How'd you find "the one"?

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BailyDread
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How'd you find "the one"?

Post by BailyDread » Tue Dec 17, 2019 5:16 pm

Hello everyone in this cozy little corner of MW.

My question for today is... your #1 guitar, the one you reach for most, the one you associate with yourself as "guitarist"... how'd you find it? What's the story? What do you love about it? What makes it your #1?

I ask for two reasons. The first is that I'm just curious, and I'm sure there's some interesting stories out there. The second is that I don't have a #1. :sadbanana:

I have a telecaster from Fender that I've played for over a decade... never really bonded with it. I have a parts Stratocaster that I've played for almost two years... it might as well be a screwdriver or toaster. Both of them get the job done (the strat more than the tele, which is so beat up it barely stays together), but I just don't feel much of an attachment to them, and I don't find them inspiring to play.

What gives? I've been to quite a few guitar stores in my day, played a good number of guitars... I can't say I've ever picked up a guitar and had that "WOW!" :woah:

Is it real? Is it psychosomatic and a Strat is a Strat? Or are some particular guitars just really particularly suited to some particular players, for whatever reason?

So let's hear it! Also, if you have suggestions for guitars I could check out, please fire away. I am a single coil pickup guy, and I'm very partial to the Mosrite Ventures guitar shape.

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dkcg
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Post by dkcg » Tue Dec 17, 2019 7:11 pm

I think "The One" is a myth.
Every guitarist I've admired plays more than one guitar, they may play one more often, but they still play several ir not dozens, plus the ones we never see in the studio.

The one I've owned the longest isn't my favorite.
Lately (key word) my favorite is my Gretsch DuoJet, but it's not "the one" when I wanna play slide, then it's my Dobro, but if I wanna send it to the synth, "the one" is one of a couple steel guitars.

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Post by sduck » Tue Dec 17, 2019 10:42 pm

Agreed, it's a myth. Play what you've got.

I have for years felt most at home on strats. But it wasn't always that way, I was in love with les pauls at first, and still own 2 of them. Sometime while I was at college, a friend handed me a 54 strat, which I got to play through a really nice amp in Finney Chapel at Oberlin, and I ended up playing for like an hour or more, and during that time a fairly sizable audience collected watching me. It felt and sounded great! Since then I've almost always had at least one decent strat. The one I now use most is a warmoth partscaster I threw together in the 90's. It's green, the one on the left.
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Post by GuyaGuy » Tue Dec 17, 2019 11:12 pm

My "one" is an MIJ Gretsch Pro Double Jet and my other "one" is a Mosrite 12 string copy by Fullerton that I play as a 9 string (no octave strings on the bass strings).

What makes them ones are similar specs--wider fretboard, flat radius, medium neck depth, Bigsby, enough weight that it stays put but not heavy, clear pickups with twang. It took me a while to figure out the specs that I prefer but now that I have, my "one" has to have them. But to sduck and dkcg's point, if I lost them I could find replacements. All of those MIJ Gretsches are made perfectly so that's easy enough. The Fullerton would be harder to replace even though it was 1/10th the price.
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Post by commodorejohn » Wed Dec 18, 2019 2:54 am

Play whatever you can until you find what feels good to you. My go-to guitar is a modestly decent Korean Tele clone that I got for a paltry $120 - but damned if it doesn't just make me want to never put it down when I pick it up.
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Post by Just me » Wed Dec 18, 2019 12:56 pm

I just played guitars until I found 2 that felt comfortable to play and made the noises I wanted.
I went through a lot of guitars over a lot of years and I'm not even a guitarist.
The two I have now I've had a long time and I no longer even look at any others.
If I have water in my ear, is it safe for me to listen to electronic music?

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Post by cretaceousear » Wed Dec 18, 2019 6:59 pm

I'm only contributing to this thread to share the Gretsch love.
Happy with my Pro Jet and Ibanez Blazer (old Strat like thing) and when I want a change, I play the other one for a month or two and think damn this is a great guitar.
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XXXEsq
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Post by XXXEsq » Thu Dec 19, 2019 12:57 pm

I started playing guitar 50 years ago. My first guitar was an Aria 335 copy. My first "real" guitar was a new Strat I bought in 73. Since then, I've owned around 100 guitars. Some I bought because they inspired me in a particular way at the moment, others just to fill out a need in my sonic palate (need a Les Paul sound, buy one...)

There were a couple that stood out and were my "one" from time to time - a prototype BC Rich Mockigbird and a Fender Electric XII (that I still own) come to mind - but most of my life, there has never really been a "one" until recently.

I was an early adopter of Synth Guitar - beginning with a 360 Systems Slavedriver controlling a Moog Modular up to my current AX50 system controlling a selection of hardware and software synths. I also found the Variax guitars to be a great way to have a wide palate in a single instrument. (I added a Helix to the Variax and that is a great combo!)

I was intrigued when I saw Adrian Belew play his custom Parker Fly (with a Variax board and a hex output) but didn't have the money to buy one at the time they were available. But the idea of a single instrument with all those capabilities really resonated with me, so I decided to build out a guitar that would be my "one" a few years back.

It's a heavily modified Variax JTV69s with a built in GK3 internal kit, changed out pickups, Sustaniac, and a Warmouth neck. I call her the Hexstainocaster.
I now play that guitar 99% of the time.

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deke
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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by deke » Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:27 pm

I have also played for decades and have had many “ones” including a few I thought would never be replaced. Unless you are Brian May I say keep buying and using different guitars. I have a strat, tele, 2 les Pauls and more and any given day one is my favorite.

To your wow question I have had that multiple times. Most recently with a $600 Epiphone that despite the store having 8 almost just like it, really stood out. Another was with a $2000 2014 Les Paul Traditional. Point is, it can be almost anything that responds best to you.

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by chachi » Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:34 pm

i bought a squire strat off the floor when i was 13 (1987) and while it has had several modifications (only strat i’ve seen with a bigsby), it is the one. only electric guitar i ever owned except for two other cheap electrics that were given to me. i got a chance to play all the guitars i ever wondered about when i worked in a music store and realized the expensive ones are just guitars as well, might as well stick with what i have and just make the music already.

but given my druthers, LP special double cut, late fifties/early sixties neck.

my acoustic was THE ONE. ‘66 B-52, it was the best playing guitar in the whole shop beating countless valuable gibsons, martins and exotics. had a huge wear mark from someone strumming too hard, they’d literally beat it into perfection. everybody who picked up that guitar remarked on it. stolen out of my house in 2010ish. but that’s the way to buy a guitar - play every single one. you’ll know immediately.

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Re:

Post by GuyaGuy » Thu Jan 16, 2020 1:31 am

XXXEsq wrote:
Thu Dec 19, 2019 12:57 pm

I now play that guitar 99% of the time.
You must not sleep much.


I'll get my coat...

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by Christopher Winkels » Thu Jan 16, 2020 6:48 am

I don't have "the one". Out of my six guitars I have three that are definite favourites, the others being specialized placeholders, but I couldn't find myself playing a single guitar the majority of the time.

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by everydaycurry » Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:05 am

Many of my heroes played Fender offsets - either Jags or Jazzmasters - Lee Ranaldo, J Mascis, Rowland S. Howard, etc.. I had one of the Classic Lacquer Jaguars but after my dad died he had kept some cash in his dresser with a note that we were supposed to use it for fun if something happened to him.

I put my share and the Jag toward a '65 Thin Skin Jazzmaster - other guitars have come and gone but everything about the Jazzmaster just fits me. It's light, the neck is perfect, by some miracle I don't even have any issues with the stock bridge. I've had a Staytrem for two years waiting on a need to put it in.

The only other guitar I can conceive of wanting/needing is building my own Ranaldo-esque Jazzblaster.

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by thetwlo » Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:36 am


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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by tuj » Tue Jan 21, 2020 4:35 am

This is mine:

Image

I built it myself and with the help of a tech for the electronics and final setup. It's a Warmoth body of swamp ash with a flame maple top. The neck is maple with a rosewood fretboard and 10-16" compound radius. Tuners are Schaller locking. Bridge is a Mastery, switchgear and jacks are Switchcraft, electronics are Orange Drop caps and carbon film 1% resistors. Pickups are DiMarzio PAF neck and Super Distortion bridge. Wiring is conventional Jaguar with a low cut. Both cavities and the pick guard are coated in copper tape to electrically seal the guitar. Strap locks and a custom headstock decal complete the job.

I built this after lots of other guitars that I liked, picking out various traits. I love Fender looks and feel and sound, and the short-scales have always felt a little better in my hands. Humbuckers give that high output sound but the PAF dials back nicely and sounds a lot like a thick single coil. Normally I'm a single coil guy. The flame maple I had on a BC Rich in red and I thought it was pretty cool. Locking tuners I've moved to on a number of my player guitars because they just work better for me.

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what gives?
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Re:

Post by what gives? » Tue Jan 21, 2020 4:55 am

sduck wrote:
Tue Dec 17, 2019 10:42 pm
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Good thing to avoid unnecessary confusion by labeling your guitar. :tu: :mrgreen:

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by Yes Powder » Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:49 am

At the moment, I'm in the "The One is a myth" camp. Of course my options for guitars are severely limited out of the gate, me being left-handed.
Right now I have a dirt-cheap Chinese Strat clone from a company that nobody seems to have heard of (S101?) and an Epiphone SG with those volume pots that let you switch between single-coil and humbucking. They both serve me well enough that I'm not really coveting a new guitar. I would kinda like to have a left-handed Danelectro, though...

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by Fabong » Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:02 am

Right now I really love my strat. Previously I was a 335 man. I would imagine I'll change my mind in a few years again, when I can afford to. I feel I'm missing out in not having a decent acoustic though. No guitar can do it all.
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naturligfunktion
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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by naturligfunktion » Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:15 am

Great question! I have never picked up a guitar like "wow dude this is the ONE :woah: " but I think it is theoretically possible.

I have two guitars. The first one is electric. I got it when I finished high school. It is a nice ESP Eclipse. Made in Japan, looks like a Les Paul but is lighter. Very beautiful. The mics on it sounds great too. Very full, I like to hear them clean.

Honestly though, I have only played on this guitar seriously recently. For a long time it was down in the basement. That being said, I really dig it. When I play Fenders, I think they play better. But I will not buy a Fender anytime soon, since I like this guitar. Is it the one.. nah. But it would break my heart if I lost it.

Second guitar is an acoustic Martin lookalike called Blueridge. O M G how much do I love that guitar! I bought it as a present for myself due to various reasons with my nepfew. It was a very fun day. I play on this guitar almost every day. It is such a joy and it sounds great. However, I did not feel like this when I picked it up. It sounded good and all, but the love has been gradual. Now Im looking forward to play this guitar for the rest of my life.

It MIGHT be the one.

Bonus: I also have an electric bass :mrgreen:

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by papz » Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:57 am

My "The One" bass is a 1973 Fender Precision found in a Brussels second hand store around the year 2000. The price was ridiculously low (less than €500 in the Belgian currency of this time), maybe because the original sunburst finish is long gone and it looks like no other Precision with the new varnish.
It catched my eye, I tried it and after a few minutes playing only, it was obvious and undeniable this bass was made for me and such a bargain for the price. Later, the store keeper asked me if I'd accept to resell it to the former owner, who regretted having sold it, I refused.
I've owned and still own other nice basses, some much more expensive, but after 20 years no one ever surpassed this one in my heart, hands and ears. :love:

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by naturligfunktion » Mon Feb 24, 2020 4:41 am

papz wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:57 am
My "The One" bass is a 1973 Fender Precision found in a Brussels second hand store around the year 2000. The price was ridiculously low (less than €500 in the Belgian currency of this time), maybe because the original sunburst finish is long gone and it looks like no other Precision with the new varnish.
It catched my eye, I tried it and after a few minutes playing only, it was obvious and undeniable this bass was made for me and such a bargain for the price. Later, the store keeper asked me if I'd accept to resell it to the former owner, who regretted having sold it, I refused.
I've owned and still own other nice basses, some much more expensive, but after 20 years no one ever surpassed this one in my heart, hands and ears. :love:
That's a beauty!

:sb:

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by papz » Mon Feb 24, 2020 8:18 am

Thanks, I think so :chug:
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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by Technologear? » Wed Feb 26, 2020 9:14 pm

Guitar- custom baritone


I wanted a doom and metal monster. The luthier wanted to try some nonconventional design ideas including a flat radius neck. We worked it out. It's weird and wonderful. A nice balance of "I want X and Y" in an instrument plus a craftsman contributing their own ideas.


Bass- fender cij P lyte.


She's been around in my life since the late 90s. It was actually a friend who noticed her first. He was a bit older and wiser, did me a favour by suggesting I check her out. She didn't appeal to me at first - she felt lovely but her light body tones weren't really my thing. I was much younger and nervous then, worrying about money and what people might think of me when they saw me with her. But I trusted my friends suggestion. Most importantly, I had a feeling that I had found an opportunity for something that I didn't fully appreciate but would in the future. So I spent what was needed and we started our journey together.


The first few years were primarily tactile. Lots of practice sessions where I became lost in the moment, closing my eyes and learning through touch. In private she taught me to loosen up, move my body, shift my positioning as we played. She was so patient with me. Being young I was initially riddled with doubt about if I was good enough, over focused on getting better and not noticing our interactions in the moment enough but she helped release me from all that.


She was so supportive when I joined my first gigging band. But I was so focused on getting to know my band mates, writing and learning songs, and obsessing over gear like amps, that I was still growing in to appreciating her and her consistency. I'm embarrassed to admit that it helped me start to enjoy her looks when band mates commented positively.


The first time I hurt her was a turning point. I was a little tired during rehearsal, cramped up against the drummer in the small practice room. As I shifted I accidentally swung her and she caught the edge of a cymbal into her head. I felt so bad. I realised I did care for her far more than I realised, and I really did appreciate her looks. She's still got a mark there.


I've never hurt her like that again.


We've gone through many phases together. Different bands, genres, scenes. She's adapted and grown, as have I.


She was again supportive when I decided to take up drums. It was like she knew that even though I wouldn't be spending as much time with her, that I would become a better partner for it. She was right.


She's still an important part of my life. To break out from a bit of a rut we were in recently, I sent her on a short 'holiday'. The specialist she saw did a great job - nothing major just a really good quality setup. She's even more lithe and versatile now, peak form. We're having some great sessions together, after all these years.


I've realised that it's not just about finding The One, but knowing when you have.

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by moloque » Thu Feb 27, 2020 8:29 am

Technologear? wrote:
Wed Feb 26, 2020 9:14 pm
Bass- fender cij P lyte.


She's been around in my life since the late 90s. It was actually a friend who noticed her first. He was a bit older and wiser, did me a favour by suggesting I check her out. She didn't appeal to me at first - she felt lovely but her light body tones weren't really my thing. I was much younger and nervous then, worrying about money and what people might think of me when they saw me with her. But I trusted my friends suggestion. Most importantly, I had a feeling that I had found an opportunity for something that I didn't fully appreciate but would in the future. So I spent what was needed and we started our journey together.


The first few years were primarily tactile. Lots of practice sessions where I became lost in the moment, closing my eyes and learning through touch. In private she taught me to loosen up, move my body, shift my positioning as we played. She was so patient with me. Being young I was initially riddled with doubt about if I was good enough, over focused on getting better and not noticing our interactions in the moment enough but she helped release me from all that.


She was so supportive when I joined my first gigging band. But I was so focused on getting to know my band mates, writing and learning songs, and obsessing over gear like amps, that I was still growing in to appreciating her and her consistency. I'm embarrassed to admit that it helped me start to enjoy her looks when band mates commented positively.


The first time I hurt her was a turning point. I was a little tired during rehearsal, cramped up against the drummer in the small practice room. As I shifted I accidentally swung her and she caught the edge of a cymbal into her head. I felt so bad. I realised I did care for her far more than I realised, and I really did appreciate her looks. She's still got a mark there.


I've never hurt her like that again.


We've gone through many phases together. Different bands, genres, scenes. She's adapted and grown, as have I.


She was again supportive when I decided to take up drums. It was like she knew that even though I wouldn't be spending as much time with her, that I would become a better partner for it. She was right.


She's still an important part of my life. To break out from a bit of a rut we were in recently, I sent her on a short 'holiday'. The specialist she saw did a great job - nothing major just a really good quality setup. She's even more lithe and versatile now, peak form. We're having some great sessions together, after all these years.


I've realised that it's not just about finding The One, but knowing when you have.
Beautiful story! 8-) And good point. I think I didn't realized when I had it and now it's gone for ever :doh: :roll: :cry:

Since then the one is the one I build myself every year..

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Re: How'd you find "the one"?

Post by Boodaleechees » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:11 am

I'm flighty and restless, so I'm in the it's-a-myth camp. I played a cheapish Fender Hwy One (1? - the early version) Jazz bass for years and then promptly sold it when I no longer played in bands and was getting more into pedals and short scale basses. Pedals led to eurorack and now I have a cheapish Fender P-bass (with flats, of course). Over thirty years of bass playing there have been a few 'the ones', so, yeah, myth.
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I'm a sucker for a different kind of pickguard though.
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