Sunday, December 26, 2010

Why are Gibson guitars such a popular brand of guitars?

By Adriana Noton

Some brands of guitar stick out in the minds of musicians of all types. For cars the list is Lamborghini, Porsche, and Ferrari. Amongst guitars, Gibson brings this kind of quality to mind. And you don't need the most expensive guitar in the line to get the quality you'd expect from such a brand. This is true for a lot of reasons.

Gibson guitars have a classic look. An instrument needs to perform, and obviously a Gibson does, but for many people the look of a Gibson is alluring. The tunings pegs have a vintage style and shape, the colours (especially the different "bursts") are simply stunning, and the company has produced so many quintessential guitars for various genres that the image of a Gibson has come to be one of the first images people summon in their imagination when they think of the company. This is true in acoustic playing with the J-45, it's true of hard rock with the Gibson Les Paul's, and the old ES series is the archetypical jazz archtop. Seeing the guitars of legends in your own hands is a good feeling!

But there's a reason why knock off companies who produce guitars that look like the real thing don't clean up. A guitar must perform. For performers, a crowd will be unforgiving if your guitar won't keep tune, and nobody wants to tune it between songs. For beginners, it's easy to believe you're not playing well in the elementary stages if you hear cacophonous sounds coming from your strings, and this can be disheartening; even if you're playing right, you don't have the ear to determine that your guitar is out of tune and it's not the fault of your inchoateness. Also, Gibson guitars are precisely crafted so the strings and the neck are perfectly parallel. This is of the utmost importance to a player as ideally the strings are of equal distance along the entire length of the neck. Guitar necks are given to warping, and in cheap instruments this can happen more than you'd like!

Finally, the reason why guitars are played in the first place: the sound. For this there is no substitute. To the untrained eye guitars might look the same, but hearing the two one after the other is no contest. Whether it's their vintage acoustic guitars or their new digitally tuned guitars these guitars sound classic! They are known for their deep, well rounded tone. The arch-tops have a thick but warm, mellow sound that's ideal for chording or soloing. The Les Pauls have a distinct crunch that other luthiers envy. The other reasons alone wouldn't be sufficient cause to explain Gibson's dominance in the field for so many decades.

The Gibson brand has become synonymous not just with the legends who play it, but with superiority in general. They have never cut corners to sacrifice the quality of their musical instruments. Their innovations over the years have been appreciated by pros and novice's alike, and it's no wonder that for so many years people have purchased their guitars.

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