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What guitar did Johnny Smith use
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fws6



Joined: 30 Apr 2008
Posts: 33

PostPosted: Tue May 20, 2008 8:20 pm    Post subject: What guitar did Johnny Smith use Reply with quote

Does anyone knoe what guitar is Johnny Smith holding on the cover of Moonlight in vermont ? It is a blonde electric cutaway with the pickup selector on the lower bout. All I found is he used a D'Angelico in 50s, Guild from 55-60 (or at least thats when he was with guild) and the gibson signature model thereafter. But what was the electric he played in 52 ???
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Mike Detlefsen



Joined: 04 Jun 2006
Posts: 98

PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 7:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It looks like one of his Gibsons, they are the only ones I've seen him playing that had a switch with a white knob in the cutaway part of the guitar. The picture may not be the same one that was on the original album.

It may not have been his guitar at all. Frequently the photographic studio would provide an instrument to pose with. I've seen a picture of Les Paul with a Gretsch. Les stated that 'they' just grabbed a guitar and put it in his hands, and that he has never used a Gretsch.

In all likelihood, Johnny was playing his D'Angelico on the album. He reportedly played that on recordings even while signed with Guild. It looks as though he didn't use the Gibsons until he went with Verve.
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ed norton



Joined: 03 Nov 2005
Posts: 762

PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 12:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lgiro wrote:
when i saw this topic, i thought it was a trick question. now i get it.

i'm sorry but i really don't know what that guitar was. i always thought it looked like a sunburst, but its a dark picture so what do i know...


ah everything is a trick question. It's funny alot of times i know someone is wrong or misinformed, but why point it out.? It just starts an argument that i'd rather not spend time with. Or why explain yourself ? most people read there own posts 80 percent more than the ones they reply too. It gets frustrating, but i suppose the only answer is to play musical examples...... but then judging by the lack of responses in the post your own music section, well people don't listen to that either. everyone is protecting their reputation , but is the reputation even real? basically the internet killed music. Porn became mixed with music and it all went to the birds. Myspace and Youtube.... everyone is star, but they never even performed anywhere. They play 2 complicated arrangements their teacher showed them, but can't play "Sittin On The Dock of The Bay" at a 30 dollar gig......... On porn and music: there are 2 types of guys..... those who look at porn and those who lie, so don't tell me music isn't mixed with porn. everything is invalid, there is no such thing as jazz, don't kid yourself myspace heroes. don't give me any righteous Christian bull either, we all know about "those guys" ,from reverend F-nut to father show n tell......Lies ,lies ,and more lies.
FFFFFFF paragraphs, this aint F'n english class.
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Generic Sobriquet



Joined: 03 Jul 2007
Posts: 804

PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Word?
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johnp



Joined: 03 Jan 2007
Posts: 111
Location: CT

PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2008 11:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I had to put money on it I would say it is an L5. The only Johnny Smith model I have seen with 2 pickups would have been a Gibson but they were floating pickups and the knobs and switch were on the pick guard.

John
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ingeneri



Joined: 03 Nov 2005
Posts: 441

PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Last edited by ingeneri on Wed May 19, 2010 7:27 pm; edited 1 time in total
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jazzbox



Joined: 21 Aug 2007
Posts: 122
Location: New York

PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any electric stuff from the 50's would have been his D'Angelico. There's a definite possibility he could've attached a rhythm chief pickup to it. After the Johnny Smith Floating pickup was created I believe he fitted that to his D'A. By the time of the 60's it's hard to say what he did and didn't use in the studio because he was endorsing certain brands. In other words, he could've used the D'A in the studio but could obviously never been able to say that for fear of being in breach of contract.

I think his earlier records that were produced with the D'Angelico are some of the best tones to ever be recorded. So sweet sounding.
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jazzbox



Joined: 21 Aug 2007
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Location: New York

PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ingeneri wrote:

Now let's get really obscure and figure out what amp he used Twisted Evil


Ahhh... that would be the infamous "Fountain of Sound"!
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Mike Detlefsen



Joined: 04 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jazzbox wrote:
In other words, he could've used the D'A in the studio but could obviously never been able to say that for fear of being in breach of contract.


I don't know about "obviously," it may very well depend on the contract. Les Paul has been pretty upfront that he didn't use the Gibson Les Paul models for recording until sometime in the 1970's, when the Les Paul models came out with low impedance pickups. He continued to use the Epiphone "clunker" until then. Les's contract apparently only stipulated that he had to use a Gibson for personal appearances ("Les Paul: In His Own Words").
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JohnB



Joined: 31 May 2007
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Location: Preston, UK

PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

he used an BC Rich Warlord 7 string through a Boss Metal Zone i think....
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Creekwriter



Joined: 19 Jul 2005
Posts: 12
Location: Lincoln, CA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2008 7:01 am    Post subject: Re: What guitar did Johnny Smith use Reply with quote

fws6 wrote:
Does anyone knoe what guitar is Johnny Smith holding on the cover of Moonlight in vermont ? It is a blonde electric cutaway with the pickup selector on the lower bout. All I found is he used a D'Angelico in 50s, Guild from 55-60 (or at least thats when he was with guild) and the gibson signature model thereafter. But what was the electric he played in 52 ???


I have a photo of Johnny playing a Guild which looks like the Moonlight In Vermont cover you mention.

Just to add to the mix: I have another one of him in 1949 playing an Epiphone Emperor, blonde, non-cutaway, with what looks like a DeArmond pickup.

Re: Amps, on one of his old 10" LPs from the 50's, the liner notes say he recorded jacked directly into the recording console to eliminate string squeaks. Unfortunately my memory of when I saw him at Birdland in '56, has faded and I don't recall what amp he used....or maybe it was because I was so blown away at the time (I was 17...oops!).
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fws6



Joined: 30 Apr 2008
Posts: 33

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always thought it was the original cover little do I know. If they made that cover later it could be any guitar

Can you post a pic of that Guild ? I'd love to see it... If it is that guitar it must have been an x550

thanks Frank
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greentone



Joined: 31 May 2008
Posts: 670

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 2:00 am    Post subject: Cover photos, contracts, and recordings... Reply with quote

If you are looking at the CD, the cover shows Johnny Smith and a partial shot of a blonde archtop cutaway guitar--no way to tell make or model from the angle. However, I am looking at the vinyl, too.

"Moonlight In Vermont" was issued on Roost. The cover showed an artist's rendition of an electric guitar and a saxophone. Clearly, the guitar was not a real model, nor something that Johnny Smith. However, the Roost album that predates MIV--The Johnny Smith Trio, "The Sound of the Johnny Smith Guitar" (Roost 2243 versus Roost 2251 for MIV)--shows Johnny Smith seated on the cover holding his D'Angelico blonde cutaway.

I'd bet the bank that this is the guitar on MIV. The Guild (which he didn't like) and the Gibson didn't yet exist.
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Creekwriter



Joined: 19 Jul 2005
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Location: Lincoln, CA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, but as Frank stated, the guitar in the later MIV photo in question has a pickup switch on the lower cutaway bout, so it is not his D'Angelico Excel. Sorry that there is no way to post the photo of the Guild that I have, as it does have the pickup switch.
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greentone



Joined: 31 May 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 4:42 am    Post subject: Guild not making guitars when Moonlight in Vermont recorded Reply with quote

Moonlight in Vermont was recorded by Johnny Smith in 1952. Guild was registered as a corporation in October 1952 and started making guitars the next year. I'd still say that MIV is the D'Angelico.
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