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Shut up and play...?


LesBonfire

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A lot of discussion in here is on modifications, pick ups, wood types, mahoganey tops, maple tops, rosewood and ebony fingeerboards, graphite and bone nuts ... this and that...what I'd like to know is if any of you think that guys like Muddy, BB, Chuck Berry and the rest of the greats cared about this stuff when they were making some if not the greatest music in the last century??? Or they just played...and played...and loved that its what they did professionally? I'd like to hear peoples input on this one...

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I agree with you in principle, but consider this;

 

How many choices did they have?

Even if Gibson built several versions of a single model (they rarely did) there wasn't a guitar shop on every corner to choose from. Finding a guitar that would fit your needs was about as much as those guys hoped for.

 

Then, could they afford them?

Very often, no.

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Electric guitars were a new phenomenon when the guys you name got started. And, yes; they do care what they play...surely you've heard BB go on and on about his Lucille. And I don't think you'd have to dig far to get an official opinion from Chuck on anything he's used professionally. I don't think they were indifferent about their instruments. And John Lee Hooker...hell, he went to his grave unable to write anything but his own name. Couldn't read a lick. Apparently that wasn't particularly important to him. But he played Epiphone Sheratons for years...long after he could have bought any guitar he wanted. He played what he liked...just as most of us do. But when he started, the electric guitar was pretty much a prototype. Wouldn't have occurred to someone back then to mod something so new and untried.

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John Lennon used his Epiphone Casino because he liked the Feel and Tone

 

Chuck Berry used Gibson semi Hollows (ES 335, 337, 336 and such) because he liked the Feel and Tone

 

BB used his ES 337 because he liked the Feel and Tone

 

Buddy Holly used a Strat because it was new and he liked the Feel and Tone

 

John Lee Hooker used his Epi Sheraton because he liked the feel and tone

 

Buck Owens used Teles because he liked the Feel and Tone

 

George Harrison had a Rosewood Tele made because he liked the feel and Tone

 

If they weren't interested in those atributes, they would have played Stellas and Sivertones.

 

Now when it comes to the old Black Blues Greats, they were poor when they started, so they had to use Stellas and Silvertones, but soon as they cut a record and made some money it was J-45s and Martins.

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Consider this.

 

They had classic gear to begin with.

 

The old 335's, ect.

 

That stuff goes for megabucks today at Gruhns, ect.

 

Les Paul was always tinkering, as am I. I assure you Chuck Berry tinkered with tubes and cords, and stuff, it just wasn't in an internet forum.

 

Any working musician "hears" things other people don't hear, and they are constantly adjusting. I just came off a 2 nighter weekend, and had monitor problems, Mexican Radio Stations, and an idiot wanting to "sit in".......

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LesBonfire, how about the flip side. Looks at the other greats, Page, Clapton, etc., who constantly tinker with their gear searching for different sounds. I'm pretty sure it was a Clapton interview where he said they'd be constantly swapping pickups between guitars, always searching for that sweeter tone. Page, well, look at his Les Paul - it's a marvel of electrical wiring...enough said!

 

Consider this.

 

They had classic gear to begin with.

It wasn't exactly classic gear when they bought it, was it? It was new or newer gear.

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George didn't like his Rosewood Tele? I'm crushed under the weight of this news.

 

I'm sure he thought he liked it at the time.

 

Serious..... Go listen to that solo......

 

It sucks. That is the thinnest sounding Tele in history, and "BY GOD...."

 

That's saying something..................

 

( I played a Tele for years, and own one, why, I don't know?)

 

:-k/

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Lets not forget folks like Seymore Duncan, he didn't waste any time re-wrapping those old Pick Ups for more Girth. Not to mention the pedals he pioneered for Better electric Tone.

 

They all had their amps Tricked out for more power. **** Dale wired three 30 watt Fender Heads together in series to make a 90 Watt amp. Most big players of the day had a Master Volume added tot heir Marshalls.

 

In fact, I go out on a limb and say Charlie Christian and Wes Montgomery likely had Mods done to their old Jazz Boxes. After all, the Horn Players of the day would use after market and custom Reeds, Mouth Pieces, Keys, and of course entire instruments made to suit their ear. They could heve used any old Cleveland or Crown and the Audience wouldn't have noticed, but the Player would.

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I'm sure he thought he liked it at the time.

 

Serious..... Go listen to that solo......

 

It sucks. That is the thinnest sounding Tele in history' date=' and "BY GOD...."

 

That's saying something..................

 

( I played a Tele for years, and own one, why, I don't know?)

 

:-k/

[/quote']

It wouldn't do me much good, I'm not much of a Beatles Fan. Or a tele Fan, for that matter.

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George said later, that he hated his "Beatles" guitar tone! The tone that so many "Beatles Freaks" now, Try so hard, to obtain! LOL!

Everyone goes through this...IMHO. I go through periods, where I like the tone I'm getting....then, changing nothing,

I get bored with it, or start disliking it, for some reason. That's why we all change "pickups and hardware" or even

guitars and amps...we get bored, or want a change...to try to find that perfect tone, feel, whatever. It's a "Tail Chase,"

no doubt...as there is NO "perfect" tone, and it, along with "feel," changes as our moods or even physical feelings, change.

Just a part of being "human," you know? Though, it can drive you "crazy," at times...huh? ;>)

 

CB

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George said later' date=' that he hated his "Beatles" guitar tone! The tone that so many "Beatles Freaks" now, Try so hard, to obtain! LOL!

Everyone goes through this...IMHO. I go through periods, where I like the tone I'm getting....then, changing nothing,

I get bored with it, or start disliking it, for some reason. That's why we all change "pickups and hardware" or even

guitars and amps...we get bored, or want a change...to try to find that perfect tone, feel, whatever. It's a "Tail Chase,"

no doubt...as there is NO "perfect" tone, and it, along with "feel," changes as our moods or even physical feelings, change.

Just a part of being "human," you know? Though, it can drive you "crazy," at times...huh? ;>)

 

CB[/quote']

 

:-k

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Great responses guys...innovation is what it comes down to I guess eh? Wanting the newest sound, trying not to go stale! I was gonna mention Page and Clapton but thought I'd stick to the originators in the start of the topic...but even musicians now adays could fall into this category. Tom Morello from RATM is an example I'd suppose. I just think sometimes, when I'm on a night shift and get the chance to pop on the forum I always find that there are few of us "newbies" who are askin question about what nut to install to keep them tuned properly, or what pick ups to put in to get this person or that persons tone. It makes me feel like I'm wasting time just reading some of them...and should be at home playing...and then I get all worked up to finish work. We all have dream guitars but if we don't know how to play the guitar even on an entry level like the Epiphone SG that I have then what's the point...not trying to be harsh...just bringing up what's in my head. I don't try to chase tones...I try to chase the time that my gf isn't around so that I can play my damn axe! lol

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