I cannot overstate what a thrill it is for me to present this guitar for sale. George Golla was one of my Australian Jazz guitar heroes back in the 1970s, and his work with the one and only Don Burrows remains amongst Australia's finest.
Maton produced only 7 of these 7-string jazz guitars, and this is serial #5. Maton has verified that this particular guitar belonged to either George himself or Don Andrews, and I strongly suspect it is the one pictured on the cover of the fabulous "Duo" album (George Golla and Don Burrows) from 1975. (see right)
The guitar has a neck-position splittable 7-pole humbucker pickup, but also has an active peizo pickup in the bridge which can be mixed in with the humbucker, allowing for a wide range of tones. I'm not too certain what the three positions on the front switch do (except that the centre position seems to be a bypass of the volume control), but can say that the rearmost switch is an on/off for the peizo, while the rearmost volume knob is a volume 'mix' control for adding the peizo output. On that basis, I can say George has the peizo pickup turned off in the picture on the right (and the front switch is in the 'up' position which seems to be a bassier preset)
The bridge itself is very interesting, being a fully floating (and beautifully made) rosewood item which is height adjustable. The bridge is not actually attached to the guitar's top, but emerges from a solid block inside the guitar's body, minimising feedback and contributing to the unique Golla sound. Scale length measures right on 63cm, or 25 inches. The lower bout measures 41cm, or 16 inches. The neck is 55mm wide at the nut (string spacing 46mm E to E) and 57mm at the body join (15th fret), so has a very subtle taper.
The guitar oozes class, from the fit and finish of its components and the quality of its select timbers and gold-plated fittings through to the multiple binding to the body, neck and headstock. It's in remarkable condition, and has the best action of almost any guitar I have ever come across! Maton is legendary for their necks, but this one has to be played to be believed.
7-string configuration allows great bass lines to be played. Just listen to George playing a GE-7 (possibly this very guitar) on the fabulous "Duo" album (with Don Burrows) and you'll see what I mean.
Collectors and jazz guitarists alike - don't miss out on this unique gem! Comes in its original deluxe Maton hard case.
I have been asked for a detailed description of the guitar, and any marks it may have. Here is the description I prepared in response, and I stress it is a very critical description!
"OK, here we go! I'm not sure where you got the idea the headstock was marked; it does have the tiniest of chips from the top right outside edge, but that's about it. And I mean tiny! If you were referring to the area where the neck radiates out into the headstock, the white areas in the photos are just reflections from the lighting - there's no mark there at all. The face and back of the headstock have no marks at all.
The back of the neck shows one or two minuscule marks- you can get marks this big on a new guitar. The heel shows a mark right in the centre where it looks as though the strap lug may have been mounted before being moved on to the side of the body (maybe it interfered with the player's hand at the upper reaches of the neck?). The mark is about 1mm in diameter. Interestingly, the strap lugs themselves show no signs of ever having been used, and this applies also to the lacquer surrounding the lugs - this guitar was definitely always played by a seated player!
Moving to the body of the guitar, the top has one or two tiny indentations (maybe 1 - 2mm in size) which can only be seen if light is reflected in the right angle - there is no penetration of the finish. These are in the area where the arm contacts the top when playing. The body and pickguard show no signs of pick marks at all. This guitar has definitely not been 'strummed' with a pick. The gold plating of the pickup has worn on the treble side only, and in a very smooth fashion indicating finger-style playing - there are no plectrum abrasions at all. Gold plate on the tailpiece is still all there
The back of the guitar certainly shows this guitar was played sitting down! There is not one mark on the back at all. Zero. And I looked carefully wearing magnifying specs!
Ditto with the sides. Not a mark.
This guitar presents as immaculately as most guitars sold as new from dealerships, other than the slight playing wear to the gold plate as mentioned, and the fret wear as mentioned. It is important to note that the fretboard itself shows no wear, indicating a light playing style."
Sold to Peter in Sydney