Other Guitars

So…is this what we were hoping for from the new Gibson?

26

Why isn’t it? It’s built, plays, feels, and sounds like one.

the one i tried out in the late 2000s did not. it felt cheap, didn't play particularly well, and the not-really-FilterTrons didn't give me anything i could use. i literally bought an Epiphone SG instead.

27

I'm holding out for the Olive drab.

28

All's I can say is I'm glad I got my Firebird when I did (2016). I love it, and at $1100 it was probably about as low a price as you'll find on a brand new firebird. The thing can go from buttery jazz to pissed off telecaster with the flip of a switch. And no goofy colors 3 years ago.

29

I "had" a recent SG. Got it at a great price. Sold it for pretty much the same price. It was quite a bit south of the $1.5K mark, even under $1K. I don't mind (most of) the colors, but they don't make me want to get another. I am fortunate enough to have other guitars that cover the same sonic territory (and incompetent enough to not be able to get any appreciable different sounds from the SG). Fit and finish were fine. Playability was fine. Neck heavy...yes. Impossible to keep in tune...yes.

Also...my wife never did bond with the devil horn look.

Do I miss her? (the SG, I mean)....NO.

30

My allusion to 'pastilles' was just for silly fun Proteus; nothing wrong with eclecticism in guitar decoration. In some cases it's even pastiche.

I've actually had an 'outside looking in' admiration for the SG, ever since I heard Quicksilver Messenger Service and saw a picture of John Cipollina with one. There was one solid color SG issued in the 60s in 'Polaris White' with three pickups, gold hardware, and a vibrato. That was the one I lusted for. Then there was the painted one that Clapton used with Cream, so there is a precedent for colors on SGs. (I never liked the black ones.) They are a thing, and do have a place in the lineage. But, as we all know, it's about marketing; every year or two there has to be something new to keep us buying more. That's good for the second hand market.

In the case of Gretsch/Fender, they manage to keep bringing out models with extreme appeal. With other companys it's hit and miss. These pastel SGs.... some will like them, but the appeal is probably limited. Gibson has already reissued most of the SG models; I think I even saw a John Cipollina Tribute model advertised somewhere. For those who hate them, just think of how handy they could be at the lake.

My feeling is that these are too conservative and by borrowing Fender colors (sort of) Gibson is again moving away from its historical roots, but not really doing anything interesting; I'll use the word 'boring.' I like what effect pedal manufacturers are doing with decoration; treat the little box's face as a palette for creative images. I wouldn't mind a guitar with Juan Miro type decoration for example, or something inspired by those viny art nouveau images, and a little subtilty can go a long way.

Gibson's strength is in its historical legacy and the models associated with it. If they are going to move away from that in an attempt to gain new market share they should probably allow a little more creativity to flow into the decision making process.

31

Well... the Cherry finish is certainly a classic look, but I honestly don’t mind the TV yellow. It appears to lean to the mustardy side, like the LP Juniors which is a blessing. I’d pass on the pastel stuff.

– kc_eddie_b

TV Yellow worked on an SG 57 years ago, and it still works.

Which, more than anything, is probably proof that we like what we're used to seeing.

32

The comparison DOES raise an interesting question, however. Both the SG and the original solidbody Corvette were introduced in 1961. Unless the two companies were spying on each other, it’s hard to argue that either was copying the other.

I don't mind you being Gretsch-centric, and somewhat "not-so-Gibson minded", but you gotta know your guitar history before making statements like that.

Gretsch most definitely wanted a piece of the Gibson market with their solidbodies, and was copying the Gibson template with their Corvettes - it wasn't the completely innocent synchronicity you seem to want to suggest. Corvettes were double cutaway slabs when they first came out, available in cherry red, and "platinum gray", a finish that was not unlike Gibson's TV finish. (here's a sold one on Reverb https://reverb.com/item/835... )

They were clearly more than inspired by Gibson's double cutaway slab bodied Les Paul Juniors.

That was the version that came out in '61, when Gibson was already abondoning the slabs and went to the SG's thinner, more contoured body. (and they did the same thing on the epiphone equivalents, Coronets etc..).
The Corvette as we know it, with the contours the current "CVT" still has came after the SG had been introduced.

33

The CVT, at least in it's current form, is possibly the most comfortable guitar I've ever played. It's well balanced & has exceptional upper fret access with a well designed neck to body joint. The Mega'Trons sound great to me, but it's easy enough to swap in the Tron of your choice.

34

I think the objections to the colors on the CME SGs come from what we're accustomed to seeing. And Gibson has done this in the past. Here's the late 80s Les Paul Custom Lite in Sunset Metallic. They offered one in a shade of pink as well.

35

I've always wanted an SG and still might get one some day, but it won't be one of these. The pastel colors look gross on this guitar. Like many here, the walnut, dark cherry look 'right', and I've also lusted after the three pickup white SG Customs, especially if the color has turned creamy. I like the basic shape but overall they work don't so well for me ergonomically. I do like the tortoise shell guards on these SG's though...they just look better on the Cherry or walnut stain bodies

Getting a CVT and tricking it out to a nonsensical degree has cured much of my SG lust, and except for the iconic nature of the SG, I honestly think it's a much better guitar; lighter weight, better balance, better ergo's, a real neck (some SG's have super skinny necks -not all but some).

Gretsch should REALLY put out a Proline CVT with a 6XXX model number (maybe resurrect the old one). It could be the perfect 'entry' Proline as it could come in at a lower price point than other Prolines, it would appeal to solid body players who have an irrational fear of chambering, and it would redeem the 'slab' body concept as having a legit place in the Gretsch line as Gretsch sort of ended up in the weeds with the Baldwin era slab bodies.

36

Corvettes did actually get a brief bit of national exposure.

Here are the Barbarians playing on the TAMI show with not one, but two early sixties Corvettes running through what look like Bandmasters. Check out the hook on the drummer's left, uh, hand. I think that's Teri Garr dancing behind him.

37

tbf Brix Smith Start (formerly of The Fall) occasionally plays an old single-pickup Corvette retrofitted with a dogear P90 in place of the HiLo, which basically makes it an SG Jr.; a wise choice. she prefers her white Rickenbacker 360 with the maple fingerboard, though. and she's the only guitarist of repute i've ever seen with one.

38

That's the same set-up that Rory Gallagher used. Someone actually makes an RG branded P-90. All of which points to what Proteus first stated: the single HiLotron was too limited, which was my experience with a slab '61. I think a TVJones Magnatron would sound fantastic in a Corvette.

39

do tell. i've never seen Rory with anything other than that de-sunbursted Strat.

40

Found it. Bullfrog Blues. And it's Kent Armstrong who makes that specific P-90. Enjoy.

41

do tell. i've never seen Rory with anything other than that de-sunbursted Strat.

– macphisto

Rory's Guitars

A couple corvettes.

42

$1,500 price point?

It doesn't make sense to me. I bought, just six years ago, an SG Standard (Limited Edition finish) for just $800 brand new. With case. (Interesting tid bit: The only thing the guitar didn't come with was a truss rod wrench. I immediately called Gibson and, get this, they told me they sometimes do not include them because people wreck their guitars using them! I told them send one to me anyway, they did.)

Seriously, how could the price have jumped $700 in just six years?

As to finish, I agree Vintage Cherry is the classic look, but I also agree that SGs do look fantastic with the natural wood grain showing. I saw this Limited Edition finish called Natural Burst and it was a must purchase:

(Strap cost 75 bucks but well worth it. Goes nicely with the guitar's finish and it is the most comfortable strap I own.)

43

I don't mind you being Gretsch-centric, and somewhat "not-so-Gibson minded", but you gotta know your guitar history before making statements like that.

This is fairly risible, since I’ve had a double cutaway early 60s MelodyMaker since 1975, and was playing Gibsons (and selling them in the music store) for decades before I owned a Gretsch. I’m reasonably knowledgeable about Gibson history. I haven’t always been Gretsch-centric, and still own more guitars of other brands than Gretschs.

I acknowledged in my post that Gibson had been making mahogany slabs for several years, and that no doubt had an influence on Gretsch in introducing the Corvette. My point was that the two companies both introduced NEW slabs in 1961, so (short of communication between the companies or out-and-out espionage) the Corvette could not have been an answer to the SG - nor, of course, the SG to the Corvette.

They were just guitars of similar spec, emerging at the same time. One succeeded in the market; the other failed. I was musing about the reasons.

44

They were just guitars of similar spec, emerging at the same time. One succeeded in the market; the other failed. I was musing about the reasons.

Well, part of your answer is in my post, I think. in '61, Gretsch was new to the solidbody (as in plank) game, and their first offering was a non-sculpted, double cutaway slab shaped corvette,by all intents and purposes an almost-copy of a guitar Gibson had come out with three years earlier with their Les Paul Junior (and special, in double pickup) and with the doublecut, single pickup Epiphone Coronet.

It's very well possible the (at that time) still slab-shaped Corvette looked fairly unspectacular compared to Gibson's fairly radicial "thinner than a Fender" contoured, devil horned, evil SG - clearly a rock and roll guitar if there ever was one. Fender was rapidly gaining ground and had shaken of its reputation as a country-picker guitar, and the new SG was Gibson's attempt to grab some of thàt market. "Walk Don't Run" wasn't played on big Jazz hollowbodies.

Hard to know for sure, but it's very well possible that in those couple of pre-George Harrison years, Gretsch electrics had somewhat of a "dad-guitar" image compared to Fender's sleek space age solidbodies or indeed the positively evil looking Gibson SG. (a white triple humbucker, sideways vibrato SG custom is still a sight to behold, imagine what it looked like in 1961!) Fender's Jazzmaster had failed with its intended audience, but The Ventures had already shown it was perfect for the new instrumental Rock and Roll that was getting bigger and bigger.

Apart from that, Gibson's guitar operation was bigger than Gretsch's then, they probably had a bigger, more established dealer network too. Gibson had been selling solid mahogany guitars since 52, and had Melody Makers, les Paul Juniors, specials, standards and Customs, all morphing into SG versions by that time. Non-Gibson dealers could sell epiphone's Coronets, Wilshires and Olympics since 1958.

And the other obvious thing that has come up more than once in this thread is of course Hilotrons. Plugging in a Hilotron Corvette after plugging in a P90 or humbucker SG is quite the underwhelming experience.

45

My first thought about the original post was NO, Just Not Right! and attributed it to the idea that the colors belonged with Fenders and surf music. But, hey, why not expand? Go for it.

With the other portion of this thread, I currently own both a Corvette and an Epi SG Maestro. Different guitars, like them both. The Epi is clearly heavier and brings out more of that rock sound but mainly because it is more of what I am used to. The megatons in the Corvette are distinctive and good in their own right. Had Gretsch initially used filtertrons instead of hilotrons when introducing this model, I think it would have achieved much greater success.

46

New pastel colors -not for me - But I guess anything might pass these days ! Poor SG got dragged in to this. I want say something nice about - some of them. They get a bad rap for being neck heavy. I had a 1997 62RI . Neck heavy , I could not live with It , didn't care for the neck profile either. I had given up on the SG , then this one showed up , locally . Well balanced (don't ask me how that could be , though its simple math) light weight, with a full rounded neck profile. IMO one of best . So don't give up on the SG ! Its from 1999. I think the color suits it

47

i love the colors, and I am a fan of SG's w a bigsby but not for any kind of classic rock, rather for country! This shell pink is pretty cool

49

I don't think it looks any worse than pastel-colored "white" Falcons, not crazy about either.

And 1500 is a good price IMO, I don't think you can realistically build a solid mahogany, gloss nitro-finished guitar in the US for less and still make a profit.

– WB

This!!!

50

my Epi SG-with-vibrola isn't particularly neck-heavy. perhaps the Maestro has something to do with it? it's a pretty big chunk of metal, and it's all-steel as different to aluminum Bigsbys.


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