The Guitars of Spinout

poster for the US release of MGM's Spinout
Photo Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

In February of 1966, Elvis reported to MGM's Culver City studios to begin work on his twenty-second feature film, Spinout (California Holiday). This would re-unite him with director Norman Taurog, and Shelley Fabares (from Girl Happy) returned as one of the female co-stars, alongside Deborah Walley and Diane McBain. Male co-stars included Jimmy Hawkins (also returning from Girl Happy), Jack Mullaney (from Tickle Me) and Will Hutchins (who would appear with Elvis again in Clambake). This role was something of a mixture for Elvis in that he was not only the leader of a traveling band, but a successful race car driver also. Dodie Marshall also appears and also starred in Elvis' next film, Easy Come, Easy Go.

The various musical scenes in Spinout featured many vintage instruments used by the main and supporting cast members (with almost no consistency and, at times, little continuity).  The ones used, and in some cases owned, by Elvis are listed as follows in the order he appears with them in the movie (click on each for a detailed page):

Deborah Walley, Elvis with 1964 Burns Double Six, Jimmy Hawkins and Jack Mullaney
Screen capture Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Elvis with 1960s Olympic White Fender Precision Bass
Screen capture Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Jimmy Hawkins, Elvis with 1960s Hoyer 12 String, Jack Mullaney and Deborah Walley
Screen capture Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Elvis with Gibson LG-1 Flat-top Acoustic
Screen capture Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Dodie Marshall, Elvis with 1965 Gibson EBS-1250 Double Bass and Jack Mullaney
Screen capture Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Spinout was also a reunion for Jimmy Hawkins, Shelley Fabares and Carl Betz.  Shelley played Carl's daughter in the movie and also his daughter on eight of the nine seasons of ABC TV's The Donna Reed Show (1958-1966).  Jimmy Hawkins also appeared in the show as Shelley's boyfriend, and coincidentally, one of his earliest roles was in the 1946 Frank Capra classic It's a Wonderful Life as Tommy Bailey, the son of  Donna Reed and Jimmy Stewart (Mary and George Bailey).  Norman Taurog directed Elvis in nine of his movies starting with GI Blues.

Elvis' Gibson EBS-1250 and Burns Double Six on display at Graceland - May 2006
Photo James V. Roy

Three of the guitars used by Elvis in the movie are still in his collection at Graceland.

This page added August 15, 2010 is part of the section The Movie Guitars of Elvis Presley.

* courtesy Elvis Presley Film Society


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