Why dont we play the smoothest guitars for us?

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by essessH, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. essessH

    essessH Strat-O-Master

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    I have a hard time understanding my habit of choosing an axe that's kind of challenging for me. The 2 smoothest playing guitars I've ever owned - PRS Ted McCarty and fgn Strat - didn't last 3 months in my stable. Yet they played like a dream where what I was hearing in my head would seamlessly translate to the fretboard. And the guitars I replaced them with are harder for me to play. In the case of the McCarty it went in favor of a Strat with a V neck which is a lot more awkward for me than the Flatter Ted McCarty. The fgn went in favor of an ESP eclipse with giant railroad tie frets which I can get stuck on when sliding up or down the neck and end up on the wrong note. The frets are so big and deep they kind hurt my hand.
    Yet for some reason I feel I need an instrument that represents some playing challenge. W e I r d I know but I also don't think im alone.
     
  2. mw13068

    mw13068 Most Honored Senior Member

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    Yep. That's weird, bro. :)

    Some of us need all the help we can get!
     
  3. geetarplyr

    geetarplyr Strat-Talker

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    I think you're alone. Lol. If it plays like crap and cant be setup to play well, its gone.
     
  4. Mouse

    Mouse The Knees of Rock

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    If it's not comfortable, I won't play it. I've got enough handicaps.


    That said, what's "comfortable" today isn't necessarily what was comfortable yesterday. I love huge frets but didn't for a long time until I played a friend's guitar with jumbo frets. For whatever reason, they felt "right" and any subsequent guitar purchases were made with fret size in mind.
     
  5. Johnny V

    Johnny V Senior Stratmaster

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    If it sounds good and plays well it generally stays unless I'm broke. Guess "vintageitis" could explain the V neck Strat. The other i don't know...

    Maybe too much leisure time on the toilet with the Musicians's Friend catalog got you wound up about the ESP?:p (The same sometimes tempts me to buy one of those yellow or pink Ibanez reissues.:oops:)
     
  6. Steelskin

    Steelskin Strat-Talker

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    Maybe its a primal thing..... The hunt... the tame..... :p
     
  7. geetarplyr

    geetarplyr Strat-Talker

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    Its true. It happens
     
  8. fenderkev

    fenderkev Most Honored Senior Member

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    My sentiments exactly!
     
  9. blackstrat

    blackstrat Senior Stratmaster

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    Lol, that's the mother of most GAS (and other) related evils Johnny V!! (with the fender catalog being perhaps the most suspect of, ahem, "reads"!)

    To answer the OP's question, the fact that a guitar plays well is only one part of the "perfect guitar" equation - for example, I once played an ES-335(?) that was an amazing player but it didn't cut it for me neither tonally nor image wise (oasis and the whole britpop thing ruined the semi concept forever for me, sorry!).

    So it might be that no matter how well a guitar might play it might not be a keeper if the overall feel, tone and vibe are not up to par.
     
  10. musicalmartin

    musicalmartin Strat-Talker

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    Its all down to mojo .some guitars have it and some dont .PRS never have it and many smooth well playing geetars dont have much of it .we perceive a certain ambience to our playing that may well need a griity fight to get the music out .If not we just become competent well trained musicians and that would never do .i mean how many real musicians do you know with Mojo ...snort .
     
  11. davidKOS

    davidKOS not posting these days

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    Perhaps the "competent well trained" "real musicians" don't need Mojo. After all, they have talent, technique, creativity, taste, knowledge, and other skills.

    After all, who needs any of that when you have Mojo, right?
     
  12. geetarplyr

    geetarplyr Strat-Talker

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    I sold a Gibson Les Paul because the mojo wasn't there for me.
     
  13. revor

    revor Strat-O-Master

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    I gotta say I'm sorta in the same boat as the OP but it's mostly about ease of play. I have this 50's like beater, it has great pickups, great wood, great neck plays great with 10's on it. I'm always sticking 11's on it looking for some tone change that's not going to happen and the guitar doen't like nor does it play as nicely with 10's.
     
  14. essessH

    essessH Strat-O-Master

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    Well looks like I'm more of a minority than I thought anyway. But not totally alone either. I read a Blackmore interview years ago where he said he prefers strats to LPs because with strats you have to fight with them a little. I don't remember the exact words but something like he thought there was value because it made you think more about what you were doing. I think theres something to that why I reject smoothies; I just descend into too much mindless wanking which leads to no where.
     
  15. geetarplyr

    geetarplyr Strat-Talker

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    One must come to a mutual understanding with the stratocaster. Only then will there be harmony. I have had a couple of gibsons and they were great guitars but never really did "it" for me. My strats have made me want to pull my hair out but they're all dialed in now. In my opinion if you want a strat, sooner or later you have to learn how to set it up properly if you don't want it to drive you nuts.
     
  16. stradovarious

    stradovarious Senior Stratmaster

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    Well personally I dream of railroad tie sized frets all day and all night. Paul Gilbert and Yngwie play them and their hands don't get stuck, don't seem to get slowed down too much! Love those HWY1 massive mega-jumbo frets; also adore Ibanez RG and other shredder sized frets... flat board to 9.5 radius... I like all of the radii from flat to 9.5 for different reasons, but gargantuan frets on all of them are pure heaven. The bigger and taller the better- it's almost like playing a on a scalloped board!:twisted:
     
  17. Tony6Strings

    Tony6Strings Senior Stratmaster

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    Hell yeah! When I get a refret I'm gonna go with the stainless steel 6100 wire. I may just kill two birds with one stone and get a replacement neck from Warmoth with a compound radius.
     
  18. essessH

    essessH Strat-O-Master

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    But u see that's your preference for playing smoothest and fastest it sounds like. Mine would be wide and flat, like an LP custom "fretless wonder" I demo'd years ago that was smooth as running water. Shredders have individual preferences: Chris Broderick of megadeth who can shred with best likes em thin and flat. Eddie van halen (no slouch either) likes em tall and thin. But me being me I passed on the LP which was most conducive to my playing.
     
  19. kchurch

    kchurch Senior Stratmaster

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    I think I get it. Jack White talks about exactly this idea as central to his approach in the documentary "It Might Get Loud". This is the reason he favours old cheap guitars like the Airlines.

    I am sympathetic to the OP, I would have to say of my three electric guitars, the one I am digging most right now is my MIM Tele, not an expensive or fancy guitar, and the neck on my strat feels so much nicer, but its just the tone and the feel of it rings true, even though I have to fight it a little harder to get what I want out of it. I do agree with MusicalMartin that what I want could be described as that elusive thing called Mojo.

    Interesting thread - thanks!
     
  20. orpheoet

    orpheoet Senior Stratmaster

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    Very interesting... My guitars have a fairly wide range of necks. All setup with fairly high action and 11-56 up to 13-56. I play whichever one I want to hear.