A Lesson in Marketing

Discussion in 'Fred's Barcalounge' started by Duo Slinger, Mar 5, 2021.

  1. new6659

    new6659 Country Gent

    Interesting video. I haven't had the desire to buy a new Gibson in quite a few years. Maybe I'm just tired of them; I bought my first new Les Paul in 1969. And it's sad to note that interesting instruments like the ES-175 aren't even being made at present. I would still love to stumble upon an affordable L5S but that's not likely to happen:oops:
     
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  2. Duo Slinger

    Duo Slinger Synchromatic

    545
    Sep 11, 2020
    California, USA
    Yeah... "Affordable" and "Gibson" never belong in the same sentence. Heck, one of the first hollowbodies I ever saw was Chuck Berry's ES-350T in a YouTube video and I thought it was the coolest thing ever. Their ES line is just the 335 and it's a shame.
     
  3. new6659

    new6659 Country Gent

    The premium cost and unaffordability of a Gibson is likely an important part of their decline but they have always been expensive. My Les Paul Deluxe was $660 in 1969 and the case was $125. Tax on top was around 5%. I was making about 90 cents/hr. Guitars prices were not discounted by stores at that time. I think my Dad bought a two-year-old Cadillac Sedan DeVille for about $3300 around that time!

    Back in the day, Gibson was unique in the marketplace by producing playable, great sounding and beautiful instruments. Playability was something that you had to pay a premium for because it was the result of the endeavors a small community of skilled craftspeople in Kalamazoo, MI. The difference between the playability and sound of a real Gibson versus the guitars that came from Japan and Europe was vast. Now, it's not so much, if anything at all.

    It's also notable that Gibson's most popular model, the Les Paul, although visually and sonically beautiful, is an unbalanced boat anchor.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
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  4. Duo Slinger

    Duo Slinger Synchromatic

    545
    Sep 11, 2020
    California, USA
    Yeah. I played an SG Special (I think... I know it was a lower end Gibson SG model, not an SGJ, could be a Tribute) once in a Guitar Center, and it was really cool, "playable" and I felt like Angus Young for a couple minutes. I handed it to my buddy, and grabbed an Electromatic FilterTron Pro Jet and we did a little AC/DC schtick. But picking up the Electromatic Jet, I realized the neck felt just as good, and the hardware didn't look like it was worth the ~500 buck price difference. Never held a real Gibson LP, just an Epiphone one a friend-of-a-friend owned (the same friend from the GC. He lives in an apartment complex with a weird amount of guitar players the same age as yours truly) and that was enough to make me stumble. I couldn't tell ya if one was playable having never touched one, but seeing the modern weight-relieved LP body pictures it looks more and more like a Duo Jet. And frankly, QC is better in the Japanese Terada factory than the modern American Gibson factories. Gibson... is a mess, to put it lightly. Here's a real interesting look at what working inside the Gibson factories is like:
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
  5. mschafft

    mschafft Synchromatic

    753
    Jan 19, 2017
    Switzerland
    Gibson: why prosper when you can shoot yourself in the foot in so many new ways?
     
  6. mschafft

    mschafft Synchromatic

    753
    Jan 19, 2017
    Switzerland
    And anyway isn't the whole Gibson drama a big joke meant to sell more Epis?
     
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  7. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Age:
    71
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Back in the day, you could get a new LP Jr. and GA-5 for $120. Still a chunk of money back then, but it could be reasonably done by a kid with a paper route of a grocery store after school job. Granted, Gibson's always made top quality gear, but, the prices have gone thru the roof. Blame Henry J for escalating prices to cover his bad business decisions, and others for basic greed.
     
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  8. afire

    afire Country Gent

    A Les Paul Standard with case ran $289.50 in 1959, $2600 adjusted for inflation. A new one today is $2500. An ES-335 with case ran $328.00 in 1959, $2950 adjusted for inflation. A new one today is $3000. If you stick to the regular line, Gibson is what it always was, a premium and expensive guitar. It's when you get away from the core models that the pricing gets silly. And hollowbodies just aren't part of the core lineup anymore.
     
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  9. Duo Slinger

    Duo Slinger Synchromatic

    545
    Sep 11, 2020
    California, USA
    Yeah... in addition to that, the quality you receive is questionable at best (you know, a Friday afternoon car) and the price point is ridiculous. Compare this to the Gretsch professional line, and it speaks for itself.
     
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  10. Duo Slinger

    Duo Slinger Synchromatic

    545
    Sep 11, 2020
    California, USA
    That is true, but I think another big problem is the world of music has changed. No one under 45 really gets any decent money playing the guitar.
     
  11. Duo Slinger

    Duo Slinger Synchromatic

    545
    Sep 11, 2020
    California, USA
    Possibly, possibly... And Epiphones are so much more uniform than Gibsons.
     
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  12. HypotenusLuvTriangle

    HypotenusLuvTriangle Country Gent

    Oct 27, 2010
    Whittier, Ca
    For me, Gibson doesn't appeal to me for multiple reasons.
    1. High cost for basic models
    2. I've never played one that didn't have issues.
    3. Didn't like the neck profile.
    4. Too many damn Les Pauls.
    5. They don't provide many options for the radical designs like the V, Explorer, which are the ones I would buy.
     
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  13. Duo Slinger

    Duo Slinger Synchromatic

    545
    Sep 11, 2020
    California, USA
    I couldn't agree more. I really liked the basic SG model I played at the Guitar Center, but it was somethin' like 1.5 K and had... "character" by which I mean defects that wouldn't pass for any other decent brand. And yeah, they have, like, two, three Flying V models?
     
  14. Back in Black

    Back in Black Synchromatic

    Age:
    71
    733
    Jun 22, 2020
    Ontario Canada
    DS,

    I listened to Jeremey's video, which is one man's opinion.

    Whether he is right/wrong/other, is the opinion or opinions of others.

    I own every guitar I have ever wanted to own, none of them carry the Gibson brand.

    I suppose, like a lot of other guitar enthusiasts of my age bracket, I was influenced by the Beatles.

    I have been loyal to Gretsch, Rickenbacker, Hofner...and a few other brands, especially those played by more recent artists that I came to enjoy in the decades following the 1960's.

    Had John Lennon, or George Harrison played a LP as opposed to the Gretsch and the Rickenbacker models...I'd very likely have a LP, but they didn't, and I don't.

    I have never been interested in brands for brands sake. I have only, ever been interested in brands/models used by my favorite players.

    I have never had the thought...I don't have a Les Paul, so I think I'll run out and buy one. Not in Anaconda Green, or any other color.

    The primary reason for my preference to artist/artist signature models, John's 325, George's Duo Jet and 360/12, Paul's Cavern Bass, Roger's 370/12, Malcolm's Double Jet, for the others, Eddie's Frankenstein, Andy Summers Tele...

    Just me...

    BIB.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
  15. GlenP

    GlenP Country Gent

    Jul 23, 2019
    WA
    The Heritage still makes guitars in the old Gibson factory in Kalamazoo, but have had their own growing pains with being bought out and “modernized” (more efficient and more expensive) since 2018 or so, and are ironically facing similar issues.

    A (former) drummer has a signature Gibson guitar, he basically appropriated from Trini Lopez, but Justin Hayward does not, how does that make any sense?
     
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  16. Duo Slinger

    Duo Slinger Synchromatic

    545
    Sep 11, 2020
    California, USA
    Hell if I know
     
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  17. Jelly Roll Horton

    Jelly Roll Horton Country Gent

    Nov 10, 2017
    Portland, OR
    I never had a desire for a Gibson. They weren’t even remotely possible financially until I was about 45. By that time I had discovered Martins and was able to get a nice D-18, which was at the time cheaper than any Gibson, and I liked the sound more anyway. A friend has a beautiful large bodied acoustic Gibson from the ‘60s, and I do like the sound of that guitar, but I think age has a lot to do with that. (The guitar’s age, not mine.)
    I think Gibson’s current problems are due in large part to their being owned by an investment firm rather than people who understand and love guitars for the sake of music. No vision in the owners, except for MONEY. :cool:
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
  18. MotorCentaur

    MotorCentaur Gretschie

    450
    May 11, 2016
    Seattle
    Radio friendly unit shifter
     
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