The Ovation Breadwinner/Deacon (Part 2)
I need another guitar like a hole in the head, yet here I am one guitar richer. The holy grail of Breadwinners is the Limited, which is more sculpted and, at least to my eye, less appealing and the Deacon version, which is ostensibly the high end Breadwinner.
I've already mentioned my pristine Deacon and equally well preserved Deacon 12 string, and that should have been the end of my quest for these 70s icons.
However, I had a sneak look on eBay shortly before the Subs US tour this month, just to see if any interesting Breadwinners were for sale. I didn't really expect to buy one.
There was an interesting Tan version with tortoiseshell pick guard, nice but I don't really need endless versions in different colours. There were also a few regular Deacons and Breadwinners, but nothing special, until I stumbled on something called the Deacon Deluxe. As there really is no such thing, I assumed the seller was calling it Deluxe because the Deacon is kind of the Deluxe Breadwinner. So I clicked on it, expecting nothing special, until I read the following:
"A beautiful, one of a kind, 1978 Ovation Deacon Deluxe. I got this guitar new from Ovation while I was playing lead guitar with Dr. Hook in the late 70s. I had the folks at the factory put in the deluxe electronics, (the same as the Preacher Deluxe), and I had them put an ebony fingerboard on with abalone inlays plus gold plated hardware. As far as I know it is the only one set up like this. I played this guitar on the hit records; "Sharin' The Night Together", "When You’re In Love With A Beautiful Woman", "Sexy Eyes", "Better Love Next Time", and it can be seen and heard on YouTube: Dr. Hook - Storms Never Last."
Bob "Willard" Henke played with Dr. Hook from late 1975 thru 1980. Prior to that he was in Goose Creek Symphony and after Dr. Hook he played with Glen Campbell. Both Dr. Hook and Glen Campbell were endorsed by Ovation at the time. I asked Bob about what I took to be coil tap switches over each pick-up.
"The switches are indeed coil taps for the pickups. It was a feature on the Preacher Deluxe that I liked and that's why I asked the folks at Ovation to put them in the Deacon. As far as I know it's the only one with this electronics package".
Bob turned out to be very helpful and a cool guy. We must have been playing Top Of The Pops around the same time because Dr. Hook had loads of hits in the late 70s, when the Subs did the show twice with Stranglehold, again with Tomorrow's Girls and also She's Not There. Perhaps we were even on the same show together. It is interesting that since those days, Bob’s Deacon Deluxe and my Strat from that time have circled the globe many times before ending up together on my guitar rack.
How bizarre is this? When I was searching for a link to the Dr Hook YouTube song that Nicky mentions in the above article, I came across an ultra rare Dr Hook song, never committed to vinyl, called 'Scum of the Earth'!!!
And if you have a look at it, the band come on stage carrying a giant safety pin!!!!!
Strange coincidence or what?
MC - Ed