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Best Guitar for UK folk club?

GUEST,matt milton 21 Mar 19 - 05:53 AM
punkfolkrocker 20 Mar 19 - 08:53 AM
Big Al Whittle 20 Mar 19 - 08:20 AM
Backwoodsman 20 Mar 19 - 06:58 AM
Big Al Whittle 20 Mar 19 - 05:27 AM
Backwoodsman 20 Mar 19 - 03:17 AM
Tony Rees 20 Mar 19 - 12:53 AM
GUEST,Nick Dow 19 Mar 19 - 08:42 PM
GUEST,Some bloke 19 Mar 19 - 07:58 PM
Tony Rees 19 Mar 19 - 02:30 PM
Tony Rees 19 Mar 19 - 02:19 PM
punkfolkrocker 19 Mar 19 - 12:38 PM
GUEST,Ray 19 Mar 19 - 11:25 AM
gillymor 19 Mar 19 - 07:36 AM
gillymor 19 Mar 19 - 07:33 AM
GUEST,Ray 19 Mar 19 - 06:42 AM
Will Fly 19 Mar 19 - 05:40 AM
GUEST,Ray 19 Mar 19 - 04:46 AM
Tony Rees 18 Mar 19 - 05:04 PM
GUEST,Ray 18 Mar 19 - 01:35 PM
gillymor 18 Mar 19 - 08:07 AM
GUEST,Nick Dow 18 Mar 19 - 03:33 AM
Tony Rees 17 Mar 19 - 09:17 PM
punkfolkrocker 16 Mar 19 - 12:55 PM
GUEST,Tunesmith 16 Mar 19 - 11:09 AM
beachcomber 16 Mar 19 - 08:02 AM
GUEST,Ray 16 Mar 19 - 05:11 AM
punkfolkrocker 15 Mar 19 - 12:54 PM
GUEST,Tunesmith 15 Mar 19 - 12:37 PM
GUEST,Ray 15 Mar 19 - 11:24 AM
beachcomber 15 Mar 19 - 10:53 AM
Big Al Whittle 15 Mar 19 - 10:42 AM
beachcomber 14 Mar 19 - 01:18 PM
GUEST,Jim Knowledge 14 Mar 19 - 11:20 AM
GUEST,Jim Knowledge 14 Mar 19 - 10:40 AM
beachcomber 14 Mar 19 - 11:15 AM
Backwoodsman 14 Mar 19 - 10:08 AM
Roger the Skiffler 14 Mar 19 - 09:59 AM
GUEST 14 Mar 19 - 08:29 AM
beachcomber 14 Mar 19 - 08:14 AM
gillymor 14 Mar 19 - 07:04 AM
Big Al Whittle 14 Mar 19 - 05:48 AM
GUEST,Matt milton 14 Mar 19 - 05:06 AM
GUEST,Some bloke 14 Mar 19 - 04:52 AM
punkfolkrocker 13 Mar 19 - 09:15 PM
GUEST,Matt milton 13 Mar 19 - 07:00 PM
GUEST,matt milton 13 Mar 19 - 12:27 PM
punkfolkrocker 13 Mar 19 - 11:54 AM
gillymor 13 Mar 19 - 11:27 AM
gillymor 13 Mar 19 - 11:15 AM
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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 21 Mar 19 - 05:53 AM

I recorded a quick video of my latest guitar acquisition, the Recording King RNJ26 NA.

As Sylvie Was Walking on a Recording King RNJ 26 NA

The guitar is based on the Gibson acoustic known as the 'Nick Lucas Special' made by Gibson in the 1930s (maybe even 20s?). It's a parlour shape but with a deeper body and the neck joins the body at the 13th fret (not the 14th). It's solid spruce top, solid mahogany back and sides. Plays really comfortably, has a sweet tone and it really rings - it seems to just generate harmonics and overtones all on its own.

My vid doesn't really do the guitar's tone justice; I should have positioned the mics nearer the guitar as they are picking up too much voice (so much so that it slightly distorts in places) and so the guitar sounds a little more muted than it actually is. You can hear the basics of its tone though.

I really love this guitar. Everyone loves a secondhand eBay bargain and this one only cost me £240! Unbelievably, nobody else bid for it.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 20 Mar 19 - 08:53 AM

Al - I need to get round to culling the herd...

Reverb is a newish site in UK for selling music gear.
At first it ws a way to avoid all he rip offs of ebay, but aparently the crooks from ebay have now migrated there as well..

Still, for any risks, I guess it's still beter than being blatantly robbed selling to cash converters...


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 20 Mar 19 - 08:20 AM

yes sadly, but we all get old.

I'm feeling the years myself. I stopped gigging a few weeks ago God knows what I'll do with all these guitars PA systems etc.

I'm filling the time with learning the ukulele. I've joined the George Formby Club.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 20 Mar 19 - 06:58 AM

Aaaahh, I reckon that'll be Steve Clark. Wonder if Steve's still working, can't find a website or FB Page for him.

Another good builder around that area is Colin Keefe - he did some work on a Martin for me years ago.

I didn't know about Jack's 'new' guitars but, now he's pretty much retired from performing, our paths don't really cross.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 20 Mar 19 - 05:27 AM

Jack replaced the Texan, with a handmade guitar by the guy who used to service his guitar.

Steve something living round Burton Joyce.

Later he bought a beautiful solid wood Tokai J45.

But he kept the expensive one.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 20 Mar 19 - 03:17 AM

Jack Hudson used a Texan back in the '60s/'70s and perhaps the '80s, and it was a great-sounding guitar. The last time I saw him play - at The Brown Cow in Mansfield in the early 'Noughties', he'd 'retired' the Texan and was playing a cheap-ish unknown-brand Dread he'd picked somewhere. He told me the Texan was too precious to him to risk taking it out.

I've spoken to him quite a few times since, and I seem to recall that he'd put the Texan up for sale to raise some money.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Tony Rees
Date: 20 Mar 19 - 12:53 AM

Nice pic of D. Burland plus his Epiphone Texan by Bryan Ledgard (doesn't move though) here... you have to imagine the sound!

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Dave_Burland_(239253069).jpg

- Tony


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Nick Dow
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 08:42 PM

Good advice. I suppose having an alternative guitar does give your favourite a rest. Funny that I can't find any YouTube video of Dave using the Texan. I'll have another look.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Some bloke
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 07:58 PM

Nick. You will be interested to note that when Dave Burland played at our club recently, out came the Texan. I was sound engineer and wanted to mic it to get that distinctive sound but he uses his practice amp as a fold back so he plugged in and I d.i’d out of the amp.

Funnily enough, I ran the desk for Wizz Jones last year and his Texan he has had for fifty plus years came out. His “distinctive” sound is a cheap glued in 1960’s transducer. He plugged that to his AER behind him for monitor and I d.i’d outbof it but I also ran a mic and blended them. All good stuff.

The point for us all here is that two musicians admired for more years than many of us would admit to are still using the guitars they played when The Beatles were playing The Cavern Club. Once you are happy, stay happy.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Tony Rees
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 02:30 PM

A typical original 60s Epiphone Texan for sale and described here, price seems also about typical, no affiliation:

https://www.mansons.co.uk/product/pre-owned-1965-epiphone-ft-79-texan-natural-10655

Definitely spruce top, mahogany back and sides (same as Gibson J-45 and J-50 of the period, also SJ and SJN...)

Cheers - Tony


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Tony Rees
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 02:19 PM

Hi Will Fly,

I am 99.99% certain that Gibson never used cedar for its tops in the 60s/70s/(?80s) or before - all spruce - so this would apply to both the Epiphone (Gibson) Texan and J45 you mention. So if there is an issue, it is certainly not due to the species of the timber used. And no, the tops should not "play out" - in general, 50s ones are considered better (now and possibly then as well) than 60s, 40s than 50s, and 30s than 40s. (20s are different because often they were not braced for steel). The most desirable and expensive vintage steel string guitars today come from the 30s (both Martin and Gibson) and there is no suggestion that the tops are "too old" or "played out"... e.g. take a look at

https://cartervintage.com/collections/acoustic-guitars?sort_by=price-descending

Just sayin'!

Cheers - Tony


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 12:38 PM

So my cedar top Art & lutherie [200 quid 20 years ago]
which I rarely touch more than once every couple of years,
would sound a whole lot better with a generous coating of creosote...???


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 11:25 AM

Cedar? Our shed sounds much the same as the day we built it!


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: gillymor
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 07:36 AM

That link didn't work. Here ya go-

https://bourgeoisguitars.net/our-news/guitar-guru-soft-top-woods-and-durability/


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: gillymor
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 07:33 AM

Here's Dana Bourgeois on soft tops (cedar and redwood)-

https://bourgeoisguitars.net/our-news/guitar-guru-soft-top-woods-and-durability/

From the article-

"Other builders, such as Lowden and Olson, make cedar guitars that put smiles on many players’ faces, and will also last as long as their spruce cousins."

He doesn't seem to go into the longevity of the tone quality.
This interests me because I have a 32+ year old L27F Lowden (can't read the serial number for the preamp installed on the neck block) purchased new in 1987. I don't play it much any more as the string spacing doesn't suit me though the action is very low and clean but I do get it out for visitors and it still stacks up nicely next to other quality instruments. After what I've heard about Cedar tops I sometimes wonder if the sound is fading but fresh strings dissuade me from that notion.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 06:42 AM

Too many variables! I’ve never come across a guitar top “dying” without explanation. Could be a structural issue, bad/wrong strings or something atmospheric (e.g. high humidity).

A luthier will look for narrow, straight, quarter sawn timber but I can’t see them searching out the best years for tonewood. A good guitar top has maybe a couple of hundred years of growth in it; it doesn’t come from any particular year.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Will Fly
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 05:40 AM

Do cedar tops last as long as spruce?

I wonder because my old Epiphone Texan (1964 vintage), lovely guitar thoug it was, had a cedar top which "died", i.e. lost a lot of its resonance and clarity after I'd had it for 40 years. Coincidentally, my luthier buddy Ian had a J45 of similar age - sister guitar, almost to the Texan - and that top died in a similar way.

Having said that, Wizz Jones still play a Texan of a similar age, and it sounds OK. And my 22-year old Lowden - mahogany back & sides - has a Western Red Cedar face and sounds excellent. Many luthiers I've talked to search out face woods from particular years, when the weather patterns produced well-grained and resonant woods. Perhaps my Texan and Ian's J45 - both made in Kalamazoo at the Gibson factory around the same time - used wood from indifferent years...


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 19 Mar 19 - 04:46 AM

Yes, that’s the one - I probably have a picture of you entertaining the traffic with it on the streets of Rouen. Ah, the week of French letters!!!
R


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Tony Rees
Date: 18 Mar 19 - 05:04 PM

Hi Ray, you mean this one:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1958565531114752&set=pb.100008839727006.

(not a J45 but a Southern Jumbo) - sold to finance a plane ticket for someone to come out to Australia 20+ years ago - a lovely guitar but since I presently have 3 nice acoustics, 2 purchased since, I cannot really complain...


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 18 Mar 19 - 01:35 PM

Owned/played? My current 3 favouritrs are all by Santa Cruz (a TR, an F and an OM/PW) They sound totally different and each has it’s particular job to do.

I’ll be taking the F out tonight and I’ll likely be playing mandolin most of the time but that’s another story.

What happened to your old J45 Tony?


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: gillymor
Date: 18 Mar 19 - 08:07 AM

" B) favorite choice of guitars - regardless of price - that you’ve owned/played."

Of the ones I've owned, the ones I play most of the time these days- 000 12 fret Boucher (Rosewood/Adirondack) which is great for fingerstyle and flatpicking old time tunes and a Bourgeois Slope D (Mahogany/Adirodack) which I use mostly with a flatpick but also shines as a louder fingerpicker.

Of the ones I've played, there is the 1930 OM-28 Martin I used to play at lunch break in The Guitar Shop in D.C. until they banned me from their "vault". And a Greven Jumbo (Maple/Sitka) that a friend up in Maryland still owns, every time I play it I'm overwhelmed by it's enormous sound.
Honorable mentions go to a S35 Lowden I played in SLC and I still kick myself for not finding a way to buy it and a Martin Norman Blake 12 fret (but with a 14 fret style square shoulder body) seemed like it could do a lot of things well.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Nick Dow
Date: 18 Mar 19 - 03:33 AM

I've been meaning to ask Dave when I see him, why he does not use the 'Texan' any more. I suspect he needs electrics hence the Lowden and Faith I've seen him use. Pity!


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Tony Rees
Date: 17 Mar 19 - 09:17 PM

Jim Moran wrote:

> Price? Well, let’s say A) under £1000, and B) favorite choice of guitars - regardless of price - that you’ve owned/played

Have to say I sold all my sub-£1000 guitars along the way, nothing there I would particularly go back to... I have found that I am really a jumbo/dread sort of player, in love with that bass rich sound I guess. My main guitar for volume+tone is a 70s Martin (D-35, rosewood, thin top bracing) while previously I had a 60s D-18 (mahogany, a bit more "jangle", a bit less "richness") that was also good for projection. I am guessing these can be had in the UK for around £2-2.5k from that vintage but you have to take care in choosing because the quality was variable particularly in the 70s - but a good one is a good one (with 40+ years of ageing) and to me they seem like excellent value still. I also *love* the extra rich sound of the 12-fret models (D-18S, D-35S) but they do not come up very often - very lush and piano-like, though you may miss access to the 2 highest frets, depending on your style.

Best guitar I have ever heard in the flesh: probably an 000-size Chris Melville (Australian maker) owned/played by Tony McManus, I would say - at least for that ringing, celtic style he plays. About 3-4x the cost of an equivalent Martin, though, so not all that practicable for many persons... Also Dave Burland's original 60s Epiphone Texan (absolutely beautiful tone+volume). I have owned some original Gibsons and Epiphones but while they can have a beautiful tone and playability, in general they do not have the projection of the Martins. Just my experience, in over 40 years of playing, buying, and swapping... I also have a couple of nice hand made guitars, but the Martin dread is still my "go to" in an unamplified situation.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 16 Mar 19 - 12:55 PM

Tunesmith - I have several "Vintage" electric guitars I bought cheap off ebay about 10 - 15 years ago...

[mostly ex shop demo & B stock..]

They are a mixture of fair to very good quality budget price instruments...

Quality control [cosmetic flaws, and fret & wiring shortcomings..]
was a bit variable from one guiar to another,
even after Trevor Wilkinson joined the JHS team;
and the guitars became equipped with his better manufactured componenets...

Though a couple do have far better finished fret ends than most new guitars I pick up in shops...

But as we have both said, searching for the brand could be a tedious chore..
Though, I suppose a 'bonus' is, I did see plenty of photos and descriptions of fantastic old guitars
I could never afford to own...


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 16 Mar 19 - 11:09 AM

Well, the Vintage people clearly aren't trying to fool buyers because a real vintage - i.e. old - guitar wouldn't have the word "vintage" on the headstock, but if somebody was searching for vintage brand guitars, on Ebay, say, they would have to wade through a pile of old - so-called - vintage guitars to find what they want.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: beachcomber
Date: 16 Mar 19 - 08:02 AM

Were they trying to say that their guitars bearing the "Vintage" logo were made precisely as their original ones were, design, materials etc ? I know the term shouldn't really cover those circumstances but I'll bet it probably lured quite a number of purchasers. It was the sound that "lured" me.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 16 Mar 19 - 05:11 AM

I thought that was the whole idea about calling them “Vintage”.

Unfortunately, the tem vintage is misused and misunderstood. The term originally stems from “the age of wine”. If a bottle was produced in 2018 and it says so on the label, it’s vintage but who would call a guitar with 2018 on the label, vintage?


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 15 Mar 19 - 12:54 PM

..unless you are actually looking for a Vintage branded guitar..
then it's not so clever...


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 15 Mar 19 - 12:37 PM

Whoever chose the name "Vintage" as a brand name were crackers!
   Put "Vintage Guitar" into any search engine - or Ebay, for example - and guess what you get.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 15 Mar 19 - 11:24 AM

A mate of mine bought one of the Vintage branded small guitars and he wasn’t impressed so he sold it. I also went to a Paul Brett promoted concert a few years ago where he was promoting some of his “Vintage” line including the Gordon Giltrap model. Needless to say, Mr G wasn’t playing one!


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: beachcomber
Date: 15 Mar 19 - 10:53 AM

If it wasn't for the "Sea around us" Big Al, I'd be on me bike already. I hope some lucky catter gets it.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 15 Mar 19 - 10:42 AM

Theres a Vintage dreadnought in a dorchester pawnbroker/jewellery shop. he only wants 40 quid for it. Its been there for weeks.
needs new strings, but its lovely.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: beachcomber
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 01:18 PM

I 'd rather not say, knowledgeable Jim ! :-)


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Jim Knowledge
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 11:20 AM

I `ad that Jim Moron in my cab the other day. `e was scanning through a great pile of guitar catalogues and making copious notes on certain pages. So engrossed was `e that I could `ave taken `im to `ighgate and `e wouldn`t `ave noticed.
I said, "Morning Ivor. You `aving problems on `ow much to do on a guitar then?"
`e said, "No Jim, I `m trying to decide which guitar, is all round best, for using at gigs. As you know, venues and audience numbers can differ widely affecting the acoustics. Look at this lot. Do I go for a Martin with its rich notes, a Gibson for its shiny finish, a penetrating Faith Dreadnought, a Hofner cello style, excellent for band work, any of the less well known custom but costly models?. It`s such a puzzle. You`re the guitarist with your lot. What would you recommend?"
I said, "After `aving my vintage `armony Sovereign knocked arse over `ead causing serious damage by someone `oo shall remain nameless, there`s only one."
`e said, " Go on. What one`s that then?"
I said, "Somebody elses!!"


Whaddam I Like??


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Jim Knowledge
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 10:40 AM


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: beachcomber
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 11:15 AM

Thank you Guest, Roger and Backwoodsman. No, I don't expect anyone to choose a guitar for somebody else but it is helpful to hear of all your experiences in the matter of the myriad brands that are available. The fact that many of them can be related to one particular, larger corporation can be a help also.
Yes, the Harley-Benton that I have is from the Thomann company.

Many, many thanks again to each of you for your kind assistance.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 10:08 AM

The 3/4 size 'Vintage' branded guitar is probably one of a series designed by Paul Brett (Paul Brett Sage, Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Freelanders, and a number of other 60s and 70s bands). They are very nice little guitars and play very well indeed - as you would expect of an instrument designed by a highly-experienced and very well-respected musician.

https://www.jhs.co.uk/products/guitars-folk-instruments/acoustic-guitars/vintage/paul-brett-series

http://www.paulbrettguitarist.co.uk


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 09:59 AM

I'm not a player and have no views to offer on this but as a member of audiences in small venues the brand name I see most often is Takamine. Blues players obviously go for National resonators or copies or the Gibson/Fender electric or their cheaper clones. However, there are so many other brands I see that really it is just personal choice, surely non-one can choose for someone else.
RtS


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 08:29 AM

Vintage is a brand name of John Hornby Skewes. The only thing I had of their brand was a Romanian built mandolin. Very cheap and with slotted tuning pegs but with good volume for the money. Pretty much the same model could also be found in Stentor's range under the Ozark brand.

Harley Benton gets a mention here and I think that's one of Thomann's brands... Ah wikipedia on Harley Benton guitars. ~As well as mentioning Thomman, I find:

Harley Benton guitars are manufactured in around 20 factories in the Far East; these include factories in China, Indonesia and Vietnam. According to Harley Benton, they are manufactured alongside and to the same standards as guitars for major brands such as ESP, Fender, Ibanez and Jackson



I guess a fair amount of good value equipment can come under these labels for music wholesalers and major retailers.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: beachcomber
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 08:14 AM

Last evening , at a pub session, I met a bloke with a 3/4 size VINTAGE Guitar. Has anyone come by one of these ? I haven't seen the brand previously. Unamplified it resonated beautifully and, it has a bass E "thump" to wonder at, since it is just about the standard 4" deep body ?
It also has a pick-up installed and has a set of light gauge strings on.
He would sell but, in what price range would it fall ? I paid Euro200 for the Harley Benton and I reckon that I can get the same for it, to offset, say a E300 offer for the Vintage ?? Any advice ?


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: gillymor
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 07:04 AM

There is a busker I sometimes see at a nearby 7-11 who plays an unamplified Ovation w/ a shallow lycrachord back and a spruce top w/ a round sound hole which is surprisingly loud in his hands.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 05:48 AM

My current best guitar is a Fender Paramount. Adirondack spruce top. mahogany sides and back.

My first really good guitar was a Fender F85. Full circle.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Matt milton
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 05:06 AM

Yes, sigma guitars are great.

Someone mentioned Blueridge. they are also very good guitars in a Martin or Montgomery Ward pre-war style. They have a big following, there’s a whole chat forum dedicated to them. In my opinion Recording King are basically Blueridge but better designed and cheaper.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Some bloke
Date: 14 Mar 19 - 04:52 AM

These days with pressure seasoning (and measuring) coupled with laser cutting and decent glues, many of the £100 to £300 brand new big names made under licence in Chinese OEM factories are wonderful. I’d put my Alvarez ARD70 (cost £350 new) against my Terry Pack (£1500 new) any day of the week.

I’d say the best guitar for the U.K. folk clubs should have the following qualities;

It will pick up the occasional dink and scratch. Don’t take your mint condition Santa Cruz.

The neck must be comfortable for your style. If you pick and strum as well, a dread’ should have the volume for the picking and not get boomy when strumming although that’s subjective. Jumbos do that but get in the way when I stand up to go to the bar..,

If you use alternative tunings, you are already accomplished enough to put thought into your choice.

Me? Whilst I have a fair number of guitars, for popping out to folk clubs I tend to use whichever is behaving... But if I am at a festival with a backpack soft case and busy singarounds to squeeze into, I bought a cheap and cheerful Sigma GME for £200 new the other year. It is based on a Martin OM, is small but rather loud and the build materials mean it stays in tune between warm humid pubs and cold dry walking between. (I have used it on stage too for the “in tune” qualities and plugged in, it may as well be what it pretends to look like.)


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 13 Mar 19 - 09:15 PM

It took me a while to remember the name..
But, Blueridge guitars..

What happened with them...???

A decade ago they were the brand folks were talking about
in terms of better quality cheaper acoustic guitars...


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,Matt milton
Date: 13 Mar 19 - 07:00 PM

Jim, you asked about Eastman... I have played some eastmans. They are clearly quality guitars with balanced tone and are comfortable to play but I find them a bit lacking in mojo. I couldn’t get excited about them. I think I like a bit of crudeness to my guitars. Eastman, Taylor, faith and others just don’t do it for me. Whereas Recording king, Sigma, the Loar, and some Guilds I have played are much more up my street. I like guitars with a bit of ‘thunk’ and ‘plunk’


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 13 Mar 19 - 12:27 PM

C-sharp: you are clearly my long-lost brother in a guitar-shaped parallel universe. I agree with everything you say about Recording King guitars. And the ROS series in particular. I use 0.13-0.56 strings on them, and often detune down a semitone or tone. I’m a total Recording King evangelist. (Except for their newer models, that is… they’ve let themselves down a little on some of them…!)

I own a ROS-616, all solid mahogany OM size, 12-frets to body, which is frankly one of the nicest sounding and playing guitars I have ever touched. I bought it new in 2013, for £340. I sometimes go to big guitar expos and take it with me: I can pick up a £2000 luthier-made guitar and compare it to the ROS-616, and the 616 always wins. It has a beautiful tone. And it is as loud as any dreadnought I’ve yet tried.

I bought a ROS-06 last year as a cheapo ‘beater’ guitar so I wouldn’t damage my beloved 616 at sessions and open mics. Same size and dimensions as the 616, but solid spruce top and laminate mahogany back and sides. But even the 06 is still a very good guitar. Cost me £120 secondhand with a hard case. It is a very ‘beefy’ sounding guitar, with a chunky classical shaped neck. Sounds actually quite dreadnoughty for an OM.. It doesn’t project as well as the 616, but is still a loud guitar. The bottom few strings can sound a little dead at times – it walks a fine line between sounding warm and sounding a bit dead. But I replaced the bridge pins with brass ones (which made a very small difference) and just make sure I change the strings on it more often than I would normally. (Whereas I hardly ever bother changing the strings on the 616 and it still sounds good)

Most recently I bought an RNJ 26NA ‘Greenwich Village’/ ‘Nick Lucas’ model. It’s a parlour guitar, 13 frets to body, solid spruce top, solid mahogany back and sides. Sounds wonderful. Quite a bright tone but very sweet, not harsh at all. I didn’t think I would ever play a guitar I liked as much as the 616 but the RNJ26 is a lot of fun and really growing on me. It is deliberately deeper than the average parlour, which gives it a little bit more bass and volume.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 13 Mar 19 - 11:54 AM

.. at that price they're definitely "Someotherguy" guitars...


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: gillymor
Date: 13 Mar 19 - 11:27 AM

Somogyi, at that price you'd think I'd get the name right.


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Subject: RE: Best Guitar for UK folk club?
From: gillymor
Date: 13 Mar 19 - 11:15 AM

The only thing that bothers me about
Somogi guitars is the base price of 39K.


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