Harmony Guitars

Jay Jernigan

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We all know that the first and last letters in BusinesS are B S, but if a company is, at least, attempting to preserve a legacy and provide an improved product, then I say: Let It Be.
 

John C

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They might be, they did purchase part ownership in Heritage which allows their guitars to be built in that factory (probably with Heritage equipment), but Harmony sold out a long time ago in '75. Brandlab has no connection to the original Harmony company and that will always be my issue with them since they try very hard to insinuate otherwise.

Just look at their website and you will see how they use the word "we" and "us" when talking about the Harmony history dating back to 1892 like they were the same company. They are not, they simply did what a lot of foreign companies have been doing for the past 20 years, they buy the vacated trademark name of an established US company and start production as if it was the same company. It is dishonest and I will always take issue with that part. View attachment 952033

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Actually I agree with you on the Marketing-speak Harmony uses on their website. It would be more honest to say something like "as fans of the original Harmony guitars we want to revive the company and update the designs for the 2020s" or something like that. And the second box you quote should read "Harmony" instead of "We" and have some verbiage about reviving that legacy, not make it sound like an extension of the original company.
 

sloppychops

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They might be, they did purchase part ownership in Heritage which allows their guitars to be built in that factory (probably with Heritage equipment), but Harmony sold out a long time ago in '75. Brandlab has no connection to the original Harmony company and that will always be my issue with them since they try very hard to insinuate otherwise.

Just look at their website and you will see how they use the word "we" and "us" when talking about the Harmony history dating back to 1892 like they were the same company. They are not, they simply did what a lot of foreign companies have been doing for the past 20 years, they buy the vacated trademark name of an established US company and start production as if it was the same company. It is dishonest and I will always take issue with that part. View attachment 952033

View attachment 952034

OK, I see what it is about this that's really irking you. And I kind of agree that it's a bit disingenuous the way they use "we." If you think of it as Bandlab giving voice to the Harmony brand, does that help?

Honestly, I think they could have rewritten most of what's there to deflect criticism such as yours, legit as it may be.

"Today, we honor the Harmony legacy with a refreshed lineup..."

"Harmony has been there for musicians, everywhere"

"Up until the mid-70s, Harmony produced more..."
 

Donny Osmond fan

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They might be, they did purchase part ownership in Heritage which allows their guitars to be built in that factory (probably with Heritage equipment), but Harmony sold out a long time ago in '75. Brandlab has no connection to the original Harmony company and that will always be my issue with them since they try very hard to insinuate otherwise.

Just look at their website and you will see how they use the word "we" and "us" when talking about the Harmony history dating back to 1892 like they were the same company. They are not, they simply did what a lot of foreign companies have been doing for the past 20 years, they buy the vacated trademark name of an established US company and start production as if it was the same company. It is dishonest and I will always take issue with that part. View attachment 952033

View attachment 952034
You are so silly. :rolleyes::lol::lol::lol:😆😳
 

bendingtens

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I have a Juno and it's great. Made in America with a Mono gig bag for $1200? I'd say that's a solid value.

I can sorta see Milspec's point—you have to earn the right to say "we"—but I'm less offended by the revamped Harmony. They are making quality guitars inspired by the original Harmony line. Same story with Magnatone. What does bug me, though, is D'Angelico. John D'Angelico made a little less than 1200 guitar by hand. The new company cheapens his legacy.
 

JustABluesGuy

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I've always heard about old Harmony guitars being very vibey guitars that fit a certain niche.
I've also heard that they weren't built particularly well and that they're not the guitar you can rely on to do everything.

Saw one and grabbed a Comet at 42 Gear Street, a YouTuber event in Germany and I was floored by the quality of these new Harmony Guitars!

Turns out, Harmony has been out of business since 1975 but was recently acquired by BandLabs and now they make incredible instruments in the same factory that Heritage guitars are made, respectively in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

They're definitely on to something with their vision. I really hope I can try out their amps too, those look amazing!

Long story short, I now own a Jupiter and made a video about it.

Here's the link to it:
I know I'm gonna get that odd "you're a self promoter" comment which is totally fine but ultimately, I just want to share cool stuff with the rest of y'all!

Cheers and stay safe!


I have a few vintage Harmony’s. One Stella acoustic that I have had forever. I also have a very nice Stratotone electric that I recently bought at an estate sale nearby.

This morning I picked up a Harmony Monterey acoustic that’s in fairly rough condition that I hope to restore. The Stella and the Monterey both need a neck reset.

1648394522929.jpeg
 
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Jestapali

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I bought a new Harmony Silhouette back in December (Champagne color), and I can only say that I cannot put it down.

I had a Harmony H75 from 1965 (the 3 gold foil pickup model, supposed to be the "Cadillac" of old Harmony's) that I sold well recently, thanks to Dan Auerbach owning one I guess. Not a bad guitar the H75, very sweet pickups, but at its age and with a floating bridge, it was more a museum piece.

The new Silhouette is solidly finished in Kalamazoo (yes, the old Gibson factory), and if that is a lie, I would like to know where it was done because it is better finished and has at least as solid as my Jazzmaster 65 RI reissue or my Rick 360, to talk about two of my US made exemplars. The guitar has been plecked, the ebony fretboard and frets are just smooth, the nitro is nitro, the awesome pickups have no need for upgrades at all (actually I might have found that sweet place btw single coil and humbucker that some crave) ,the bridge is perfect, and it is so light ... anyway, I'm starting to sound like company representative I guess, so I would add that I prefer the aesthetics of the old Silhouette better. This one is a little in the minimalistic side of things, but well , we all now that looks are something very personal.

Try them if you get a chance.
 
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mad dog

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Krenar: That's an excellent demo. Well played, well described. Makes me very curious about these new Jupiters. And eager to see more of your videos.
 

bottlenecker

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I have a Juno and it's great. Made in America with a Mono gig bag for $1200? I'd say that's a solid value.

I can sorta see Milspec's point—you have to earn the right to say "we"—but I'm less offended by the revamped Harmony. They are making quality guitars inspired by the original Harmony line. Same story with Magnatone. What does bug me, though, is D'Angelico. John D'Angelico made a little less than 1200 guitar by hand. The new company cheapens his legacy.

I'm not offended by what the people who own the harmony name are doing, but it is not very interesting. They seem to be generic solid body electrics, because that's what the public will buy, with retro styling and name, because that's what sells. It's prett boring.
New guitars that say harmony on them are nothing like real harmony guitars.
The old harmony guitars are like old fashioned hand tools that are dangerous and difficult to use. It takes extra skill to get a result from them.
The new ones are like a new power tool with the old name stuck on it. Lots of people will not understand why anyone would not want the new power tool, but music and guitar playing is inherently aesthetic. We like what we like. Some of us are weirdos.


You are very right about D'Angelico. That makes me angry.
 

backporchmusic

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For those of you who own or have played a new Harmony--how would you describe the neck profile?

I'm looking at a Comet maybe, but I'm not a fan of bigger necks.
 

4 Cat Slim

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I haven't tried a new Harmony. I still own the original H45 that was my Christmas present more than a few decades ago and was my first playable electric guitar. I enjoy playing it, and used to take it to play in church once in a great while. It's not in the same league as some of my other guitars, but that's not the point. I guess it might be a matter of nostalgia.
I compare taking on the Harmony brand name to a jeans manufacturer taking over the TuffSkins name, or a drink manufacturer resurrecting the Funny Face brand.
There's people who will want to connect with the past, for any number of reasons, and companies that will market to those people. I can see how this might strike people as less than honest.
 

Wooly Fox

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Just tried a Harmony Rebel in a fetching shade of burgundy. Has been in my local music store for over 6 months so today decided to try it.

The neck profile is a thicker C shape, not baseball bat Gibson but not a modern C. The strings on this one are shot so not the best first impressions. The body is a double cut with strong SG vibes, not too heavy and nicely finished.

The Rebel has two goldfoils which I have never tried before. They are like a single coil filtertron, chimey and quite articulate. Wouldn't use for jazz as the tone pot taper isn't the best and the neck is too bright otherwise. Would be a good rock guitar but doesn't compete with a Tele bridge or P90s. For C$1896, it's too rich for me but for $1000 it'd be a good second hand guitar.
 

Jipes

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I have a Harmony Rocket which I really love quite versatile guitar as it can really sound quite jazzy or harsh for a good blues tone. The frets are getting low but I really hesitate to refret it

I am now looking for a Silvertone Jupiter but it's hard to find here in France
 

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Danb541

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Here’s mine. Garage sale find… I changed a few things. it has custom shop texas specials in the mid and neck. Duncan duck bucker at the bridge. Gotoh tuners.
I realize this is a harmony guitar most assume is junk.it ain’t, it plays pretty good, early 1980’s I think.
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sidestyle

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They might be, they did purchase part ownership in Heritage which allows their guitars to be built in that factory (probably with Heritage equipment), but Harmony sold out a long time ago in '75. Brandlab has no connection to the original Harmony company and that will always be my issue with them since they try very hard to insinuate otherwise.

Just look at their website and you will see how they use the word "we" and "us" when talking about the Harmony history dating back to 1892 like they were the same company. They are not, they simply did what a lot of foreign companies have been doing for the past 20 years, they buy the vacated trademark name of an established US company and start production as if it was the same company. It is dishonest and I will always take issue with that part. View attachment 952033

View attachment 952034
Glad to hear that they are building a good product, just should have used their own name instead. I closed my doors a few years ago and sold my trucks to a guy several states away. He actually had the nerve to buy my vacated domain and trademark to lauch his own business using my former company name. I only found out because my suppliers called me asking when I moved to Oklahoma?

It is becoming a very common business practice once perfected by the Chinese, but I will never be able to ignore it. They will always have a difficult time selling me anything knowing that they did such a move.

Maybe that is just my old age talking or my bitter streak over losing my company, but it is what it is.
So it's only legitimate to revive the brand if there is a direct connection to the original owner? This is just a dumb take to have. I guess since Steve Jobs died, Apple should change its name and stop using his designs? Should Chevy drop its name because a grandchild of Louise Chevrolet isn't involved in the company? And just because Bandlab doesn't have it's headquarters on US soil doesn't make it a "scam." International companies have facilities and operations in many countries. They can saw "we" because they own the name, the intellectual property, and the legacy!
I own a new Harmony, and it is indeed made in Kalamazoo Michigan by real live red-blooded 'Mericans. I have the Comet, which is a unique design and is an incredible value, far superior value--by more than $1500--than any US Gibson or Heritage.
 

ragingplatypi

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I just got a Comet and I love it. I have no attachments to Harmony historically which helped me to judge the guitar on its own merits. I found out after the fact about the Heritage connection, which makes sense to me because the Comet is a killer semi-hollow.
 
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Milspec

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So it's only legitimate to revive the brand if there is a direct connection to the original owner? This is just a dumb take to have. I guess since Steve Jobs died, Apple should change its name and stop using his designs? Should Chevy drop its name because a grandchild of Louise Chevrolet isn't involved in the company? And just because Bandlab doesn't have it's headquarters on US soil doesn't make it a "scam." International companies have facilities and operations in many countries. They can saw "we" because they own the name, the intellectual property, and the legacy!
I own a new Harmony, and it is indeed made in Kalamazoo Michigan by real live red-blooded 'Mericans. I have the Comet, which is a unique design and is an incredible value, far superior value--by more than $1500--than any US Gibson or Heritage.
I think you missed the point. All of those example given were still the same company, Harmony is a brand new company using the name and reputation of a former one that hasn't existed in decades. Willys no longer exists building vehicles, so if somebody buys the name and starts to build cars, you would be okay with them claiming they built the Jeep that served in WWII? That is what Harmony is doing in their marketing, they are claiming to actually be the ones that built all those instruments decades ago.

So yes, I have a problem with doing that.
 




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