1967 Yamaha SA-50
The Oldest Guitar I've Ever Had
I’ve owned roughly around 400 Japan vintage guitars over the last decade and this is by far the oldest guitar I’ve ever found. Before expressing the joy of my discovery, here is a brief chronology of Yamaha SA50 – debuted in 1967, she joined the family tree of her hollow body lineups such as SA-5 (1966) and SA-30 (Jun 1967). These first generations of Yamaha jazz guitars handed their genes down to newer models of SA-15 (May 1968) and the very twelve string SA-20 (Oct 1968), followed by half decade of gap before they gave up hockey stick-shaped headstock and introduced more modern and symmetric design which obviously seemed to be inspired by Gibson’s but not as carbon-copying as other Japan brands including Greco, Ibanez and Tokai.
The thrilling part of this guitar is that she is really the first batch of production, judging from three digit of serial number 952. To verify the production year, I called Yamaha HQs and was told yes, she was made in 1967 at Hamamatsu factory in Japan. I am sure not many of us are older than she is. Now have a quick look the guitar. How gorgeous and graceful this vintage is. Yes there are rusty parts, lacquer and fret wears, missing tremolo, neck still curved when truss rod maxed out, and the parts of bridge and knobs replaced. Nonetheless I dare to ask you, show me an equally beautiful 56 year-old guitar, or tell me how the price tag put on this guitar can be more affordable, considering her half-century matured timbers.