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Don Everly’s Everly


JuanCarlosVejar
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1 hour ago, E-minor7 said:

Admit bein' among the ones who think these guitars look way cooler than they sound.  Then again it would be hard to match the J-180 design. 

I'm pretty much in the reverse camp.  The Everly/J-180 design is essentially that of the J-185 which came before it - Which I love, including the tonal characteristics of a good one.

What I don't like is anything about the Everly guitar's look.  Don't like black guitars, don't like the twin & massive pickguards, don't like the star inlays, and most of all, don't like the pin-less bridge as seen on the originals.

But the Everly connection is soooo cool!  Been a long time fan of the Everlys, including their father Ike's connection to Merle Travis.

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42 minutes ago, E-minor7 said:

Admit bein' among the ones who think these guitars look way cooler than they sound.  Then again it would be hard to match the J-180 design. 


Em7,

Fair enough.

To me this is the ultimate design especially if you want almost instant decaying sound.

 


I’d take an Everly over anything else even prewar Martins.

 

The pinless  bridge to me just complements the idea of almost no sustain that I look for in guitars.I like my chords and my single notes to be like a ghost ... it’s there for a second and then gone.

 

But I understand that not everyone hears music like I do and plays guitar like I do.

 

For those who do like almost no sustain ... this is a holy grail.And I’m sure that age has made the old ones a bit more resonant than when they were new.

 

JC

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1 hour ago, JuanCarlosVejar said:

But I understand that not everyone hears music like I do and plays guitar like I do.

That's  a  realization which serves everything and us all well.  Exciting too. .

The one above is beautiful - and I can hear it as a tight'n'snappy rhythm-axe in fast rolling  not too heavy rock band.  Easy to handle on stage, , , charismatic and sharp in mix. 

If I was a millionaire there would be a black ex on my wall. 

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A cousin of my wife had a cup of coffee in the teen idol recording industry years ago; he was a friend of Wayne Newton and cut a record or two.  In the late 60's I was just starting to play; he had a black Everly.  I didn't know enough to know if it was a good guitar or not, but that thing just dripped cool!  Some years later I mentioned to him how much I had loved that guitar and he said, "Wish I'd known; you could have had it."    Just one of a list of 'music regrets" 😢.

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15 hours ago, JuanCarlosVejar said:

I understand that not everyone hears music like I do and plays guitar like I do.

This to me trumps everything and is a big part of not only connecting with a guitar but also with achieving happiness with that guitar and making music with it.

I am sure that I have said something to this effect here before but it is worth repeating in my mind. It's pretty much a given that anyone hanging around on a forum like this one appreciates acoustic guitars, enjoys playing acoustic guitars and making music with them, and most certainly loves geeking about about acoustic guitars (Gibson's in particular) with others. With that in mind it took me a while to accept the fact that if you were to listen to three recordings of me playing the same song on three different guitars, based on audio only they would likely all sound very similar. On the other hand if I were record myself and two other guys all playing the same song on the same guitar there would likely be far more difference in how the guitar on each track sounds. The guitar geek in me gets a bit bummed out by this but for better or worse we ourselves are by far the biggest influence on tone and presentation.

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36 minutes ago, Guth said:

This to me trumps everything and is a big part of not only connecting with a guitar but also with achieving happiness with that guitar and making music with it.

I am sure that I have said something to this effect here before but it is worth repeating in my mind. It's pretty much a given that anyone hanging around on a forum like this one appreciates acoustic guitars, enjoys playing acoustic guitars and making music with them, and most certainly loves geeking about about acoustic guitars (Gibson's in particular) with others. With that in mind it took me a while to accept the fact that if you were to listen to three recordings of me playing the same song on three different guitars, based on audio only they would likely all sound very similar. On the other hand if I were record myself and two other guys all playing the same song on the same guitar there would likely be far more difference in how the guitar on each track sounds. The guitar geek in me gets a bit bummed out by this but for better or worse we ourselves are by far the biggest influence on tone and presentation.

Well spoken ^

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22 hours ago, JuanCarlosVejar said:

The pinless  bridge to me just complements the idea of almost no sustain that I look for in guitars.I like my chords and my single notes to be like a ghost ... it’s there for a second and then gone.

For those who do like almost no sustain ... this is a holy grail.And I’m sure that age has made the old ones a bit more resonant than when they were new.

JCV, the more I contemplate your post the deeper the roots of thought grow within me.

For what it's worth, if I were to describe that particular Everly Brothers model played in the Norman's video I would say that it has quite a bit of sustain. However, that guitar strongly emphasizes the fundamental of each note with a strong initial punch followed by almost no overtones whatsoever. This is likely due in part to the maple back & sides. The tone of this guitar provides a stark contrast to the many rosewood guitars that tend to really emphasize subsequent overtones.

Many years ago I had a beautiful used Goodall guitar at home on a trial period from a remote dealer. A friend of mine accidentally managed to put a ding in it one evening and so I felt obligated to buy the guitar. I found out much later that had I simply let the dealer know what happened they would have happily taken the guitar back and charged me a small amount for the damage. My experience with that Goodall proved to be a good one however as it really helped me figure what I do and don't like in terms of guitar tone. In terms of appearance that guitar was a real beauty and for that reason alone I was tempted to hang on to it. (I also really dug the "flying G" on the headstock since my last name is Guthrie.)

Regardless of how impressive the Goodall looked or how nicely it played, I just did not care for the way it sounded in my hands. It was like it was too pretty or too beautiful sounding for me if that makes sense. Essentially I figured out that I personally don't care that much to play guitars gushing with overtones. Mind you I love listening to other people play them but they just aren't for me. So here I am a couple of decades later with a few mahogany guitars, one maple guitar and even one rosewood guitar (one that still sounds pretty fundamental in nature to my ear). While they all sound different to some degree, I truly like how each of them sounds in the context of my playing and my music — even if they do manage to all sound a lot alike when I listen to the recordings I've made of myself.

In reality your holy grail when it comes to tone is likely closer to mine than many people might think. Yet you would never know it by the way we describe guitar tone. I suppose that's what makes such conversations interesting.

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Frankly, for all the fame the original Everly model received in the studio on hit records, on stage, and in music videos, I still prefer the Bozeman reissue (J-180) over the original Everly design. The thinner body depth (think J-45 v. G-45), while certainly more convenient for the stage, didn't allow the 60s original to realize its full potential given the perfect body shape, the pinnacle of Gibson guitar design to me. I don't mind the oversized adjustable pinless bridge so much, even though, I suspect, most models must have been converted (rerouted) by now with a standard saddle, as I almost never see nonconverts these days anymore.

Below is the reissue exactly as I have it in my possession spec-wise (only as a lefty):

 

Edited by Leonard McCoy
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2 hours ago, Sgt. Pepper said:

I have only played one J-200 in Gruhn's for a minute or two, but for you guys that have them, does that much pickguard affect the way the top vibrates?

No,

And the people who say it does don’t really understand what maple brings to the table.

 

Most of the people who complain about maple not having volume or sustain are people who are used to playing Rosewood or Mahogany.So they bash J 200’s saying that they have no sound coming out of them.

 

Here’s a demo of a Double Pickguard Billie Joe Armstrong J 180 (same as Leonard posted above basically) being strummed and the owner specifically mentions the double pick guards not being a factor in the tone :

 

 

 

The same applies for the J 200.

If someone feels that they can’t get the sound they expect out of a maple guitar ... then a lot of times it’s the person’s actual expectations that are the problem and not the guitar.


 

 

JC

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9 hours ago, Leonard McCoy said:

Frankly, for all the fame the original Everly model received in the studio on hit records, on stage, and in music videos, I still prefer the Bozeman reissue (J-180) over the original Everly design. The thinner body depth (think J-45 v. G-45), while certainly more convenient for the stage, didn't allow the 60s original to realize its full potential given the perfect body shape, the pinnacle of Gibson guitar design to me. I don't mind the oversized adjustable pinless bridge so much, even though, I suspect, most models must have been converted (rerouted) by now with a standard saddle, as I almost never see nonconverts these days anymore.

Below is the reissue exactly as I have it in my possession spec-wise (only as a lefty):

 


L,

 

The idea behind the thinner body depth in the orginal Everly design was to help the notes come out faster and they certainly achieved that .

 

As both Don and Phil aged I’m sure the way they heard music changed and their sonic horizons broadened... So the original Everly design no longer cut it for them (it was too basic) and they sought out Steinegger for something more sophisticated sonically but still in the image of the Gibsons.

 

The modern J 180 is a great guitar I’m sure both the fact that it has a pin bridge and more depth than the original allow it to be more sophisticated than the 60’s model.

 

But if you want simplicity and no sonic frills those old everlys are hard to beat.

 

I guess one man’s junk and toneless guitar is another’s holy grail.I’m saying this as a general statement regarding any guitar.

 

 

JC

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Here’s P. Townsend first on a J 200 then on a 60’s Everly  in my opinion this is maple tone at it’s best:


Notice that he’s not pounding the guitars to death ... his technique is such that he’s allowing  the guitar space to do it’s thing.

 

This Is what a guitar should sound like to me. And you will not get that sound out of anything but maple.

 

The parts where he is striking the guitar very rapidly still isn’t done with an iron fist.

JC

Edited by JuanCarlosVejar
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On 2/23/2020 at 1:43 PM, E-minor7 said:

Here's a guy who's very good at that - no Gibsons involved though

 

That is an interesting comparison. One thing about the '69 D-35: it seems a bit choked compared to the Goodall across much of the range, although this choice of a tune (Wildwood flower) isn't necessarily that great as a demonstration tune, since most of the lead is picked on the middle strings . I wonder if the un-scalloped top bracing of the Martin in that period contributes to this, compared to the aggressive  scalloping of the Goodall top.  At the same time, I remember D-35s when they first came out having this similar issue, which could mean that somehow the three-piece back is the culprit.  (I had a friend back in 1969 with a brand-new D-35, and I was a bit disappointed with it compared to a D-28 from just a few years before.)

The return to scalloped top bracing--and Ren's modification of it-- has to one reason for the remarkably balanced and projective character of a lot of modern Gibson slope-J models. This probably helps modern Martin dreads as well, of course.

The Goodall is certainly a nicely-balanced guitar, and it's tone appeals to me more than that particular D-35.

Em7 may have a vintage D-35, and might comment on it.

Incidentally, I really like that studio. It's a classic, with wood floors  and a highly-reflective brick wall that can be toned with soft hangings if necessary for recordingl

It also has the studio-standard Hammond B-3 with Leslie, plus a conventional grand piano

Edited by j45nick
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6 hours ago, JuanCarlosVejar said:

Here’s P. Townsend first on a J 200 then on a 60’s Everly  in my opinion this is maple tone at it’s best:


Notice that he’s not pounding the guitars to death ... his technique is such that he’s allowing  the guitar space to do it’s thing.

 

This Is what a guitar should sound like to me. And you will not get that sound out of anything but maple.

 

The parts where he is striking the guitar very rapidly still isn’t done with an iron fist.

JC

Pete is one of the greatest chord bashers ever.

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9 minutes ago, Sgt. Pepper said:

Pete is one of the greatest chord bashers ever.

I'd say Townshend "encourages" his guitars in the same way a jockey "encourages" a race horse with a whip.

And I mean that in the best possible way. I really admire him.

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On 2/22/2020 at 4:41 AM, bobouz said:

I'm pretty much in the reverse camp.  The Everly/J-180 design is essentially that of the J-185 which came before it - Which I love, including the tonal characteristics of a good one.

What I don't like is anything about the Everly guitar's look.  Don't like black guitars, don't like the twin & massive pickguards, don't like the star inlays, and most of all, don't like the pin-less bridge as seen on the originals.

But the Everly connection is soooo cool!  Been a long time fan of the Everlys, including their father Ike's connection to Merle Travis.

I think the black looks bad @ss,  the massive double pickguard is overkill, and the star inlay are tight. I'm jonesing for a maple guitar. Owed a Guild JF-30 and did nothing for me. Would love a Dove or the smaller J-180 with out 2 football feilds worth of pickguard.

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11 hours ago, JuanCarlosVejar said:

Notice that he’s not pounding the guitars to death ... his technique is such that he’s allowing  the guitar space to do it’s thing.

This Is what a guitar should sound like to me. And you will not get that sound out of anything but maple.

If I'm not lost behind blue eyes/ears the 180 is tuned down.  I like it ^

11 hours ago, JuanCarlosVejar said:

The idea behind the thinner body depth in the orginal Everly design was to help the notes come out faster and they certainly achieved that .

Good idea. The Everly Bros. as I know them were primarily a duo of strummers and 2 full-body guitars could easily have generated too much traffic, , , if not soup. 

Faster isn't necessarily richer - then again a smaller or withheld sound isn't necessarily poor. 

9 hours ago, j45nick said:

 The Goodall is certainly a nicely-balanced guitar, and it's tone appeals to me more than that particular D-35.

Em7 may have a vintage D-35, and might comment on it.

Well, my old 35 isn't vintage, , , yet - it's a 84er.

Had it out of the case the other day, but not for long. The brave squire nowadays must give room for scalloped Marts. and has retired. Not for good though, , , and it surely stays around.  

In the A/B one clearly hears the difference between scalloped and none-scalloped bracing. As mentioned the first is preferred here - still not in a full band situation where I'd go for tight focus, not multi-dimensional room.  Actually think a strong black Everly should do the job.  Light - Snappy - Precise - Cool.

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On 2/22/2020 at 3:22 AM, E-minor7 said:

Admit bein' among the ones who think these guitars look way cooler than they sound.  Then again it would be hard to match the J-180 design. 

It most likely wouldn't be the first time many of us have discovered this about a guitar that drew us in by looks alone. Some come to the "mini-super jumbo"(?) design and it's not a match. Same with maple in general. Different time, different place. It happened with me- 10 years later, the ears had an appreciation for it's qualities.

Edited by 62burst
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