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Jackson Brown Signature


ChrisA83

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  • 4 weeks later...

The pickup kit is around $600. And it has to be installed.

 

A $1500 difference seems way out of line.

 

The $1500 difference does, indeed, seem way out of line. I want one! Anyone know about installing these? I read an interview one time with J Browne and he was talking about it took his premo guitar tech a long time to figure out how to install it correctly. Placement of the mics being crucial or something. I wonder if that guy is for hire!

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All of JB's classic Gibsons have that pick up. He swears by it.

 

Hmmm... I guess I am just old school -- why put electronics in a world class ACOUSTIC guitar?

 

But then I never heard of Jackson Browne until his name was associated with old Gibson Smecks.

 

It is interesting to read the PR on this guitar. Of course, it is not a copy of any old Smeck. Walnut? Give me a break. It is an electric guitar, so maybe walnut makes sense -- I guess.

 

Old Smecks, particularly RGs of which there were very few, do not have a consistent sound. We have Garnet Rogers' old Stage Deluxe -- he did not put electronics in it -- and it does not "sound like a piano." It is really raw and in-your-face -- very effective in peeling loose paint.

 

Now the RGs -- that is a different deal. These are more like old AJs in sound -- some of the best guitars ever.

 

I have no idea how walnut fits into this picture, but if it has good electronics, I suppose rock fans don't really care.

 

I would be interesting to hear one I guess -- not plugged in of course.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

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Hmmm... I guess I am just old school -- why put electronics in a world class ACOUSTIC guitar?

 

But then I never heard of Jackson Browne until his name was associated with old Gibson Smecks.

 

It is interesting to read the PR on this guitar. Of course, it is not a copy of any old Smeck. Walnut? Give me a break. It is an electric guitar, so maybe walnut makes sense -- I guess.

 

Old Smecks, particularly RGs of which there were very few, do not have a consistent sound. We have Garnet Rogers' old Stage Deluxe -- he did not put electronics in it -- and it does not "sound like a piano." It is really raw and in-your-face -- very effective in peeling loose paint.

 

Now the RGs -- that is a different deal. These are more like old AJs in sound -- some of the best guitars ever.

 

I have no idea how walnut fits into this picture, but if it has good electronics, I suppose rock fans don't really care.

 

I would be interesting to hear one I guess -- not plugged in of course.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

 

Tom, I am a huge JB fan, so, here's some thoughts. Why english walnut? I have no idea except that I think I read it is a sustainable and I know that JB is very much a supporter of environmental causes. As for the Roy Smeck deal, as you say, this guitar is not a copy, it has been stated that he borrowed some of the features of the Roy Smeck, as he uses a couple of those in his life shows. He has 18 classic acoustic guitars on stage at his shows! He is a guitar NUT. Gotta love that. I'd say 75% of those 18 are Gibsons.

 

As for why he would amplify an acoustic, well, he is one of the world's premier touring artists, he has to amplify. I think he also mics his guitars on stage (he sits during his acoustic shows) with a Neumann mic. As for the expensive system, it seems over-priced to me, but, hey, I know it works because I have heard him live. Fab live sound. And... I have read several interviews about his guitar pickup experimentation and I know that it took him MANY years to settle on the Amulet system. The problem with electronics is getting the guitar to sound reasonably close to a live acoustic sound. His system is the best he can come up with. I want one, but it sure seems that Gibson has jacked up the price on the electronics too much.

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Tom, I am a huge JB fan, so, here's some thoughts. Why english walnut? I have no idea except that I think I read it is a sustainable and I know that JB is very much a supporter of environmental causes.

 

Thanks for taking time to answer. There is nothing wrong with environmental causes.

 

He has 18 classic acoustic guitars on stage at his shows! He is a guitar NUT. Gotta love that. I'd say 75% of those 18 are Gibsons.

 

I guess it is part of the show. I can certainly identify with the guitar NUT part -- we have been collecting and playing old instruments for 30+ years. Actually, we have been doing it for 55+ years, but earlier the instruments were new. ;)

 

When the folk revival morphed into folk rock in 1970s, we went over the to dark side and have resided there for 40+ years now -- bluegrass. There is a genre that has never plugged in -- with lots of guitar heroes that play acoustic. There is an associated price to be paid of course -- if you don't plug in, there are limits to how loud you can be. In the early 70s, the Osbourne Brothers plugged in to try to compete, and they were roundly rejected by their fans -- so they backed off.

 

I am not faking my shock at these instrument being modified to be usable in a rock show. What we like to do is to save old instruments -- we rescue them on a regular basis -- and I hope I am not being too pompous when I say we would never put pickups in them. Like everyone who performs at questionable venues (many of ours can be so described), when we (my wife and I) leave the comfort zone of a bluegrass stage setup with a good sound man, there are often problems. ("Here is a mic -- you don't need two for the both of you, do you? Here is where you plug in the guitar.") For this situation, we have a couple of new guitars -- and we hope for the best.

 

I guess I might now go to one of his shows now. But it would to see the guitars.

 

This whole post makes me feel like a curmudgeon -- but it is an honest curmudgeon.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

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Thanks for taking time to answer. There is nothing wrong with environmental causes.

 

 

 

I guess it is part of the show. I can certainly identify with the guitar NUT part -- we have been collecting and playing old instruments for 30+ years. Actually, we have been doing it for 55+ years, but earlier the instruments were new. ;)

 

When the folk revival morphed into folk rock in 1970s, we went over the to dark side and have resided there for 40+ years now -- bluegrass. There is a genre that has never plugged in -- with lots of guitar heroes that play acoustic. There is an associated price to be paid of course -- if you don't plug in, there are limits to how loud you can be. In the early 70s, the Osbourne Brothers plugged in to try to compete, and they were roundly rejected by their fans -- so they backed off.

 

I am not faking my shock at these instrument being modified to be usable in a rock show. What we like to do is to save old instruments -- we rescue them on a regular basis -- and I hope I am not being too pompous when I say we would never put pickups in them. Like everyone who performs at questionable venues (many of ours can be so described), when we (my wife and I) leave the comfort zone of a bluegrass stage setup with a good sound man, there are often problems. ("Here is a mic -- you don't need two for the both of you, do you? Here is where you plug in the guitar.") For this situation, we have a couple of new guitars -- and we hope for the best.

 

I guess I might now go to one of his shows now. But it would to see the guitars.

 

This whole post makes me feel like a curmudgeon -- but it is an honest curmudgeon.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

 

Tom, I can appreciate the purist view of not messing up a good acoustic with a pickup, haha. But, I am guilty, as well, for gigging. I am a singer-songwriter and when performing, we are always fighting the feedback issue. That is why all the experts say we need pickups in there, even if we augment with a mic. Blend the two signals, pickup for volume and mic for realistic sound. I am not an expert, I am a writer! Anyway, I bought a DPA 4099, I think that is the model. It is a gooseneck mic that you can attach to any guitar in a snap and it doesn't alter it, just clips on. An expensive mic, $600. The issue is getting enough volume out of it for a show. I am still trying to work with all of this, as I am not a soundman!

 

As for why the singer-songwriters "need" more than once mic, it's to control the balance between the vocal and the guitar. Especially, those who play fingerstyle without picks and without fingernails... getting good volume is a problem. Jackson Browne strums some but also does a lot of fingerstyle. Quiet ballads. Just a man and a guitar. He is one of the best singer-songwriters there is, IMO. Plays piano, too and very well for what he does.

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Tom, I can appreciate the purist view of not messing up a good acoustic with a pickup, haha. But, I am guilty, as well, for gigging. I am a singer-songwriter and when performing, we are always fighting the feedback issue. That is why all the experts say we need pickups in there, even if we augment with a mic. Blend the two signals, pickup for volume and mic for realistic sound. I am not an expert, I am a writer! Anyway, I bought a DPA 4099, I think that is the model. It is a gooseneck mic that you can attach to any guitar in a snap and it doesn't alter it, just clips on. An expensive mic, $600. The issue is getting enough volume out of it for a show. I am still trying to work with all of this, as I am not a soundman!

 

As for why the singer-songwriters "need" more than once mic, it's to control the balance between the vocal and the guitar. Especially, those who play fingerstyle without picks and without fingernails... getting good volume is a problem. Jackson Browne strums some but also does a lot of fingerstyle. Quiet ballads. Just a man and a guitar. He is one of the best singer-songwriters there is, IMO. Plays piano, too and very well for what he does.

 

At some point we became so entranced by acoustic music that we are now spending our life seeing how close we can get. When we wandered into the Georgia mountains in the late 1970s, after a youth filled with folk revival music and even a little 50's rock, we found the amazing music that resides there. This is powerful acoustic music, performed by powerful instruments and powerful voices. It is so intense and so profound, it more or less steals your soul. You really can't get it on stage or on a recording -- you have to be right there.

 

For us, that is what the old instruments are good for. You can use them for anything you like of course, but as you noted, they don't really record or amplify well -- but they are almost required to get the old style music right. Not that we get it right -- you more or less have to be born to it to do that -- but we are blessed to be able to hang out with (and sometime participate with) people who can.

 

When we perform -- which is not particularly a priority with us anymore: we'd rather jam -- our first choice is to do it acoustically. However, chances to do that are few and far between. Next, we like like a single large diaphragm condenser mic setup -- this has become a standard for most bluegrass festivals over the past 5 years. Here, you are really working closer to the acoustics, and you can really nail the vocal and instrument mixes. However, it does require a lot of moving around on stage if you have a full band -- it can be DANGEROUS. When that won't work, we use two close action vocal mics, a condenser instrument mic for the guitar and a realist acoustic bass pickup on my wife's doghouse. If we can't even do that, we pull out a guitar with a pickup.

 

We recently played a gig where the sound man had my wife's bass sounding like an electric rock bass -- twang, twang, twang. We had no control -- we were not happy but went with the flow. We got a standing ovation at the end, two encores, and we were booked for another show. This does not happen to us to often -- they weren't really hearing us, but it is all music I guess.

 

But not our music -- ours is acoustic.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

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At some point we became so entranced by acoustic music that we are now spending our life seeing how close we can get. When we wandered into the Georgia mountains in the late 1970s, after a youth filled with folk revival music and even a little 50's rock, we found the amazing music that resides there. This is powerful acoustic music, performed by powerful instruments and powerful voices. It is so intense and so profound, it more or less steals your soul. You really can't get it on stage or on a recording -- you have to be right there.

 

For us, that is what the old instruments are good for. You can use them for anything you like of course, but as you noted, they don't really record or amplify well -- but they are almost required to get the old style music right. Not that we get it right -- you more or less have to be born to it to do that -- but we are blessed to be able to hang out with (and sometime participate with) people who can.

 

When we perform -- which is not particularly a priority with us anymore: we'd rather jam -- our first choice is to do it acoustically. However, chances to do that are few and far between. Next, we like like a single large diaphragm condenser mic setup -- this has become a standard for most bluegrass festivals over the past 5 years. Here, you are really working closer to the acoustics, and you can really nail the vocal and instrument mixes. However, it does require a lot of moving around on stage if you have a full band -- it can be DANGEROUS. When that won't work, we use two close action vocal mics, a condenser instrument mic for the guitar and a realist acoustic bass pickup on my wife's doghouse. If we can't even do that, we pull out a guitar with a pickup.

 

We recently played a gig where the sound man had my wife's bass sounding like an electric rock bass -- twang, twang, twang. We had no control -- we were not happy but went with the flow. We got a standing ovation at the end, two encores, and we were booked for another show. This does not happen to us to often -- they weren't really hearing us, but it is all music I guess.

 

But not our music -- ours is acoustic.

 

Let's pick,

 

-Tom

 

Tom, you are doing something very right. Much of our problems revolve around amplification beyond that required for the front porch. Which doesn't exist anymore. Right?

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