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CAN I HAVE IT BACK?...........Memories of Guitars


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                                                                             I have had MANY guitars in my life and I have fond memories of the great times i have had owning and playing them. But.................but like many of you here I have bought,sold,and traded through the years and let go of some that I remember oh so well and would love to have back If  by some magic it was available that you could have only one guitar back that you let go of which one  would it be? I have mine but alas I have no photo of it to show as it was way back in the day in the year 1969 that I had it. I had ordered a new 1969 Fender Telecaster in the "Blonde" finish from Stewart Organ and Piano located in the back of the Madison East shopping Center Mankato, MN. It took 2 weeks to get it and when it arrived the top of the guitar was stained yellow in the finish by something so I refused the guitar and they said they would send it back and get another. As I had 2 upcoming gigs to do with my band at the time,this left me with no guitar. So the sales man said hey we just got  a Gibson Les Paul in.........it's a old one,the guy's father had it and the kid bought it in to sell it to us and we bought it.We ordered another "TELE" if you want it when it comes in it's yours and you can use this Les Paul till then and if you decide you want to keep it is your's....... it's up to you. So I took the Gibson Les Paul and used it to play at a high school prom and later at a county fair. It was a really fine guitar and I decided I would keep it and pass the Tele on to another buyer when it came in.Well the Fender came in about a month later and the store called and the owner said for me to bring the "GOLDTOP" back, said he had to talk to me. I said OK but told him I was keeping it and passing on the Fender and with that he said we would talk about that when I got to the store. Turns out the Gibson Les Paul Goldtop with the  P-90 pickups I had been playing was "HOT", the story the kid had told them was B S.and he had taken it from his uncle. So I HAD to give it back,I STILL remember that guitar like it was yesterday and IF I could have ANY of my guitars back that I have owned that WOULD be the one. Here is one just like it, and no it's not the one, same condition though................no case candy but the same case.That guitar even smelled great,LOL! It was a beauty and I loved playing it!.............and at age 67 I have never forgotten it.If I could only have one back..................this guitar would be IT. dOvrn3T.jpghttps://www.williesguitars.com/product/1954-gibson-les-paul-model/ Of course it would be worth a little more money now.;)

Edited by ARM OF HAMER
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Great memories. Unfortunately, I have kept all my great guitars. And anyway started much later playing.

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7 hours ago, fractal said:

Sure, but what about the tele?

 

                                                                            Well the Fender did come in,and I took it.......................I had already paid for it so.................. and this one was fine as far as the condition.I played that guitar for several years, gave lessons, did all sorts of gigs.At the end of that second year or close to it I bought a brand new Gibson  Les Paul Custom from Trestman Music in Richfield ,Mn. so then I had 2 guitars.I sold the  Telecaster shortly there after although I would buy back several more in the years to come.I always like the look and the sound of the Telecaster but they never seemed to bond with me or me with them. That Goldtop was sooooooo nice! I hated to give it back but then I couldn't live owning a guitar that I knew was stolen from someone else.I wonder where it is now?.................no photo or serial number of the guitar...............you just didn't think about things like that back then................being a "VINTAGE" guitar,it was just a old used guitar.

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7 hours ago, gorch said:

Unfortunately, I have kept all my great guitars.

"Unfortunately"?

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The one(s) I would like to have back are the ones I had to sell under duress, which happened more than once. Such financial hassles were undeserved, but that was the reality at the time.

The decision to sell was self-imposed as I needed to contribute my fair share to household income. If I'd been able to retain them, they would have fetched even more down the line (many HFCers already know I sold the bulk of my collection about four years ago after I got on Social Security). I'd built my collection over decades in an honest and ethical manner, and to have to dispose of them because I had to (not because I wanted to) is something that others have faced as well (collections as well as individual guitars).

If I had to select one of the long-gone guitars, I suppose it would be the one that epitomized (for me) "the old guitar phenomenon", a '63 Esquire with clay dot markers. It had the original case, which contained the original ashtray and drop tag (part of which was torn off). However, what nailed it for me regarding its status was the cigarette burns on the headstock. When I encountered the instrument in a pawn shop, I took one look at those and said "Gotta have it."

Esquire.jpg

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3 hours ago, kizanski said:

"Unfortunately"?

Well, as it concerns, the one thing I have to remember is, when have I last played one or the other guitar.

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For me, it would be (in order):

- 1961 Esquire, mint, came with tags, paperwork, Polish Cloth, Ashtray still in the envelope, keys...even. Mel Bay chord book.   It changed my mind about Teles, and I’ve never played a better one.

- 1979 Standard Custom, black, bound & crowned (#0150).   Let it go WAY too cheap (as I always do) and lived to regret it constantly.

- 1991 Gibson Custom Shop Firebird VII - Frost Blue, I bought it new...traded it in on the Esquire above.   
 

1988 Hamer Californian Elite, O’Connor Marble finish.   Traded it for the Tommy Williams SS-1, which was super cool, but never bonded with it the same way.

- 1989 Fender “Mary Kaye” ‘62 Reissue Strat.   Just the most beautiful looking and playing Strat ever.

- 1989 Gibson LP “56 Reissue” Goldtop.   A feather, and just a beast all around.

There are plenty more, but those can conjure a tight lump in the throat and misty eyes...

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My 1957 Les Paul Junior would not stay in tune.  Now I know what to do about it.  As a teenager I did not.  I wish I still had it. 

The 1951 L-7C is another I wish I had kept.  If it came up for sale, and I could afford it that guitar would be mine again. 

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14 hours ago, ARM OF HAMER said:

                                                                             I have had MANY guitars in my life and I have fond memories of the great times i have had owning and playing them. But.................but like many of you here I have bought,sold,and traded through the years and let go of some that I remember oh so well and would love to have back If  by some magic it was available that you could have only one guitar back that you let go of which one  would it be? I have mine but alas I have no photo of it to show as it was way back in the day in the year 1969 that I had it. I had ordered a new 1969 Fender Telecaster in the "Blonde" finish from Stewart Organ and Piano located in the back of the Madison East shopping Center Mankato, MN. It took 2 weeks to get it and when it arrived the top of the guitar was stained yellow in the finish by something so I refused the guitar and they said they would send it back and get another. As I had 2 upcoming gigs to do with my band at the time,this left me with no guitar. So the sales man said hey we just got  a Gibson Les Paul in.........it's a old one,the guy's father had it and the kid bought it in to sell it to us and we bought it.We ordered another "TELE" if you want it when it comes in it's yours and you can use this Les Paul till then and if you decide you want to keep it is your's....... it's up to you. So I took the Gibson Les Paul and used it to play at a high school prom and later at a county fair. It was a really fine guitar and I decided I would keep it and pass the Tele on to another buyer when it came in.Well the Fender came in about a month later and the store called and the owner said for me to bring the "GOLDTOP" back, said he had to talk to me. I said OK but told him I was keeping it and passing on the Fender and with that he said we would talk about that when I got to the store. Turns out the Gibson Les Paul Goldtop with the  P-90 pickups I had been playing was "HOT", the story the kid had told them was B S.and he had taken it from his uncle. So I HAD to give it back,I STILL remember that guitar like it was yesterday and IF I could have ANY of my guitars back that I have owned that WOULD be the one. Here is one just like it, and no it's not the one, same condition though................no case candy but the same case.That guitar even smelled great,LOL! It was a beauty and I loved playing it!.............and at age 67 I have never forgotten it.If I could only have one back..................this guitar would be IT. dOvrn3T.jpghttps://www.williesguitars.com/product/1954-gibson-les-paul-model/ Of course it would be worth a little more money now.;)

I remember stopping in Stewart Organ and Piano, and the old Musicland (pre-Bestbuy) and Team Electronics store anytime we went there as a kid.  Did you ever go to the old Brown's music store at the top of Madison Ave hill?  

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Pretty much everything in this picture:

DSCN9730.JPG

'59 Les Paul Jr. TV, '58 Esquire, '59 Stratocaster, and Gene Baker '59 Burst Replica.
Each one an "it" guitar for me, so of course I would sell them all to buy a muscle car (which I would later sell to buy guitars).

DSCN9737.JPG

 

Honorable mention*:

bj1.jpg

*you suck, @The Shark

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I've only parted with 2 guitars over the years, and I only regret letting one go. The Les Paul Studio Lite (my first real guitar) is not missed. But about 18 years ago, a customer offered me his 91 SRV Strat, which was the best one I'd ever played. I scraped together the money by cashing my paycheck and nearly emptying my account on lunch break, restrung it and set it up for 11s that evening, and got a call the next morning he wanted it back and would pay me an extra $50. I felt guilty about keeping it, so I gave it back and charged him $25 to put 9s back on and adjust accordingly. Haven't found an SRV that felt and sounded that good since, but at least he kept it, and beers were on him everytime I saw him for the next year!

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3 hours ago, kizanski said:

Pretty much everything in this picture:

DSCN9730.JPG

'59 Les Paul Jr. TV, '58 Esquire, '59 Stratocaster, and Gene Baker '59 Burst Replica.
Each one an "it" guitar for me, so of course I would sell them all to buy a muscle car (which I would later sell to buy guitars).

DSCN9737.JPG

 

Honorable mention*:

bj1.jpg

*you suck, @The Shark

But I feel really healthy!

Love that slab board Strat

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Jimmy Wallace's '58 Gold Top

'61 slab board Strat coral pink

Leo's Hollywood Burst Les Paul

White Gibson Flying V w/ block inlays

'85 PRS w/ birds

Black 1980 Flying V which I reacquired decades later...

Dead mint olympic white Jazz bass 1963

This thread is making me sad, except for Kizanski's quip...

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14 minutes ago, The Shark said:

But I feel really healthy!

A fella can dream.

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43 minutes ago, The Shark said:

"A fella" and his buddy's wife...

Ideally.

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1980 Zemaitis metal front that was sold to Tom Keifer and a black butyrate Dan Armstrong one of 8 made 

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Posted (edited)
22 hours ago, kizanski said:

Pretty much everything in this picture:

DSCN9730.JPG

'59 Les Paul Jr. TV, '58 Esquire, '59 Stratocaster, and Gene Baker '59 Burst Replica.
Each one an "it" guitar for me, so of course I would sell them all to buy a muscle car (which I would later sell to buy guitars).

DSCN9737.JPG

 

Honorable mention*:

bj1.jpg

*you suck, @The Shark

  KIZ You really know how to make a grown man cry don't you? Those are some fantastic guitars! I know it was tough to let those go.......................wait Gene Baker Built the 'BURST?................what is the story on that guitar if you don't mind sharing,sure looks cool!

Edited by ARM OF HAMER
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19 hours ago, Carl.B said:

I remember stopping in Stewart Organ and Piano, and the old Musicland (pre-Bestbuy) and Team Electronics store anytime we went there as a kid.  Did you ever go to the old Brown's music store at the top of Madison Ave hill?  

                          Yeah Carl I used to buy many records and CDs at Musikland,and Team I remember walking by one day and right out in front of the store was a great stereo system playing Roy Buchanan's first album..................later Papa John Creach who played with the Jefferson Starship/Airplane.Yeah they had some great guitars at Stewart O&P, the store was back by the Caledonia Lounge,and they had some great bands there.And yes I remember Brown's as well, I still go over to Rhapsody Music, I was just there yesterday.....................Howard has owned that business forever.............Sanda Lee and The Velvets was his band.

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1 hour ago, ARM OF HAMER said:

...wait Gene Baker Built the 'BURST?................what is the story on that guitar if you don;t mind sharing,sure looks cool!

Not much of a story, really. 
Somewhere around 2002/2003 Gene and company built about a few '59 Burst replicas on the down low. they're often referred to as "Keeblers," since Gene was elf-sized.

This guitar was light, beautiful, and it played as you would dream your Les Paul would play, so of course I would sell it to fund something else.

BURSTREPLICA8.JPG

DSCN8255.JPG

keeb2.jpg

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Just now, crunchee said:

I don't miss anything that I've gotten rid of in the past, I only miss the money I didn't make when prices/values went up afterward.  ;) :lol:

That's because you're dead inside.

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I've sold a lot of guitars I regret. However, I valued form over function; now, it's the other way around.

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