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Thread: 61 F5 at Carters

  1. #1
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    Default 61 F5 at Carters

    Isn't this F5 an F12?

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    Registered User Charles E.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Looks like it to me.
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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    I knew 60s F5s weren't great, but.....

    That's one heck of a typo Mr Carter

    Here's what you're looking for in a 61 F5:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    This era is very interesting to me. Did Gibson build mandolins expecting they would sell or were they only building orders that came in? They were clearly busy in other area's, primarily electric guitars. There would still be a demand for there archtop guitars even though by this time they also would mainly be electric. The Les Paul was just discontinued and they were going for the space age look with Flying V's SG's and Explorer's
    So in the mandolin world bluegrass is in it's infancy and there aren't a lot of non-professional players, but the festival scene is about to arrive. I've seen players like Jesse Mc Reynolds, Dean Webb and Roland White playing 50's F-5's. I don't even know how much players knew about Monroe's mandolin, they just knew it was a Gibson.
    Anyway, just some thoughts about what was happening back when I was 10.

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charles E. View Post
    Is there a thread for least impressive back?…this one might be a good starter for that…
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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    1961:

    Ted McCarty is Gibson's president. His interests are largely focused on furthering the development of the electric guitar. I don't know whether Julius Bellson, who was a mandolinist, was still working there or not. The quality of their flat top guitars is deteriorating-- they are building them heavy, sticking those horrible adjustable bridges on them, and they are about to introduce plastic bridges on their lower end models.

    Gibson was probably only making mandolins to fill an occasional order and uphold what would at that time have been considered an ancient company tradition.

    Martin builds 151 mandolins that year, a slow year compared to the 200+ they built in surrounding years. Their guitar production has been cruising along at an average of 6000 to 7000 instruments a year since the early 1950's. It will be five more years before they produce 10,000 guitars for the first time.

    Perhaps the aging John D'Angelico builds one or two mandolins, but none are documented.
    Harmony may still be making a handful of mandolins, but certainly not many. Does Favilla make any? Who knows.

    The top 5 on Billboard's Hot 100 were "Tossing and Turning" by Bobby Lewis, "I Fall to Pieces" by Patsy Cline, "Michael Row the Boat Ashore" by the Highwaymen, "Crying" by Roy Orbison, and "Runaway" by Del Shannon.

    At the top of the country charts [in no particular order] were Marty Robbins, Jimmy Dean, Kitty Wells, Faron Young, Patsy Cline, the young George Jones, and Johnny Horton. Flatt and Scruggs had two singles that did well, and the Louvin Brothers had one, but I don't know how much mandolin can be heard on those records.

    Folk acts were enjoying a bit of popularity, much of it "underground," but most of them weren't using mandolins, airplay was very limited, and record sales were modest, except perhaps for the Kingston Trio [who never claimed to be a true folk group].

    The young Beatles were working in bars in Liverpool and Hamburg. It would be another 3 years before they would turn the music business upside down.

    My folks were listening to folks like Sarah Vaughn, Frank Sinatra, and whoever was still active from the swing music era. We had a few records by Pete Seeger, Josh White, and Django Reinhardt around the house, a copy of "West Side Story," and Toscanini conducting Beethoven's 5th Symphony, but most of what I heard was what was on the radio. I was too young to put a record on the turntable.

    Mandolins were not heard much in the US in those days, except perhaps in the rural South.
    The only mandolin music I heard back then was Pete Seeger playing "Woody's Rag" on his "Goofing-Off Suite" record, or perhaps an occasional Italian-American popular song on the radio with a mandolin in the backup band. I wouldn't hear Bill Monroe or David Grisman until the 1970's.
    Last edited by rcc56; Jul-28-2021 at 2:19am.

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Yeah, but the Greenbriar Boys (formed 1958) were bringing bluegrass to NYCity and the folk scene, Duffey and the Country Gentlemen recorded Bluegrass at Carnegie Hall, Monroe recorded Going Back to Old Kentucky with Clements and Spicher, Flatt & Scruggs were featured on NBC Nightly News, including Sechler's mandolin and vocals in Polka On the Banjo, and Chris Hillman formed the Scottsdale Squirrel Barkers. Oh, and the Charles River Valley Boys released their first record.

    So there was a lot of the "Great Folk Scare" going on, and bluegrass was getting talked up as "Folk Music In Overdrive" whateverthehell that means. Gibson didn't make, or sell, many top-end mandolins, for sure, but mandolins were there if you looked for them. And I wish, wish, wish I'd picked up a Lloyd Loar F-5 for $800-1K or whatever they were going for then.
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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Besides being popular in the south bluegrass also became popular on northern campuses. Guys like the Charles River Valley Boys, Grisman and Wernick were all exposed this way.

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    HAs anyone told Carters it's listed wrong? Should be listed as an F12 for $3000, sounds about right...

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    I sent them a message the other day: "Isn't this an F-12?".
    Haven't heard back...
    "it's not in bad taste, if it's funny" - john waters

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Quote Originally Posted by John Rosett View Post
    I sent them a message the other day: "Isn't this an F-12?".
    Haven't heard back...
    Me too. Guess they're sticking with their assessment.

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Walter wrote the book. I guess he knows it's an F5.....

    https://www.amazon.com/Mandolin-Amer.../dp/1495001539

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Quote Originally Posted by Bazz Jass View Post
    Walter wrote the book. I guess he knows it's an F5.....

    https://www.amazon.com/Mandolin-Amer.../dp/1495001539
    This is a bit out of bounds. There's no need to go there. Walter and Christie have a sizeable staff and I know for fact they don't take the pictures, upload them to the web, write every word of every description for every store product and place the ads. They have an enormous amount of inventory and pressure running a business during a pandemic. If it's such a bother, call the shop and report this troubling development.

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Just testing out a new strategy for publicity. Looks like it worked.

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    It is updated in the Classifieds and Carter’s.

    Price is $4k+

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Yup, updated as an F-12. They’re good people running (IMO) the premier acoustic music shop in the country. Mistakes happen.

    (But, yeah, that’s a pretty unremarkable back, lolol)…

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Quote Originally Posted by CES View Post
    Yup, updated as an F-12. They’re good people running (IMO) the premier acoustic music shop in the country. Mistakes happen.

    (But, yeah, that’s a pretty unremarkable back, lolol)…
    That’s why we buy them for the sound
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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill McCall View Post
    That’s why we buy them for the sound
    I have not heard this mandolin but it seems to me that for over 4K one could easily find a much better sounding and built mandolin than a 1960's Gibson. And at Carters at that. They are in the business of selling instruments and this is one they have in stock, nothing more.
    Charley

    A bunch of stuff with four strings

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles E. View Post
    I have not heard this mandolin but it seems to me that for over 4K one could easily find a much better sounding and built mandolin than a 1960's Gibson. And at Carters at that. They are in the business of selling instruments and this is one they have in stock, nothing more.
    My comment was not focused on that instrument, it was a general comment on aesthetics versus sound quality of any particular instrument, triggered by the ‘plain back’ statement. While this instrument has a plain back, many plain Jane instruments sound fantastic and some beautiful ones are not impressive. I’ve played both types, as I’m sure many folks have.

    You might do better for $2k and worse for $10k, depends on who’s listening.
    Not all the clams are at the beach

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandolin Cafe View Post
    I know for fact they don't take the pictures, upload them to the web, write every word of every description for every store product and place the ads.
    Wasn't aware of that. Apologies. My comment was a tongue in cheek dig, but I can appreciate in re-reading it may not have come across as such.

    I am a big fan of the shop, and Walter way before that

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill McCall View Post
    My comment was not focused on that instrument, it was a general comment on aesthetics versus sound quality of any particular instrument, triggered by the ‘plain back’ statement. While this instrument has a plain back, many plain Jane instruments sound fantastic and some beautiful ones are not impressive. I’ve played both types, as I’m sure many folks have.

    You might do better for $2k and worse for $10k, depends on who’s listening.
    But having a fancy flamed back makes those of us who can't play so well feel important!
    Last edited by Bazz Jass; Jul-31-2021 at 9:50pm.

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    Default Re: 61 F5 at Carters

    yes, the 50's and 60's F5 and F12 were custom order only instruments, or made to order. A dealer would normally get a downpayment (it varied) and the order was placed. It could take 6 months to 2 years before your mandolin came in. If you found a dealer that had one "in stock" it was one that was turned down by the custom order person ( or maybe they found a Loar for less money while waiting on the custom order). Dean Webb when he bought his new F5 in 1956, said he owned several other mandolins including a nice mid 20's Fern, but felt the '56 was always his favorite and did all of the Dillards recordings with it. Other 50's owners like McReynolds, White, Stoneman, were happy at the time but moved onto better mandolins as they found them. Donna Stoneman has gone back to her 1953 F5 after recent repairs to it. And several like Rinzler and McReynolds had their old 50's converted to Loar specs. but sold them later. And don't forget Larry Rice who found a nice 1958 F5 and kept playing it until he died.

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