Jerry Garcia's famed Alligator is up for auction!

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by Jon Silberman, Nov 3, 2019.

  1. CharAznable

    CharAznable Member

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    Let's not kid ourselves. Jim Irsay will buy this too.
     
  2. johnnyb128

    johnnyb128 Member

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  3. johnnyb128

    johnnyb128 Member

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    A few miscellaneous pics from the gallery, coolest one is annotated lyrics to Passenger, in Jerry's hand according to the sign:





     
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  4. CharAznable

    CharAznable Member

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    I know it's an iconic guitar but I see pictures and all I see is some old, modded Strat like any other you can find in a pawn shop.
     
  5. johnnyb128

    johnnyb128 Member

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    I'm sure people were modding Strats back then but not in the numbers they were in the 80's -> today. definitely not to the extent this one was....remember it would be early 1972 this was done. I'd wager it's the first modded Strat to be played by a rock star, on stage across years, and on record, but I could be wrong.
     
  6. rollyfoster

    rollyfoster Silver Supporting Member

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    It’s most likely the first truly custom modified guitar around, at least in a widely known capacity.

    Partscasters and pickup swapping are one thing but the amount of changes made to this guitar and the nature of them this one pretty much kickstarted alembic and the entire custom guitar industry.

    I’d imagine anybody else altering guitars back then was just tinkering and changing parts around. Alligator was full-bore experimental.

    It may look like a pawn shop guitar but it’s the Big Bang of pawn shop guitars IMO
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019
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  7. speedtaco

    speedtaco Member

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    Thanks for the pics @johnnyb128 !!!! I like them better than the auction pics! I’m fascinated by all the slotted head screws they used for the modifications.
     
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  8. rollyfoster

    rollyfoster Silver Supporting Member

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    those pickups are up there, too. I never realized the brass was hand-hammered like that. So cool.
     
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  9. dharmafool

    dharmafool Member

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    I was fortunate to see and hear Garcia play the Alligator at six shows. As recordings bear out, it sounded like no other guitar at that time. For me, a big part of the excitement about seeing him perform back then was knowing the guitar tones would be different—in an interesting way—than they had been before.
     
  10. johnnyb128

    johnnyb128 Member

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    Great perspective, thanks for sharing that. I can imagine at the time, if you were a guitarist, to have heard Alligator and then Wolf + the Wall within a year, it must have been incredible. Really unique, it’s something easily forgotten from the point of view of today and generations of copycats.

    Even for me, coming at it for the first time in March 90, Jerry was getting sounds out of his MIDI rig that were so unique to my young ears. Knowing nothing about the tech it was a “hows he doing that???” type of situation. Comparing back from today, I much prefer the early sound but he had a knack for doing unique stuff his whole life didn’t he?

    Out of curiosity, do you remember the dates of those shows? I’ve listened to nearly all of ‘72 and most of the best of ‘73 and haven’t heard a bad one yet, in fact, they’re the best I’ve ever heard.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2019
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  11. sergv

    sergv Member

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    Wow very interesting, If I had to pick only one GD album Europe 72 would be it and this is the guitar on the album. It's not as sexy as Wolf and Tiger, but it's definitely up there in significance.

    Also cool to see Garcia's GK250ML in that amp collection pic, I still have mine from the late 80's.
     
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  12. Lotis

    Lotis Silver Supporting Member

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    I like the Sunshine Daydream original looking 50's burst strat for Jerry strat tones. Wonder where that one ended up?
     
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  13. johnnyb128

    johnnyb128 Member

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    It's possible he gave it to David Hidalgo of Los Lobos fame who says it's a '58 (at 10:30, should be queued):

     
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  14. wgs1230

    wgs1230 Fully Intonatable Supporting Member

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    Wayne Kramer was using a modded Strat (humbucker in the middle) with the MC5 in '69.
    [​IMG]
     
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  15. johnnyb128

    johnnyb128 Member

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    Looks like he still is too. Thankfully he dropped the poofy shirt:

    [​IMG]
     
  16. GearPagent

    GearPagent Member

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    :p
    oh yeah. Like that second outfit much better :D
     
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  17. rollyfoster

    rollyfoster Silver Supporting Member

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  18. wgs1230

    wgs1230 Fully Intonatable Supporting Member

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    "How soon they forget..."
    [​IMG]
     
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  19. rollyfoster

    rollyfoster Silver Supporting Member

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  20. johnnyb128

    johnnyb128 Member

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