Miscellaneous Rumbles

Passing GAS

1

Have you ever had really painful GAS, the long, enduring kind, only to finally hold and play what you coveted and have the GAS pass (pun fully intended)?

For quite some time, I’d fancied an R6, likely used if I were to ever pull the trigger. Well, I tried one last weekend, about which one of the store employees even said “that there is the best Goldtop in the store.” For the price, I was pretty underwhelmed. My 1990 Special to me plays as nicely, and I didn’t feel like I was playing thousands of dollars more guitar than my 2013 Traditional.

I even played a used R4. Tone debate between wraptail and ABR aside, I didn’t like the feel of the wraptail.

I feel relieved, yet somehow empty, wondering “now what?”

It’s funny how even a long-held bad idea can be hard to let go of, even when it’s abundantly clear to one’s rational side.

2

I always wanted a MM Stingray. Finally had the cash so went searching. Tried about 5 different ones, single/dual pickups, rosewood/maple fretboards. Came away disappointed in all of them, for a variety of reasons.

The other was a Rickenbacker 4003. No problems there !!

3

Did you need time to heal, or was it on to the next obsession?

When I got back from the shop, my wife asked “So there wasn’t anything you couldn’t live without?”

Did I leave a guitar at the store when I could’ve brought one home, even if the wrong one?!?

So now I’m looking for the new next guitar, but everything feels forced.

4

Not really. I had a few different ones in mind. MM Stingray, Fender Jazz, Rickenbacker 4003, G&L L-200. Couldn’t find a Ric or G&L anywhere, Stingray disappointed, so I got the Jazz, a few weeks later. Unfortunately I didn’t bond with that either, she was pretty heavy. Ok for a short stint but long sets hurt the shoulder. Pretty much played it once every six months. Then found a Ric so it sat in its case until I traded it a few weeks ago on a ‘75 Fender Musicmaster bass. All in all, it wasn’t like a HAD to get something straight away, I sorta procrastinate and not impulse buy.

5

The recording studio has cured me of new GAS. It helped me realize I have the sounds available in guitars that I already own that I want and need for any situation that may arise.

Of course I still love to look! I just don't have the burning desire to acquire gear anymore.

6

I think I too have just about every reasonable sound covered with my existing guitars.

I’d been wondering if an ES-335 might be the next dream guitar, but I suspect my PAF Les Paul and P-90’d Special cover that same range to at least an OK level, if not my DSW.

So maybe I need a new amp...

7

I LOVE P90 Les Pauls! Obviously I don't love them enough because I don't have one now. The ES-225 seems to scratch that itch and now I have the R9 I don't have the burning need for the R4 anymore. FWIW I quite like the wrap-around tailpiece and when I had an R4 I used a Pigtail wraparound bridge which was aluminium but had intonatable individual saddles. Sounded great, felt good...

Oddly enough the R9 took me a little while to adjust to but now I like it more each time I play it. The neck pickup is good but the bridge pickup is incredible. It's not just a hard rock sound. It jangles, it rings, it chunks - it's really quite something. As it bloody well should be for how much it cost!

Guitars I lusted after before playing them but lost the lust for after playing them? Probably pretty much any Dearmond equipped Gretsch I'm afraid! Yes they sound great and have some transcendental tones - but they just don't work for me. The Gibson Chet Atkins Country Gent. Just weird. Works if you play clean fingerstyle but has none of the charm and sparkle of a Gretsch. Do anything other than clean fingerstyle and it bucks you off.

And the BB King Lucille. Played it unplugged and loved it. Plugged it in and didn't. None of the warmth of a 335. Just a hard, unforgiving sound. Sounded good for BB style sounds and nothing else. Fair enough, but I thought it might sound more like a 335. Nope.

8

You’re not helping me back away from the Les Paul reissues!

I’d read that elsewhere, where sometimes you need to “get ‘em right for you” before they really spread their wings. Unfortunately, likely buying used, it’d be a big roll of the dice for me to presume its specialness is something to be coaxed out. For that kind of coin, I’d need it to smack me in the face the minute I start muddling through my Jimmy Page riffs.

But all of this may be a good thing. I’m unlikely set to buy immediately. I need to let the hunt for the right guitar, be it a Les Paul, ES-something or maybe something I haven’t even thought of, be part of the fun.

9

i don't quite have every sound that i could use. for new-to-me instruments i generally focus on the pickups, which IMO are the greatest determinant of the guitar's sound and tone. thus, i still need a Jazzmaster, a Strat retrofitted with Burns PUs, a Gretsch with Filters, and perhaps a Jaguar. regular Strat PUs, Duo Sonics, PAFs, P90s, Dynas, D'A 2000s, and Rickenbacker hi-gains are covered.

10

GAS is a mental state, and for some a real illness.

Nothing worse than just getting the latest conquest home, and then instantly thinking " what's my next one."

Been there, done it, and finally shook it out. Thinned the Gretsch herd to 3 ProLines, and if one does come home, one has to leave.

I've got the various Gretsch characteristics that are meaningful to me covered with these three.

For several years now I spend time just fine tuning and tweeking each one.

Get the most out the pup adjustments, a good bridge, and then just get the Bigsby set perfectly, along with neck tweeks.

Right now I can't think of one that I would get rid of for anything else. They are all different enough from each other, and are set up just the way I like.

I just play them and grin.

11

Kind off. I've been smitten by the looks of these new Electromatic Double Jets. So I've been checking out some sound clips of recent Electromatic Jets with blacktop filters but they're just a tad too bright and plucky to me. I actually like the BT's a lot better.

12

Mine's moderated since my last acquisition in June,a brand-new Les Paul 60's BourbonBurst Standard.Although Gibson hit it right out of the park with the '60s-and '50s-Standards,a 3 night sub gig on lead guitar soured me on playing country lead(standing for hours with an arthritic hip didn't help,either) even though the LP did great.Pedal steel gigs,which I'd far rather do than six-string, are fairly hard to come by,so I'm not anticipating much if any work anytime soon,and I was a little surprised to find that if there isn't paying stage or studio work in the offing,all dem beauties start to look like furniture. But I gotta admit it's gorgeous furniture!

13

Dave, you’re not helping!

I’ve yet to read a cross word about the 2019 Gibsons.

I’d initially thought, should I go for an ES-335, I’d get a used Custom Shop Historic, but the price for those sobers me up pretty quickly.

But a new 335 from the “regular line” might be a little more digestsable financially.

My wife did remind me I have a birthday coming up in November...

Should I be starting a new thread? Maybe queuing up John Lennon?

“I’m a looo-hoo-oo-ser.”

I hate myself because I’m probably going to be buying another guitar I don’t need.

15

need vb 1: to stay awake at night wondering if this gear acquisition is the one that will finally turn the corner on one’s tone (I need this guitar so I will finally sound like Billy Gibbons) 2) to be in want 3) a purchase you think you could make and not end up in divorce

16

need vb 1: to stay awake at night wondering if this gear acquisition is the one that will finally turn the corner on one’s tone (I need this guitar so I will finally sound like Billy Gibbons) 2) to be in want 3) a purchase you think you could make and not end up in divorce

– 50 Shades of Orange

At some point,it gets to be a matter of collecting objets d'art that you can gig with,rather than work tools that over time become objets d'art.I might relapse if Gibson put the ES345 Stereo/Vari-Tone/Bigsby back into production,but the only way you can get one now is to pay outrageous money for vintage or throw similar bux at The Custom Shop. I'm safe,sound.and un-GASsed.......for now.

17

I have been lucky to find decent deals on Historic Gibsons. And i am yet to be disappointed with a Gibson Historic - or whatever they call their CS guitars. Despite all the bagging on Gibson I haven't found a Historic I didn't like. Are they perfectly finished? No, but Gibson never have been.

Used Gibsons at Dave's can be very good deals. And i found a recent very lightweight '59 Historic 335 on Ebay from a little store in southern California - maybe it was Lovie's? If you find a store that's miles from a big city the price is often a fair bit lower!

JD is right though - GAS can be an illness. I have found that I was looking for guitars just to try to make myself feel better but in the long run it doesn't work. In other fields it's called retail therapy and it's looking for a cure for boredom/depression/whatever in the wrong places because you don't want to face what seems too difficult to fix. I've recognised this in myself and sold a lot of gear over the past few years. For me building amps became an addiction but not sustainable because it cost too much. Fortunately in a strange twist i have developed a bit of a reputation locally for the amps I have built so it wasn't difficult to sell most of them.

Now I have 6 guitars and they are all wonderful. I'm sure I will feel a pang for something else one day but so far I'm content - and I really should be!

18

A friend had sent me a video that kind of touched on this:

You think it might’ve been a long distance intervention?

Either I’m in denial or don’t have a problem.... but I think I buy guitars for the different sounds they make. Plus, and maybe this is where the boredom/depression/etc. kicks in, I don’t particularly like my job, and a new guitar here or there is sort of a carrot to keep me plodding along.

Thanks for the tip on Dave’s. Just glancing, the couple Custom Shop 335s they had were $500 less than what I’d seen in another store recently.

I bet they’d ship too...

19

Dave, you need to do what "The Over the Hill Gang " does, we play while seated.

20

A friend had sent me a video that kind of touched on this

I like that guy and his honorable Emersonian quest for the minimal sufficient rig. He's thought things through, he's engaging, and he makes astute points. I was following right along - not gaining any hoard-shattering new insights, and not exactly recognizing myself in his character portraits - but hearing the wisdom.

Then he sold off 20 cheap guitars...for not one, not two, but three-countem-3 PRSeseseses?

I'd way rather have the 20 cheap guitars than three of those.

There went his credibility!

21

It’s funny that I completely missed the part about downsizing to a few PRSes. The guy that sent me the video swears by them, and every time he suggests I get one I reply with something to the effect of how sterile they are and how I have zero interest in them.

I also didn’t really bite on the guy in the video’s suggestion that you only get more if it’ll be used to play with others.

I picked up guitar later in life than most and play at home, but my shifting taste enjoys having the variety of sounds. Whenever I think about selling a guitar, when I pick it up and play it, I quickly realized I’d likely regret it.

And lately, my go-to when I have a few minutes to play is my Les Paul. There was a time I regretted the purchase and just couldn’t bond with it. Then something clicked after a few years, and now I’m so glad I didn’t sell it.

22

I've had my PRS for about 21 years....for about 20 of those years it spent most of its time inside the case,....UNTIL I decided to change the rotary knob pickup selector into a three way toggle with a push pull several months ago. Now, it is one of my most played guitars.

I guess I'm finally in the honeymoon stage.

23

As a brand I don't know how people let PRS into their space before the 2 John Mayer guitars. Now I understand a little bit but only because of the John Mayer guitars.


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