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Guys who own stupid expensive and stupid cheap guitars at the same time


I used to think these guys were weird, but I understand why they do this.

Above is a Fender Eric Clapton Stratocaster in Torino Red. Not cheap. But that doesn't stop guys from buying it, as it is one of the better Artist models from fender. I personally think the Eric Johnson model is the better guitar, but that's just my preference.

What's more interesting is what some guys do after they buy that really expensive guitar.

Before getting into that, yes I have owned some expensive ritzy guitars. I parted with all of them because none ever really worked out. At this point in my guitar playing life, I go with cheap vintage or cheap new. In addition to that, I've been around some seriously expensive stuff. I did attend a NAMM show and saw the best of the best new guitars, and have also seen the best of the best vintage as well.

The only thing I've not seen nor experienced at this point is a from-scratch built guitar. And by that I mean one guy, with his own shop, that builds every single part of the guitar. For the wood parts, that is. This is the guy who fabricates the body and neck from blanks and does it all himself. That's the only type of electric guitar I've yet to experience.

Now as for the guys who buy the ridiculously expensive guitars, it is interesting and sometimes almost funny that they will also own something ridiculously dirt cheap, like a Grote. Sure, the guy may have a $2,000 Stratocaster or a $4,000 Les Paul. But literally right next to it in his collection are one or more insanely cheap guitars, none of which are worth more than $200 at most.

Is this guitar player's remorse? No. That kind of remorse happens when you buy something really expensive and then realize it was a mistake. These guys kept their expensive guitars.

The urge to go dirt cheap is for a different reason entirely.

Okay, so the guy bought his dream guitar. It was really expensive, but he finally got it. The top of the mountain was reached.

After reaching that peak, there's only one way to go. Down.

The funny part is this: Now there's a new goal. How far down can one go?

This is when that guy who owns the really expensive guitar will buy something really cheap. Something he can just bang around, maybe switch out the electronics, maybe try some woodworking with it, and so on. He's certainly not going to modify his expensive guitar, but for something under $200? Sure.

Remember that dirt cheap guitar I said some people buy in threes? It would not surprise me at all if some of those buyers were people that already owned a guitar worth over $2,000.

It's fun to finally get that dream guitar. But it's also fun to mod cheap guitars. The goal in both instances is to keep having fun, and that's why some guys own both the expensive and dirt cheap stuff at the same time.

There's also a secondary goal, which is to have a guitar they can actually use instead of just sit there and look pretty. All expensive guitars are ultimately white elephants. Nice to own, very pretty, but useless as a gigging guitar because the stupid thing is just too valuable. The expensive guitar is totally a "pride of ownership" thing more than anything else, so having a cheap guitar for gigging or taking to a friend's place for a jam is less stressful, to say the least.

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