With players such as Chet Atkins, Brian Setzer, Malcolm Young, Chris Cheney, George Harrison, Bo Diddley and Eddie Cochran sporting Gretsch axes, there’s no doubt you’re already familiar with the name. Favourites in the rockabilly, country and rock world, Gretsch guitars definitely have a ‘sound’ that has seen them used in just about every genre imaginable. Now residing under the Fender banner, Gretsch continue to produce classic instruments such as the Falcon, Jet, 6120, Penguin and Country Gentleman, as well as offering a suite of variations and new models to suit a range of players.
The G5622T is a hollow body instrument with a centre block, and arrives fresh from Gretsch’s Electromatic line of guitars. The body and neck are both constructed from maple, while the fretboard features rosewood and classic Gretsch ‘thumbnail’ pearloid inlays. Vintage-styled open back tuners add to the overall aesthetic, alongside the Filter’Tron-style pickups, F holes, control switches, and of course, the Bigsby tremolo system. Available in finishes of Walnut, Vintage Orange, Georgia Green and Black, the G5622T looks very much a Gretsch design.
The G5622T isn’t a big bodied archtop, but still has some girth which you can wrap your arm around, with a thickness similar to that of a 335 or Casino. The neck shape is described as ‘Classic U’ and has some thickness to it, but is still an easy player (not even close to a baseball bat feel). Twenty-two frets, 42.86mm nut width, a 12” radius, medium jumbo frets and a good setup and action help to make the guitar feel at home right away. The design also makes the guitar nice and light, ensuring it’s easy to play both sitting and standing.
How could you not jump straight into some big open dominant seven chords and hybrid picking licks on a Gretsch? The Super HiLoTron pickups are chirpy and bright, with the standard three-way switch offering everything from rounder neck tones through to twang city on the bridge. Each pickup has its own volume, with a master tone and volume switch allowing you to balance your overall sound. The guitar’s chambered body really adds some depth to the tone, making it great for vintage, fatter rock tones, while the Bigsby can take you to swampy tremolo or fast vibrato.
Of course, the G5622T will do the country, rockabilly and rock thing no worries (both with clean and dirty sounds), but it can also add some chime and sparkle to rock/pop/indie stylings and pull smooth, round jazz tones too. A great priced hollow body for those wanting to get a taste of the Gretsch look and sound.
Hits and Misses
Neck/action/feel are all super
Master tone switch can take some tweaking