Sherman Allen | The Official Website Of Doug Fieger

This Is My Song

Sherman Allen

Sherman Allen

Sherman Allen

Gretsch Story

The night Gretsch happened for me was not The Beatles on Ed Sullivan (I was watching, but, at 4 years old, the subtleties of Hi-Lo ‘tron pickups eluded me). Not when I bought my first Atkins LP, even though I used to stare at the Chester and Lester album cover, dazzled by the banks of toggle switches on that white hollowbody. Not the MTV Stray Cats videos. Loved ‘em, but I’d already devoted my life to hardtail Gibsons by then.

Doug Fieger, the Knack frontman who wrote and sang “My Sharona”, was gravely ill by 2009, and he asked for my help. I work in the vintage guitar and amp world, and my old friend was facing the business of, as the phrase has it, Putting His Affairs In Order. For some months, on Tuesday afternoons, I would leave my work in West Hollywood, and spend a couple of hours at Doug’s Woodland Hills home, attending to the details of liquidating his lifetime’s accumulation of guitars and amps. On Tuesdays, my residency at Hollywood’s Pig ‘N Whistle would force me to get a “Doug Hug”, and head back to The Strip. Weary of watching his beautiful guitars languish, unplayed, in their cases, Doug began to insist that I take a different piece each week, and play it for a small crowd that would never suspect that I was playing a REAL Rosewood Telecaster, a REAL 1961 SG, or a REAL 1952 ANYTHING.

One night, Doug sent me off into the night with a Gretsch White Falcon. Now, I’m five foot six on a good day, so it never crossed my mind to play a 17″ hollowbody. I’d never used a Bigsby in my life.

Well…
Two hours later, every guitar player in the nightclub was high-fiving me, and my life has not been the same since.

I have never known how to really talk about receiving that very guitar as a gift from Doug in the wake of his passing. But musicians will understand the feeling of falling really, truly, madly, deeply in love with the guitar they were meant to play.

I miss Doug every day, and I hope he’d be pleased.

Pictured above: Doug’s Gretsch White Falcon which Sherman now owns.

Browse Friends

  • Richard Lewis

    Richard Lewis

    My wife and I watched in awe as Doug and the Knack blew the roof off of the jammed House of Blues on Sunset a few years back

  • Berton Averre

    Berton Averre

    I'll always remember Doug as he was in the writing room. And he was great.

  • Bruce Ravid

    Bruce Ravid

    They say a guy never forgets his first, and that's certainly true for an A&R guy and his first signing. My first was The Knack. I got to be part of something truly spectacular at the time,

  • Pamela Des Barres

    Pamela Des Barres

    I remember one gorgeous night when he picked up my old Gibson and serenaded me with every Beatle song I asked him to sing. It was breathtakingly beautiful, etched in my heart for eternity.

  • Jeff Lynne

    Jeff Lynne

    I always enjoyed jamming with Doug, it seemed like he knew the chords to every song ever written,
    you could never catch him out.

  • Wayne Kramer

    Wayne Kramer

    There’s a photo of Doug on his website as a young boy with his Hofner bass. In my memory, that’s the fellow I met at the Grande Ballroom in Detroit...

  • Bruce Kulick

    Bruce Kulick

    Doug thankfully loved the track... Jeremy and I were stoked and when the recording session was to happen, Doug was in and out of the studio in an hour! Total pro.

  • Robert Greenfield

    Robert Greenfield

    One day, Doug called to ask if I wanted to be in a band. (I remember when Doug used to call me his voice was so high, I thought it was a girl.) Sky was born.

  • Don Was

    Don Was

    doug fieger burst into my life on the first day of 8th grade, september 1965... he'd been expelled from a private school... and seemed determined to wave his freak flag high...

  • Elliot Easton

    Elliot Easton

    Doug was my best friend. There are only a small handful of people in this world who even know what the hell I'm talking about in all matters of life and pop culture.

  • Ringo Starr

    Ringo Starr

    Doug Fieger was a friend. Peace and Love, Ringo.

  • Brian McNelis

    Brian McNelis

    It is really because of Doug that I started playing guitar. Guitar is always something I thought I could never do. So at 42 years old, I thought, maybe I can do this...

  • Harold Bronson

    Harold Bronson

    It was while I attended a Knack performance in August, 1998, at the Galaxy Theatre in Santa Ana, that I appreciated Doug's sartorial dedication to the 1960s.

  • William Stout

    William Stout

    I loved The Knack, Doug's writing and his onstage persona. It turned out, unknown to me, that he was a huge fan of my art.

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