To mark the fiftieth anniversary of one of the world’s most celebrated bands, Alvarez released two limited edition Grateful Dead signature model acoustic guitars – ‘Flag’ and ‘Montage’ (‘Skulls’) – both adorned with instantly recognizable artwork from the Dead’s long career.
One of the most amazing stories in the history of rock music
Formed in Palo Alto, California in 1965, the Grateful Dead carved out one of the most amazing stories in the history of rock music. Over a million fans – the legendary ‘Dead Heads’ and more – recently gathered in San Jose and Chicago for five farewell shows, as the band finally hung up their touring axes.
Based on Bob Weir’s famous WY1BW
In a relationship with the Dead dating back to the eighties, Alvarez Guitars jumped at the chance to create the 50th anniversary guitars, adding to their previous Jerry Garcia and Bob Weir signature models. The 50th Anniversary models are based on Bob Weir’s famous WY1BW acoustic-electric model. In typical Alvarez style the company pulled out all stops in both design and build departments.
Alvarez’s famous forward shifted bracing system
Both guitars feature solid A-grade Western Red Cedar tops, Mahogany back & sides, and Rosewood fingerboard and ‘moustache’ bridge. Guitars are bound front and back, the fingerboard is also bound. Inside, the guitars feature Alvarez’s famous hand-finished FST2M bracing system – forward shifted and hand scalloped for incredible performance and response.
Unique screen-printing process
Cosmetically, these guitars are really something! Designed using a new and unique screen-printing process from the Alvarez custom shop, which lets the Spruce top become part of the artwork, every one of these instruments is therefore unique. At the 12th fret is a stunning lightning bolt – one of the Dead’s most recognizable trademark designs – hand crafted from premium Mother of Pearl. Another piece of Grateful Dead art that features on both guitars is the famous dancing bear on the back of the headstock.
What I see in my head
The ‘Flag’ model features a subtle background of ‘Old Glory’, plus the “skeleton band” from the cover of the live album, Dave’s Picks, Vol. 8, (Fox Theatre, Atlanta, November 30, 1980). The artwork was the creation of longtime Dead collaborator, artist Tim Truman, of whose art Jerry Garcia himself famously stated, “Wow. This guy draws what I see in my head when I’m singing the song!”
Great acoustic tone
With identical construction, both guitars have typically great acoustic tone – a magnificent blend of woody lows & mids, plus bright, clearly defined upper mids and highs – hallmarks of both Alvarez and the Grateful Dead. The body size is eminently playable. The smaller body is similar in scale to Martin’s OM-size or Gibson’s LG-1, with the Alvarez bracing system providing almost as much punch as a full-size dreadnaught.
Grateful Dead history
Only 300 of each exclusive design were produced, with the production run fully sold out and selling at secondary market prices before they were even shipped! This is the last one we have of the 'flag' design, with little likelihood of securing more, so act fast to grab yourself one, (or both!), of these fabulously collectible pieces of Grateful Dead history.
Free courier delivery
Complete with FREE COURIER DELIVERY to any address in Australia, ($100 airfreight to New Zealand, $175 to the US, Canada, UK and mainstream European countries), your Alvarez 50th Anniversary Grateful Dead acoustic ships in its original shipping container, with its own matching artwork