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Gibson's Fabulous Flat Tops Question


gottabetweed
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If you own the first edition, is it worth getting the second edition?

The main text appears to be a photo reproduction of a late printing of the first edition. The main differences are that the foreword by Stan Werblin was replaced by a new foreword by Steve Earle, the Acknowledgements were reset (but seem to be the same), an Appendix that consists of a 16 page table "Gibson Models Produced in Bozeman, Montana, 1989 to 2008" -- no production numbers, but an 'X' entry if the model was produced that year -- was added at the end, and the authors bios were updated. Far from the comprehensive revision and update that was planned prior to David's passing.

 

-- Bob R

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The main text appears to be a photo reproduction of a late printing of the first edition. The main differences are that the foreword by Stan Werblin was replaced by a new foreword by Steve Earle, the Acknowledgements were reset (but seem to be the same), an Appendix that consists of a 16 page table "Gibson Models Produced in Bozeman, Montana, 1989 to 2008" -- no production numbers, but an 'X' entry if the model was produced that year -- was added at the end, and the authors bios were updated. Far from the comprehensive revision and update that was planned prior to David's passing.

 

-- Bob R

 

Thanks for the info Bob! I have the '94 edition...I assume the first. Great book and reference material. I have 'dried up' a yellow highlight marker on it...ha!

 

I am a huge fan of Steve Earles' music. Especially the mid-80's with the black J100, which I mostly associate him with. Not sure of 'other' Gibsons that he played. It appears to me that he is more 'associated' with Martin 'these days'.

 

Not sure how he gets a 'Foreward' mention in a Gibson book? I would think that John Hiatt (or Jorma) would be better associated as a "Gibson man".... to give a Foreward mention to....

 

Your thoughts?

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I am a huge fan of Steve Earles' music. Especially the mid-80's with the black J100, which I mostly associate him with. Not sure of 'other' Gibsons that he played. It appears to me that he is more 'associated' with Martin 'these days'.

 

Not sure how he gets a 'Foreward' mention in a Gibson book? I would think that John Hiatt (or Jorma) would be better associated as a "Gibson man".... to give a Foreward mention to....

 

Your thoughts?

Evidently Steve traded all his Gibsons in toward Martins at Matt Umanov's after moving to New York. But then New York does have strange effects on some folks.

 

No idea how he got picked to write the Foreword. I agree that he was never "iconically Gibson" in the way that some other artists are.

 

-- Bob R

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Thanks Bob! Its good to know "nowadays"....IT ain't JUST me [scared]

 

It is an interesting story that you tell of Steve selling off to Martin after his arrival to New York! From what I have read, he kicked some pretty rough addictions. I have the utmost respect for any person that was 'addicted' to anything (including cigarettes) and had the moral/intestintudinal 'strengh' to "kick it".....REALLY!

 

Steve makes great music with Martin, these days! Townes Van Zandt Tribute CD is awesome....TOP-NOTCH!

 

I am proud to have him speak anything on Gibson.

 

Could you give us the Foreword in text, so some of us do not have to buy the book? Please Sir?

 

 

 

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The book is full of inaccuracies -- actually to the point of being pretty misleading. The problem is that the the authors assumed that Gibson was pretty consistent so if you saw a few Gibsons, you had seen them all. Since that time. further scholarship has shown that the picture is MUCH more complex than that and during that period, Gibson was pretty much always inconsistent.

 

The true picture is gradually emerging -- Joe Spann's work is a big step and look at Willi Henkes' two web sites -- http://www.bannergibsons.com/ for wartime Gibsons and http://www.j-35.com/. The Fabulous Flat Tops make interesting reading -- just don't count on it.

 

Best,

 

-Tom

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The reason I never considered buying the book. The research is really lacking in some areas.

 

This is a very common refrain on message forums and not without merit. However, I think we need to consider the fact that vintage Gibson details are much more difficult to come by than that of Martin, etc. Martin's record keeping was very good so their information is readily available. The Gibson company has changed hands many times so a lot of the information is lost to time, etc. We can't overlook the fact that much of the old Gibson details are counterintuitive and inconsistent.

 

Current Gibson knowledge is always evolving. I'm still a fan of the FF book even though it contains inaccuracies. It's still a great compilation of knowledge and a little bit of incorrect assumption.

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However, I think we need to consider the fact that vintage Gibson details are much more difficult to come by than that of Martin, etc. Martin's record keeping was very good so their information is readily available. The Gibson company has changed hands many times so a lot of the information is lost to time, etc. We can't overlook the fact that much of the old Gibson details are counterintuitive and inconsistent.

 

 

I agree but only to a point. Michael Wright, as example, in his "Cool Guitars" books was able to reconstruct detailed histories of more elusive companies such as Hondo, Alamo, and Kay, and their instruments. Just figuring out what name Kay was using in any particular year could prove a daunting task.

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I agree but only to a point. Michael Wright, as example, in his "Cool Guitars" books was able to reconstruct detailed histories of more elusive companies such as Hondo, Alamo, and Kay, and their instruments. Just figuring out what name Kay was using in any particular year could prove a daunting task.

 

Well put, point taken.

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Current Gibson knowledge is always evolving. I'm still a fan of the FF book even though it contains inaccuracies. It's still a great compilation of knowledge and a little bit of incorrect assumption
.

 

I agree with that. However, if correct detail is important to you for whatever reason -- emotional, money, etc. -- just treat the details reported in the book as a bit suspect.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

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.

 

I agree with that. However, if correct detail is important to you for whatever reason -- emotional, money, etc. -- just treat the details reported in the book as a bit suspect.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

 

Well put. I think it is important that a baseline of information was created around the time the book came out.

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