Sunday, April 15, 2018

1970's Epiphone EA-250

Welcome back to another blog at Mississippi Son!

We've been busy!  The family and I recently took a trip back home to the Mississippi Gulf Coast and enjoy some quality time with the parents.  Now it's time to get back to blogging!

Check out this view on the MS Gulf Coast. The wife and I took the sunset tour on the Betsy Anne Paddle boat!  If you are in the Biloxi, MS area I highly recommend booking a tour.

View of the Biloxi Schooner from the Betsy Ann Paddlewheel Boat

Now, let's talk about this beautiful EA-250. Epiphone introduced this archtop electric model through Matsumoku in Japan from 1970 through approximately 1975.  Although Gibson still owned Epiphone they haulted production of the Epiphone brand in the USA in 1969.

Rare Epiphone EA-250 Natural

The earlier versions of the EA-250 were named the 5102T.  In a similar fashion to Henry Ford and the color black, this Epiphone was available in any color you wanted as long as it was redburst!

As for the EA designation, it stood for thinline series guitars.  Epiphone also used ET (Electric Solid Body) and ES (Electric Spanish).

Example of an original Epiphone EA-250

Scratching your head about the red color after seeing this particular guitar?  It was refinished in natural, and quite well actually, by the previous owner shortly after he purchased it.  What flaws were left after the refinish definitely add to the genuine mojo of the guitar.  The guitar sports a maple laminate body with dual F holes, a maple bolt on neck, rosewood fretboard and double coil pickups with a vibrato system.  This natural EA-250 has the wood overlay on the vibrato as well. Epiphone later introduced trapeze and chrome pickup options.

The guitars has two volume knobs and two tone knobs.  Each pair of knobs controls one of the two pickups.  There is also a tone selector switch for rhythm and treble.

The sound can be best described as both warm and bright?  It's a special type of funk with no outside pedals or tweaks.  I believe it has something to do with not only the woods used but the hollow body archtop does not have the typical bracing inside and it also has the thinner body compared to your standard jazzbox. The soulful tones are surprising and the guitar can actually be enjoyed unplugged.  It's not acoustic guitar loud unplugged but enjoyable nonetheless.  If you don't know how to play but like all things music, this guitar is absolutely beautiful and has lots of cool features to look at!

Want to hear what she sounds like? Check out this video!

Unfortunately, there is no reliable system to date these guitars other than some of the options previously mentioned.  The community generally accepts the dating between 1970 and 1975 and all guitars were manufactured for Epiphone by Matsumoku.  In 1975, the EA-250 was replaced by the EA-255.  There were no major notable difference other than the finish was changed to walnut and gold hardware was used.

Until next time, I hope you enjoyed this post!


Jason "Mississippi Son"
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