This is where it all started in 1966.  The original Ovation Balladeer (later known as the Standard Balladeer) was Ovations very first model.   Very early prototypes had a traditional shaped peghead and you can see a photo of me playing "Old No.6", the oldest surviving prototype, below. The earliest production samples had an elongated truss rod cover with the name Balladeer engraved on it.  Later the standard truss rod cover was adopted and the name Balladeer was scripted down the middle of the peghead.  The inlaid rosette was a chain-link design with a small bunch of grapes depicted at the 4 o'clock position.   The first rosettes were a black background, but early on was changed to off-white.  The 5-piece neck, multi-ply body binding and the 5 point rosewood bridge were standardized, as were the Kluson tuners.  Shown below are a 1967 and 1968 Balladeers, both with 3-piece spruce tops.  Later examples switched to the more traditional 2-piece top.  Both guitars are in outstanding condition, as are the original cases. 

Original Balladeer

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Specifications …

Shiny Bowl Balladeers

L-R: Balladeer 12-String, Standard Balladeer, Deluxe Balladeer, Glen Campbell Deluxe Balladeer

Shiny Bowl Balladeers

L-R: Balladeer 12-String, Standard Balladeer, Deluxe Balladeer, Glen Campbell Deluxe Balladeer

Dave playing “Old #6”

40th Anniversary Reissue