Re: Newb advice from a newb

Tony Done:
All of your reasons are good reasons to bring someone
with you that knows what to look for.

Absolutely, that is the best single piece of advice, but you need to
find someone who is interested in the mechanics of guitars as
opposed to just a good player with an ear for tone. That is an
interesting question in itself, how many players have a reasonably
deep understanding of the mechanics of the beast?

Presumably though, if they are experienced players at all,
they should at least know what's "not working".

I think the very real "danger" in bringing an
"experienced player" with you is that he will
end up showing off to you and the other kids
in the store, rather than evaluating the guitar.

He's likely to inject his own personal prejudices
about what a good guitar should feel/play like.
There's probably nothing inherently wrong with that.
But now we've created a situation where the newbie
has to judge guitars he isn't familiar with plus
a player whose personal beliefs he's not familiar
with. When the "guitar gawd" says "that one is crap".
Is it crap because of some structural reason or is
it crap because the experienced player wasn't able
to play as fast as somebody else in the store?

I search for guitars on the emotional level FIRST.
I don't care (initially) about cost or brand or
anything else except "how does this guitar LOOK".
If I were to find a guitar that LOOKED like what
I wanted, I could always find a similar looking
guitar that was less expensive, more expensive,
better build quality etc.

So especially when you're a newbie and you're not
sure Strat or LP(?) or other broad questions, just
go play a gazillion guitars. Then once you think
"I like the feel of these strats", then you can ask
your guitar playing pals or the sales guy or anyone
else "why is this one $200 and that one is $2000?"

To narrow it down from the other side isn't productive,
to me. "I will only look at guitars that cost <$600
and they must have alnico magnets"
or any other criteria, will exclude tons of guitars.
Better, IMO, to keep the field really wide open when
hunting. That way you stand to learn a lot more about
stuff that will be important in ANY guitar choice.
Tuner machines, rosewood vs maple f'board, wide vs
narrow frets, spruce vs cedar top acoustics etc are
all things that apply to any guitar you might look at.


In Your Ears for 40 Something Years