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Bob acquired the 16-inch Gibson L-5 pictured here (serial number: 86949) in 1953. He bought it in New York from the widow of guitarist Frank Victor who had recorded a series of instrumental duets with Harry Volpe back in the 1930s.
In the early 1970s the guitar, along with other items of musical equipment, was stolen from Bob’s home.
Several years later guitarist John Jorgenson bought it for $600. In 1984 while appearing on The Tonight Show with Roger McGuinn (Bob had been guitarist with The Tonight Show Band for 22 years), John met Bob and the L-5 was duly returned to him.
Guitarist Bob Bain’s professional career began prior to World War II. From the mid 1940s he toured with Tommy Dorsey and later with jazz pianist Phil Moore’s band with whom he recorded the song Bop! Goes My Heart with Frank Sinatra on vocals. Other recordings with Sinatra, include Young At Heart and I’ve Got You Under My Skin. In addition, Bob recorded with Mel Torme, Peggy Lee, Henry Mancini, Rosemary Clooney and Nat King Cole.
Session work included the of countless movie and TV soundtracks including Breakfast At Tiffany’s, Dr. Zhivago, The Magnificent Seven, The Pink Panther, Ozzie and Harriet, Mission Impossible, Bonanza, Peter Gunn, Batman, The Adams Family and The Munsters.
Tracy Longo (left) with John Jorgenson
Images courtsey of Tracy Longo