team of Richard Smith and Julie Adams got the musical festivities started, with Smith showing off his fingerpicking prowess as Adams accompanied him on the cello. Joe Robinson was up next, and his set with bassist Marcelo Bakos and drummer Tito Pascoali offered a diverse offering of original music highlighting the Australian-born phenom’s guitar heroics. After a brief break Robinson and Smith teamed up for an impromptu jam session, as the musicians took turns taking the lead on their Gretsch guitars. A finale of the Chet Atkins instrumental was certainly a crowd favorite. To view a photo album of the event, click here, and watch Fred Gretsch address the audience in the videos below, in addition to performance footage of Robinson and Smith.