I’ve been wanting to build my older brother Mike a guitar. He’s done a million things for me over the years. We both share a passion for music, guitars, and The Beatles. As we talked over what to make we kept coming back to a Gretsch Duo Jet. Great guitar. It would give me some challenges that I’ve never faced before. Mike’s band back in High School used to haul their equipment around in an old Packard hearse. It was black and they had written their band name, My Friends, on the side in white block lettering. That was the first thing that popped into my head was to make the guitar black with the band name as it was on the hearse.
We wanted to theme the guitar around his band. I did the traditional Gretsch hump block fretboard inlays in pearl and engraved all the names of the people who’ve been in the band in chronological order. The fingerboard wood is ebony.
I put the logos of the band influences on the pick guard.
The body and neck are mahogany with the neck being a five piece lamination of mahogany and maple. On the back I did a water slide decal taken from the poster that My Friends used back in the sixties. The finish is nitro lacquer.
I carved the Gretsch logo out of pearl for the head piece and added a small nod to guitar hero George Harrison on the truss rod cover.