Did you ever hear your acoustic guitar?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by RL52, Apr 16, 2019.

  1. dan1952

    dan1952 Friend of Leo's

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    According to the liner notes to Robert Johnson's King of the Delta Blues Singers, RJ set up and recorde facing the corner of a room.
     
  2. RoscoeElegante

    RoscoeElegante Friend of Leo's

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    I hear ya, zombywoof. And I certainly appreciate why you like Gibson acoustics. Good ones sound really sweet, especially in the higher registers.

    But I gotta quibble with your claim that guitars don't dry out. When exposed to relatively low humidity for prolonged periods, they will and do, as per this standard set of maintenance tips:
    https://www.taylorguitars.com/support/maintenance/symptoms-dry-guitar

    My friend's Martin is a late '60s 00-D18, I think. It's pretty formidably braced, but light as a feather. And its sound is very crisp and...well, dry. He keeps out of its case most of the time, in an apt. w/ very drying baseboard heat. He likes his air-conditioning in the summer, too.

    So while I agree that guitars will absorb or lose ambient moisture, ones kept in relatively dry conditions will lose moisture, and that will affect their structures and sounds. My best-sounding acoustic, overall, is my 20-yr.-old Sigma DM-18 beater, of all things. It's been out of the case since I bought it, getting lighter every year, and developing a lot of dry-out cracks, including a long one in its spruce top from the bridge plate to the strap-peg area. Yet every year it gets drier, it sounds crisper. I'm not gonna put it in the toaster, and I need to address its perhaps-structural cracking. But in-sum drying out sure can happen, and can be part of what affects an acoustic's sound.
     
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  3. telel6s

    telel6s Tele-Afflicted

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    I've played guitars like this with the hole in the upper side. They definitely help the player hear things better but it's not the same sound as what a listener sitting across from the player would hear. It was a Breedlove that I strummed on:
    [​IMG]

    I can definitely see the worth in having that extra hole, especially if you played in an ensemble where everything was mic'd (no pickups) or using a pickup but no monitors back to the performer.
     
  4. telel6s

    telel6s Tele-Afflicted

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    I LOVE listening to other people play my Gibson because I know that what I am hearing while playing it is not what other people are hearing. Especially when those people are better than me (I have a friend who is great at blues & folk finger-picking which I am definitely not) because it reminds me of what the instrument is capable of. Similarly nice when people compliment how my guitar sounds. I was at a small open mic just this past Thursday and another player complimented the guitar's sound after my little set; there was a PA but he was sitting close enough that he undoubtedly was also hearing the true acoustic sound.

    When I was shopping for what eventually became the above-mentioned Gibson CL-30 Deluxe I always had a friend with me or asked the salesperson to play any guitar I was really interested in. Sometimes I would even play along on a different instrument to get a feel for it in a mix. When I found my GIbson in 2002 hanging unsold and unloved for four or five years in a small store my brother was with me and after three or four minutes of both of us playing it I was hooked thanks in big part to having listened to so many other guitars in the previous nine or so months.

    Even last summer when I was looking for a less expensive knock-about guitar I asked another customer at Guitar Center to play a bit on three used guitars I was looking at. Made a big difference in my choice. I ended up with a Seagull and that guy got one of the others because our playing together for ten minutes helped him figure out what he wanted.
     
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