Mr. Elvin Jones' Gretsch Floor Tom

KONA

Silver Member
The latest drum to be added to my late 50's early 60's kit.

Gretsch 16" Floor Tom in Starlight Sparkle. The finish was introduced by Gretsch in 1958 to celebrate their 75th Anniversary. This drum belonged to the late Elvin Jones. The kit was leant out and never returned. The only drum to find its way back to him was this floor tom. The drum was purchased by Donn Bennett (DonnBennettMusicStudio) from Elvin's wife Keiko. The drum was then purchased by a drummer who owned it for a few years and then decided to put it up for auction. I won the auction on Sunday. A little surprised that I did....and very happy!

The drum comes with the case....with an SwissAir luggage tag (European Tour with John Coltrane?) and a letter from Keiko.
 

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  • INSIDE WITH MUTE - SILVER SEALER.jpg
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Drumolator

Platinum Member
That is way cool. Are you planning to play it? Peace and goodwill.
 

Nickropolis

Senior Member
That's pretty awesome right there, great score.

I would have to play it and try to soak up some of that energy.
 

Mediocrefunkybeat

Platinum Member
We were following that auction on another thread.

Great to know it was won by a real enthusiast! (With deep pockets!)

Looks to be in wonderful condition. Anthony will be proud of you.
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
Personally, I don't know another cat so devoted to Gretsch drums. This drum has indeed found a good home.​
 

KONA

Silver Member
Thanks guys.

Yes, I plan on playing it - with care and appreciation for where it has been.
I don't have deep pockets - I'm just very selective and when I'm after something like this I like to give it somewhat of a shot. I was really surprised that I won the auction given what I've heard a drum like this could fetch from someone like me but with 'deeper pockets.'
Now I have to pay off the Visa bill haha.........that's the realively easy part......I just don't eat for a month or so and sell one of my kidneys.

If I was younger I probably would not do this sort of thing = buy an old Gretsch floor tom for the money I paid here. But I look at it this way.....it's connected to some very nice American Jazz and drum history...and I like that. I'm getting older....seems like faster too....and I just love this stuff. It's a great hobby and no where near as expensive as collecting vintage cars or even buying a nice boat and fishing gear. I know because I work with lots of people that have boats and I can no way afford to upkeep let alone buy a big boat = Bayliner etc.

Harry - thanks for those nice words.
 

bobdadruma

Platinum Member
I wish you endless hours of happiness with your new find.
Enjoy your drum.
 

opentune

Platinum Member
Yes another thread mentions this. Wrap is still in superb condition for that age. This maybe stupid, but one of the coolest things is the case, truly authentic 'vintage' and a piece of history, as one would gather he did his name up in yellow tape himself.
 

KONA

Silver Member
Not 'stupid' I totally agree with your take on the case.
The case is part of the reason I was attracted to the auction. The 'tape' and the 'SwissAir' tag add a lot to this package in my mind.

Yes another thread mentions this. Wrap is still in superb condition for that age. This maybe stupid, but one of the coolest things is the case, truly authentic 'vintage' and a piece of history, as one would gather he did his name up in yellow tape himself.
 

Kona1984

Active member
I'm also thinking about selling this drum. It would have to go to someone that appreciates the history and of course the drummer. I have a Yamaha custom-made-for-Elvin Jones' 18. Inch bass drum head, a tee shirt, some stage played Gretsch drum sticks with display case, some NOS drum heads all with letters of Provanance from Mrs. ELVIN (KEIKO) Jones.
I have a couple of drum posters too no letters with the posters.
I could sell everything as a unit. Would have to think of a price for the drum alone. It would be more than what I paid.
20191218_003752.jpg
 

Kona1984

Active member
Not selling this gear at this time. I'm old and I've made a list of my drum stuff including rough value at this time. That's so my surviving family members may have an easier.... worry-free?... time disposing of my stuff. I know it seems a little dark to think that way but it's a fact. We will pass on sometime. I never thought about it much if at all in my 30s 40s 50s and 60s. But now in my 70s and many friends and loved ones passing on... some younger than I... I do think about it.
I'd like some of my drum gear to go to good homes so I've had the talk with family members. It makes good sense to me.
:)
 

Yamaha Rider

Well-known member
Who did he lend it to?
And why didn't it come back?
Not saying he was careless with his gear - but have you seen the photo of him nailing his bass drum to the stage floor? ?
 

Kona1984

Active member
Who did he lend it to?
And why didn't it come back?
Not saying he was careless with his gear - but have you seen the photo of him nailing his bass drum to the stage floor? ?
Donn Bennett bought it along with a room full of drum gear from Elvin's wife after Elvin passed.
The person that owned it before me bought it from Donn. A letter of provanance has passed from Keiko to Donn... to the person that bought it from Donn then to me. I will pass that letter on when and if I sell it.
 
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