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Author Topic: Best blues guitar under a grand?  (Read 8823 times)
jwsamuel
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« Reply #40 on: October 28, 2007, 10:03:32 PM »

It's kind of funny, in an ironic way, to see people discussing paying $1,000 for a "blues guitar" when the blues masters of the 20th century played whatever they could get their hands on because they could not afford expensive guitars.

Jim
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Novalis
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« Reply #41 on: October 28, 2007, 11:06:02 PM »

the blues masters of the 20th century played whatever they could get their hands on because they could not afford expensive guitars.
I agree completely, BUT,  AS SOON AS ANY OF THEM COULD AFFORD a nicer guitar, or had one given to them, they no longer used a cheap guitar. Remember, some of those classic 78rpm recordings were NOT recorded using their own personal guitars, but often with a guitar that was kept at the studio.
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jeremy3220
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« Reply #42 on: October 28, 2007, 11:38:00 PM »

It's kind of funny, in an ironic way, to see people discussing paying $1,000 for a "blues guitar" when the blues masters of the 20th century played whatever they could get their hands on because they could not afford expensive guitars.


I think you got it backwards. Many of the old blues guys played expensive guitars:

Mississippi John Hurt - Martin OM-45 , Gibson J-45 or J-50, Guild of some kind.
Rev. Gary Davis - Gibson J-200 and other Gibsons
Big Bill - Gibsons and Martin 000-28
Elizabeth Cotton – Martin 00-18, 000-18, D-18, Gibson J45.
Skip James – Gibson J-185, J-45, Martin D-18, D-28 in the sixties. Stella on the original rec.
Lonnie Johnson – Martin 00-21, 1942 Gibson J-100
Robert Johnson – 1928 Gibson L-1
Frank Stokes – Martin 00-28

Most if not all those guitars listed are still being made to this day and cost more than $1,000.
Even alot of guitars like Stella's were nice guitars made with solid woods; they would cost as much as an 03 Larrivee if they were being made today. And those players listed were some of the biggest names in country blues.


Here's a nice list:
http://www.earlyblues.com/blues_singers.htm

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jwsamuel
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« Reply #43 on: October 29, 2007, 01:01:52 AM »

I think you got it backwards. Many of the old blues guys played expensive guitars:

Not when they started. And those that had those guitars, tended to keep the same one for a long time.

Jim
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jeremy3220
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« Reply #44 on: October 29, 2007, 04:22:44 AM »

Not when they started. And those that had those guitars, tended to keep the same one for a long time.

Jim

I believe the only ones from my list that didn't have expensive guitars when they started were MJH and Skip;  The pre-40's palyers Stokes and RJ started with theirs. Besides what difference does it make; contrary to what you stated, the blues masters of the 20th century did play expensive guitars. Hey, I started on a 1979 laminated piece of crap ladder braced Harmony dread and when I could afford it bought nicer guitars. Just like most people on this forum, the 'masters' played expensive guitars if they could afford it. I don't see what's so funny or ironic.
 
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billchivers
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« Reply #45 on: October 29, 2007, 10:53:35 AM »

When I saw this thread my first reaction was "Martin 000-15S"...

Then I saw the creature's post and I do tend to agree with creature on this one. You are NO a-hole creature! Trouble is, there are SO many beautiful guitars and we have to think of SOME excuse to buy another one...

Then I got really worried as a thread on this beautiful forum started to get a bit testy, but then this is the Larrivee forum and thankfully we proved that this really is the friendliest forum out there.

Getting back to the controversial issue:

I like jeremy3220's approach. Look at the great blues players on that list and the range of different guitars and woods. Then add Rory Block on a spruce/rosewood OM, early Dylan on an 00-17, Leadbelly on a giant 12 string, Taj Mahal on a resonator, SRV on an unplayable strat, Paul Kossoff on a Les Paul, heck you might even be able to play the blues on a piano! Maybe the creature is right.

The only thing you can't use is a Rickenbacker, they are just TOO happy.

Bill
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jwsamuel
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« Reply #46 on: October 29, 2007, 12:01:14 PM »

I believe the only ones from my list that didn't have expensive guitars when they started were MJH and Skip;  The pre-40's palyers Stokes and RJ started with theirs.

If you want to think that all the people on your list went out and bought Gibsons to start with, go right ahead if that makes you feel better. And if it makes you feel better to think that you need a specific type of guitar to play a specific type of music, go ahead and believe that too.

I tend to believe that a good player can play whatever he or she wants on any guitar. But then it is easier to just buy a new guitar than take the time to learn something new.

Jim
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JasonA
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« Reply #47 on: October 29, 2007, 02:26:27 PM »

... it is easier to just buy a new guitar than take the time to learn something new.

That's my guitar buying motto!!
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jeremy3220
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« Reply #48 on: October 29, 2007, 03:16:57 PM »

If you want to think that all the people on your list....

Thats great but I was addressing your point that it's ironic to be discussing paying $1,000 for a "blues guitar". What we know as country blues was recorded on those guitars, and when we hear what MJH, Rev. Gary Davis, RJ and others sounded like we are hearing it on those guitars. It doesn't matter what their first guitar was and like I said if they started on cheap guitars and moved up then it only adds to the similarities of most guitar players on this forum. What we know of the country blues sound is in the recordings and if someone wants to imitate that sound they would be just as authentic playing a OM-45 as a Stella; why would they care what the blues players had before they recorded and didn't want to play once they could get nice guitars?

Quote
And if it makes you feel better to think that you need a specific type of guitar to play a specific type of music, go ahead and believe that too.
I said "Sure you can use a cedar/rosewood Taylor dreadnaught but it probably won't sound like any guitar used in the 20's and 30's." in an earlier post. I don't care what you play blues on, play bagpipes for all I care.

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If you want to think that all the people on your list went out and bought Gibsons to start with, go right ahead if that makes you feel better.
I listed two players I thought didn't start with expensive guitars in the very sentence you quoted.

Since you seem to have resorted to personal attacks and can't keep up with what's being said I see no reason to continue this discussion.

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patrickgm60
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« Reply #49 on: October 30, 2007, 12:49:13 AM »

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heck you might even be able to play the blues on a piano

Uh, yeah; piano blues. Probably as vast and influential as guitar-based blues...
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« Reply #50 on: October 30, 2007, 12:25:54 PM »

Good point, blues on a piano.  What is the best piano for playing the blues under ten-grand? 
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bluesman67
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« Reply #51 on: October 30, 2007, 01:25:53 PM »

 

Play the guitar that moves you!!!!  nuff said!!!

 

Blue
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dberch
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« Reply #52 on: October 30, 2007, 09:14:14 PM »

From what I've seen, guys who play guitar are worse than women in a shoe store.  They want this one in this color, this one in this style, etc. Over time people convince themselves that they *need* all of that stuff, but it all just boils down to getting more toys.  

If you want a "blues guitar" that's cool; I still say there is no such thing, but that's my take.  The important thing is to enjoy whatever you get and make great music on it.  

 
Well said, Creature! I agree completely.  And I'm guilty, as well. 
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ElJefe
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« Reply #53 on: October 31, 2007, 01:15:18 AM »

There's no such thing as a "blues guitar".

If there was, her name would be Stella or Lucille

Der's naw such thang
  da dum da dum
As a blues guitar
  da dum da dum
Just take that old thang
  da dum da dum
And throws in in dat far.

<Insert blues riff of your choice> Best played on a <insert your favorite brand> L-00 Braz/Adiblahblahblah

There obviously taint no blues mandolins either.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTUXH6ZC4rI

1 of my favorite blues guitar sites---    http://littlebrotherblues.com/Gear/SoundTest1/index.htm

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Larry

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bearsville0
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« Reply #54 on: October 31, 2007, 02:39:43 AM »

Adaptation.

It's amazing what sounds good when you can't afford anything better.
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If it sounds good, it is good.

ElJefe
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« Reply #55 on: October 31, 2007, 10:29:45 AM »


It's amazing what sounds good when you can't afford anything better.

Bear: 

I was thinking that a good blues guitar has at least 1 sticker that either makes a statement or covers a bullet hole.

You can lay it on the ground on a street corner while you count coins thrown in your case.

We all wear the "tatoos of life".  A blues guitar should have a few.

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Larry

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SteveO
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« Reply #56 on: October 31, 2007, 12:10:46 PM »

I like my 61' Silvertone Hollowbody'd Plywood guitar for blues play'n
"it'z got that real WOODY sound" 
 
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« Reply #57 on: November 05, 2007, 02:29:52 AM »

Under a grand my choice would be a Martin 00-15 or a 000-15. If you don't mind buying used, I would look at the Martin 00-15, 000-15, OM-15, 000-16GT, OM-16GT, or a 60's Gibson LG1. All should be well under a grand used. In addition, you could get lucky and find a deal on a used Martin 000-18 or a Gibson L00 like a Blues King.

Any of the above mentioned guitars should serve you well.

Good luck.

Ted
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Ted

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bjstrings
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« Reply #58 on: November 05, 2007, 06:18:11 AM »

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If you don't mind buying used, I would look at the Martin 00-15, 000-15, OM-15, 000-16GT, OM-16GT . . .

This is a little misleading.  Most of these Martins should be available NEW for under US$1,000.  The 000-15S, which isn't listed in the previous post, would probably run you a bit over a grand, street price, new.  I don't believe Martin makes (or has made in the recent past, for that matter) an OM-15. The OM-16GT is not currently made by Martin, but is different from the 000-16GT only in that the nut was 1/16" wider.  If you're looking at used Martins, you should probably also look at the 000-16SRGT (rosewood 12 fret slothead) and the 000-16SGT (mahogany 12 fret slothead), both out of production, available as custom orders, but also occasionally found on the used markets for reasonable prices. 

Generally, the best of the group are the 12 fret versions.  The 000-15S is easy to find, new or used.  The two 16 series are around but get snapped up very quickly, often within a day of going on the market.
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Mike

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« Reply #59 on: November 05, 2007, 04:59:00 PM »

Mike, out of the used guitars I recommended only the 00-15, 000-15, and the 000-16GTcan be had new for under a grand, and I don‘t think the 000-16GT is worth a the grand that it will cost you new. The others are going to go over and/or have been discontinued.

I left the 000-15S, out because I tend to prefer 14-fret guitars for blues. This, for me at least would also eliminate the 000-16SRGT.

Just my opinion after playing hundreds of different guitars through the last five years, but of course creature is right, any guitar can be used to play blues, or anything else for that matter. Heck, I even like the sound of blues being played on a classical. But in the end, FOR ME, it’s hard to beat a Martin 000 or a Gibson L00 for acoustic blues.

Ted
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