"Buy, sell, trade..."
A person not in the know could be excused for passing by Cream City Music, 12505 Blue Mound Road, and thinking it's "just a second-hand shop." It's in a sort of non-descript building with signs that seem to say, "Pawn it here."
But step inside and, if you're the least bit knowledgeable about guitars, you'll feel like Charlie at Willy Wonka's Six-String Chocolate Factory.
According to Ben Derickson, one of the expert guitar-slingers at Cream City, the large shop has as good a selection of new, used and, especially, vintage instruments as any place in the Midwest.
And it's right here in Brookfield, often overlooked by the masses but well known to really serious players and collectors.
Patch asked the staff of Cream City to pick out and show off the most awesome guitar on the premises at the moment, and that only started a debate. So we widened the range to three.
First up was a 1969 Gibson Super 400 CES model, which, we were told, is "the Holy Grail of jazz players." The big, deep-bodied instrument has it all in terms of warm, round, natural tone, electrified luxury, and beautiful flamed wood grain.
Next, a 1964 Gretsch Chet Atkins model 6120, but better known as "the best rockabilly guitar of all time." It's a thin-line hollow-body with all the trimmings: original Bigsby tailpiece and Filtertron humbucking pickups among them.
And last, maybe the simplest electric guitar ever built, the first solid-body "I'm just a slab of wood with an attitude" guitar, probably as sought-after now as any ever built – a 1953 Fender Telecaster, the type (if not the year) played by Bruce Springsteen and hosts of rock and country greats throughout more than half a century.
Sorry, though, boys and girls. The Tele just sold. We can't reveal the buyer and we won't reveal the price, but we did ask.
You could get a very nice new car in that range.