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Ernest Tubb's Custom Epiphone

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Hi Mojo


Bixby did do some custom replacement guitar necks for various country stars and musicians.The Lefty Frizzell

guitar shown in the photo was offered for sale several years ago and brought big money.




Thanks Moose, great to get the background on that guitar. I also have an LP by Lefty with the same J200/Bigsby hybrid on the sleeve (The One & Only Lefty Frizzell).


Some more info from Wiki: Frizzell's signature guitar was a 1949 Gibson J-200 (Model SJ-200). Originally built by the Gibson Guitar Corporation, it was retrofitted in early 1951 with a custom neck and pickguard by guitar maker and innovator Paul Bigsby. In a 2003 interview Merle Haggard recalled, "When I was a teenager, Lefty got me onstage [at the Rainbow Garden in Bakersfield, California] and handed me that guitar. That is the first guitar I played on a professional stage." For many years it had been on loan to and displayed at the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, Tennessee. In January 2005 it was returned to the Frizzell family.



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The Ernest Tubb TV shows from the 60's are available on DVD from Ernest Tubb record shops in Nashville or online.

Leon Rhodes on guitar and Buddy Charleton on pedal steel was the premier combination on the country circuit.

I was fortunate enough to to study PSG with Buddy when he retired from the road. He had a ton of great Troubadour stories.

Leon still plays regularly with Anita Stapleton at ET's record shop on Broadway. You can catch them there on Saturday afternoons.

Leon has switched to mostly Tele playing now.

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Another celeb Epiphone. Here's Ralph Davis playing with Jean Shepard in the 50s. I think he's using an Epiphone Emperor without a pick-up. The neck markers don't look right for an Emperor though, so I could be wrong.




Almost looks like the neck markers on the excellente. It also doesn't have the regular vine inlay must be an early maybe 30s?

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Ernest had a sponsorship deal with Epiphone. His whole band played Epic. Ernest had a custom Frontier, and an Excellente. Loretta Lynn also played a n Excellent, ad has it till this day.
Leon Rhodes played custom Sheratons. As did Steve Chapman who followed him on lead guitar.

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