26: Songbirds Guitar Museum

The Songbirds Guitar Museum has been open in Chattanooga, Tennessee. for a little more than a year now. If you are a vintage guitar geek then you probably already have heard about it. Terry Foster (SLN #11) and I paid a visit to examine a recent addition to the museum’s collection, Fender Spanish guitar #0075 . In this podcast we discuss the Museum’s creation and mission with it’s chief curator David Davidson. Songbirds has done it right, a beautifully repurposed industrial space (the old Chattanooga Choo  Choo Station) houses a mind boggling collection of vintage guitars. Do not listen to this podcast if you can’t book a trip to Chattanooga .


David Davidson has been in charge of assembling the stunning collection of important guitars for the last 20 years. Thanks to David the time and money have been well spent.

David Davidson

I don’t think Gibson has a collection of custom colored Firebirds to rival these

Of course Fender produced a few custom colored guitars as well. Here are a few examples but the really rare colored Fenders are in “The Vault” easily accessible.

Don’t worry acoustics are well represented. Loyd Loar signed the tags inside these master Gibsons all on the same day.


This is the small performance stage used for local songwriter’s night. I told you they do it right. The mixing board for this venue rivals some recording studios I’ve been in. There is a lager stage downstairs for national acts.


Each display case at Songbirds is themed for maximum impact from side by side comparison.



The 2nd half of the podcast Terry and I discuss Fender #0075 with David. Terry believes it’s the most important Fender discovered for the last 20 years.


Here is Leo Fender’s first published image of his Spainish guitar and it’s description in the 1950 Fender catalogue.


Below is my attempt to duplicate Leo’s photo in color using Fender guitar #0075 which we believe is the same guitar. This instrument is now at Songbirds.

3 guys having too much fun at Songbirds.

L-R: Peden, Foster and Davidson




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