Don went to school in the Bay Area in the “60s. “We were all “Dead Heads” (fans of the Grateful Dead, the legendary SF band) and regulars at the Fillmore,” says Don. “A lot of Dead Heads loved Felix; he’s really a rock n” roll character with his cheeky personality. We thought a tie-die approach to the guitar graphics was a natural. It’s like he’s dancing at a Fillmore light show.”
Since Martin’s issue of the Felix I in 2004, demand for these impish little cat guitars has grown to gigantic proportions. Collectibility is synonymous with both Martin guitars and Felix memorabilia, so the Felix the Cat series has become especially coveted by both players and Felix fans alike.
While the Felix “tie-die” guitar is a fun and wonderful novelty, it is first and foremost a real Martin guitar. And as with all Martins, tone, playability and quality are integral to its design.
The body is a compact O size, the same as the standard Little Martin guitar. An adjustable, modified low profile 14-fret neck (23” scale) was selected for easy playability. The Felix III makes use of Martin’s highly advanced “X” technology, with textured HPL (high pressure laminate) one-panel back and sides. The top, also of durable HPL material, is reinforced with
Sitka spruce cross braces. Fingerboard and bridge are black Micarta, an excellent and environmentally friendly alternative to ebony.
The colorful Felix graphics, custom designed for this special edition, are carefully applied to the top and the headplate and then coated for protection and durability. Each guitar label will be signed by Don Oriolo with the Felix graphic, serial number and patent number.
The Felix III comes with a premium black travel gig bag, embroidered with a gold C.F. Martin logo (talk about letting the cat out of the bag!)