Never enough GUITARS

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by Principessa, May 16, 2008.

  1. Principessa

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    Never enough GUITARS

    Rockers keep an array at hand for different tunings and tones --- and to tantalize ax fiends in the audience.

    When mega-rockers the Eagles went on the road for the "Hell Freezes Over" tour in 1994, they brought something like 48 guitars with them, an all-star lineup of wood, fiberglass and steel that included 10 Les Pauls, six Stratocasters, a double-necked Gibson and a smattering of Rickenbackers.

    This for a band with only three guitar players, plus a drummer who played a little acoustic here and there.

    Every song on the set list meant another gorgeous vintage instrument would come out onstage. This parade of Gibsons and Fenders has been waggishly described as "guitar porn," especially for the guitar players and collectors in the audience, most of whom could only smack their chops and dream.

    This week, when the Eagles come to Alpharetta for four sold-out nights at the brand-new Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre at Encore Park, 48 guitars is not enough.

    Joe Walsh and Glenn Frey alone will have 50 between them. Throw in guitars for drummer Don Henley, bassist Timothy B. Schmit and the new guy, guitarist Steuart Smith, and the fellows will have a total of 80 axes at their disposal.

    Does this take it past the limit?

    "Some would say they're excessive, but I like them; I think they're neat," said Victor Rodriguez, the guitar tech for Frey. Besides, Rodriguez adds, "It's job security! Bring them all out!"

    It's enough, in fact, to keep the band's four guitar techs busy —- changing strings, tuning, setting up action, tweaking necks and re-fretting.

    And, for at least some audience members, it's a big part of the show.
    "The initial reaction is 'Oh my God!' " musician-turned-software writer Leon Chalnick said of the sheer number, variety and quality of guitars that the band members play onstage. "It's the jaw-dropping wow factor."
    A guitar collector and a regular contributor to the guitar-and-gear discussion Web site called the Gear Page, Chalnick has 13 guitars up on the walls of the music room at his house, and he's not that unusual among the 28,000 members of the site.

    Most suffer from what they jokingly call GAS: Guitar Acquisition Syndrome.
    When Kerry Marchman opened up a guitar shop in Tucker, he used his own collection as a seed inventory. He called the place Too Many Guitars.
    The phrase was a regular complaint he heard from his wife, as in "Don't you think you have too many guitars?"

    For women, it's shoes; for men, it's guitars, said Bryan Lilje, of Clarkston, musician, luthier and admitted GAS sufferer.

    Many rock stars have severe problems with GAS, and that includes even acoustic stars like Atlanta's Indigo Girls, who at one time toured with 30 guitars on hand.

    But the parade of flat-tops isn't just an excuse to play with their toys, said their guitar tech, Lisa "Sulli" Sullivan.

    Like most bands, the Indigos play in a variety of tunings —- drop-D, open G, open D —- and they keep guitars dedicated to those tunings so they don't have to retune between songs. Also, Amy Ray, the dark-haired Indigo, is an enthusiastic banger, and breaks strings with abandon.
    "It's a nightmare for the guitar tech," Sullivan said, "but the crowd gets off on it."

    Electric guitars add another layer of complexity to the equation, offering different tones for every make and model, from Telecaster twang to Gretsch jangle.

    And a certain part of the audience just wants to see those beautiful instruments.

    "Part of the reason I go to any concert is see what kind of guitars they're going to play," said Jason Durham, Marchman's partner. He remembers catching the Eagles in the 1990s: "It was a feast for the eyes."

    Some players carry the fashion show to extremes. Take Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick, who has owned and played a ridiculous assortment of 2,000 instruments, including a five-neck monstrosity built by Hamer.

    There are also some guitars that are closely associated with some songs. Phil Collen of Def Leppard plays a black-and-white, crackle-finish Jackson instrument on "Pour Some Sugar on Me" in concert, as he did in the video, just because "people like to see those guitars again," said Collen's tech, Scott Appleton. In the same vein, Joe Walsh brings out his 1959 Les Paul for "Life in the Fast Lane," not just because of the crunchy tone, but because it's the one he's known for playing on that song.

    But art direction plays a role as well.

    Derek Brooks, of guitar manufacturer Ernie Ball/Music Man, said his outfit is busy building Eagles guitarist Steuart Smith a new double-necked electric to play in "Hotel California," even though the blond double-neck they made for him several years ago is still fine.

    "They've changed set cosmetics around, and they asked for black instruments," Brooks said.

    String theories: Guitar techs talk
    Changing strings on 80 guitars means a lot of finger pokes from the sharp ends of those wires. But some players want them changed more than others.

    Glenn Frey? "He never changes the strings," said Eagles tech Victor Rodriguez. "He doesn't sweat much."

    Joe Walsh? "Every day."

    Are there guitars that the bosses own that the techs like to play?

    "It's bad form to beat away on the rock star's guitar any more than you have to," said Eagles tech Bobby Carlos. "I actually carry my own [a '61 Gibson SG], just for fun."

    GUITAR BOX SCORE
    When the Eagles take the stage at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre this week, just how many guitars will they play? Here's the lineup:
    > Joe Walsh: 30, including a 1959 Les Paul
    > Glenn Frey: 20, including a 1954 Les Paul Jr. (a gift from fellow rocker Jackson Browne) and a wacky-looking Gibson Moderne
    > Timothy B. Schmit: 6 basses, including three 1962 Fender Jazz basses
    > Don Henley: 5, including three Takamine acoustics and two Telecasters
    > Steuart Smith: 19, including a custom double-necked Music Man
     
  2. D_Jurgen Klitgaard

    D_Jurgen Klitgaard Account Disabled

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    I can't even play guitar yet, I just got an Epiphone Les Paul to get started on. But I already want to collect every guitar I see.

    They're pieces of art, every one style, every finish, they are all gorgeous in their own way. And each one can produce a different sound. Possibilities are almost endless when you start looking at the choices of pickups, paired with the right amp, etc. Each and every guitar can vary from the next, producing a different sound.

    They are like snowflakes or thumb prints. And every one beautiful enough to hang on a wall in a museum.

    Slash Les Paul - Guitar Center

    Buy Gibson Inspired By Dave Grohl DG-335 Electric Guitar at Musician's Friend

    The ESP Guitar Company :: Kirk Hammett Signature Series

    The ESP Guitar Company :: James Hetfield Signature Series

    Buy Gibson 50 Year Commemorative Flying V online at Musician's Friend

    Buy Epiphone Zakk Wylde Les Paul Custom Electric Guitar at Musician's Friend

    Buy Gibson Angus Young Signature SG online at Musician's Friend


    Just a small sampling of guitars that get me hard.:cool:
     
  3. Principessa

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    I know exactly what you mean Mr. Hardcock. I keep saying I will take lessons and haven't started yet. :redface: Of course now that Hotrocker982 has turned me on to the prettiest guitars I have ever seen. I have to get a really good job so I can buy some of these. :smile: All of these guitars cost more than my last car. I don't mean together, but individually. :lmao:



    http://andy.dbamps.com/images/guitars/Ibanez_JEM77_FP.jpg
    http://www.jemsite.com/jem/model/jem77gmc.htm
    http://www.jemsite.com/jem/model/jem7bsb.htm
    http://www.jemsite.com/jem/model/jem77pmc.htm
    http://www.jemsite.com/jem/model/jem77bfp.htm
     
  4. D_Jurgen Klitgaard

    D_Jurgen Klitgaard Account Disabled

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    What are those, Steve Vai signatures?

    I like the blue floral for you.:wink:
     
  5. Skull Mason

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    Steve Vai is the king
     
  6. jlr080281

    jlr080281 New Member

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    Haha, I'm the same way. I can barely play, but there's so many I wanna buy. I need to stop spending my time on Ebay looking at guitars and more time actually practicing :tongue:

    I bought an Epiphone SG 400 to start with like 2 months ago, and I've already spent $1200 on a new guitar( Ibanez PGM301). It's Paul Gilbert's signature series. I had to buy it since he's my favourite guitarist :tongue:

    Oh, and pedals. I can't stop buying effects pedals either. They're funnnn! I need to stop, though. I'm going broke :frown1:
     
  7. Mr. Bungle

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    In the Huge Tits On A Thin Body thread
    Think I'm gonna have to agree with ya on there, Skull... as much as I love Satch too, but having seen Vai at G3 in 2001, I was completely in awe. I couldn't imagine how Satch could possibly follow that set. Satch played a great one, but it couldn't top Vai. I've seen a lot of great guitar players live, and no one has even come CLOSE to matching the crazy shit Vai was pulling off. And I'm not talking purely SPEED either, I'm talking about his sheer command of the instrument. He can conjure any sound out out of his instrument...

    Just thought it strange how Don Henley, from the prior post, primarily a drummer, has more guitars than most strictly-guitar playing friends of mine... I only have 4, a Fender Strat, Ibanez RG 7-string, an ESP H-302 (my baby), and an Ibanez classical electric-acoustic. Never been too big on effects, been trying to figure out how to work my new TC Electronics G Major... but my Mesa Boogie dual rectifier does the trick - best amp I've ever played out of, byfar.
     
  8. Hotrocker

    Hotrocker Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, i fucking love those guitars. Ibanez all the way. The JEM are treasures, which is why i gave you those links.... but you should also check out the J Customs. Theyre only available in Japan and through private sales. I wish I had 50 different Ibanezes like the Eagles have so many other guitars...
     
  9. B_The Greek Dude

    B_The Greek Dude New Member

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    Yeah, and I can't play the violin so I got a 350-year old Guarneri to practice on.
     
  10. D_Jurgen Klitgaard

    D_Jurgen Klitgaard Account Disabled

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    If you're gonna learn, might as well be on something that sounds decent, stays in tune, and will last longer than a Sears special.

    Now it would have been another thing if I got a vintage Gibson LP to learn on. That's crazy!:eek:

    If I could have found one, I would have gone with an Eph Firebird. But those are harder to come by than a standard LP.
     
  11. Qua

    Qua
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    My favorites

    PRS Guitars | Private Stock Home

    Love Jems for their playability, but they just don't sound up to what I want. That and I prefer the classy figured wood/"clean" look to the over-the-top inlays and graphics. Distorted they're great, but they lack the full pure clean tone I require. Thus I have a PRS SE Singlecut (GASing for a McCarty Rosewood; when I have $2-3k to spare it will be MINE) and an American Deluxe strat. I have my alder bodied Strat for the trebly kinda thing (and don't worry, this isn't a tinny 60s strat; the modern SCN pickups are a great deal thicker, and the tone control wired to the bridge pickup lets me use it for any humbucker like distorted tone; it actually gets a better tight palm muted chug than my PRS). The PRS fills the thick lead and jazzy clean territory; best sounding and playing $600 guitar I've EVER come across--highly recommended for anyone looking for a LP-style guitar with a bit more treble snap. Yeah, yeah, I know a hollowbody is the only real way to go for jazz tone, but I prefer the sustain and full frequency response of a solid body.

    For some reason all my guitars except my 7 string are black...hmm...well at least only one is METAAAAL \m/ black...the rest try to be classy

    Like this only black with the natural scraped binding....the figured veneers are really lacking, so I decided to dispense with that and get it in black

    http://www.dolphinmusic.co.uk/shop_image/product/3b37051228bb4f25fc37678626f32b09.jpg
     

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  12. lucky8

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    i have 4 guitars, and would love to have 100 more. my baby is my fender american series deluxe fat strat 60th anniversary addition. it gives me orgasms when i play it. long live the stratocaster
     
  13. Hotrocker

    Hotrocker Well-Known Member

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    Nice Strat. I like it alot. I, myself, am a fan of versatility- oriented guitars, so I tend to choose the super Strat brands (like Ibanez, Jackson, Caparison, some Fenders). I bought an Ibanez S for that reason alone (my S). I personally think that PRSs are overrated, as are most Gibsons (I own one, myself). Its obviously clear that the best clean tones are made with hollow body electrics (Gibson ES ftw).



    What you said about the JEMs I somewhat believe. The tone of a solid body electric has a versatile tone, but its just can't fully reproduce that warm hollow body sound, although they come pretty damn close under the right settings. TONE IS IN THE FINGERS AND AMP. :smile: And if you want to experiment with your tone, you might choose to change the pickups.
     
  14. quercusone

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    You have to be careful or the collecting can get outta hand. I have a Guild Acoustic (F47 made in Rhode Island before fender bought them), a Burns Steer electric (same guitar my hero Billy Bragg made famous), a fender mandolin, and I'm looking at getting a Burns Marquee....which I really don't need.
     
  15. Principessa

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    Hmm, what does need have to do with it? :confused: I thought men and guitars were like women and shoes. Just because we can wear one pair at a time or in your case play one guitar at a time doesn't mean there isn't an actual need.:cool::smile:
     
  16. Mr. Bungle

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    Yeah man, I know what you mean - as of a few years ago, I think I had 7 or 8 of 'em, mostly what I have now, plus a couple Ibanez's and Fender Strats. Got pressed for cash though, and logic took over... hated to sell 'em.. :indifferent: I remember seeing an a picture of a guy in a Gibson catalog with about 25 or 30 Les Pauls lying around his pool (not IN it, obviously...), and the caption read "will work for Les Pauls". WISH I had that kind of fundage...
     
  17. Qua

    Qua
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    While I WHOLEHEARTEDLY agree that Gibsons are overrated (the modern ones are pieces of shit with terrible quality consistency intrument to instrument), I have to disagree with the PRSs. Overpriced...hells yes, and if that's the sole indicator then granted. But their build quality is beyond top-notch and the things sound excellent. Granted, they sound like PRSs, not anything else, though I think that's an impressive achievement when so much is Strat/Superstrat/Gibson. The 25" scale is mostly the reason for this, and it is MONEY. Perfect blend of warmth and bright snap. That and I just think they're straight classy looking; perfect proportions. I played a McCarty with a rosewood neck through the reissue 1x15 Fender Vibroverb at Guitar Center the other day...fucking transcendent. Now I just need $5k or so for the guitar and amp. I'm VERY much a Fender amp fanboy. I run a Blues Jr with a Jensen and a Hot Rod Deluxe in stereo, with boxes for boost and drive.
     
  18. invisibleman

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    I like the sustain bow design of Auerswald Custom Guitars. I wish I had that much money to put down for the Anastasia, Model C (If you are a ?rince fan, you may recognize that one.), and the Barracuda. I really like the Barracuda model.

    http://www.auerswald-instruments.com/page4/page4.html
     
  19. Hotrocker

    Hotrocker Well-Known Member

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    I've never really been able to tell the difference between a Les Paul with humbuckers and a PRS with humbuckers. To me, and probably to many others, the two sound identical when ran without effects, both on clean and overdrive. If there actually IS a difference, its a small minority who can tell that difference.

    It basically comes down to functionality. Does the PRS play excellently and sound excellent? Of course. You're paying over $2500 for it... it better play well. But doesn't any other excellently- made solidbody guitar with humbuckers play excellently? Damn right it does, plus most guitars are half the price or less. Does a PRS have an excellently- functioning Floyd Rose? Nope. Does it have a super thin neck on level with that of a Wizard II? I don't think so. That limits many player's choice. PRSs would be great guitars if they appealed more to the shredder looking for a top- of- the- line made guitar that they can play ANY genre with and less to the prep listening to Nickelback and Mark Tremonti. Way too many people buy into the hype of a brand. Look at instruments more as tools of expressing your innermost musical fantasies rather than as status symbols or trophies, I say. Thats not to say you shouldn't treasure your guitar, however.

    I wasn't singling you out, Qua?. I meant no offense. This goes out to everyone.
     
  20. Qua

    Qua
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    There's a key difference; I hate Floyds. While, obviously great for trem abuse, I think they sound like ass. Kills bass response. I'm never buying another Floyd guitar again, and I've had a bunch. Same with a really thin neck. While they definitely aid playability, they simply don't sound as good (ask Allan Holdsworth). I tried a bunch of strats before coming to mine, even other identical Am. Deluxes, and the key difference was a thicker 50s V-shaped neck on mine. Though PRS's wide-thin neck is not as super-shredder thin as the wizard II, it is more than thin enough to shred on. I shred on a wide-fat, and I have quite small hands. I find it far more versatile and useful for multiple genres than a dead-sounding basswood RG designed to be played behind a wall of distortion. Can't compare to an S, as I've never played one. The only genre that requires shredding is metal/virtuoso rock anyways--your definition of versatility seems quite biased, especially considering every floyd guitar I've tried couldn't handle blues/jazz/most anything cleanish to save its soul when put next to a true strat or LP-style guitar while the latter two can still match the shredders in the distortion category. Floyds and shredder necks simply aren't for me.

    Sure, Nickelback and Tremonti are the most visible users of the PRS brand, along with Linkin Park and Limp Bizkit and such. Tremonti and Brad Delson are woefully underrated guitarists by the nose-turning guitarist crowd, and if you think they're just pop n00bz you need a new set of ears or fewer pretentions. I make no similar statement about Nickelback and Durst. But there are many other indisputably high caliber players who use/d them: Santana, Guthrie Govan (a better technician than Vai, dare I say it; he's switched to Suhr, my other dream brand and better, I just prefer the PRS sound/feel), Al DiMeola, Mikael Akerfeldt, to name a couple. Obviously price is no object for them, but hey.

    On the subject of pickup change, what is in your Ibanez? I was amazed at how GODAWFUL the new Dimarzio IBZ pickups are. Definitely a turn-off to Ibanez for me, since I'd have to replace the pickups in a >$1000 guitar not just for taste, but to get a decent sound out of the thing.
     
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