When and Why did Lindsey Buckingham stop playing Ovation acoustic guitars?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by IMMusicRulz, Jun 18, 2021.

  1. IMMusicRulz

    IMMusicRulz Tele-Meister

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    I know that this was pretty much his only acoustic guitar from 1973 (the Buckingham Nicks Polydor album) up to about 1982 (when Mirage came out.)
    Did he get tired of playing them, did he want a different guitar that sounded better and that the strings didn't break on them? He did have a cocaine induced habit of throwing his guitars onstage so I wonder if that's why he stopped playing them.

    Most everything (Songbird, Sara, Tusk, Landslide, Never Going Back Again, the Bob Welch solo version of Sentimental Lady, Second Hand News etc.) that was on Rumours is an Ovation Balladeer acoustic guitar. Those are pretty good guitars. He also owns a Martin D28 acoustic guitar, and he's also been known to play his Rick Turner model 1 acoustic solidbody electric guitar, Rickenbacker 330 12 string electric guitar, a Gretsch, Dobro, Taylor 6 string 814ce and Taylor 12 string acoustic guitars. A video was posted a few months ago of him playing a Fender Acoustasonic Jazzmaster electric acoustic guitar, so I guess he's back to endorsing Fender.

    Most of my friends who know Lindsey pretty well know that he is an Ovation player. I think Bob Welch played Ovation acoustic guitars too, but I am not very knowledgeable about what acoustic guitars he used.
    Most if not all of the Go Insane and Law and Order solo albums Lindsey put out in the Eighties were composed on Ovation models.

    Does he still own any Ovation guitars, and would any of you like to post pictures of his Ovation guitars? Please let me know.

    looking back now, it’s cool how many of my favorite guitarists played ovation guitars. Roy Orbison, Jeff Lynne, Nancy Wilson, Steve Lukather, Paul McCartney to name a few.
     
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  2. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Back in the seventies, Ovations were about the only commonly available, roadworthy acoustic guitars. They were used by many people in that era. By 1982 there were far more options available, plus better pickups for amplifying them.
     
  3. wabashslim

    wabashslim Friend of Leo's

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    In the 70's Ovation installed the only acoustic pickups worth a darn, one big reason for their success.
     
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  4. 4 Cat Slim

    4 Cat Slim Friend of Leo's

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    +1 on what's been said so far.
    I still enjoy my Ovation guitar with its factory pickup and OP-24 preamp. it still works for me. Unfortunately, Ovations often developed finish cracks or through-the-wood top cracks from the bridge to the end of the lower bout.
    Not trying to make light of this, but maybe Linsey's Ovation developed a finish crack.
    Edit: You seldom see an Ovation described as relic'ed,
    An ad for a used Ovation will mention finish cracks, if any, or the lack of finish cracks.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2021
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  5. vhilts1

    vhilts1 Tele-Holic

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    Ovations were all the rage in the 70s particularly on stage

    The actual guitars have generally not aged well. Many develop cracks probably due somewhat to being 2 entirely different materials at points

    They are in the running for the most uncomfortable guitars ever made to hold and play.

    Most guitar players develop a long term attachment to their favorite Martins Gibsons etc etc as the wood ages and they continue to sweeten

    That doesn’t happen to a large degree with those round backs
     
  6. 4 Cat Slim

    4 Cat Slim Friend of Leo's

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    I agree with you, vhilts1.
    I know other Ovation players, and nobody ever talks about their
    composite bowls aging. Or improving with age, if that's possible.

    Some years ago, an aftermarket manufacturer
    created a device that could be clipped onto the bowl in order to make the guitars more comfortable to play while standing. Ovation eventually
    developed a bowl with slightly modified shape, but by the time this happened, the uncomfortable-to-play reputation was sealed.
     
  7. wabashslim

    wabashslim Friend of Leo's

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    Also, as players aged and grew potbellies the situation worsened to the point of un-playability for the players and cruel comedy for the audience!

    Ask me how I know...
     
  8. CajunJ

    CajunJ Tele-Holic

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    Played an Ovation once and it was like trying to hold a slippery fish.
     
  9. rand z

    rand z Friend of Leo's

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    I still have mine from '74 with cracks, big bowl etc.

    It was, as said, pretty much the only thing going for a stage guitar at that time.

    It is still playable and in pretty good shape and if I had to use it for a show, I would.

    But, generally, it has seen a lot of stage time (years ago) and is resting in a well deserved retirement.
     
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  10. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Doctor of Teleocity

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    My experience too... but about only option at time.
     
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  11. Daddydex

    Daddydex Friend of Leo's

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    My Elite model cracked within two years and they charged me 250 for a new top. Mid 90s. Traded it shortly after that on my SRV strat. Still have that but am open to offers :)

    Dan
     
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  12. toomuchfun

    toomuchfun Tele-Afflicted

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    Once he got his Rick Turner guitar I think things changed.

    Now at the risk of getting in trouble, I'll first say I owned a Custom Balladeer and it was a fine guitar with great action.

    But the appeal of Ovation was more that is was less prone to feedback then to sound it offered. Times have changed and one can use any guitar with a much better result in avoiding feedback. Doesn't mean Ovations don't have a great place in music history.

    I could be wrong but I'm pretty sure he had moved to wooden guitars by his "Out of the Cradle" album in 1992.
     
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  13. alnicopu

    alnicopu Friend of Leo's

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    I had a buddy that glued a bunch of those little clam shells on the “lap side” you see driveways made of after breaking them a bit with a hammer so it wouldnt slip off his legs when playing sitting down. They are like trying to hug a greased pig.
     
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  14. wabashslim

    wabashslim Friend of Leo's

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    I'd wanted an Ovation 12-string since the Glen Campbell TV show and in the early 2000s I bought one - Standard Balladeer, USA, cherry sunburst - and didn't like it. Opening the case was like walking into an unregulated Chinese chemical plant but aside from the playability there was something about the radius or the low-E string placement that my left hand couldn't adjust to. So in 6 months I sold it to another church member who was happy with it.
     
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  15. freshmattyp

    freshmattyp Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    My first "nice" acoustic was an Ovation Balladeer I bought in about 1987. It was lovely to play sitting down, and a beast once I stood up. Ended up trading it for a Yairi.
     
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  16. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

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    Just wondering - if you have friends who know Mr. Buckingham pretty well, why not ask them to fill you in on these Ovation questions and then you’ll have a great story to tell us?

    Ovation had a cutting edge moment and had all the pros and cons of factory produced guitars.

    They also provide another example of how live performance logistics have changed over the years.

    Good questions!
     
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  17. El Marin

    El Marin Friend of Leo's

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    When? I don't know

    Why? Because they sound BAD
     
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  18. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Takamine killed them dead in the 80s and 90s
     
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  19. scottser

    scottser Friend of Leo's

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    i had a cheaper version, applause i think it was called. horrible yoke, awful to play and sounded gack. i left it behind in a house move.
     
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  20. getbent

    getbent Telefied Silver Supporter

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    you say you 'know this was pretty much his only acoustic guitar from 73 to 82' how do you 'know' this?
     
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