Sunday, August 9, 2009

First MIJ.....

This is the very first Japanese guitar I ever got -- a flat-top Epiphone acoustic back in 1971. It wasn't my first guitar but it's the one I've currently had the longest (over 40 years).

Everyone I knew back then always referred to Epiphones as "Japanese Gibsons" never really taking into consideration that Epiphone had been an American guitar maker for a jillion years. I still play it regularly although it's gotten a little beat up over the years:

I remember at the time when I bought it, the guy at the music store making a big deal out of the three-piece back and how it made the sound better.

Detailed history (or correct history, anyway) is kinda hard to come by about a lot of older Japanese guitars. About 20 years ago, I found a book in the downtown L.A. library about Epiphones and their history with Gibson and read a little snippet about my guitar for the very first time and photocopied the page:

$300 was a lot of money for a junior high kid back in 1971. I've been through a lot with that guitar. By the time I was 17-years-old it had been around the world with me three times (and many more since then).

My "old" Epi and its ObG nephew together:

There's a lot to be said for older wood. For an acoustic that's pushing nearly 40-years-old, my Epi has a strong, sweet, golden tone--she's loud, too. These are great guitars!

And some of the rest of my favorite acoustics....