Guitar - General/bradley electric guitar


BreAsop/Gig Pig Music wrote at 2009-03-17 22:35:55
Interesting info, thanks!  For my part, I'd like to point out that there are more than one line of "Bradleys." From my personal, hands-on experience I know of three lines, the latest of which also produced mando's.  I've been collecting Original Bradley Guitars for many years (they have an inlaid MOP Script Logo on the headstock) and the history I've received from multiple sources is that Original Bradleys were the Veneman's Music, Rockport Maryland house brand (Later to become Veneman's Music Emporium and recently Music Emporium.)  Original Bradley's best seller was the 69' Thinline copy, with the Les Paul, and SG coming in after.  I'm not sure the 335's were in the original family.  Legend has it they started production at the Matzamuko Factory and stopped being produced there long before the factory burnt down. Production started at another factory (not sure where) but the pearloid Bradley script logo on the headstock was replaced by black decal script logo, and the L6 (or LS6) copy was the popular guitar, along with a strat copy.  Both were relatively clumsy bolt-ons with the Fender copy sporting plastic saddles. Bradleys disappeared until late 80's thru mid nineties at which time the Bradley logo was either black or gold decal, and fret markers were stick-on dots.  They made a couple different copies, their most popular being the PRS CE copy, either with set or bolt on neck.  From what I hear, like the older Bradleys, this was a really good guitar if you swapped out the pickups.  At any rate, eveyone everywhere claims their vintage MIJ guitar was made at Matzamuko or a lawsuit guitar, so who knows?  I own a small music store in a Cincinnati, and the simple truth is that I can go through my distributors and order a lot of guitars from China/Korea/Indonesia (the new Japans) with any name I want on the headstock.  In fact, I could even put Bradley on there if I wanted to.  Its called product labeling and it means little more than a personalized pen, so long as there's no registered trade mark inscription included.  The point is that Original Bradleys bearing the MOP type inlaid script logo are indeed worth money and hard to find.  I wouldn't trade my Thinline for anything in the world and I'd love to find one of their LP Black Beauty copies, bolt-on neck and all!  Veneman's did a good job in picking out a fine instrument to stick "Bradley's" name on...oh, and just for the record, Veneman's named the guitars "Bradley" because they lived on Bradley Blvd in Bethesda, MD.  Smiles for all, and thanks for the additional info!

stratboycopy wrote at 2009-09-19 13:41:42
Very good research! Just one correction Vennemans was in Rockville (I live in the DC area)Maryland. I currently have a Bradley mahogany Strat copy body married to a 50th anniversary Fender strat neck both in a metallic sky blue!Can you believe my good luck in getting both of these at different times. Also, in the mid 70's, I bought my baby brother a Bradley tele  which he still has. I love these guitars & I good one can rival the best of the MIJ lawsuit strats!

Wess Hayes wrote at 2010-07-21 22:05:54
Veneman's was around during my childhood, they started on Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring, MD, and where in two different locations on Rockville Pike in Rockville, MD. My older brother owned a gold Bradley Les Paul Custom "sweet" and I current own a Bradley with ibanez style, flame top H-S-H blackout p/u's, sharktoth inlays, gold floyd rose type bridge

Bob McKenna wrote at 2016-03-29 22:34:23
Great article, mild correction.  Change Rockport, MD to Rockville, MD. I was a regular there, born and raised.  (suburb of Washington, DC.). Good luck finding if there IS a Rockport, MD, but lots of coastline, it is possible.  

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Bill Ruxton


What kind of old guitar do I have? Is it valuable? How old is it? Where was it made? Is it worth repairing? Advice on buying new or used guitars, accessories, etc. [Note: While I can give some general info on approximate values of types of instruments, neither I nor anyone else can do an "appraisal" without actually seeing and handling the instrument] I have almost 40 years` experience as a player and afficianado. If I don`t have an answer myself, I can often refer people to other authoritative sources.

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