len’s second signature guitar was the 1127 (later, the 1627 w/pickup) Glen Campbell Artist Balladeer. Glen is seen here with one of the first ones Ovation produced, probably around 1969/70. Very few, would have had the 5-point bridge found on the first generation shiny bowls.
he first generation Ovations had a large deep bowl, which provided an extremely resonate sound across all the strings. Since Ovation had yet to develop their electric acoustic, Glen had to play in front of a mic and he wanted less bass resonance in the acoustic response. Bill Kaman shared, in 2003, that “He (Glen) also wanted more cut in the sound, so the mid-depth bowl was introduced."
t is pretty clear that Glen, in the early 70’s, had quite a bit of influence over Ovations R&D department, by his playing preferences. Ovation will ultimately modify their bowl and develop a game-changing piezo pickup, between their first and second generation Ovations, due to Glen’s influence.
alter Carter states in the History of the Ovation Guitar
that “Glen Campbell did more than just play Ovations. He made several suggestions that led to his own signature models and to improvements across the line. “Everything I liked or wanted done, I let Charlie know”, Campbell said.”
hen Glen suggested a shallower bowl, Ovation developed the “artist bowl” and the new model was introduced as the Glen Campbell Artist Balladeer. The base guitar was an Artist Balladeer (model 1121). Glen’s signature guitar, 1127/1627, came with a better AAA soundboard, fancier mother of pearl, diamond-shaped fret inlays, Glen Campbell truss rod cover, Gold Grover tuners, and fretboard binding.
aul Moody shared with me:
In documents I saw about 8 years ago, notes from the factory, Glen's desire for less bass was considered an "anomaly". Most people want more bass out of their Ovations. But Glen was the consummate flat picker. He was looking for projection, clarity, punch. The GC Artists tend to make me think that he wasn't that concerned with tone.
len played his Artist Balladeer from about 1969 to around 1973/74, when he began playing his Ovation Legend
. Ovation continued to find tremendous success in reducing the bowl size on their acoustic electrics.
any thanks to Paul Moody
in helping with this topic.