Throughout the 1930's, Gibson took some of its most popular designs and manufactured them as off-brand instruments to be sold through catalogs like Montgomery Ward. The popularity of these more affordable, ladder braced instruments, such as the original Recording King guitars, lead to Gibson introducing Kalamazoo guitars as their in house 'budget' brand at the time.
This 1940 Kalamazoo Oriole is a fantastic example of a rare pre war Kalamazoo flat top from the first production year of the range. This Kalamazoo features a Spruce ladder braced top with Maple back and sides, with the veneer featuring a distinct flame. The ladder braced design projects well with a tight, punchy sound that is perfect for finger style playing. The Oriole was the top of the range Kalamazoo at the time, with the 'L-00' sized body featuring both tortoise shell binding and a beautiful tiger stripe pick guard. The Mahogany neck features a Rosewood fretboard and a markedly different profile when compared with equivalent Gibson guitars of the same period, with a very comfortable and playable rounded 'C' profile, reminiscent of much later Gibson acoustic guitar necks.
This guitar is in good condition, and has benefitted from some work undertaken by our luthiers to ensure it continues to play and sound as it should. This guitar has had a full service and appraisal by our luthiers at the Vintage Instrument Workshop, including a neck reset, bellying reduction and the reseating & re-lacquering of the original bridge. This guitar also includes a 3 year warranty for any set up or repair work with our luthiers.