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GRETSCH 6119 CHET ATKINS TENNESSEAN, 1960
Introduced inl 1958 as the budget model
in the Chet Atkins line, the Tennessean mod. 6119 is a killer rock &
roll machine: a basic circuitry with a single FilterTron (in this case a
Pat. App. For) pickup, a graceful single-cutaway shape, a flashy red
finish, a Bigsby. Few guitars have such a strong personality. The later
Hi-Lo Tron version which replaced it was totally different from the
From a structural point of view, a 6119 from '60 is very similar to a 6120 from the same period. Both the neck and the body, thinner than a regular full-bodied archtop, are made of maple, and through the f-holes you can see the "sound-post", the rigid bracing system which connects the top to the back, conceived to reduce unwanted top vibration and feedback for louder electric volume.
Other features similar to the 6120 are the oval-button Grover tuners, the straight-bar bridge, the zero.fret, the 'neoclassic' fingerboard with 'thumbprint' inlays, the Gretsch By Bigsby vibrato, the "signpost logo" with Atkins signature on the plastic pickguard, which is black on the Tennessean and gold on the 6120. Less hardware, with only one pickup, one volume and one tone selector switch, also means a lighter instrument, with a lot of acoustic resonance, in spite of the soud-post inside. Unbound rosewood fretboard. The neck-body joint shows the typical neck-dowel in the cutaway.
The guitar is ALL original. Pickup and circuitry are untouched. FilterTron's cover still has the Pat. Applied For (P.A.F.) stamp. All the chrome plated parts are in almost perfect conditions, while the nickel-plated brass tuners show more wear. The strong red finish is in excellent shape with light checking, and only the neck shows heavy playing wear, as pictures clearly show. The neck is straight and solid, with some hairline finish cracks in the neck-heel area, but no signs of structural issues. Binding in good conditions.
Beautiful sound, loud and aggressive, with the legendary FilterTron attack. Perfect action and frets in good conditions. The guitar has its original hardshell case - a little too deep, as always happens with these early thinner guitars, but beautiful and solid.
front - body1 - body2 - body3 - in case - back - body back - headstock - knob - bridge - pickup1 - pickup2 - pickup3 - switch - tuners - soundpost1 - soundpost2 - pickguard - label - bigsby - neck1 - neck2 - logo - heel - dowel - action - case