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Old 02-19-2021, 03:45 AM
Kona Kona is offline
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Default 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

I bought these locally in 2009. I'm second owner. Ist owner bought them in a local music store... long since closed down. They're right at that transition time of 3ply to 6ply shells. This set came from the factory with snare, bass and tom of 3ply and floor tom 6ply.
The original owner passed away in 2005 and I didn't know him. I bought the drums from his daughter.... she never played them.
I'm a little confused after looking at the catalogs of the day.... I have a 58 and 61.... can't find 1959 and 60.
The confusion for me is I've been told these are a Name Band set and have never questioned that until I looked for my drum sizes offered in the catalogs.
1958 and 61 catalogs show Name Band bass drum optional size 20x14 which mine is. But, when it comes to toms they don't list 12 x 8 or 14x14 floor toms as size options for Name Band sets. The only set with those tom sizes is the Progressive Jazz. The Bop Sets of the day did not offer the smaller tom configurations either.
You could however buy the smaller toms by themselves.... They're listed further into the catalogs.
My drums are pre- paper tags. They have Silver Sealer. The floor tom has the diamond plate leg supports which are shown in the 61 catalog. The Nodal supports shown in the 58 catalog. I'm thinking the transition for the supports was 59 or so.

In the end I guess my drums could very well be Name Band with a special order of 12x8 and 14x14 toms.
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  #2  
Old 02-19-2021, 07:38 AM
Round Badge Round Badge is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

Kona, The Name Band set included 22-13-16 with optional 20. Never included 12 or 14. I had a '67 Name Band, 20-13-16 in Moonglow Satin Flame. Looked and sounded killer.Hope it helps. Round Badge
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Old 02-19-2021, 09:59 AM
leedybdp leedybdp is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

Oh my God! Yet another music store ordered a group of drums that were not shown together in a catalog and given an outfit name. This should be at least a misdemeanor offense if not a felony. The store might have ordered these four drums for a specific customer. Or, the store might have been as irreverent to conventional practice as the stores that I patronized in the Chicago area in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s. They ordered drum sets in configurations that they knew would sell quickly rather than sit on the sales floor for months. Once again, I will suggest that, if you want your drum outfit to have a name, choose one for it. If the drums were mine, I think that I would name the drum set the "Fit in my car trunk" outfit. They look like a very nice and sweet-sounding drum set. Enjoy many years of drum happiness with them.
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Last edited by leedybdp; 02-19-2021 at 11:45 AM.
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Old 02-19-2021, 11:03 AM
O-Lugs O-Lugs is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

^^^Yeah...IF you had a time machine and could go back to that time, then it would be absolutely ludicrous to be concerned about a name of a drum set or if the configuration matched what the Gretsch company put in their catalogs...


...Oh...but wait....It is 60 years later...and now there is a group of people who want to have one of those named (by Gretsch -not Joe Shmoe) kits for their collection.

Damn that Gretsch company (and every other vintage drum company, too!) for naming their kits! How could they have done such a terrible thing to us? They should have known this was going to happen when they made these decisions all those decades ago! Oh well.

Nice looking Gretsch drums, by the way. I'll bet they sound "great"!
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Old 02-19-2021, 11:54 AM
leedybdp leedybdp is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

Some of the very large drum sets pictured in catalogs were pieced together by the marketing people from drums that were in the warehouse just to show the possibilities of what someone could order.
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Old 02-19-2021, 12:58 PM
O-Lugs O-Lugs is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

^^^I don't doubt that for a New York second! I guess that was someone's job back then. But things sure did change over time and now people really desire those marketing people's ideas. And I also suspect that companies offered famous drummers a big drum set for the same purpose. The larger the kit, the more impressive the advertising. Great big kits were "the" thing for awhile....until all of us unknown guys who didn't have roadies, started getting sore backs and venues stopped having stages and started moving a table or two out of the corner, instead. But those were the days, eh?
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Old 02-19-2021, 01:33 PM
jda jda is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

it could be a Progressive Jazz (minus the Max Roach 4/14 snare)

Listed in the
"Downbeat Part Two- October 5, 1955"
"America's Top Drummers Play Gretsch"

a catalog supplement that apparently came with a downbeat magazine)

did you ever see that catalog? I have it. Shelly Manne and Max Roach pictures are next to the set (Copper Mist)
oh. $454. price listed
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Old 02-19-2021, 01:37 PM
jda jda is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

PDF is here:
page 3.
your Floor tom must be a few couple three years newer

(hit that pop out thingy top right corner)

(interesting way the site displays pdf's..

SO I WOULD call your set a Progressive Jazz from the mid 50s (55) with a later floor tom.

Could have been sold that way originally somehow
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Last edited by jda; 02-19-2021 at 01:42 PM.
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Old 02-19-2021, 02:03 PM
O-Lugs O-Lugs is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

EXCELLENT jda! Thanks.

And again...None of this stuff would have made any difference to anyone, at the time....Now it does, though! Thank God for the catalogs and supplemental information and the detectives out there who find the answers!
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Old 02-19-2021, 02:18 PM
leedybdp leedybdp is offline
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Default Re: 1959 Gretsch Gold Sparkle

Thank goodness for the catalog-correct people because they ignore the drum sets not pictured in the catalogs. Consequently, there are some bargains to to be found for those of us who don't obsess about catalog-correctness. For those folks' catalog obsessions, I can point to my 1966 Rogers Top Hat outfit that is suitable to be a catalog picture. My 1963 Leedy Shelly Manne outfit consists of alternate sizes listed in the catalog as available for this outfit. It wouldn't matter to me if neither set was presented in a catalog.
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