I’ve noticed that some professional guitarists change guitars and change endorsements as often as most people change their underwear, say, around once a month. (What?)
But other professional guitarists choose a guitar and seem to stick with it for years and years and years, and get associated with THAT guitar. David Gilmour’s guitar, B.B. King’s Lucille, Brad Gillis’ red strat (although the last few years he seems to be switching around quite a bit, including Hamers).
Is there ever one perfect guitar?
How many guitars are enough?
For me, it is mostly function, partly appearance:
I lust after beautiful guitars. But a beautiful guitar that plays crappy isn’t worth it, and an ugly guitar that sings takes on a beauty all its own.
Part of the answer to “How many guitars?” for me is what I’ve had a chance to play.
Before, 2 electric guitars were probably enough: one superstrat with a locking tremolo and H/S/S configuration with the bridge Humbucker splittable, and a H/H fixed bridge. That way I’d have most traditional sounds and techniques covered.
But then I needed a 24 fret guitar. Got one with a fixed bridge.
And then I wanted a 24-fret with a tremolo. (Why I want to have a trem guitar when I can’t use ’em for shit is beyond me, but I do).
That’s 4 right there.
Then I started to realize the difference between maple, rosewood, and ebony fingerboards.
So that is making me look for an ebony fingerboarded guitar.
Sonic differences also require another roster spot.
So I have:
1) my Carvin, fixed bridge, 22 fret, splittable H/S/S, low action, maple fingerboard, swamp ash body.
2) my JB Player Sledgehammer H/H, 22 fret, rosewood fingerboard; possibly swamp ash body; keeping it because it is unique among my guitars for the sweet neck position tone and the unique feel of its low, narrow frets for chording.
3) Hamer XT SATF, 22 fret, H/H, rosewood fingerboard; keeping it because of the Hamer/Duncan Design tone, and overall ease in playing, and beauty of the flamed maple top
4) Hamer Stellar 1, 24 fret, H/H, rosewood fingerboard; keeping it because of the Hamer/Duncan Design tone, and 24 fret flexibility, and unique (to me) Lacy Oak figuring
5) Shredder guitar – this one isn’t fixed yet. All of them I have right now have 24 frets and rosewood fingerboards. I have a Fernandes Pro with a Sustainer, H/H with a good vintage sound and the sustainer for good trem tricks; I have a Hamer Korean Cali, H/S, but haven’t been able to play it because I haven’t fixed the burr in the high E string saddle…no idea how it sounds/feels, because (I think) that’s why the guy sold it on eBay…buyer beware, eh?; I have a Hamer Korean Centaura, H/S/H, sounds good and the trem stays in tune, but I haven’t played it much because I haven’t had time to fix the action/tuning/intonation (action is high because I was strugging to get it tuned; you guys have told me how to fix it, but haven’t gotten around to it yet). But I’ve heard enough good things about the Peavey Vandenberg that I have been considering discarding all three of the aforementioned shredders. the Vandenberg is known for its thin/fast neck, and its ebony fingerboard would be unique in my collection.
I think I could be quite happy with 5 electric guitars, once I decide on my shredder. I would have enough to be able to grab the guitar that matches my mood and style of music, but few enough that all would be in regular rotation.