Gibson EM150
Gibson EM-150, 1937. $2,750.
From the second year of production, here's a rare and wonderful 1937 Gibson EM-150 with its original Charlie Christian pickup. The factory order number is 246-C-6, which indeed corresponds to the year 1937 according to Spann's Guide to Gibson.
   
 It is in quite good shape, with some nicks and scratches and player wear acquired over an 83-year career. Sunburst spruce top. The back and sides have a reddish finish; the sides are mahogany but the back looks like it might be birch. Top and back are bound. Mahogany neck, rosewood fretboard. The ebony bridge is a replacement; when acquired it had a saddle crack, but it now has a new saddle. The other hardware appears to be original. The celluloid pickguard is bound, and has a cutout for the pickup. The hardshell case, although worn, still functions and appears to be an example of the highly sought-after "redline" style from the 1930s.
     The pickup has an unbound coil surrounding a blade pole piece, with large, flat bar magnets underneath. Tone and volume knobs are mounted on either side of the top. The pickup has plenty of bite, but the sound retains something of the mandolin's acoustic quality. If you're a fan of Tiny Moore's work with Bob Wills, you know what one of these instruments sounds like. Scale length is 14 in. and the nut is 1 1/8 in. wide.
     See more photos, call 425/772-0231, or for more information. $2,750 plus shipping.