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Takin' Care of Business: Stolen guitar returned after 45 years


Randy Bachman, stolen guitar, Gretsch, music, COVID
SOURCE: Bachman & Bachman, YouTube

No one would disagree when I say the COVID-19 pandemic stripped the world of so much. For many, it stripped them of company, it stripped them of reliable income, it stripped them of human contact. And for some, it stripped them of their health, their sleep, and their sanity.


But the Coronavirus also brought with it surprising silver linings. Seemingly overnight, Facetime and Zoom rates skyrocketed, and friends and family all over the globe found the most creative ways to find togetherness, even when apart.


Artists and creatives who found themselves halting tours and putting live shows on hold had to find new and unique ways to connect with their audiences and share their art with the world.


For Canadian songwriter Randy Bachman, putting on online performances was the catalyst that filled a void that had been left behind nearly 50 years ago.


The Winnipeg-born musician and founder of Canadian Rock band The Guess Who tragically had his near one-of-a-kind guitar stolen from a hotel lobby in Toronto in 1976 and thanks to the power of the internet has been reunited with the long-lost instrument.


The 1957 Gretsch 6120 Chet Atkins was one of only 35 made. For any guitar buffs out there, Bachman’s Gretsch came equipped with humped fret blocks, a Chet Atkins signpost, DeArmond pickups, and a Bigsby tremolo.


Since the guitar was stolen, Bachman has purchased more than 350 Gretsch guitars in the hopes to find the Chet Atkins model from so many years ago, to no avail. Subsequently, Bachman went on to sell his collection to Fred Gretsch which is now on display at the Gretsch museum in Savannah, Georgia.