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  1. #276

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    I wouldn't suggest that *all* commodity prices have to be increasing in order for inflation to be taking place. Some commodity prices are inherently deflationary, which spoils the concept that everything needs to be on the increase for inflation to be occurring in an economy. Tech is a good example. The cost of computing power has been falling for decades and will continue to fall, but the prices of many other things continue to rise. What is more likely is that some commodities are subject to inflationary pressures while others are subject to concomitant deflationary pressures. Mathematically speaking this is reflected as some commodities having time constants that are positive while others are negative. The idea is nothing new... Copernicus wrote about this in the 1500s.

    In many respects, we in the USA are now living through the deflationary period that invariably follows as the result of previous inflationary excess. Those who are inclined to inflate a stagnant economy, through the manipulation of monetary supply and credit, want to continue to use moderate inflationary pressure as a growth engine. Unfortunately inflation financed growth is a two edged sword -- it works for a while and then it comes back to bite you. Inflationary expenditures on expansion of manufacturing capacity often results in excessive manufacturing capacity, and deflationary pressure invariably results when the excess manufacturing capacity beings to exert it's own deflationary pressures. If one's view of the time constants is long enough, it becomes evident that inflationary growth is followed by deflationary contraction, and the net result is a zero sum game. Unfortunately those who manipulate these variables don't seem to be learning from the Japanese example of the 1970s. Japan was only able to export it's unemployment for so long; while it worked they had a booming economy followed by a real estate boom. When their economic model failed, they suffered a terrible recession, a real estate collapse, and prolonged zero bound currency manipulation. They're still trying to recover. The lesson from Japan was clear -- none of those methods are suitable long-term approaches. It's just too bad that the guys at the Fed thought they could repeat the same basic experiment and have it yield a totally different outcome.

    Of course, this is evolving into a bit of a thread hijack. Although I believe that there is some inflationary pressure in the Gibson market, I agree that most of the upward pricing pressure on Gibsons comes from those other forces that have already been mentioned.

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  3. #277

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    Quote Originally Posted by boatheelmusic
    I stand corrected. SG's are great jazz guitars in the hands of a great jazz guitarist.

    Once again. Gibson's rule.

  4. #278

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    The best jazz performances were played on borrowed guitars. If you want to be like Wes, borrow a guitar. There's no need to buy anything.

  5. #279

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    Another borrowed guitar: Joe Pass, on the all-acoustic album Apassionato borrowed a vintage Epiphone from John Pisano that the latter's father apparently had played.

    And btw that is one super-hard swinging album that you don't hear much about.

  6. #280

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    Joe Pass used that borrowed Epiphone Deluxe on Summer Nights as well. Another terrific album.

  7. #281

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    Joe Pass used that borrowed Epiphone Deluxe on Summer Nights as well. Another terrific album.
    I think they were basically the same session, weren't they? Or close to it?

    Both of those albums are just spectacular, IMO.

  8. #282

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    John Pisano told me the story about the borrowed Epi. Apparently Joe tried it in the studio and commandeered it.

    Both albums are superb. I think Summer Nights is in the top five best Joe Pass records along with For Django, Virtuoso, Intercontinental and Two for the road.
    Last edited by Stringswinger; 05-25-2016 at 09:09 PM.

  9. #283

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    John Pisano told me the story about the borrowed Epi. Apparently Joe tried it in the studio and commandeered it.

    Both albums are superb. I think Summer Nights is in the top five best Joe Pass records along with For Django, Virtuoso, Intercontinental and Two for the road.
    It blows me away that some players can simply pick up a guitar they are not familiar with and say, "You know, I think I'll record an album with this.." The more I hear about this kind of stuff, the more I realize how mediocre I am. I could NEVER do that.
    In the early 80's I was recording an album with a band for the San Remo Festival and I brought my beloved D'Agostino D45 Copy. The engineer didn't like the sound of it for some stupid reason so he asked that I play his Martin that he had hanging in the studio. After 3 or 4 takes, I wanted to throw the real thing out the window. I ended up finishing off the recording with my D'Agostino. It sounded great.

  10. #284

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    John Pisano told me the story about the borrowed Epi. Apparently Joe tried it in the studio and commandeered it.

    Both albums are superb. I think Summer Nights is in the top five best Joe Pass records along with For Django, Virtuoso, Intercontinental and Two for the road.
    Those are absolutely in the stratosphere of great Joe Pass albums. If I get to listening to the Summer Nights/Appassionato pair, I won't turn them off. "That's Earl Brother?" Who ever hears that song anymore.

    Joe Pass had a preternatural knowledge of tunes.

  11. #285

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    Quote Originally Posted by aboutIt
    Lawson and Stringswinger, thanks for the recs. I haven't heard those two but will check them out.
    You won't regret it, except for the fact that they will blow most stuff out of the water and you won't want to listen to anything else for days.

    Serious, hard-core, acoustic bebop-swing in an ensemble setting, balls-to-the-walls call the tunes and burn 'em style playing. Amazing stuff.

  12. #286

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    I would agree and disagree on a few points with "The Cost of A Gibson" post. First off, although I haven't calculated the cost of a Gibson today v yesteryear I did do it for a Stratocaster. In '72 I purchased a new Strat for $275 w/case out the door from Sam Ash on 48th street. Sounds like a steal right? Not so.

    When I cross referenced minimum wages from '72 and the average minimum wage today that Strat should cost a bit over $1600 USD. One can purchase an American made strat for less than $1000 USD today, or at least the last time I looked. I won't be a high end strat but in '72 they didn't have as many options. If Gibson is the same….then I agree that they may not be overpriced. The Custom Shop Guitars? Well, that may be another story. LOL

    As far as Gibson being the best? I'm not sure. I haven't played enough new Gibson guitars to support or refute that but I will say that on any given day one can pick up a "foreign made" guitar and the craftsmanship, playability, sound etc. may be outstanding at a fraction of the cost.

    I have a Chinese made Gretsch Pro Jet (similar to a Duo Jet) that plays as well as any guitar I've ever owned and better than most. The action is super low, maybe too low, with no string buzz, no fret outs or dead spots, nada. It plays great. At 10lbs I don't like the weight but it makes a great sit down guitar. It's an older model with Mahogany sides and back, Maple top, rosewood FB and I can't find anything wrong at all with the construction. The pickups are terrible but if one slapped in a set of DeArmonds, Rickenbacker (no mods needed), or ?? you'd have a hell of a guitar and it cost $340 w/OHSC delivered to my door (used of course) but it probably didn't cost much more when it was new in 2009.

    Now, I also have American guitars which I have an attraction to as well. I believe the line has blurred between American v Foreign in terms of quality in many areas….then again…does anyone outshine the German's when it comes to engineering/tooling manufacturing?

    The reference to Sanders and cars I will disagree with. Not all Sanders, Trump or Clinton voters can put put into their separate pots as stereo types and I'll leave it at that. This is guitars not politics so I won't go there.

    Cars? Well that's an entirely different story. Many so-called "American Made" cars…..are not entirely American Made. In fact aren't many Godin guitars assembled in the US with parts imported from Canada? I read recently that one of the big 3, I believe Ford couldn't be called an American Made car, I forget which line/model, because more than 50% of the parts came from outside the US. Many so-called foreign cars are assembled in the US and so do provide far more jobs than those that are fully assembled and imported. That Foreign/Domestic line is blurred as well.

    Yes, I support "Made in America" but there are times when a foreign made guitar purchase makes sense. Who wants to take your American made arch top or even solid body guitar out on a humid 95 degree outdoor gig. Gibson overpriced? Maybe, maybe not…"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" as the saying goes.

    JMHO

  13. #287

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    There is a price to pay for everything and it doesn't mean the same thing for everyone.
    For me, regarding guitars, it comes down to how much it costs to bring that perpetual smile on my face when playing it.
    Since last summer, every and I mean every single time I pickup my Tal, just playing the first notes brings an instant smile because it produces the jazz tone I learned to love and strive for.
    It was a revelation for me as yes I was craving for a Tal since the '90s, tried to tweak cheapos to get there without success.
    A Tal was and is still my dream guitar, I know few will believe GAS can be cured, but in my case I have no other archtop envy since last summer wifie is also happy
    The only thing that could still tease me a bit would be an early '60s Tal or better a late '40s 350; but I would never shed that kind of dough on a vintage instrument to play in my living room and I already got the next best thing...
    I love the specific assertive tone of a 25.5 scale laminated maple top Gibson and so far have not heard anything else close enough to it except maybe a Heritage H550.
    My Tal simply has the tone I strive for and the remarkable thing is, it seems not amp dependant as it also sounds great in a cheap Behringer mixer into a living room sound system...It sounds of course even better in my Princeton.
    Was it an expensive move ? as a Canadian it probably would mean it was, because our dollar was sucking big time and still does, so buying from an American was obviously not the best situation.
    However Tals are very scarce up here and rarely cheap and the price I got was very fair, but most important, that smile has not diminished since day 1. There is something in pleasing yourself with something and even better when that honeymoon phase still goes on; means it was definitely a good move.
    That for me justify the cost of a Gibson, it might not to someone else I agree.
    I could have bought an alternative import, set for something else but would still feel that crave in my guts every time a Tal is showing as FS or PSA here...Now it just reminds me how great an instrument I have in my hands and how much pleasure it provides.
    Buy and play what makes YOU happy, if it means spending a bit more for a tone, a name or whatever only you can judge that.
    Last edited by vinlander; 07-16-2016 at 09:59 AM. Reason: typos

  14. #288
    Don't forget that a $3000 guitar gets a really nice setup. The $300 doesn't. Give it the same care during the setup and blindfold yourself. You'll be surprised. Or course, then there are electronics...


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  15. #289

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    That is a ridiculous conclusion. Perhaps a college level course in logic might be in order?
    I graduated from LaSalle College (now University), a small liberal arts school in Philadelphia in 1971. At that time, every incoming freshman took Logic in the first semester of freshman year as a required course.

  16. #290

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazz.fred
    I graduated from LaSalle College (now University), a small liberal arts school in Philadelphia in 1971. At that time, every incoming freshman took Logic in the first semester of freshman year as a required course.
    I took a logic course at NYU in 1975. It was a requirement of my first major (philosophy ). I quickly became disillusioned with that course of study and switched to Economics with a minor in music. The chairman of NYU's Economics department met with me and found my choice of music as a minor curious. He told me that he had never seen that combination before. I told him that music was my passion and that economics was simply to advance my marketability in the job seeking race. He seemed disappointed.
    Last edited by Stringswinger; 07-18-2016 at 06:08 PM.

  17. #291

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    I took a logic course at NYU in 1975. It was a requirement of my first major (philosophy ). I quickly became disillusioned with that course of study and switched to Economics with a minor in music. The chairman of NYU's Economics department met with me and found my choice of music as a min or curious. He told me that he had never seen that combination before. I told him that music was my passion and that economics was simply to advance my marketability I'm the job seeking race. He seemed disappointed.
    Just imagine the look on his face if you'd have expressed an interest in becoming a jazz musician!

    edit - You were at NYU when I was slaving away at the naval base in Philly.

  18. #292

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    I would never trash talk a Gibson guitar. The company has taken some marketing steps to try to lure in a younger demographic--with mixed success. (Think robot tuners. I honestly don't believe that the automatic tuners make the guitar play in tune better than I can make it play--auto-tuners have crummy success dropping sharp strings to pitch in a way that will _stay in tune_.) However, I suppose that for the _average_ player the tuners are better than the status quo. Nonetheless, they failed the market test.

    FWIW, Gibson has always built very good guitars overall, with some of their instruments being superb. Also, the value of a Gibson has been pretty good. You pay up front, but the guitar maintains its value, long term. Has anyone lost much if anything on a Les Paul, SG, 335, 175, L-5, etc., holding the guitar for a number of years before selling? I sold _all_ of my Gibsons for much more than I originally paid.

    I continue to prize Gibson guitars, but I also prize Heritage guitars, Guild guitars, Fender guitars, etc. Gibson is great, but it is _not_ the case that only a Gibson is good enough. (They are pretty darned good, though.)

  19. #293

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    GT, true about the value of a Gibson, my 1968 Les Paul and 1979 ES175CC are both worth significantly more than what I paid for them new. Of course one may not want to wait 48 and 37 years respectively for an instrument to appreciate.

  20. #294

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    This may not be the right place to add this post, but I have been struck by the notion of various posters who claim that the new Custom Shop Gibsons are not of good quality or not of the quality of yesteryear. I disagree. I have, within the past 12 months, purchased 3 brand new Gibson Custom Shop guitars (L5 CES blond within the past 3 weeks, an L5 Wes and a Tal Farlow). All of these instruments appear to have been impeccably and flawlessly finished. The two L5's are blond and sport highly flamed maple backs and sides, as does the sunburst Tal. When I compare my 25 year old L5 CES to the 3 week old model, aside from the fact that the older cousin is sunburst and has experienced some PUP spring issues that have been resolved, I see very little if any difference in craftsmanship, finish or playability. The older L5 may be a tad darker in tone, but that can be attributed in part to its age and perhaps the less tightly grained wood of the sunburst model. Other than that, there is no difference. I will not get into the discussion about aged wood, etc., as I do not consider myself an expert in that department. But as a player, I see no reason, other than perhaps cost, to avoid the new Custom Shop guitars.

    And to those who feel that luthier made guitars that follow in the tradition of the L5 are a better purchase ... each to his own. However, I own several costly, high end, custom arch tops made by well regarded luthiers that are a marvel to behold and play, but none of them, IMO, can provide the amplified tonality of the Gibson L5 CES or Wes models. It is my opinion that nothing can replace the real deal.

  21. #295

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    Quote Originally Posted by plectrum99x
    This may not be the right place to add this post, but I have been struck by the notion of various posters who claim that the new Custom Shop Gibsons are not of good quality or not of the quality of yesteryear. I disagree. I have, within the past 12 months, purchased 3 brand new Gibson Custom Shop guitars (L5 CES blond within the past 3 weeks, an L5 Wes and a Tal Farlow). All of these instruments appear to have been impeccably and flawlessly finished. The two L5's are blond and sport highly flamed maple backs and sides, as does the sunburst Tal. When I compare my 25 year old L5 CES to the 3 week old model, aside from the fact that the older cousin is sunburst and has experienced some PUP spring issues that have been resolved, I see very little if any difference in craftsmanship, finish or playability. The older L5 may be a tad darker in tone, but that can be attributed in part to its age and perhaps the less tightly grained wood of the sunburst model. Other than that, there is no difference. I will not get into the discussion about aged wood, etc., as I do not consider myself an expert in that department. But as a player, I see no reason, other than perhaps cost, to avoid the new Custom Shop guitars.

    And to those who feel that luthier made guitars that follow in the tradition of the L5 are a better purchase ... each to his own. However, I own several costly, high end, custom arch tops made by well regarded luthiers that are a marvel to behold and play, but none of them, IMO, can provide the amplified tonality of the Gibson L5 CES or Wes models. It is my opinion that nothing can replace the real deal.
    My L-5 and my ES-175's are still my favorite gigging guitars. I have yet to play any guitars other than my vintage D'Angelicos that I like as well. And I have played Benedettos, Buscarinos and many others.

  22. #296

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    Quote Originally Posted by plectrum99x
    This may not be the right place to add this post, but I have been struck by the notion of various posters who claim that the new Custom Shop Gibsons are not of good quality or not of the quality of yesteryear. I disagree. I have, within the past 12 months, purchased 3 brand new Gibson Custom Shop guitars (L5 CES blond within the past 3 weeks, an L5 Wes and a Tal Farlow). All of these instruments appear to have been impeccably and flawlessly finished. The two L5's are blond and sport highly flamed maple backs and sides, as does the sunburst Tal. When I compare my 25 year old L5 CES to the 3 week old model, aside from the fact that the older cousin is sunburst and has experienced some PUP spring issues that have been resolved, I see very little if any difference in craftsmanship, finish or playability. The older L5 may be a tad darker in tone, but that can be attributed in part to its age and perhaps the less tightly grained wood of the sunburst model. Other than that, there is no difference. I will not get into the discussion about aged wood, etc., as I do not consider myself an expert in that department. But as a player, I see no reason, other than perhaps cost, to avoid the new Custom Shop guitars.

    And to those who feel that luthier made guitars that follow in the tradition of the L5 are a better purchase ... each to his own. However, I own several costly, high end, custom arch tops made by well regarded luthiers that are a marvel to behold and play, but none of them, IMO, can provide the amplified tonality of the Gibson L5 CES or Wes models. It is my opinion that nothing can replace the real deal.
    I think Vinny has said that he thinks the Custom Shop is turning out the best Guitars he has seen in years.
    3 NEW High end Gibsons in 12 months? Wow! I plan on doing the same thing when I win the Powerball drawing. I am trying the "power of Positive thinking" approach..

    JD
    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    My L-5 and my ES-175's are still my favorite gigging guitars. I have yet to play any guitars other than my vintage D'Angelicos that I like as well. And I have played Benedettos, Buscarinos and many others.
    SS, they do invoke a sense of confidence where it matters most, don't they?
    I gotta get me another 175. It never ends..

  23. #297

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    "3 NEW High end Gibsons in 12 months? Wow! I plan on doing the same thing when I win the Powerball drawing. I am trying the "power of Positive thinking" approach."

    Hi,
    Yes, I got a little carried away, but they were brand new with warranty and offered at really good prices ... I could not resist. Last week I bought what I think is my last guitar purchase, a Collings Eastside LC Deluxe (bought one a few months ago that I did not like and returned it. But there was so much good hype in re this guitar that I decided to try again from a different reseller, this time with a maple neck and ebony fingerboard as opposed to mahogany and rosewood. Not sure if the last git was a bad build, but this one is wonderful).

    And now, there is no more room at the inn for guitar cases and the play rotation is becoming a tad confusing. Since I cannot think of anything else that would interest me, I think that the GAS is finally over ... I hope.

  24. #298

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    plectrum99x,

    I think you are right on the money about the recent quality of Gibson's Custom Shop Guitars. The one's I've examined have been excellent--in direct comparison to a very large number of Gibsons that I have played, owned, or long-term evaluated through the years. Gibson seems to be "getting it right" currently with its archtops.

    Like you, I am currently topped up regarding guitars. Otherwise, I wouldn't hesitate to consider, say, a Gibson L-5CES, or perhaps a Tal Farlow. Great guitars. It's one of those periodic times when it's good to be an archtop guitar player, IMO.

  25. #299

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    I remember walking through the Gibson Showcase store in Nashville a few years ago (before the great 100 year flood)and being shocked at the horrible fit, finish, and general lack of set-up and playability on many of their "Showcased" guitars. So Gibson quality is not always a given. It is, or at least has been at times, very hit or miss.

    Having said that, a good Gibson is a great guitar. I learned to play guitar on a Gibson Les Paul, and have just about always kept at least one Gibson around me ever since.

  26. #300

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    The Crimson Custom shop is currently at the top of their game IMO. Memphis is still a roll of the dice but so far the 2016's seem to be a lot better QC wise there too.