Musician's Friend: What first drew you to play a Gretsch? Was it the aesthetic, the sound, the Bigsby?
Billy Duffy: The Gretsch thing is definitely the look, because the first Gretsch I was really interested in was a White Falcon. I believe it was just pre-punk. A lot of my mates and I were in little high school bands and we were into Neil Young. Neil Young and the Falcon was my main (reason for) getting into Gretsch—those images of him in his barn with the old one without a tremolo and the four switches. They were quite rare in America and in England they were unbelievably rare. So it was this mythical beast, almost like the great white buffalo. I thought one day
maybe I'll get one of those. Up until that point I'd been into more attainable guitars that I could afford or steal or whatever.
MF: You have a signature Gretsch Falcon out now. How did the partnership with Gretsch come about?
BD: The Gretsch thing actually happened very organically. On the last Cult album I needed a double-cutaway Falcon and I didn't have one. I needed to get really high up the neck and had some particular things I needed to do in the studio. So we just contacted Gretsch and a guy named Mike showed up. We were sitting around with these Gretsches around