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Whats yyour favorite guitar shop 'moment' ?


EuroAussie

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When I was in NYC two years I was visited all the 'must go' guitar shops.

 

One of them was Umanov guitars in SoHo. Small shop with a nice mix of new and in particular vintage guitars.

 

One the regular visitors there is an austistic gentleman, very much like the Rain Man character. He loves music, and knows every fact relating to music. He knows every track played by ever artist at Woodstock for example.

 

While we were there it was pretty quite and he started singing the tune to Funky Town, the head of bass dept picked up on it, and started playing the bass line. Head of acoustics started strumming away and head of electrics started playing a lead ... completely impro. This is all in one mid size room.

 

It was gold ... just out of the blue and beatiful, made the guys day.

 

Mine too, for for this reason and becasue ... its the place where i bought my 69' Hummingbird.

 

Anyone else have unique or memorable guitar shop stories of your own ?

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Ihad been playing a nice D-28 at a guitar shop. I was really thinking about buying it, so I played for about an hour.

 

I hung it back up, and went to the counter. The counter guy thanked me for not playing " Stairway To Heaven". Apparently he hears versions of it all day every day.

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Funny thing is Ive never actually heard anybody play Stairway in all the shops Ive visted .... Wish You Were Here, now thats a different story ...

 

Ihad been playing a nice D-28 at a guitar shop. I was really thinking about buying it, so I played for about an hour.

 

I hung it back up, and went to the counter. The counter guy thanked me for not playing " Stairway To Heaven". Apparently he hears versions of it all day every day.

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Well, I've just recently been to Ochanomizu. If you don't know about Ochanomizu, click here. This guy maybe covered 1% of it. The whole place is guitar heaven. I was there recently and found easily a few hundred Les Pauls. All legit.

 

That was heaven. Other than that, I once heard a 7 year old play Kiss solos on a les paul in Steve's music in Toronto. I was talking with his dad who was wondering whether it was worth forking out $3000 for the guitar his son liked. His son left there happy, put it that way.

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I walked into a friends vintage guitar shop one day, and laying across the counter was a korina Flying V. I just walked up and grabbed it and started checking it out and asked "is this one of those 80's reissues?".

 

"No, that's a '59." A REAL '59.

 

I set the guitar back on the counter as quickly and gently as I could. I think he ended up selling it for something like 60-80K.

 

Edit: P.S. The main thing that struck me about that guitar was it's weight, or lack thereof. The guitar weighted NOTHING, probably the lightest solid body guitar I've ever picked up.

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Great thread topic.

 

My wife and I spent our honeymoon in New England. Most of the trip was planned out in advance - we stayed in a different B&B most every night while we toured about the area in the height of peak foliage season - it was a great trip. We had one night free of reservations and decided to head for Boston. We drove towards the city about as far as we could stand until we decided to pull over and locate a phone (this is going back over 18 years ago - I didn't have a cell phone) to see if we could find a hotel room for the night.

 

We got out of the car and it was then that I realized that we had parked within 20 feet or so of one of the premier acoustic gutiar stores in the country: The Music Emporium. My wife was laughing quite hard as I tried to convince that I had not planned this in advance - I truly had no idea. She humored me and we stepped into the shop. Fantastic selection of guitars. We started talking with some of the staff, explaining that we were visiting from Austin, were on our honeymoon and that we had just ended up in their neighborhood by pure chance. They allowed us to use their phone and one guy working there even offered us a "place to crash" on his apartment floor if we couldn't locate a room, which were hard to come by during that time of the year)! Fortunately for the sake of our honeymoon, we lucked out and found a place not too far away within walking distance of the subway. While we were chatting, there was someone in the background playing some fantastic guitar and my wife and I both turned to take a look. It turned out to be Pierre Bensusan who we had seen in concert earlier that year down in Austin. The whole experience was just so surreal. I've got a few other great guitar shop memories, but this one was certainly the most memorable.

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Ihad been playing a nice D-28 at a guitar shop. I was really thinking about buying it, so I played for about an hour.

 

I hung it back up, and went to the counter. The counter guy thanked me for not playing " Stairway To Heaven". Apparently he hears versions of it all day every day.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RD1KqbDdmuE

 

My favorite moment occured over a two day span back in '95. I walked into my local Mom and Pop music store (now gone) and Mom said "you just missed a beautiful flamed Les Paul Classic Premium Plus". She ordered it for another customer but he wanted a wide flame and this had a tight narrow flame. So, she had just UPSed it back to Gibson. I told her I was sorry I didn't get a chance to see it. The next day she called and told me that she had UPS bring it back and wanted to know if I wanted to look at it. I took a look and it was gorgeous. When I told her I wasn't into electrics and didn't have the cash, she said to take it home for a few days and decide. Well, I still own that guitar. Boy, I miss my Mom and Pop store.

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My moment was brief, I guess. In '72 I was in college in upstate NY. A friend of mine had a solo act, some folk, folk blues, etc. He played a 60's era Goya that had a perfect tone...probably an N26...a great undervalued guitar. I was fixated on that guitar even though I hadn't heard of the Goya brand. When my Gibson J50 was stolen from my Albany apt, my father scooped me up and drove me down to Manhattan. He was a musician and bought all his stuff from the infamous Manny's music store. We walked in and he asked the salesman if he had any Goya flattops. The guy nonchalantly reached behind him and handed us a beautiful blond S18. As close to a Martin tone as you can get for the buck. A hundred dollars. What a beautiful moment...no drama and no wasted energy. Ask and ye shall receive, I guess, but only if you have a hundred bucks.

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Kind of Guitar shop related. I was in Japan on holidays a couple of years ago and whilst in Tokyo did some serious browsing in many good acoustic shops.I was keen on getting a J-45 as they are generally way overpriced in Australia.Although much better value in Tokyo it was still a big investment for me.

I found exactly the sound I was after in a 2010 J-45 standard in Heartman Guitars Shibuya...it was a used mint model.I still couldn't commit.

So I made a deal with myself that I'd only buy it if I got a "sign".......ie something out of the ordinary J-45 related in the last few days I was there.Weird I know but hey...

Then on my second last day I turned on breakfast TV and there was this guy doing a full Dylanesque number in Japanese on his J-45, harmonica brace and all. He was obviously a fairly big name as they were showing a lot of clips of his past concerts etc. he was a real bluesey/folkie.

During his interview he was even talking about the guitar, pointing to the neck, soundboard etc...all in Japanese.

So I got my sign and bought the J-45 that morning........no regrets.

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I was visiting a friend who lives in the Village of NYC. He & I went to Matt Umanov's which is within walking distance (dangerous) and my buddy is a "regular". We sat at the counter playing a bunch of old guitars and talking with the salesperson. One guitar my friend was playing was an old L-0, maybe 00?? It was an amazing guitar. The guy told us the story about it and then said "Oh, I gotta take it back. We called this customer to come over and take a look at it".

 

We handed it back to him. As I was trying to figure out how I could explain to my wife how a Banner SJ ended up in my luggage, my friend nudged me and motioned to the "customer" holding the old "L". Steve Earle! I started playing "Pancho & Lefty" & he gave us a nod. My buddy talked with him a short bit, I kept plotting how to get that SJ. Never did come home with me.... except the sound in my head and the "nod".

 

willy

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Two Best experiances for me..

 

First one...I already knew one person that worked at Gibson Montana.. we talked back and forth on the land Line on a frequent base..The best guy you could ever know. then After dealing back and forth on some High end Gibsons and Martins at Music Store in Missoula, and Being asked if I would be interested in Driving to Bozeman to meet the Guys at Gibson Montana.. I sure didnt say No... that would of been 1992.. I was given goggles, earplugs, and then I spent Most of the day in the Custom Shop with Ren, John, , at the Time had free Rayne to wander the Shop and watch the Builds.and do some Hands on. A Great experiance... Made alot of friends that day or who I would Consider friends...

 

The Memory is Burned in Forever..

 

The Second was .. Visiting in Missoula at the Music store and being asked if I wanted to go on a Road trip to a Guitar Show.. clear accross the country to King of Prussia Pa. he already had a table reserved.. Person to the Right was George Gruhn , person on the left was Jim Danz, accross the Isle was Scott Chinery.. and being able to visit with these folks..

 

Greg Boyd.. if your reading this.. Thank you so much ..

 

Gary Burnette I believe had started this Guitar show.. what a Cool Guy.. the Place was packed.. Guitars seen I will never see again.. a once in a lifetime Experiance..

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Popped into the Vintage Fret Shop in Ashland NH back in, what, 96?, with my wife to be, on the way to another event. Didnt see much that caught my eye, randomly picked up a hog Martin, played a few runs. The sales guy came up and said "you like mahogany, huh?" and went into the back room. He came out with a road worn '57 D18, just set up. Was asking $1100. Hit one chord and, well, that was all she wrote. Traded a sq.sldr CW and cash for it on the spot. That's Mrs. Rambler's guitar now.

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Popped into the Vintage Fret Shop in Ashland NH back in, what, 96?, with my wife to be, on the way to another event. Didnt see much that caught my eye, randomly picked up a hog Martin, played a few runs. The sales guy came up and said "you like mahogany, huh?" and went into the back room. He came out with a road worn '57 D18, just set up. Was asking $1100. Hit one chord and, well, that was all she wrote. Traded a sq.sldr CW and cash for it on the spot. That's Mrs. Rambler's guitar now.

Rambler,

 

might you be kind enough to show that Martin here ?

 

 

thanks

 

 

JC

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Well, I've just recently been to Ochanomizu. If you don't know about Ochanomizu, click here. This guy maybe covered 1% of it. The whole place is guitar heaven. I was there recently and found easily a few hundred Les Pauls. All legit.

 

That was heaven. Other than that, I once heard a 7 year old play Kiss solos on a les paul in Steve's music in Toronto. I was talking with his dad who was wondering whether it was worth forking out $3000 for the guitar his son liked. His son left there happy, put it that way.

That IS a lot of guitars. I don,t doubt that they had some legit ones in the back.....but most of what I saw hanging and on racks appeared to be "knock-offs" [confused]

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Some time ago I saw a special item in a shop-window. An old Landola precisely as the first western I ever owned. The store was closed, but I knew I had to go back to check this one out in person the following week – simply to feel the measures, the woods between my hands again.

 

I realized it could be sold any day and I was so determined not to miss the six-string, that I broke my schedule to visit the place before too late. It was worth it – it had aged well and sounded quite good. It brought up waves of memories for every chords I played. Buy it ? No no, , , it wouldn't be played enough – but I should have taken pictures.

.............................................................Landola.jpg">

 

The real moment though, occurred a short hour later. Inside another shop, I took a Jumbo from the wall. Well, you might not know it, but though I love the look, I'm a bit of a closet J-200 skeptic. Surprisingly many I've tried over the years were disappointingly quiet – okay many of them might have been Norlins, but too big a number seemed to lack projection and strength when considering the body-size. This one however, sounded very good. Rich and 'fountainous', rather loud and full of life. It made me dig into the test to a degree where I at some point forgot myself in a series of syncopated almost frantic strums. Suddenly I sensed something to my left. Not a salesman, not a dog, something in between, , , it was a 7 or 8 year old boy, who had sneaked up to listen. I played on as nothing and followed him from the corner of my eye. Priceless – now standing very close, he looked at me as if John McLaughlin had landed before his eyes. He was in trance this was high-wired communication. Shortly after his mother came around, we exchanged knowing smiles and they drifted towards the counter. That was my favorite so far this year – a tiny major moment for Minor7.

Apart from that, I have mixed feelings about shops and shopping. Check my upcomin' thread on the topic -

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Great thread topic.

 

My wife and I spent our honeymoon in New England. Most of the trip was planned out in advance - we stayed in a different B&B most every night while we toured about the area in the height of peak foliage season - it was a great trip. We had one night free of reservations and decided to head for Boston. We drove towards the city about as far as we could stand until we decided to pull over and locate a phone (this is going back over 18 years ago - I didn't have a cell phone) to see if we could find a hotel room for the night.

 

We got out of the car and it was then that I realized that we had parked within 20 feet or so of one of the premier acoustic gutiar stores in the country: The Music Emporium. My wife was laughing quite hard as I tried to convince that I had not planned this in advance - I truly had no idea. She humored me and we stepped into the shop. Fantastic selection of guitars. We started talking with some of the staff, explaining that we were visiting from Austin, were on our honeymoon and that we had just ended up in their neighborhood by pure chance. They allowed us to use their phone and one guy working there even offered us a "place to crash" on his apartment floor if we couldn't locate a room, which were hard to come by during that time of the year)! Fortunately for the sake of our honeymoon, we lucked out and found a place not too far away within walking distance of the subway. While we were chatting, there was someone in the background playing some fantastic guitar and my wife and I both turned to take a look. It turned out to be Pierre Bensusan who we had seen in concert earlier that year down in Austin. The whole experience was just so surreal. I've got a few other great guitar shop memories, but this one was certainly the most memorable.

 

 

What is your wife's version of that?

 

[thumbup]

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