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Why I don't own any vintage guitars

There's a mystique surrounding vintage electric guitars that I've never been able to fully understand. When I hold an old electric in my hands, I don't feel the magic it's supposedly imbued with.

When I see vintage, I see old and problematic. I'm thinking, "Uh-oh.. I wonder what's wrong with this thing.." because chances are several things are seriously wrong with the instrument because of age. Weird-feeling neck? Probably. Buzzy pickups? Almost a certainty. Tuners that are either really difficult to turn or have lost almost all tension and will move with barely a touch of your pinky finger? Oh, you'll definitely find that going on and a whole bunch of other crapola. Creaks here, weird noises there, crumbly parts, rust, etc.

I see nothing good about vintage electrics, save for one thing - style. Yes, I will admit openly that something like an old well-used Stratocaster does have that desirable old-world appearance to it, but that's where the goodness of one ends because everything else about the thing is busted-up crap. And even if not busted up, it's still old and uses several-decades-old (even up to a half-century or more) parts that I can't trust to be reliable.

I don't collect guitars, I play them. My guitars get used. To own an authentic vintage electric would be a step backwards because I'd probably destroy the thing just from the way I play and how often I do it.

As far as gear lust is concerned, I have none for vintage electrics and really never have. For new guitars, sure. But not for vintage.

I am more than happy to play my Squier guitars because they do the job in fine style and can handle the punishment of being used often.

If you like vintage electrics, I don't have a problem with that. What I do have a problem with is so many guitar players that say the ONLY way to get that sound out of an electric is to use old stuff only. That, summed up in a word, is nonsense.

I will admit that prior to 2000, it was tough getting that vintage sound out of new gear and I don't deny that. But these days you can get just about everything they used back in the 1950s and 1960s. Same guitars built exactly the way they used to be to precise dimensions made by the same company, same amps, same pedal effects, same everything. Heck, you can even get cloth-coated wiring for new vintage-spec guitar electronics if you wanted. It gets that period-correct specific.

My deal is that I don't see the point of owning vintage electrics other than pride of ownership and nothing else. If you own a vintage electric and are proud of it, fine. More power to you. But you know as well as I do that as a stage instrument it's complete crap.


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