I am a Fender instruments player and a really big fan of all their musical equipment. But I must say that I’ve been truly disappointed with Fender jacking up their prices resulting in a huge price increase. Don’t get me wrong, I think any company is fully within their rights to charge what the market is willing to bear. I also think it’s fully within the rights of the consumer to shop around for the best deals.
As you know, I primarily play my Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster’s in my live band. I also own a Gibson Les Paul Custom which I used to play in my live band until they jacked the price up so high I knew I could never replace it if it was stolen or damaged. Now it sits safely in it’s case, un-played and increasing in value which I think is a complete waste of a beautiful guitar. I also have a Gibson Les Paul BFG that is a fun instrument to play but still doesn’t see a lot of stage time. It’s just a little too poorly constructed to stand up well to the rigors of regular live use.
Still with Fender putting the markup on their best Stratocaster’s so high, I’ve been looking into Gibson again. While checking the current deals at Musician’s Friend I ran across their add banner that Gibson has reduced prices on their American made guitars. So naturally, I checked into it. (Here’s the banner for you to check out)
As it turns out, you can save a bundle of money on a Gibson Les Paul Studio or a Gibson SG guitar. They’re both American made and possess the legendary Gibson sound that they’re famous for. Now for why they’re so affordable, the finish is crap! The best deals are on the “Faded” finish or as I like to call it, the “half-can of spray paint” finish.
Before you think that I feel like the faded finish is a bad thing, I really don’t. Because these guitars are intended to be working guitars. They’re meant to be played live in your band. A finish is just going to get beat to hell with regular live playing use so why not start out with a more affordable finish? That’s why I’m recommending these guitars as potential candidates to become your onstage, working guitar. They’re both definitely worth a look.