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I hate "signature" and "artist" models... of everything!
Old 14th June 2006
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Tibbon's Avatar
I hate "signature" and "artist" models... of everything!

Just a little rant. I REALLY hate signature and artist models of just about everything out there. I am SO glad that we don't have George Massenburg U87's out there and similar bull**** for recording, but yet instruments like that abound! John5 Telecaster... only 400 bucks! Tony Levin OLP bass! Jimi Hendrix Strat! Brian May AC30! Eddie Van Halen Phase 90, etc...

What it comes down to is a few things

1) The gear that they sell you is rarely anything like what the actual artists play. Tony Levin's OLP bass, while he HAS quoted that he likes it a bit, I am certain isn't just your off the shelf one that he got at Guitar Center. The cheapo John5 Tele isn't anything that he plays. He's got like 50 guitars or more. You can get the Custom Shop one for a few grand, but I'm sure even that one isn't the same one he plays.

From what I have seen the guitars that artists actually play are normally not at all like the ones that they sell with their names on it at the store. If it's their live ax then they have all sorts of weird stuff done to it at times to make it work better live for them (extra shielding, some odd setup for a specific tuning on that song, whatever).

Some of them are NEVER used by the artist. How many Jimmy Page les pauls have there been? I think Jimmy for the most part is going to keep using his real vintage ones thank you.

I know some artists NEVER AT ALL used their 'signature' guitars. Kurt Cobain NEVER used that piece of crap Jag-stang at a single show, practice or recording. It's a piece of ****. The custom guitar he had made was nothing like it.

Brian May didn't use a AC30 "Brian May One Knob edition" to get his sound. He built something to make it happen!


2) The artists' preferences are theirs, and the chances that even if musically they line up with the consumers... they might not line up playing wise. The exact setup on a guitar, and the overall voicing of the guitar, pickups, etc... seems to be a player oriented thing... not a style oriented thing. No one would guess that my guitar is mainly used for art rock and industrial stuff, but it is and it works great because it works that way in MY hands. In another person's hands it would not do the same likely.

3) The guitars that the artists are thought of as using are just normally standard production guitars that have been played heavily by them, or slightly modified. They aren't anything that you can do to that guitar anyway! Want a "real" hendrix strat? Get a 1967 strat, flip it, restring it, etc... and learn to play leftie. You don't need a 'special model' to get the sound.

4) They are just normally a waste of money. If you want a customized guitar, then buy a guitar and do some work to it!

5) Only applies to some things, but for example there are some 'special edition' MXR pedals out there for artists. The artists didn't have 'special editions' to make that sound. They simply used the pedal and got the sound. No special edition about it. Maybe they changed out a resistor. Nothing you can't do.


Anyway enough ranting. The ONLY piece of signature gear that is amazing(which I only call it because it has a signature on it) is the Moog Voyager Signature and that's because it has the late Bob Moog's signature on it (may he ever rest in peace).
Old 14th June 2006
  #2
Lives for gear
 
pingu's Avatar
 

Beleive me when i say i hate everything.
Old 14th June 2006
  #3
Gear Guru
 

more good signature gear:

Steve Gadd and Peter Erskine signature model drumsticks

excellent sticks, no pricier than other sticks and I believe the artists actually do use them.

Even if they don't, I do.
Old 14th June 2006
  #4
Lives for gear
 
5down1up's Avatar
 

if i look at those signature models ( guitars, basses etc. ) ...

i am NEVER gonna buy one fuuck

but looks like people are still hot for names ? could never figure that one out.

they are all just out of flesh & blood ? right ?
Old 14th June 2006
  #5
Motown legend
 
Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 

My cousin works for one of the top motorcycle drag racers. She told me that the only thing on his bike made by the major manufacturer who sponsors him is a decal. The same is true of some guitars.
Old 14th June 2006
  #6
Gear Addict
 

Are we talking about all those rock bands who mic their tiny vox amp, send the signal
straight to the PA system, then surround themselves with towers of empty Marshall Amp Cabinets?

Old 15th June 2006
  #7
Lives for gear
 
XSergeantD's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobR
Are we talking about all those rock bands who mic their tiny vox amp, send the signal
straight to the PA system, then surround themselves with towers of empty Marshall Amp Cabinets?

But isn't that called a stage show
Old 15th June 2006
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Tibbon's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobR
Are we talking about all those rock bands who mic their tiny vox amp, send the signal
straight to the PA system, then surround themselves with towers of empty Marshall Amp Cabinets?

Reminds me of a Gig where I guitar tech'd for a friend. They were opening for David Lee Roth (what a hoot). Anyway, DLR's guitar setup was 10x as large, still cost 1/2 as much, and was mostly empty cabs. I think there were two live cabs per guitarist on stage, one for main use and one for backup. the other 8 per guitar player were all empty. Moreso they were driven by 5150 heads (not my favorite) and some really cheap digitech (or some other ****ty) delay processor.

Meanwhile, we had a Vox AC30HW, a Germino rockgrinder, about 5 vintage guitars, and a pedalboard that made the guitar tech drool. Hell, some of our pedals cost nearly what the 5150 head did.

Anyway, I think they were used to opening bands with really ****ty equipment, so after the show ended, they were just rushing the stuff offstage in a totally careless manner. Really ****ing sucked that they were being so careless and pushy with out equipment.


Anyways, I'd rather do as Peter Gabriel did on his last tour, and have a fairly clean stage with NO amps on it!
Old 15th June 2006
  #9
Lives for gear
 

Music Man manufactured a VH sig guitar before Peavy bought Eddie for themselves. It's a fantastic guitar, and lives on now sans EV logo as the Axis Super Sport.

The Ibanez JS model is also a fantastic playing guitar, and identical to Satch's own axe. He also uses the stock JS amp live.

Yamaha makes a killer Billy Sheehan bass. It's afordable, plays like a shred bass should, and is the same exact model that Sheehan uses as his main axe.

Warr makes a Trey Gunn signature tap guitar that plays and sounds amazing. It is priced no more than the non signature custom stuff.

Anyway, no, I wouldn't buy a sig piece myself simply because as a musician, I am trying to be original , but there are a few artists and companies with enough integrity to at least make a quality, no BS sig instrument.
Old 15th June 2006
  #10
Lives for gear
 
ajfarber's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq
more good signature gear:

Steve Gadd and Peter Erskine signature model drumsticks

excellent sticks, no pricier than other sticks and I believe the artists actually do use them.

Even if they don't, I do.
Newsflash: Elvin Jones no longer using signature stcks!
Old 15th June 2006
  #11
Gear Nut
 
Diskordia's Avatar
 

Stephen Perkins threw my friend one of his sticks that had his signature on it. pretty coolheh

its just a stick
Old 15th June 2006
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
Ben Walters's Avatar
 

The Taylor Leo Kottke signature is the best 12 string acoustic I've ever played. And he plays them quite a bit too.
Old 15th June 2006
  #13
Lives for gear
 
TheReal7's Avatar
 

All this signature crap is geared towards the armature beginner. They all want to look and sound like their heroes. Once they grow up, mature and develop their own style. All the signature stuff they bought is thrown out the window. How many major artists out there use someone else's Sig model?

A few exceptions to the rule for sig models being used by who they made for would be:

Steve Vai
Joe Satrianni
John Petrucci
Dimebag Darrel (rip)
Lars Ulrich

Me ( hopefully someday )


to name a few.
Old 16th June 2006
  #14
Lives for gear
 
cramseur's Avatar
I have to admit that I bought a Gary Moore Les Paul, but at the time had NO IDEA who Gary Moore was! I just happened to like THAT particular guitar's sound

(I think it was the first one with the Burstbuckers and had one reverse wound).

Other than that I agree totally. I really don't give a cr*p about artist endorsements.
Old 18th June 2006
  #15
Here for the gear
 
AnimalChin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq
more good signature gear:

Steve Gadd and Peter Erskine signature model drumsticks

excellent sticks, no pricier than other sticks and I believe the artists actually do use them.

Even if they don't, I do.

Hells yes on the Erskine sticks...such a nice bounce..and he does use them.
Old 20th June 2006
  #16
Lives for gear
 
Meriphew's Avatar
 

Les Paul?
Old 20th June 2006
  #17
Lives for gear
 
doorknocker's Avatar
Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Meriphew
Les Paul?
Yeah, that's what I was just going to say.


My fave signature models:

-The Jaco Pastorius Fender Custom Shop Bass where they measured and recreated every surplus screwhole on Jaco's bass and naturally it goes without saying that the bass came without a pickguard.

-The Signature Edition of Willie Nelson's gut-string Martin where they RECONSTRUCTED the cracked top/hole.
Old 22nd June 2006
  #18
Gear Nut
 

I agree, the one ubiquitous signature model I get tired of seeing is the Gibson Les Paul...
Old 22nd June 2006
  #19
Gear Addict
 

What about a Tibbon Signature Model electric made by (insert your favorite guitar company here) ?
Old 22nd June 2006
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheReal7
All this signature crap is geared towards the armature beginner.
Not sure what an armature musician is, but most of of the signature stuff is designed for one thing and one thing only - to sell product.

If it didn't work, you wouldn't see so much of it out there.

When Eventide did the H3000-S Steve Vai Ultra-Harmonizer, it was with Steve's full involvement. He locked himself up for 3 days with just his JEM 777 and his beta H3000, and sent us DAT tapes with hours of material, and a slew of presets which we incorporated into the S model.

When he toured, he brought out the fully-loaded H3500 DFX model with his presets in it, because he wanted everything Eventide had to offer in one unit. But that doesn't mean the H3000-S model was any less a Steve Vai model.

I had a customer call me up a few months after the H3000-S started shipping. He said "I don't get it - I bought the Ibanes JEM 777, got the Bradshaw rack and switching system, picked up an H3000-S and a Marshall JCM 800 and the other stuff Steve uses - but I *still* don't sound like Steve Vai. What am I doing wrong?"

'Well, let's see - try 4 years at Berklee, 3 years with Zappa, fill Yngwie Malmsteen's shoes in Alcatrazz, put in 3 years with David Lee Roth, and try a stint with PiL and Whitesnake and maybe you'll get there... of course, you could always try for your own sound...'

He hung up, extremely disappointed and decidedly lighter in the wallet.

Point being, there are some folks who have their idols and rush to emulate them.
Ask any guitar teacher - they'll tell you of the hordes of students coming in who just want to learn a certain lick - in my day it was Van Halen and Judas Priest (usually "Eruption" and "Hellion/Electric Eye") - instead of learning the basics of playing the entire instrument. I see no difference between that behavior and buying "signature" models.

I still have my original 1973 P-Bass and the only signature I care to have on it is Leo Fender's.

-gil
Old 24th June 2006
  #21
Lives for gear
 
Tibbon's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2012
What about a Tibbon Signature Model electric made by (insert your favorite guitar company here) ?
Oh, you should see my guitar... it's nothing like the original model. I'd hate to see the price point that Fender would have to put it at with all the work that's gone into it.

Maybe if I was famous they'd come to me and ask if they could market my guitar and amp (which is pretty unique in it's own weird way). I would probably turn them down, until I saw the check (and maybe even then).
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