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Thread: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

  1. #1
    Registered User Steve Sorensen's Avatar
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    Default 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    Earlier, there was a discussion of this emerald green F5 built by Rolf Gerhardt and Jeff Harrison.

    Thought it would be nice to have the pictures of this unique early F-style build by one of the great instigators of the 1970s mandolin building Renaissance "on the record" here --

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    Amazing to think Rolf built this in 1976 . . . back when the earliest Gibson copyists were just getting started. What a welcome relief from the endless barrage of "Cremona Brown".

    Sure would have liked to see Sam Bush or John Duffey picking on this sweet baby back in the early days of psychedelic Newgrass!

    Steve

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  3. #2
    Kelley Mandolins Skip Kelley's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    Steve, thanks for sharing that! It looks so awesome! I’m guessing by the label, that it was built for Harry West? I saw his green Pag but, I never knew of this one. Maybe he had sold it. I love that green color!!

  4. #3

    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    Glad you like it.

    I’d keep it in the back of a closet.

    Now if it were translucent red.........
    Last edited by Bill McCall; Aug-12-2019 at 12:33pm.
    Play it like you mean it.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    Wish I’d seen this before Saturday...was passing through Statesville and would have stopped in to check it out!
    Chuck

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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    I might like it if I was a leprechaun !
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

  7. #6
    Registered User Gunnar's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    Well, that's actually quite a good looking instrument! Although it'd probably attract lots of little kids, which could be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on the kids....
    Mandolin: Kentucky KM150
    Other instruments: way too many, and yet, not nearly enough.

    "Imagine life without mandolin. Now slap yourself! Never do it again!" -Gunnar Salyer

  8. #7
    Registered User Bob Clark's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    You know, it is a thing of beauty. Truly amazing. But I really have no desire to own it. It's enough just to know it exists.
    Purr more, hiss less.

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  10. #8

    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    The first thing I thought when I saw it:
    Reminds me of the old movie "The Boy With Green Hair" ...

  11. #9
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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    I bet James Condino likes it!

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  13. #10
    Registered User grassrootphilosopher's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    For whatever reason the other thread got closed. I think that the mandolin and its builder deserves recognition. So hereīs my amended post from the other thread.

    The mandolin was built in a period when Gibson didnīt make nice instruments. The Gibson F-5 revamp by Roger Siminov hadnīt really happened yet. At that time pickers often relied on F-5 copies by (good) luthiers.

    Rolfe Gerhardt is a good luthier. He built mandolins under his own name and under the "Unicorn" as well as the "Phoenix" brand (donīt confuse it with the and "Unicorn and Mustang" brand by Taku Sakashta). I have played a Rolfe Gerhardt built mandolin at the great TAMCO (Brighton/UK) and was very pleased with the built and sound. I believe that Rolfe Gerhardt is a member here. Rolfe Gerhardt has retired as a luthier. His brand "Phoenix" was continued by Jenny Warner (http://www.phoenixmandolins.com/phoenix/about-phoenix/). Even though the website is still up, Jenny Warner has discontinued to build Phoenix mandolins.

    The label indicates that the mandolin was built for Harry West. Harry West was a very well known instrument dealer. He passed on some years ago. He was very knowledgable when it came to instruments. For example, he once had the Pee Wee Lambert Lloyd Loar F-5 for sale, that Ricky Skaggs owns now. I would say that a person who was this involved with instruments and mandolins in particular does know who should build him a nice mandolin. (Example: See David Grismans involvment with Giacomel mandolins or Mike Comptonīs involvment with Gilchrist and Duff mandolins; I think this speeks for itself)

    Consensus seems to be that Harry West had a Paganoni mandolin that John Paganoni especially made for Harry West finishing it in a green color. So it looks like Harry West had a soft spot for "green".
    Olaf

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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    You can read more about this mandolin at harryandjeaniewest.com. It is still listed on their site under vintage instruments. This was definitely a huge step outside the box in 1976.

    Adam

  16. #12
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    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    In a timeline you would find this was about the time Steve Gilchrist made his first mandolins, Mike Kemnitzer was about 2 years in and Tom Ellis was building in Austin and I assume knows Jeff and Rolfe.
    Also about the time I bought the Siminoff book and studied it like no other book in my life.

  17. #13

    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    So many comments and emotions about the color but nothing about the voice or playability; it seems like a lot of people forgot what the mandolin is actually for.

    It was the 1970s....the world already had enough $#!t brown mandolins....

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  19. #14

    Default Re: 1976 Gehrardt Green F5 Pictures

    Quote Originally Posted by grandcanyonminstrel View Post
    So many comments and emotions about the color but nothing about the voice or playability; it seems like a lot of people forgot what the mandolin is actually for.

    It was the 1970s....the world already had enough $#!t brown mandolins....
    We got a picture, not a sound clip. I commented on its looks, not it’s, as yet unknown, sound. But if it sounded great, it would still be ugly, to me anyway.

    Ymmv
    Play it like you mean it.

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