Here for sale is a bit of a collector’s piece that is in on consignment from “Radio Rich.” Radio Rich was a local DJ for a Nashville local radio station for 15-20 years. In that time, he made a number of friends. One friend he made was an elderly lady who took care of a one Zeke Clements at the end of his life. Upon his death, she was gifted this guitar and then returned the favor to Radio Rich upon her passing.
From Radio Rich:
This vintage 1966 Harmony Rocket guitar was owned by Zeke Clements. He was a star of the WSM Grand Ole Opry and also the yodeling singing voice of the character Bashful in the Disney animated movie Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.
The guitar was purchased by former 15-year WSM-FM radio personality and nationally syndicated radio host Rich M. who bought it from the woman who took care of Zeke, his estate, and his personal effects prior to his death. She told Rich that Zeke’s grandchildren had “horsed around” with the guitar and it did need some work as it was pretty much unplayable and missing knobs. Rich had Nashville Fretworks do some restoration work on it in 2013 and the receipt is included. The “cupcake” knobs and logos are reproductions. It has the original working “moustache” pickups, adjustable bridge, and “trapeze.”
This is not only a vintage guitar that’s over 50 years old. It belonged to a man who has a very unique place in the film and country music history.
As Rich mentioned, Zeke Clements was a player on the Grand Ole Opry in the 1930s and ’40s known in particular for his magnificent yodeling. You, in fact, have heard his yodeling, as he played “Bashful” in the 1937 Disney classic “Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs.” They yodeling you hear as the dwarves are marching is the voice of Clements.
Functionally, the guitar plays great. The Fretworks folks did a great job on the repair! It looks like it was well played, but well maintained. The binding has been removed off the sides of the neck and sanded smooth, so it makes the neck especially thin. It also removed a little of the finish, but honestly, at first, I thought it was play wear.
As always, we cleaned it up, polished the finish, oiled the board, flushed the electronics, changed the strings and set the action as low and smooth. Comes with a super nice original vintage hardshell case and a collection of documents Rich had to accompany the guitar and confirm it’s authenticity. Given the background of the consignor, I have no issues believing that all of the provided information is genuine. I pack my guitars up tight and insure every package for the full purchase amount.
Like all my consignments, this one is being sold “as described” regardless of condition.
Got questions? Shoot me a message, I love nerding out with other gearheads!
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