That Was The Year 1956 Awards, Power Plants And Dominators
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first solidbody guitars, the 160 with one pickup and the 162 with two. The construction is very basic with a cutaway body and glued-in (set) neck with two or four controls on the tear-drop shaped scratchplate. In the late 50s Henri Selmer in Charing Cross Road begin importing the upgraded versions (with the trade mark rectangular control panels) and give them the name Colorama.
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Burgess and Donald Maclean are seen in the Soviet Union; Pakistan becomes the first Islamic republic; Australian television broadcasting commences; the transatlantic telephone cable begins operation; the Chew Valley artificial lake in Somerset is inaugurated by the Queen and will provide drinking water for Bristol and the surrounding area; Mach 3 is finally conquered by the Bell X-2 aircraft; and the UK’s Calder Hall becomes the world’s first commercial nuclear power plant.
is criticised for his suggestive movements while performing Hound Dog on a US TV show; My Fair Lady opens on Broadway; Doris Day records Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be) featured in Alfred Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew Too Much in which she co-stars with James Stewart; and following the unprecedented US release of Laurence Olivier’s Richard III in theatres and Television on the same day Olivier is nominated for an Oscar.
Johnny Smith Award cutaway acoustic archtop guitar yet curiously Johnny never used one. Smith had sent in his design that specified the top be carved before the cutaway was taken out but the plant foreman insisted on doing it the other way round. Smith pronounces it an excellent instrument but refuses to accept or play the guitar. It sells well, however, but due to the popularity of electric guitars most are sold with a floating pickup fitted.
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guitar the ES-150 is phased out after 20 years in production; Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis get together at Sun Studios for the first and only time; Brigitte Bardot’s performance in the Roger Vadim film And God Created Woman earns her the title of sex kitten; Prince Rainier III of Monaco marries actress Grace Kelly; Shirley Bassey’s first single Burn My Candle (At Both Ends) is released; and Humphrey Lyttelton and his band record Bad Penny Blues in London with sound engineer Joe Meek.
electronics innovator Charlie Watkins introduces the Dominator amplifier with a V-shaped front to offer greater sound dispersion. It offers two channels, four inputs and tremolo and employs a pair of EL 84 output valves and two 10-inch Elac speakers. It delivers 17 watts and the finishes and control knobs bear a striking resemblance to the popular Dansette record player.
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