Gretsch Billy Bo?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by rlc478464, Aug 17, 2008.

  1. rlc478464

    rlc478464 Member

    Messages:
    59
    Joined:
    May 11, 2007
    I saw a video blues lesson with Billy Gibbons on you tube and loved the sound he was getting from that guitar. Anyone played one of these. I have a bias against Japanese-made guitars, I must confess.
     
  2. DrumBob

    DrumBob Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    13,332
    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    Location:
    NW NJ
    I have played one and it was very comfortable, sounded great and looked, well, totally weird. It's also too expensive for a "special interest" guitar. I classify the Billy Bo in the same league as the Explorer and Flying V. The Billy Bo is a guitar people buy on impulse, it seems, then they get home, look at their credit card bill, and put the guitars up on Ebay. I saw a middle aged man buy one just like that. If Gretsch made a lower priced version in Korea, I might consider it for some strange reason.
     
  3. frank62

    frank62 Member

    Messages:
    5,375
    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    Mechanicsburg, Illinois
    ^Ah. The Rev is a middle aged man, No?
     
  4. Blauserk

    Blauserk Member

    Messages:
    1,309
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2002
    I have the same bias against non-US-made guitars, but I recently bought a Gretsch "Power Tenny" hollowbody, and I found the quality to be superb. The Billy Bos are chambered heavily, so when you pick them up they feel like nothing, and I think the lack of heft makes some people who play them think they're an insubstantial guitar.

    Shanghai Music in Oklahoma has done custom runs of them in White Penguin and Black/Silver Phoenix colors, with the added bonus of sperzel locking tuners and available bigsbys.

    Reputedly, Billy G's Billy Bos are made/remade by Bolen in Texas--they're not actually made by Gretsch.
     
  5. soulohio

    soulohio Member

    Messages:
    11,033
    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2005
    Location:
    vin drin dop
    i picked up an electromatic last weekend..the $599 list made in Korea model..and i was floored at how well the guitar played and stayed in tune...didn't sound spectacular, however.
     
  6. dzo

    dzo Member

    Messages:
    1,378
    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2002
    John Bolin of Idaho does make the guitars for Billy. He had one for sale a while back that was used in a magazine review but it was fairly expensive.
     
  7. MBreinin

    MBreinin Supporting Member

    Messages:
    3,844
    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Location:
    New Orleans, Booziana
    I had the first White Penguin Billy-Bo delivered. It kicked ass. I ended up selling it because it felt strange to play while sitting down. However, it was a sh*t hot guitar that screamed and weighed nothing. Easily the equal in quality to a made in the USA axe.

    Mike
     
  8. Bankston

    Bankston Member

    Messages:
    13,715
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2007
    Location:
    Houston
    Correct.
     
  9. frisco kid

    frisco kid Member

    Messages:
    1,785
    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2005
    Location:
    Dallas
    Don't expect to buy a guitar that the Rev. uses and get the same tone...you could have the same axe, amp and pedals and still sound worlds apart.
     
  10. KBR

    KBR Member

    Messages:
    1,606
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2004
    Location:
    Central, Oregon &
    Bolin lives in Idaho, not Texas.
     
  11. tybone

    tybone Member

    Messages:
    1,079
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2004
    Location:
    Ontario
    I actually have a Billy Bo. It's been modified with a bigsby and stainless frets. With a marshall it is very convincing in terms of the Rev tone simulation quotient. Very powerfull. With SS frets it is very smooth on the left hand. The visual impact of a guitar like that needs no mention. Let it suffice to say that old men, children, girls and wild animals all have the same reaction.

    Now, having said that, you are not going to get a lot of twang....the guitar has a meatier tone than that but for me it's a keeper.

    Larry
     
  12. bluehugh2

    bluehugh2 Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    242
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    North of T.O.
    Hey Larry, not only does that guitar have stainless frets and a Bigsby... it also has had the pickups changed from the meaty sounding originals to TV Jones Filtertrons... a bit nore spanky sounding!
    Great guitar!!! I modded it...!!!
    BTW, the Japanese Gretsch stuff is way better quality than the old USA stuff, which seems to be held together with "spit and popsicle sticks". I have a 1964 Gretsch 6120DC. Scary construction!!!... and NOT "scary-good", either! Still, a great guitar!!! :D
    Cheers, Hugh H.
     
  13. chrisjw5

    chrisjw5 Supporting Member

    Messages:
    9,335
    Joined:
    May 22, 2003
    For a grand, I'd be all over it.

    2.5x that.... no thank you.
     
  14. skhan007

    skhan007 Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,574
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Location:
    NoVA
    I'm a life-long ZZ Top fan, so I'm intrigued by the guitar. Yes, it's odd looking, but I think that's the idea- to be totally different- just like Billy G. has always been. I'm hoping to play one this coming week and know for sure if it's all that or none of that.
     
  15. larimar

    larimar Member

    Messages:
    1,941
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2007
    Is there more than one model or just just the 2.6K one?
     
  16. frisco kid

    frisco kid Member

    Messages:
    1,785
    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2005
    Location:
    Dallas
    Shanghai Music in Oklahoma had special runs in white and black that cost around $2200 to $2400 depending on whether you got a Bigsby. The everyday model which only comes in red will set you back around $1800. That's the lowest I've seen new ones go for.

     
  17. larimar

    larimar Member

    Messages:
    1,941
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2007


    Thanks for the info!
     
  18. frank62

    frank62 Member

    Messages:
    5,375
    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    Mechanicsburg, Illinois
    Why is there no Billy Gibbons Les Paul?
     
  19. MBreinin

    MBreinin Supporting Member

    Messages:
    3,844
    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Location:
    New Orleans, Booziana
    That's mine! :rotflmao

    I am telling you, that guitar ripped and it got some really cool reactions from players and non-players. I thought it looked much better sans PG, as you can see.

    I wish Gretsch would build a La Warpa replica. I think that is one of BFG's coolest axes.

    These guitars do not disappoint, trust me.

    Mike
     
  20. soulohio

    soulohio Member

    Messages:
    11,033
    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2005
    Location:
    vin drin dop
    i really like the thought of a ripping axe that weighs in considerably less than a Le Paul but i wonder if the Billy Bo takes high test or ethanol and how many miles to the gallon?
     

Share This Page