This instrument debuted in 1952, and featured a single cutaway body, a distinctive "fire stripe" tortoiseshell pickguard, and a pair of thin blade-style pickups that gave the guitar its name.Kay used this type of pickups on various Kay electrics dating back to the 1940s.Kay eventually subcontracted its amplifier production to Chicago music industry rival Valco in the 1950s.After the retirement of Kuhrmeyer in 1955, the company was taken over by Sidney M. The product line of Kay was shifted toward electric musical instruments on demands, and in 1964, the company moved to a new factory in Elk Grove Village, Illinois.Also in 1952, Kay introduced the matching K-162 "Electronic" Bass, which was the first commercially available thinline-hollowbody electric bass guitar, and the second production electric bass guitar after the Fender Precision Bass debuted in 1951.Due to the use of K-162 by a bassist of Howlin' Wolf, Andrew "Blueblood" Mc Mahon, it is commonly known as the "Howlin Wolf" bass.
Kay made guitar models for its own brand name and guitars branded as Silvertone for Sears, Sherwood and Airline for Montgomery Wards, Old Kraftsman for Spiegel, Custom Kraft for St.
The global boy band share the client roster with the original ladette; each, strikingly, at very different points on the glittering arc of fame.
“I bumped into them the other day, they’re really sweet lads,” says Van Outen, 38.
Kay offered their first electric guitar in 1936 — five years after the Rickenbacker Frying pan, and the same year as the Gibson ES-150.
However, the Kuhrmeyer-owned Stromberg-Voisinet brand had produced the Stromberg Electro even earlier, in 1928, making the short-lived model arguably the first commercial electric guitar.