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Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: June 23, 2006 16:20

the good Mathijs has suggested that a separate thread for the Zemaitae is appropriate,
and i'm inclined to agree, especially since he's providing so many cool photos and fascinating details - many thanks Mathijs!
(i'll be including some of the shots and information we've already had on other threads, just for the sake of completeness ... )

first ... Keith's old pirate Zemaitis, aka Macabre, which got stolen or burned up - or both - sometime late in 78:


- 1975, by Neal Preston

and his new replica - he's been using it only for Sway, i think?


- Ft Lauderdale, mar 12 2006, courtesy of Kanoka

and some nice "studio portraits" - i'm not sure if this is a replica or actually one of Keith's:


- all three courtesy of Mathijs

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: June 23, 2006 16:35

Ronnie's first metalfront Zemaitis - Mathijs wrote this on another thread:
"This Zemaitis was built in March 1971, as was Wood's Disc Front Zemaitis. ...
[Ronnie's] had at least four [metalfront Zemaitae], maybe five: one stolen in 1973, one stolen after 1976, one stolen in 1979.
The one he used on the 1981/82 tour might not be the same as the one he sparsely used on the 89/90 tour,
but I am not sure as the available pictures are limited."


- probably june 1971, by Craig Petty, courtesy of Mathijs

does this next shot look like about 74? which would mean it's the replica Ronnie had made after that first one was stolen?


- courtesy of Mathijs (don't know who took it or when, sorry!)

Ronnie and his Faces-era metalfront in action - I'm Losing You, apparently from 1973:





Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 2006-12-31 23:45 by with sssoul.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: June 23, 2006 16:44

some close-ups of Ronnie's third metalfront Zemaitis, with the different control set-up:


- both Chicago apr 30 1979, both by Henry Diltz, both courtesy of Mathijs



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2006-06-23 17:26 by with sssoul.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: June 23, 2006 16:44

I really wonder how Ronnie managed to get the Zeamitis that early on in his career. I mean how he was able to afford them. I had no idea there have been that many; that he has had that many stolen. The thing is: no one can really do anyhting with them. They would be recogniozed immediately. Or at least by the 3rd gig.
And I agree with Lady Sssoul that the studio shots of Keith';s guitar has the feel of a copy. But as close as I look I can not find any difference. And the headstock looks authentic.

"...no longer shall you trudge 'cross my peaceful mind."

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: June 23, 2006 16:49

Ronnie's pearlfront Zemaitis, which was apparently stolen during the New Barbarians tour:


- Chicago apr 30 1979, by Henry Diltz, courtesy of Mathijs



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 2006-12-30 17:21 by with sssoul.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: June 23, 2006 17:20

not sure when these shots were taken, but i believe Ronnie's diskfront Zemaitis
is the same one he's had since 71 - that must be why he calls it his Stay With Me guitar. :E






- all courtesy of Mathijs



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2006-07-06 09:18 by with sssoul.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: browneyedgirl ()
Date: June 23, 2006 17:22

Great photos & information on the Zemaitis guitars. Thank you, with sssoul & Mathijs!

The 3 close-up shots of the guitars (2 of the metal front & 1 of the pearl front) are by Henry Diltz.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2006-06-23 17:23 by browneyedgirl.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: June 23, 2006 17:27

smile: that figures - in more ways than one. :E
thank you BrownEyedGirll - i've updated the posts to include that.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: June 23, 2006 17:30

Ronnie's dragon Zemaitis - if anyone has any shots of him playing it i'd love to see them.
how long was this one around before it was - wild guess here! - stolen or burnt up?


- courtesy of Mathijs (don't know who took it, sorry!)

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: June 23, 2006 18:14

Has anyone here ever tried a Zemaitis? How are they to play?

(just as a matter of curiosity, since I'll never own one)

And has anyone ever tried the Duesemberg RW signature (not a Zemaitis, but it remembers the "pearl top" Z)

C

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: June 23, 2006 18:37

Wow, ahve never seen the red one. beautiful!

"...no longer shall you trudge 'cross my peaceful mind."

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: Erik_Snow ()
Date: June 23, 2006 19:00

Many thanks for this reading, with sssoul and Mathijs.
ChelseaDrugstore, you wrote that you couldn't understand how Ron could afford this guitar at such an early age,
I just wondered (if you know) how much a guitar like that costs now, and also in the 60s ? (I suppose it's much more expensive now).

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: bruno ()
Date: June 23, 2006 20:07

I add myself to the Thank-yous to our dear Sssoul and Mathijs. Very informative threads!

Liddas: I only tried a Duesenberg, but it wasn't the RW siganutre model. It was a hollowbody model, which had a P90 pickup on the neck and a humbucker on the bridge position. In any case it gave me a very good impression, and it seemed to have a very good balance between price and overall quality.

Erik: [ []] I don't know if these are over- or under-priced, but they seem to be expensive in any case!

[There'll be no wedding today...]

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: June 23, 2006 20:56

bruno Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Liddas: I only tried a Duesenberg, but it wasn't
> the RW siganutre model. It was a hollowbody model,
> which had a P90 pickup on the neck and a humbucker
> on the bridge position. In any case it gave me a
> very good impression, and it seemed to have a very
> good balance between price and overall quality.
>

I saw a RW signature for 3,000 euros!

C

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: June 23, 2006 23:50

I have a few questions about Ronnie's third metalfront Zemaitis (LesPaul shape).

It has 2 pups but 6 controlknobs
2x Volume,
2xTone and
2 x ???? <--what are these for?
I see a microswitch down south and I could think of functions what that would be good for - but I'd rather have a safe answer.

How heavy is that guitar?
the metalfront must add a few grams to it, beeing as thick as a pickguard.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: June 25, 2006 16:01

open-g Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I have a few questions about Ronnie's third
> metalfront Zemaitis (LesPaul shape).
>
> It has 2 pups but 6 controlknobs
> 2x Volume,
> 2xTone and
> 2 x ???? <--what are these for?
> I see a microswitch down south and I could think
> of functions what that would be good for - but I'd
> rather have a safe answer.
>
> How heavy is that guitar?
> the metalfront must add a few grams to it, beeing
> as thick as a pickguard.

There's a master volume right under the bridge. The microswitch is an on/off for the 18 volt active boost, the control knob behind the bridge is the volume knob for the active boost.

Zemaitis guitars are very light actually. The mahogony is extremely lightweight, and the body is thinner than a LP. I have only played the new Zemaitis guitars from Japan, and I find them among the best ever guitars ever built. They play and sound just completely encredible, I never experienced such a thing before. I am right now saving money to buy either a real Zemaitis Metal front, or a Greco Zemaitis metal top.

Mathijs

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: June 25, 2006 16:14

Erik_Snow Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Many thanks for this reading, with sssoul and
> Mathijs.
> ChelseaDrugstore, you wrote that you couldn't
> understand how Ron could afford this guitar at
> such an early age,
> I just wondered (if you know) how much a guitar
> like that costs now, and also in the 60s ? (I
> suppose it's much more expensive now).

In 1969 a '52 Tele and a '57 Strat cost $100, a '59 LP $1000, a pre-war Martin D45 $1500. In 1974 a '52 Tele and a '57 Strat cost $600, a '59 LP $1500, a pre-war Martin D45 $2500. But remember, in 1969 $1000 for a LP meant an entire year salary for the average Joe. A custom built Zemaitis in 1970 would have cost about $1000, so only accesible for the rich and famous.

In 1970, Wood had been touring the US with Jeff Beck, and the Faces were on their way to become Englands biggest party band. By all standards, Wood was rock royalty in 1970, rich enough to buy a large villa "The Wick", and to buy about any guitar he wanted.

Mathijs

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: Erik_Snow ()
Date: June 25, 2006 17:01

Thanks! It's amazing that you know those things.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: June 25, 2006 20:01

Thanks for the answers Mathjis

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: June 26, 2006 00:10

Yeah Erik, I was going to say: ask Mathijs. He Knows. Mathijs, I hope you tear it up on that Zemaitis when you get it.
The reason I was wondering about Ronnie being able to afford it, is because in that B&W pic he looks pre-Faces, maybe even pre-Beck.

"...no longer shall you trudge 'cross my peaceful mind."

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: July 6, 2006 09:01

>> in that B&W pic he looks pre-Faces, maybe even pre-Beck. <<

smile: yeah, he looks about 14 years old, doesn't he? but the photo is from 1971.

meanwhile, some more fascinating looks at that Dragon Zemaitis - or rather two of the Dragon Zemaitae.
thank you Mathijs for all these great shots!
did Ronnie ever play these on stage? what became of them? and what about the other ones referred to in those papers?









Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2006-07-06 09:02 by with sssoul.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: July 6, 2006 09:05

and while i'm here: some closer looks at the 5-string diskfront ...


- all courtesy of Mathijs; don't know who took them or when, sorry!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2006-07-06 09:10 by with sssoul.

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: July 6, 2006 09:09

smile: back to Keith's pirate Zemaitis for a minute - looks like 1975?


- probably 1975? courtesy of Mathijs; don't know who took it, sorry!

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: with sssoul ()
Date: July 6, 2006 09:13

wow - get a load of this :E


- courtesy of Mathijs

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: August 2, 2006 12:30

Just for being complete: at the Amsterdam show Wood played a Zemaitis Terzetto on Sympathy. I must say that I liked the classic look of Wood playing a Zemaitis.

[www.zemaitis.net]

Mathijs

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: Rockman ()
Date: August 2, 2006 12:52



Belin 2006........... cheers and applause to shidoobee for photo.

ROCKMAN

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: sjs12 ()
Date: August 2, 2006 13:41

Mathijs Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I must say that I liked the classic look of Wood
> playing a Zemaitis.

I think it goes further than that. For some reason, I think he plays better on a Zemaitis. It's probably just my imagination running away with me but maybe there's something about a strat that doesn't suit Woodie's playing. Perhaps it's the sound of the single coils or perhaps it's the neck or something?

Looks cool, sounds cool...

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: PiotrRSpl ()
Date: September 21, 2006 23:22

I've recenlty found this picture of Macabre - I scanned it from Tattoo Too booklet, a double cd bootleg released by Rattlesnake, with set of Tattoo You Sessions. The booklet includes plenty of pictures made circa 1978 - 1980. And one of them is this - I don't know who is it (?) but he plays Macabre. Who is it and does anybody know any more info about this picture (where it came from?)



Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: donnywas ()
Date: September 21, 2006 23:37

with sssoul Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> and while i'm here: some closer looks at the
> 5-string diskfront ...


Hey, can anybody tell me if that's the one Ronnie used to play "PLYNTH" on ???
(on his solo tours)

Re: Keith's and Ron's Zemaitis Guitars
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: September 22, 2006 00:00

PiotrRSpl Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I've recenlty found this picture of Macabre - I
> scanned it from Tattoo Too booklet, a double cd
> bootleg released by Rattlesnake, with set of
> Tattoo You Sessions. The booklet includes plenty
> of pictures made circa 1978 - 1980. And one of
> them is this - I don't know who is it (?) but he
> plays Macabre. Who is it and does anybody know any
> more info about this picture (where it came
> from?)
>
>
> [members.lycos.co.uk]

This is Jagger, and the picture is from a set of press pictures taken at Pathe Marconi, October or November 1977. There's a tour booklet by Cream Magazine with loads of pictures from this session.

Mathijs

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