There are a lot of popular guitars on the market these days and often I’m in stores observing people shopping. Some go straight for the brands they are familiar with from Ads. Others to what was recommended and most go to what their favorite artists play.
Polishing a guitar in the acoustic room of Jim’s Music a young gentleman who had been playing various guitars asked me “Do you work for Gibson? Can you tell me why this guitar sounds so much better than everything else in here? He was holding a SJ200.
I gave him a brief history on the “King of Acoustics” and explained how the Nitro Lacquer, dovetail neck joint and hand made construction added to the sound quality. A lot of the guitars he was playing had a Polyurethane finish that can really deaden the tone. He stated that he pulled it of the wall thinking, “I have seen this guitar before”. I told him he was right, that a lot artists play the SJ200 because of its loud deep rich sound that other guitars pale in comparison. Originally built for volume and projection to be heard over Mandolins and Banjos of the Bluegrass Era it later became popular with rock musicians.
We talked for a bit and I listened to him play until his father came and pulled him out of the room. As he left he looked at me and said “Someday.” He was only 12 years old but for his age he was a good player and a smart kid. He listened to his ears first.