Both had double rounded cutaways, unbound f-holes, and of course, the center block.Its neck was mahogany and its rosewood fretboard had 20 frets with dot markers on a 301/2″ scale.In general, 30s Kays tend to get the best prices and they drop about 15% for every decade up you go.
) finish goes for a higher price than clean original.On a personal level, we almost always shy away from squeaky clean original finish instruments- if it was not inspiring enough to play for the last 75 years, we don’t want it!!!!The differences between the two were primarily cosmetic – different headstock silhouettes with different pearloid inlays.The pickguards also had different configurations, and the Epiphone had the trademark circular E on its scratchplate.Jimmy Page played a sunburst Rivoli during his tenure with the Yardbirds, perhaps the same one played by Samwell-Smith before he left the band – and Yardbirds rhythm guitarist Chris Dreja may have played it when he switched to bass after Page became the band’s sole guitarist during its final incarnation.
Later in the decade, Free’s Andy Fraser utilized a natural-finish Rivoli.
But another significant accomplishment was more about Mc Carty’s role in marketing…
In 1957, Gibson’s parent company, Chicago Musical Instrument (CMI) bought floundering New York-based instrument builder Epiphone primarily because it produced a respected line of upright “doghouse” basses.
The ’67 Epiphone Rivoli shown here sports the Cherry Red finish that became an option the year before.
It also sports the later hardware, plus a handrest seen on some examples.
The E logo has worn off its tortoiseshell pickguard.