Author Topic: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador  (Read 870 times)

lowend1

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #15 on: August 17, 2017, 12:09:52 PM »

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Pilgrim

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #16 on: August 17, 2017, 02:30:33 PM »
Fender sold a LOT of Strats thanks to Clapton and Hendrix.
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westen44

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #17 on: August 17, 2017, 03:21:14 PM »
Fender sold a LOT of Strats thanks to Clapton and Hendrix.

Kirk Hammett said that before Hendrix the Strat was considered a pedestrian guitar mostly associated with country music and surf bands.  But Hendrix made it into a lethal weapon.  A shame, IMO.  I prefer the sound of a Gibson guitar (as I've noted in previous threads of course.)  I would say it's all subjective, but I've got a friend (who prefers Gibsons) who can tell you what guitar Hendrix was playing on live performances she has never heard before.  Needless to say, most of the time he was playing a Strat, but there were some exceptions. 

Dave W

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #18 on: August 17, 2017, 09:25:58 PM »
Kirk Hammett doesn't know what he's talking about, and he's not old enough to know unless he was going to gigs in the cradle.

I also don't believe the story about CBS planning to discontinue the Strat until Hendrix and Clapton came along. One of many tall tales told by former Fender guys looking to sell their books.

westen44

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #19 on: August 17, 2017, 10:01:30 PM »
Kirk Hammett doesn't know what he's talking about, and he's not old enough to know unless he was going to gigs in the cradle.

I also don't believe the story about CBS planning to discontinue the Strat until Hendrix and Clapton came along. One of many tall tales told by former Fender guys looking to sell their books.

Kirk Hammett didn't claim to have been speaking as an eyewitness.  Metallica didn't even form until 1981.  But I do think there is some validity to what he was saying.  Without Hendrix who knows where Fender guitars would be.  Just like without Paul McCartney who knows where Hofners would be.  But I'm a big Hendrix fan and believe that a lot of factors were involved in Hendrix playing Strats, but easy access on Strat necks was one of those factors.  It's my impression that he would have played Gibsons more if not for that.

I'm speaking mostly as a fanatical Hendrix fan who has observed some things through the years.  Based on what I've seen and read, this is my observation.  Several years ago here some of this was also discussed on a similar thread.  Eventually, a squad of pro-Fender people swooped in.  I thought they were going to take over everything--including maybe even the entire world itself.  I'm not personally interested into getting to any debates about this, though.  It doesn't mean that much to me, especially since it's about guitars--something i'm way less interested in than bass.  On a personal level, though, I've had both Gibson and Fender guitars. I liked both a lot, but preferred Gibson.

As for Hendrix fans (and I'm not even sure how relevant this is,) but I'm not sure how many fans from the original fan base are even left.  Most of the fans I encounter are people who became fans listening to the Band of Gypsys, "First Rays of the New Rising Sun," various bootlegs people like me may have never even heard, the Alan Douglas produced albums which came out for years even on into the mid-90s, the so-called definitive 2000 Purple Box 4 CD album, etc.  I seriously doubt if very many new fans are being brought in now that it's the 21st century, but some of the previously unreleased material like the 2010 West Coast Seattle Boy anthology is really good (but expensive.)
« Last Edit: August 18, 2017, 12:47:41 AM by westen44 »

Highlander

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #20 on: August 18, 2017, 03:31:29 AM »
... It's one of several Slash models over the years.

Les Paul "Slash" model... ;)
I agree with you, btw... anyone but Henry... :mrgreen:
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uwe

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #21 on: August 18, 2017, 04:39:56 AM »
I prefer a Strat sound to a Les Paul one - so there, I said it! If you listen to Blackmore's tone on In Rock (largely his beloved ES 335) and on Machine Head a few years later (pure Strat), the Strat tone is at the same time uncluttered, soaring, authoritative - it sounds more like a lead guitar.

I wasn't around either, but I have read many times that in the UK at least the Strat had a "Cliff Richard/Hank Marvin & The Shadows" goody-goody image in the early 60ies



which is why even The Beatles - originally a noisy cellar band from a harbour town - didn't play Strats. Or the Rolling Stones. Then Hendrix came along and the tall black man looked great with his white Strat (that match certainly no coincidence). And Clapton moved to Fender. So did Jeff Beck. David Gilmour. Robin Trower (a Hendrix fan, yes). Rory Gallagher. Blackmore (him again!), who said that he never loved a guitar more than his cherry ES 335,










but that he came to the realisation that even a hand-me-down Strat from Clapton with a warped neck was the better tool for his style (though he never became attached to a single Strat like he did to his ES).

He looked better with the Strat too, at least to my youthful innocent eyes!  :mrgreen:





I wouldn't discount the image thing with younger players. At the end of the day, the reason why I never took to Fender basses was simply that any dance and Top 40 band in my neck of the woods had a bass player with either a P or a J. I didn't want my bass to look like that (though my first bass was a Korean J Ho because it was the cheapest thing available, I was distraught about the look from day one though and it never went away). I began playing bass in 1977 - it was the time when Jaco became famous too so everybody started pulling frets and playing Jazz Basses. But I didn't want to sound or look like some "jazz musician" either, I wanted to look like Roger Glover, Jim Lea, Martin Turner or Gene Simmons - players that never or hardly ever played Fender basses.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2017, 05:33:06 AM by uwe »
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westen44

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #22 on: August 18, 2017, 05:50:21 AM »
Wanting to play something different sounds like the Jack Bruce explanation for wanting to play an EB -3.  Jack's comments in an interview--

"But probably the most important reason was that I didn’t want it to sound like a Fender; I wanted it to sound very personal. So the EB-3 fit the bill in all of those ways; I was able to get some great distortion, and it didn’t sound like a Fender at all!"

Later on he adds in discussing his desire to have a distorted sound on bass--

" To me it was actually a more musical sound than the very bland “thumpy” sound of even P-Basses. Certainly, in the hands of a master like James Jamerson, and later, Jaco Pastorius, they sound great, and I’ve got a couple of them myself. But at the time, I wanted to do something completely different."

Vintage Guitar, 2002

(i've quoted this before, but most of the time leave out that last part.)
« Last Edit: August 18, 2017, 06:19:44 AM by westen44 »

uwe

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #23 on: August 18, 2017, 06:52:00 AM »
There is nothing inherently wrong with a Fender P sound (on the contrary, you can do most things with it), it's like wearing a Levi's or eating at McDonalds or driving a Volkswagen Golf, "does what it says on the tin"***. But that unremarkable look and the fact that everybody plays one, I can't help it ... that always turned me off.

***published consumption and emission data of the diesel engine may vary at times and HIMMEL!!! it was hard work to get zät richtig
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patman

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #24 on: August 18, 2017, 07:01:18 AM »
As a huge Allman Bros fan...I always preferred the sound of a Les Paul...

Less attack and more sustain...almost like a horn when soloing...

Sounds great in Duane's, Dickey's, Warren's hands...sounds like no other guitar.

I always say a Fender P does everything well, is never inappropriate for whatever type of music being played.

Highlander

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #25 on: August 18, 2017, 08:21:09 AM »
Les Paul all the way... and DA pretty much top of that pile, and slide, no coincidence I own an SG...

I own a cheapie Squier Tele and a budget Gibson SG, for the 6 stringers in the herd, a budget Squier J with a fretless maple (ebanol capped, F licenced) neck that cost more than the bass (not that stupid, due to a seller error I paid 1/3 what I should have paid), some obscure Gibson bass, a dodgy headless with a 60's profile P thru-neck, and a couple of really dodgy custom basses... no replication anywhere... oh yes, and the Ibanez 12 acoustic and the fretless acoustic 5 stringer...

Uwe... the first bass player you listed was known for a Rick through the prime of his career with "that" band... and you ended up having this obsession with a certain other brand...? The remainder during that era known for EB3 (ish), T'Bird and Grabber... just curious...
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Dave W

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #26 on: August 18, 2017, 12:23:07 PM »
Kirk Hammett didn't claim to have been speaking as an eyewitness.  Metallica didn't even form until 1981.  But I do think there is some validity to what he was saying.  Without Hendrix who knows where Fender guitars would be.  Just like without Paul McCartney who knows where Hofners would be.  But I'm a big Hendrix fan and believe that a lot of factors were involved in Hendrix playing Strats, but easy access on Strat necks was one of those factors.  It's my impression that he would have played Gibsons more if not for that.


Obviously not, but he's still dead wrong. The Strat became a sensation in 1957 thanks to Buddy Holly. I was in fifth grade, and believe me, any kid who wanted to play guitar noticed it. My first was a Melody Maker in 1959, thanks to the fact that my folks were paying for it and the store where I took lessons didn't see Fenders. If you went to a store that sold both in the early 60s, it was the Strats that got far more attention from young players. Solidbodies were second-string at Gibson, the ES series were their bread-and-butter.

As to where Gibson and Fender would be without the big stars that came along later, who knows? Hard to say.

slinkp

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #27 on: August 18, 2017, 12:26:40 PM »
Hm, I'd never heard this before:
"When the British Invasion hit big in February 1964, Fender instruments were not a prominent part of its armaments. The post-war U.K. import ban on U.S. musical instruments had only recently been lifted, and Fender guitars, basses and amps were only then starting to reach England in significant numbers."

From http://www2.fender.com/experience/guitarchive/the-stratocaster-in-the-1960s/

If true, that would explain why strats, so common in the US in the early 60s, were rare in British Invasion bands...

That article also repeats the assertion that Strats were "not a dominant electric guitar by the middle of the decade" and credit Hendrix for the revival of popularity.
I wouldn't assume an article by Fender to be unbiased and accurate, but it's notable that they specifically mention a mid-60s dip in popularity.

This was all before I was born (1970), so of course I give more credence to those of us who were around at the time.

Dave W

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #28 on: August 18, 2017, 03:29:28 PM »

westen44

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Re: Gibson’s First-Ever Global Brand Ambassador
« Reply #29 on: August 18, 2017, 03:45:53 PM »
Obviously not, but he's still dead wrong. The Strat became a sensation in 1957 thanks to Buddy Holly. I was in fifth grade, and believe me, any kid who wanted to play guitar noticed it. My first was a Melody Maker in 1959, thanks to the fact that my folks were paying for it and the store where I took lessons didn't see Fenders. If you went to a store that sold both in the early 60s, it was the Strats that got far more attention from young players. Solidbodies were second-string at Gibson, the ES series were their bread-and-butter.

As to where Gibson and Fender would be without the big stars that came along later, who knows? Hard to say.

My impressions are mostly personal and maybe pretty subjective, too.  I grew up looking at Gretsch, Fender, and Gibson as the top three guitar brands, with Fender probably being in third place, though.  I felt Hendrix's popularity did give Fender quite a boost even years after his death.  For several reasons, I never joined in on the adoration for P basses, although in later years I did end up having more of an appreciation for J basses than I expected.