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  1. #76

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    I remember about 10 years ago I played a gig and afterwards, while packing up, a couple in their early 20s approached me. In terms of frequency of people approaching musicians in the band, people seem far more likely to come up and talk to the guitarist than to the trumpeter, saxophone player, drummer or bassist. I think that's because so many more people play guitar than those other instruments.

    The woman said "I have a question for you." She pointed at my Matt Cushman archtop and said "is that a guitar?" I don't think she had ever seen an archtop guitar before.

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  3. #77

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cunamara
    I remember about 10 years ago I played a gig and afterwards, while packing up, a couple in their early 20s approached me. In terms of frequency of people approaching musicians in the band, people seem far more likely to come up and talk to the guitarist than to the trumpeter, saxophone player, drummer or bassist. I think that's because so many more people play guitar than those other instruments.

    The woman said "I have a question for you." She pointed at my Matt Cushman archtop and said "is that a guitar?" I don't think she had ever seen an archtop guitar before.
    Gibson Custom Archtops - 2019-smiley_hysterical-gif
    Last edited by nevershouldhavesoldit; 06-14-2021 at 04:34 PM.

  4. #78

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    Quote Originally Posted by nevershouldhavesoldit
    While I agree completely with your post, I think there may be another equally important reason for the current widespread use of solid and laminated semi-hollow guitars where carved archtops would have been found years ago. ...[excellent points made...] ... So I think it’s a combination of the reputation for fragility (which is to some degree deserved), the need for more care and attention, and the higher costs of entry and ownership that has led to the popularity of “lesser” guitar forms in all music. Good archtop guitars, like vinyl records, will survive - but both are in specialty niches today because there are so many easier and less expensive alternatives.
    Yes to everything you posted. My comments are about the past, and your comments are about the present.

    I'm not suggesting that the acoustic, carved archtop will ever be more than a niche instrument, just that one of the side effects is that, at this point, many (if not most) steel-string guitar players have no conception of how a good carved archtop sounds, feels and plays. As someone who loves acoustic carved archtop guitars, I think that's a sad thing.
    Last edited by Hammertone; 06-14-2021 at 09:18 PM.

  5. #79

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hammertone
    Yes to everything you posted. My comments are about the past, and your comments are about the present.

    I'm not suggesting that the acoustic, carved archtop will ever be more than a niche instrument, just that one of the side effects is that, at this point, many (if not most) steel-string guitar players have no conception of how good carved archtop sounds, feels and plays. As someone who loves acoustic carved archtop guitars, I think that's a sad thing.
    Sorry - I was responding largely to your statement, "It's true that lots of 'modern' jazz guitar is not being played on 'old-school' jazz guitars, but I think a lot of that has to do with simple lack of exposure." This seemed to me to be a reference to the present.

    I can't speak for the rest of the world, but no one in the US will ever again be able to experience a good archtop while browsing at a music store unless it caters to that market (and few do). And with no opportunity to see and hear one, let alone hold and play one, there's no demand - so there's no dealer interest in stocking any. No one in his right mind would leave a $10k+ acoustic or electric archtop hanging among the $200 Squires and Rogues for everyone to play with. And there are so many variables and alternatives in a good archtop that arbitrarily picking just one for store stock would likely strand it in inventory until it became NOS.

    Many music stores had at least a few decent archtops in stock when I was growing up, and the better shops had several. While in high school, I was even able to bring a few home for trial from my local music store in Atlantic CIty, NJ (!) One of them was a very nice single floating pickup Vega DuoTron C166 solid wood archtop that I passed up in favor of the 175DN I tried next. Years later after graduating from college, I bought a '69 L5-CN new in '69 from a Philadephia music store's stock, which also contained an L5-CES, an L4-C, and a few very nice used pieces. They even had a full stock of DeArmond pickups from which I added a Rhythm Chief to my L5. A year or two later, I found a new Gretsch Van Eps in stock at Manny's and got to sit and play it for over an hour before deciding that I wasn't nuts - it was simply not a very nice guitar.

    Sadly, those days are gone.
    Last edited by nevershouldhavesoldit; 06-14-2021 at 05:08 PM.

  6. #80

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    Quote Originally Posted by ipmala
    The L5 CES is "special order" ONLY.....from ALL the dealers. Plus, they will probably want a 50% DEPOSIT before they place the order. On top of that....you are looking at a delivery time of 12-18 months. However....in late 2019 my local Gibson dealer got in a NEW L5 CES Blonde.... which he had *pre-ordered*. As Gibson collectors know....Gibsons have always been "hit & miss"....but when I played this one-- I bought it on the spot. Acoustically....the BEST archtop I have ever heard or played. Fit and finish are also PERFECT. With this one...it doesn't even need pickups. Sometimes in the guitar world....we get lucky. Especially when it comes to Gibsons.

  7. #81

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    Quote Originally Posted by nevershouldhavesoldit
    ...Sadly, those days are gone.
    Those days are gone forever, over a long time ago, oh yeah, hey, hey.