2000 - 2002 - Move, Trade Shows, Stars & foreign countries

2000 – feeling good …

We had settled in well in our Südstadt rear building. Our parts warehouse consisted of a gigantic Mauser rolling shelf, which we were allowed to take over from the previous owner free of charge, i.e. one row of shelves next to the other, all moveable with electric motors, so that only one "aisle" remained open at a time to get the parts from their boxes for shipping. The pick-up wrapping machine also continued to work perfectly. It was quite crazy that our rear building had this roundabout-like pavilion in the middle, which any "normal" entrepreneur would have turned into the boss's office, the control center. But we didn't need such a thing and we wrapped our pickups there perfectly. Because handling this tenth of a millimeter thick enamelled copper wire requires good light!
Halle Südstadt
As always all kinds of rebuilding, but we produced diligently, and a table tennis table invited for relaxing breaks ......

2000 - Los Angeles, NAMM-Show

Anyway, L.A., Anaheim is definitely nice in January. It is best to book a direct flight from Germany to Los Angeles, because stopovers in the USA almost always end in chaos: Connecting flights missed, flight cancelled or whatever else. Arriving at LAX-Airport, you first have to go through the immigration formalities, which regularly causes long queues in front of the check-in counters. This takes at least an hour. Finally outside, the first cigarette, then into a shuttle bus to the car rental, (where hopefully you have already reserved a car from home). From now on everything goes relatively fast. You grab a street map (navigation systems were not available back then) and take Freeway 105 east, then 405 south, a few more miles on 22 and you're in Anaheim, where Disneyland is located directly across from the exhibition center. And that's exactly the good thing about the NAMM show: the infrastructure. The hotels and motels are in the immediate vicinity.

After a hearty breakfast in one of the abundant eating places you can go to the fair on foot and without stress. As an exhibitor one comes fast without lining up by the rear entrance inside, where one must show his badge and his identity card. But that's it then.

Here is a breakfast in Tiffy's Restaurant including the totally typical American receptionist we were fascinated by for many years.

In January is usually quite good weather, in any case over 20 degrees. In addition, the Americans control the volume in the halls much better than is the case in Frankfurt. So the whole daily routine is much more relaxed. And the evenings are also more pleasant than in Frankfurt's hectic pace. They start at 6 p.m., because that's when the sun has set, and you step out of the exhibition hall into the darkness. A short visit to the Alamo Inn - our regular hotel for decades. A two-story, typically American motel from the 1950s with a huge courtyard as a parking lot. Apart from the NAMM, most of the guests are visitors to Disneyland directly across the street, separated by the palm-planted Katella Avenue.

Around 7 p.m. you get into your rental car and drive to dinner. In L.A. you can eat really good Japanese (great tuna, raw scallops and creative sushi compositions). Only the oysters offered here are rather second rate because they are grown in brackish water, so no salt and little taste, so the Japanese add some spicy ingredients. And the supply of fresh fish is - because it is directly at the Pacific Ocean - not from bad parents. Tuna, Yellow Fin, Mahi Mahi etc.

However, good food is not possible in the immediate vicinity of the fair. Here the motto is rather: a lot and cheap (which is clearly owed to the Disneyland visitors). And especially in the evenings I prefer not to have to see those short, fat parent couples with their brats, who mostly wear Mickey Mouse caps on their heads. These people in crowds - that's almost as bad as the sceneries at the Munich Oktoberfest.

So we mostly drove on Harbour Boulevard towards Fullerton, where you can easily find Japanese restaurants on the left and right along the road. Alternatively, take Katella Avenue to the west, where you will find a restaurant called Kings Fish on your left after about five miles (it's worth the trip!). Of course you can also drive to the sea, e.g. to Newport Beach or to the Balboa Island peninsula. You can reach it either directly from Highway 1 or, if you like it romantic, a little further south by car ferry. Directly at the ferry pier of the Balboa Island Ferry, which crosses an about 100 meter wide arm of the river, there is a really nice restaurant called Newport Landing Oyster Bar, where one Sunday afternoon even a black trio celebrated bluesy jazz for general entertainment. More flair is not possible ...


2000 Messe Frankfurt

The NAMM show in L.A. in January is always a nice event with good weather in the 70’s - in contrast to the Frankfurt Music Fair, which was unavoidable at that time and took place in April. We shared a quite respectable booth with the Clovers, who had already put their main focus on their Delano pickups. Shortly before, we had designed a special Duesenberg for Carl Carlton, the "DCC" with a bigger body, because a Starplayer seemed to be a bit tiny in the hands of this very tall man. The show went well for us, and on the second day Trevor Wilkinson came along with the legendary but somewhat disturbed Peter Green, who was especially interested in our tremolos.

Here The Clovers: Sabine & Reinhard Jedamzik and my daughter Jule ...

And a new Starplayer for Sheena Ringö!

Pickup winding kits

Our own pickup production gave us this idea: we had already wound pickups with the students on Formentera and the parts were all available. So why not give people the opportunity to wind their own pickups? That's how this beautiful assortment including our official 0.063mm winding wire came about. And I suspect that all these small pickup smithies in Germany and elsewhere have sprung up as a result of our initiative.

2001 – again Frankfurt

Every damn year at least two of them. It is annoying, costs a lot of time, a lot of money, and the real financial success is hard to estimate. But being present is important. 

In the meantime I had changed the name from göldo-guitar-parts to "göldo music" in the spirit of Duesenberg guitars. In Frankfurt we were again represented by the Clovers, who already showed their Delano pickups. Reinhard and Sabine Jedamzik - simply nice people.


Heinz Rebellius (see also his foreword to my blog!) had told me that he had been sent a new guitar that produced these buzzing sitar sounds - probably a Danelectro with the Gotoh sitar bridge. A fascinating sound, but only on this special guitar. Couldn't something like this be developed as a replacement bridge for more general use?

So I thought about it: This buzzing comes about because the strings start to vibrate at one point, but then gently touch the surface of the string rest. The three-legged table seemed to me to be the simplest solution. The "table" edge where the string starts to vibrate must be slightly higher than the opposite edge, with a very slight gradient.

Such a construction for each of the six strings would have meant an enormous amount of precision engineering. The Telecaster came to mind - three pivoting "tables", each of which can be swiveled horizontally using three grub screws! Simply swap the brackets and every Telecaster becomes a sitar!

And the icing on the cake: scale length compensated! The edge of the trestle for the D and G strings is simply rounded off the wrong way round. And another one: If you get tired of playing the sitar at some point, simply tilt the brackets down by unscrewing the grub screw in the middle and it will sound like any other "normal" guitar. The buzzing simply stops!

2001 – Tito & Tarantula

Tito und Tarantula
Wow, one of my favorite bands, although of course "From Dusk 'till Dawn" by Tarantino is one of my favorite movies. Tito, same year of construction as me, is a super charismatic musician. He played a DCC (Carl Carlton), and we were proud, yeah. And our friendship has lasted until today. And still this one: On "After Dark" they bring a lot of people on stage during a long guitar solo for the "Vampire Dance". And, wow, shortly before the end Tito pulled me up too, and I sang the last chorus "Find myself in a room ..." instead of him.

2001 - göldo catalog with Quark Express in the Toscana

Göldo Katalog
I had bought this layout program to finally be able to create a new, great göldo catalog on the screen. The advantage is, of course, that you can easily change details at any time, because everything is digitally stored in a linked database. But I needed some peace and quiet, which was not to be found in the company at all. So in November I grabbed my McIntosh Cube (what a clever design!) and a few boxes of material and drove to Tuscany near Greve, where I had reserved an apartment in an agroturismo.

Of course I love the good things in life, but I can also - if I have to - convert myself into an absolute workhorse at any time. Once I have started my new "project", I can work on it for nights, days and weeks and see it through until it is finished. In this Tuscan idyll, I completed page after page for more than two weeks. Of course it was fun in this beautiful, rural atmosphere, along with good wine and excellent food. And 20 degrees Celsius was sometimes still there.

Yes, there it was printed, the catalog with all its subtleties. I've always liked to include photos in our publications that have nothing to do with our topic at all: Cars, seafood, crazy guys, whatever. Such a pure guitar parts catalog is otherwise completely boring!

Under "Old catalogs" you can have a look at the complete 2002 catalog I created in Tuscany. This was a very important cornerstone for all other göldo catalogs, because as I said, everything was linked to several databases - photos, texts, article numbers, prices etc. So you can easily and quickly add updates and make other changes.

2001 – Duesenberg 3-Step-Z-Tuners

3-Step Tuners
And finally we had been able to perfectly transfer our 3-Step design to the machine heads. The grand pianos are not only extremely Duesenberg-stylish, but also lie perfectly between the fingers when tuning with their three steps. And in addition the idea of drilling the shafts from the top all the way through so that the string is pulled all the way through the headstock. And what sticks out at the back is cut off, pulled back a bit so that nothing sticks out from the end of the string at the back, and it can be wound. My God (should you exist, and I'm absolutely sure you don't), how many times have I drilled the ends of the three high strings into my fingertips while stringing - my worst experience in all the years of tinkering with my guitar. The risk of bleeding fingertips is now greatly reduced and it has the advantage that even without a string cutter at hand you can quickly string up strings of any length during the performance! (Please cut off the end after the gig!)


2002-The German joint booth

We had rented a small space in the subsidized German exhibitor booth. It was inexpensive, and the infrastructure in terms of "drinks etc." was also well organized. Unfortunately, however, this block of about 16 exhibitors was positioned at the end of the very last hall. Very bad location, because only a few fair visitors went to this remote corner. As an eye-catcher we had a big TV screen on which a video with photos of our various Duesenberg users was running all day long. Background music: Midnight Rambler by the Stones, a concert recording with Ron Wood playing a really strong solo on our Pearl guitar.  Ingo can't listen to it anymore after four days of continuous playing at the booth, but I'm still digging it ;-)

Promo-Video part 1

Promo-Video part 2

Promo-Video part 3

So we stood there a little bit on lost ground; and this with our Ron Wood guitar, which demanded respect from at least some visitors. 

The Frankfurt fair was really huge at that time, because there were several halls for discotheque equipment, lighting, studio equipment etc. All of them areas that were practically never covered by NAMM. And in March or April: bad weather was part of the daily program. In addition, long journeys from the accommodation, then a kilometer walk from the parking garage to the booth and the continuous infernal noise in the halls. I am glad that we exhibited there for the last time in 2013. Today this trade fair as such is practically non-existent. All important companies and also the guitar makers are flying to Los Angeles for the NAMM.


Ingo immediately got down to business and soon engaged Mr. Olly Blunck as representative for the northern half of our republic, important things I would never have been able to finish that way. Olly is still doing this today.

Martin Huch

I have known Martin for ages. A gifted lap and pedalsteel guitarist and a super friendly, good person. On top of that with a sense for my sometimes vicious humor (and still a man of good taste). Martin played in Heinz-Rudolf Kunze's band for a long time, and has played in Fury In The Slaughterhouse and also with Carlton Carl. Besides his technical mind, he is an excellent photographer and especially a master of photomontage by computer. Over the years, he has taken hundreds of photos for us, like guitars and basses in front of wacky, surrealistic backgrounds, photos of musicians at all kinds of concerts, as well as lap-steel designs and other suggestions in terms of "form and graphics".

Years before, Martin had developed the so-called "Thunderlog", four lapsteel guitars of different tunings, scales and pickups, arranged on a rotating axis like a revolver drum, all mounted on a solid stand for upright operation, ingenious!  In addition, from 2006 on he was our constant companion at the Namm show in Los Angeles, where he took impressive photos, especially of Johnnie Depp and many other top stars.

We hadn't seen each other for a long time, but got in touch again when he bought a guitar from us. And there our common enthusiasm for Chris Whitley turned out. Whitley was playing the opening act for Stoppok, whose manager was Ute-Elke Schneider. Via this wire I then hired Chris for my birthday party.

The ads designed by Martin can be viewed here under "Publications" >> "Duesenberg" >> "Ads & Artworks Martin Huch"! And look at his montages of our instruments in the bizarre ambience of the Joshua Tree National Park under "Publications" >> "Duesenberg" >> "Martin Huch-Joshua Tree"! This site has its special features not only because of these gnarled, holly like trees but especially because of Gram Parsons, who is considered one of the most important men in "country music". He was involved with the Stones in the south of France on the fantastic album Exile On Mainstreet, but unfortunately became more and more addicted to alcohol and heroin and finally got the golden shot in room 8 in this small pension in Joshua Tree Park. Wikipedia and my notes here in 2009 recommended!

It should be noted that the one who invented the B-Bender with Clarence White was not Gram but a Gene Parsons.

Juni 2002 – my 50th birthday

Big party in the house of Duesenberg, Chris Whitley as special guest:! Meiomei, "Big Sky Country" is for me one of the most important musical works of all. Especially on Formentera, I played this song in the Casa of Thomas Stratmann for a few nights on permanent repeat.

Chris had moved to Europe, his daughter was in Amsterdam and he was in Dresden with his new German girlfriend. At that time, we all knew nothing about his state of health. Chris Whitley was the absolute discovery for me, for Ingo and especially for Martin Huch and we assured him of a correct fee for this evening and all the support he needed. He toured Europe and always played alone, one man show with his Dobro, and the audience was always electrified. This man had it easy, a charisma that captivated everyone.

Have some videos of him at my party on Youtube that are worth seeing.

Big Sky Country - Chris Whitley.mp4:

Poison Girl - Chris Whitley:

Life Boat - Chris Whitley:

Living with the Law - Chris Whitley:

Violin Bass

I have always been fond of short scale basses. Contrary to the opinion of many unconvinced traditionalists, they sound great, don't miss anything in the low frequencies when well built, play much more comfortably and hang pleasantly on the body. I have always liked the Höfner Beatle Bass in principle. A violin shape is simply something classic. It's just that these basses lack a bit of low end, and that's because they don't have a sustain block inside the body. So we simply modified our Starplayer body, which does have a sustain block, for a slightly wider neck. That was the Starplayer Bass. Shortly after that, we took the violin bass and added a sustain block to that as well. Both basses could boast with a reasonably adjustable bridge and a humbucker including midrange shift control. We soon added a second humbucker to the neck of both basses.

It should be mentioned that we later renamed our Star Bass to "Starplayer Bass" because of a complaint from Warwick, who had reissued their traditional "Star Bass" under "Framus", good-natured as we are.

Here is a nice review from an English music magazine:

And last but not least the Violin Bass and the Starplayer Bass, each one with two humbuckers: