Other Guitars

Epiphone releases a ltd. edition of the Johnny A. signature model

26

i respectfully disagree. i think getting a sig model or not getting a sig model based on the artist that is affiliated with it are two sides of the same coin.

Couple years ago i was looking for a Jazzmaster. i knew what i wanted but those specs were hard to find. Then comes along this artist sig model, Troy Van Leeuwen. never heard of the guy. Still have no clue who he is and i don't care, it doesn't matter. What matter is now Fender makes a Jazzmaster with: - American Vintage '65 pups - Bound Rosewood - Block inlays - Mustang bridge

everything i wanted and all at a decent price. don't care for the colour too much or the matching headstock. but c'est la vie.

10 years ago similar situation with the John Mayer Stratocaster. it was like a custom strat made for me. best strat pick ups I've ever played. i do know who JM is and i think he's a great blues player. love his tone. but it's not about that. i don't even play any of his songs. never did.

Artist model are great because they often make tweaks on classic specs. variety and choice is a good thingand sometimes its a new design...

That Les Paul guy made an artist model with Gibson, that seems to have worked out pretty well for a lot of people who never heard his music.

– Chris-O-Matic

Chet Atkins too. . .

28

Oooh kay.... My dislike of Artist Sig comes from something that is in short supply today. INTEGRITY. Do you really think that Johnny A is going to play the Epi, or the 4K Gibson that his overlords at Gibson marketing would prefer him to play? Same with Slash, and his $200 AFD Epi with the bolt on neck. Hell, he doesn't really even play Gibson, since most of his "Pauls" are custom made replicas.Joe Bonamasso playing an Epi, or his 5K Gibson? I believe that if your name is on it, play it.

Les did. Same with Chet, and the multitude of revisions Gretsch did for him. Steve Vai became linked with the JEM, so when you see the JEM, you immediately think of Vai. Satriani became a fan of the Radius Series in 87, that they changed the name of it, to the JS series.

Artists Sig series in general, especially in lower line guitars, are just a cheap marketing ploy. I am not knocking the instruments themselves, I am happy a few of you found guitars that matched your personal specs, but for me, it's a strong dislike.

29

The Epi Johnny A. will street for $999. And rumor (on other forums) is that they have ALL been pre-sold... as in, the 1st run is already sold out.

It's definitely one I'd be interested in checking out, but I'm not pre-ordering one sight unplayed for $1K.

30

BadPenguin, I can sorta see where you're coming from, but I don't agree.

In the case of Les Paul : he's actually a pretty good example of someone who never really played the guitar you could get at the store with his name on it. It's also been pretty well documented by now that he had very little to do with the design of the Gibson Les Paul, if anything. The only thing that really came from him was the trapeze tailpiece on the first year Les Pauls, but Gibson implemented that the wrong way around, so that was that.

Other than that, he played Goldtops for a short while, but he put a Dynasonic pickup in the neck position, and as soon as he started playing his home-made low impedance pickups, he custom ordered flat-topped LP customs from Gibson because they were easier to do his crude pickguard/pickup modifications to. I don't think he ever played a stock Les Paul until the Les Paul Personal/Recording models came along twenty years later.

Chet Atkins was photographed with all of the Gretsch models bearing his name, but hardly played them except for his now legendary 59.

Even with that info, I like the idea of a lot of signature guitars. Great players can have very good/practical/sensible ideas about guitars, and if they make a little money on guitars so I get to use their clever little ideas, I don't mind one bit.

And even if a lot of the signature game is about idol worship and money....isn't a big part of the music business anyway? I wear T-shirts with artist/band names on them too, and I like the idea the artist makes money on them.

31

The Gibson Johnny A model is (imo) a very comfortable guitar to hold & play. Johnny frequently uses the pickup selector switch during songs, so he spec'd its location to be within easy reach (right below his picking hand).

Seems to me that it is mostly a question of whether the artist-specified features work for you or not, re: whether a "signature" model is worth considering.

32

BadPenguin, I can sorta see where you're coming from, but I don't agree.

In the case of Les Paul : he's actually a pretty good example of someone who never really played the guitar you could get at the store with his name on it. It's also been pretty well documented by now that he had very little to do with the design of the Gibson Les Paul, if anything. The only thing that really came from him was the trapeze tailpiece on the first year Les Pauls, but Gibson implemented that the wrong way around, so that was that.

Other than that, he played Goldtops for a short while, but he put a Dynasonic pickup in the neck position, and as soon as he started playing his home-made low impedance pickups, he custom ordered flat-topped LP customs from Gibson because they were easier to do his crude pickguard/pickup modifications to. I don't think he ever played a stock Les Paul until the Les Paul Personal/Recording models came along twenty years later.

Chet Atkins was photographed with all of the Gretsch models bearing his name, but hardly played them except for his now legendary 59.

Even with that info, I like the idea of a lot of signature guitars. Great players can have very good/practical/sensible ideas about guitars, and if they make a little money on guitars so I get to use their clever little ideas, I don't mind one bit.

And even if a lot of the signature game is about idol worship and money....isn't a big part of the music business anyway? I wear T-shirts with artist/band names on them too, and I like the idea the artist makes money on them.

– WB

yep! Brian Setzer's "Signature model" hardly gets played onstage at all.. AND they are all refretted w stainless steel 6105 frets.. The feel of the instrument is a bit different and its sound changes a tad too, I know. I spend the extra money to have my SSU refret so it was actually like setzer'sI also heard his sound change in the last few yrs only to find out last yr that his pickups werent even classics, they were pre "Setzer Sigs". Having talked w Curt Novak a few times there are plenty of Artists who's guitars arent even what they appear to be.

33

That version of the Epi headstock is too large/long for the petite Johnny A. guitar body. Look at the Gibson original and you can see the designers of the instrument went out of their way to pair that body with an appropriately petite headstock.

35

I'm under 50 and I've been into his solo music for over 10 years. That said, other than people on guitar forums i don't know anyone else who's heard of him.

Re: the guitar being sold out. I think that just means the shops have bought all of them up. They have started to ship... just start calling a few shops ans see who's got one coming in. I did just that today and the shop does have one coming in. L&M is a great music store with an incredible 30 day return policy. Cause of that i pick up a guitar I'm interested in, take it home and try it out. If I'm not happy with it, back it goes. While it's at my home it's treated better than most of those trying it in the shop. Worst case if i scuff it or something the shop charges me as it it was a rental and sells it new/used. That's never happened to me but that's how they roll... how lucky are we up here in Canada to have such a fantastic music chain :)

36

Who is Johnny A. and does anybody under 50 know?

– TheNocturneBrain

A fantastic guitarist and sideman who's been doing it a very, very long time. I'm 47. :)

Didn't dig his latest release as much as the first 2, "Get Inside" being my favorite. I just looked it up, and Johnny is 65

37

What's his last name...what's the "A" stand for?

Never heard of him but I liked the two videos posted earlier.

38

What's his last name...what's the "A" stand for?

Never heard of him but I liked the two videos posted earlier.

– Setzer

https://en.wikipedia.org/wi....

FWIW, alot of the unique design elements of the Gibson Johnny A. were an attempt to re-create the tone of his ES-295 with P90s, but without the hum, as well as crossover into 335 and Les Paul tones.

39

I always felt that the "budget" artist models were something that the artist approved of, the cheaper price being more for an aspiring guitarist. Which is why Chet endorsed the Tennessean. And why the Epiphone (and Electromatic) line exists today.

40

I always felt that the "budget" artist models were something that the artist approved of, the cheaper price being more for an aspiring guitarist. Which is why Chet endorsed the Tennessean. And why the Epiphone (and Electromatic) line exists today.

– lx

I can absolutely verify this about the Epiphone Bonamassa models. That was the EXACT goal, and Bonamassa did approve of and quality-check these models. Out of his own mouth.

41

Just ordered one from Long & Mcquade today!

42

Just ordered one from Long & Mcquade today!

– Takabilly

Which L&M did you order from?

The shop in Vancouver said they were already shipping to the stores on the east coast.

43

https://en.wikipedia.org/wi....

FWIW, alot of the unique design elements of the Gibson Johnny A. were an attempt to re-create the tone of his ES-295 with P90s, but without the hum, as well as crossover into 335 and Les Paul tones.

– ruger9

when did you turn 47, holy moses it was just yesterday I knew you at 35?

44

when did you turn 47, holy moses it was just yesterday I knew you at 35?

– TheNocturneBrain

LOL, yeah... time marches on. Getting older sucks. The trick is to do it healthfully in body, and positive in mind. I figure if Johnny A is still rockin' at 65, and Setzer is still doing it at 57, I'm ok LOL

45

Which L&M did you order from?

The shop in Vancouver said they were already shipping to the stores on the east coast.

– Chris-O-Matic

North Van! They weren't sure when it would get in, we thought it might be a couple months because we assumed they'd be sent out to the states first. But that's good news if they're already being shipped out in the East!

46

Sweetwater isn't getting their first shipment until August.

47

And then there's THIS.....

One-off, or proto? Hmm.....

Gibson Johnny A. hardtail with P90s

49

Well, it was indeed a one-off, that "TV White" is gorgeous, and now it’s been Bigsby’d!


Register Sign in to join the conversation