Vintage Instruments: Gibson Guitars

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1931 Gibson TG-1

A beguiling tenor guitar from Gibson’s finest period, this TG-1 features a delicate and light build, gorgeous hand-rubbed sunburst finish, and many pretty details. Beyond that, it has the sound – the cavernous, deep, smokey, dark, and emotive tone that these early L-body Gibsons are famous for.

Built during a period where banjo players were starting to pick up guitars, the TG-1 features a standard L1 body fitted with a tenor banjo style neck. The guitar’s headstock even features Gibson’s Style 3 headstock inlays and banjo tuners to help add appeal to banjo players of that era.

In remarkable and original condition, the TG-1 shows three small repaired back cracks and a couple of reglued brace ends. It’s completely original but for one of its bridge pins and plays very nicely. Set-up was done here at Folkway, and we have it set up and tuned to octave mandolin tuning (GDAE), which we feel brings the most of out just about any tenor guitar. Mahogany sides and back, X braced red spruce top, rosewood bridge and bound fingerboard, bone nut and saddle, Grover pegs.

Original chipboard case included, with a few period string packs in the case pocket.

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