Playing cheaper guitars at gigs?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by LunarSlingShot, Oct 30, 2019.

  1. LunarSlingShot

    LunarSlingShot Tele-Meister

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    There's something I've never really understood that has been mentioned quite a bit on the forum. The idea that a lot of folks have stated that they bought a low-end Squier to play at their gigs so they don't have to bring their USA guitars, I guess in fear of something happening to them. Nothing against Squier's as most of my guitars in the last 4-5 years have been Squier's (mostly due to my budget). They have always performed well and I don't have any complaints.

    However, I guess I don't grasp the concept of buying a bunch of high end guitars and then not using them when it really counts. I would want to have top performance when I'm doing a job. It just seems wasteful to have such great instruments to leave them at home.

    I can understand not bringing vintage instruments, but anything short of that I just don't get the case queen thing.
     
  2. joeford

    joeford Friend of Leo's

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    people steal things?

    a lot of the venues i play are in bad neighborhoods. a lot of promoters want you to load your stuff into a back room where a bunch of sketchy musicians are in and out. not to mention car thefts
     
  3. GuitarKid

    GuitarKid Tele-Holic

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    I have thought about it. My classic vibe strat would probably sound just as good if not better than some of my Fenders. But in the end i always grab the Fenders. I guess I want people to know I have some Fenders. If I show up with a Squier they might think I'm not serious enough. If I play my butt off on the Squier, some folks will give due credit, some wont care, but something in the back of my head will keep telling me that I should have brought the Fenders. I don't have any vintage anything anyway, but my guitars are still valuable considering I live in the middle of freaking nowhere and the Fender logo will always attract some eyes.

    I might bring just the Squier next gig.
     
  4. DekeDog

    DekeDog Tele-Meister

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    I don't get relics.
     
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  5. CK Dexter Haven

    CK Dexter Haven Friend of Leo's

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    Depends on the gig/venue, there are still many places where leaving late at night w/ a brand name guitar can put you in a dangerous situation (professional thieves know what they are looking at to at least that level) There are other gigs, such as festivals where you may not always have your instrument in hand and volunteer stage "help" can do serious damage, this is especially a problem w/ amps and drums.

    I play the good stuff when I feel comfortable doing so, and have a few "peace of mind" things for other situations.
     
  6. guitartwonk

    guitartwonk Tele-Meister

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    I see your point. Why would you not want to use the best tools you have for the job?

    I've never owned a guitar worth more than about 1k, so it's never been a massive issue for me. If I owned 20k+ vintage instruments, maybe I'd take a different view.

    But then, why would I own a guitar so valuable that I wouldn't want to gig it?
     
  7. Mike SS

    Mike SS Poster Extraordinaire

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    If it stays in tune, and is fully functional, then it shouldn't matter how much you paid for it, or what brand is on the head stock. If you can pull some good sounds out of it, and entertain the crowd then, NUFF SAID!
    Worrying about what other people might think of your instrument brand name is something you can discuss with a therapist.
     
  8. Ron R

    Ron R Friend of Leo's

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    Eh, I think you're making too much of it, and most people actually fall in that "won't care" (or won't know) category.
    True story:
    Some years ago, I was in a 4 piece band, and I played primarily my PRS Custom 24 with a Squier Strat as my backup. During our first break, some guy came up to our other guitar player and said "Hey man, tell your boy to put down that Gibson and play his Fender".
     
  9. Henry Mars

    Henry Mars Tele-Afflicted

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    ... I use a low end Ibanez AM73B on gigs a lot. I changed the PU's but it is till really low end. I just like it. Sometimes I bring my Tele or my ES335 ... The Ibanez sounds good and at the end of the night I don't need a Chiropractor. What is the difference? If you like it you like it. The best player I know uses a $100 no name ... doesn't hurt him any.
     
  10. LunarSlingShot

    LunarSlingShot Tele-Meister

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    Definitely was not my point. I could care less what people see me playing. MOST everyone there will have no clue that your squier is cheaper than a fender. They just see it as a guitar. My point was, why refuse to play your mid-high end guitars as gigs.
     
  11. Ron R

    Ron R Friend of Leo's

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    When I first started in bands, I used my PRS for practice, but left it at home for gigs, because I was worried about dings, etc. Then I finally had the epiphany that I bought the guitar because of how much I loved to play it, so there was no point in making it a museum piece. I take it to just about every gig, and haven't looked back. If we're playing outside and the weather looks really dubious, then yeah, I might leave it behind in lieu of my cheaper guitars. Otherwise, nope.
    It does not get left out of sight though, either.
     
  12. GuitarKid

    GuitarKid Tele-Holic

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    I used to see a therapist. He made some improvement so I let him go.
     
  13. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Holic

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    I've always been a setup/teardown **** for gigs. The band needs to be reloaded and ready to roll after the set if it's an out of town gig. Iv seen too many missing gear trailer posts on CL to change my ways.

    But my gear has always been old Fender amps that ran under $1000, and Mexican/Japanese Fender guitars. Pedals? Early 2000s EHX. There were probably times when my big muff was the least desirable one in existence, before more recent, less mod-friendly ones came around.
    I can see why certain situations would warrant cheaper, or at least cheaper looking gear.

    If its really bad, one could always stash a PRRI inside of a SS crate combo amp enclosure, right?
     
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  14. unixfish

    unixfish Poster Extraordinaire

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    Some friends of my wife and I are in a regional touring band. The lead guitarist has three high-end guitars, and three other decent guitars. I looked them up, and he has about $18,000 worth of guitars on stage. That blows my mind. Mind you, since they are a bigger act, they don't play dives, but still. I would not have the nerve to take that much with me.

    But then again, why have them and not use them?

    I am so on the fence here.
     
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  15. LunarSlingShot

    LunarSlingShot Tele-Meister

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    Again, not my point. I play low end guitars mostly. But if I owned a USA Fender, I sure wouldn't leave it at home if it played just as good or better than my other guitars.
     
  16. ElJay370

    ElJay370 Tele-Holic

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    I have a lot of gear, but there's only a small handful of it that I have a deep emotional attachment to..so it generally stays home.

    Everything else isn't anything that can't be replaced...or anything anyone would want, really.

    Low resale value is a fortunate perk of preferring mostly homemade/heavily modified gear.
     
  17. CK Dexter Haven

    CK Dexter Haven Friend of Leo's

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    Or they think they know..

    I did a wedding once on nylon; now I am in no way shape or form a serious classical player, it was just a few simple Irish folk tunes before hand, and then the traditional wedding songs. This guy comes up as I'm loading out.."Lovely guitar..what is it?" and then rattles off a list of Spanish makers.. "Its a Yamaha" .."NO..IMPOSSIBLE..you are being coy.. I MUST know". I handed it to him he, peers in the sound hole.."Humfp.. and only a G55" he hands it back and totters off. I didn't have the heart to tell him it was $20 at a thrift store.
     
  18. stepvan

    stepvan Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    Depends on the part of town a venue is as to what guitars get brought. but honestly if the damn thing plays good it will get played.
     
  19. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity

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    Yup...depends on the gig. A festival with a lot of band switching and commotion, and I often leave the good stuff home.
    Also...I have some inexpensive guitars I REALLY like.
    For sounding as good as possible...bring a great amp.
     
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  20. LunarSlingShot

    LunarSlingShot Tele-Meister

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    uhhhh, don't let your equipment out of your sight? I've played gigs just like you describe and my guitar goes with me everywhere when I'm at a place like that.

    If you're playing a seedy venue and you let your stuff out of your sight and it gets stolen, that was your fault for not keeping an eye on your gear. If someone is really that worried about their stuff getting jacked they shouldn't leave it alone.
     
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