Johnny Davis had several key roles within the music products industry, which made his Oral History interview particularly meaningful for the NAMM collection as we seek to preserve our industry’s great history.
For example, Johnny worked for the Barcus-Berry Company when both founders were still very active in the design and production of their world-class violins and other products.
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Fifties flattop electrics Martin actually got into the electric guitar business in the late ’50s when it started slapping De Armond pickups onto some of its acoustic guitars yielding the D-18E, D-28E and OO-18E.
These pickups were the De Armond humbuckers with chrome sides and a black center in a trapezoidal hole, large pole pieces along one side and smaller poles along the other.
For this essay, however, let’s take an alternative view and look at the company’s various electric guitars, its thinline hollowbodies and later solidbodies.
The primary starting point for information about Martin guitars is, of course, Martin Guitars: A History by Mike Longworth, one-time pearl inlaying ace and former company historian (4 Maples Press, Minisink Hills, PA).
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