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Parlor Guitar


munchmemory
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I have been looking around at inexpensive (under $500) parlor acoustics.  Anyone own/played one you might recommend?

I have narrowed it down to the Gretsch G9511, Gretsch G5021E, Alvarez AP66, and Dean AXS.   Not looking for anything fancy, just a fun guitar to play while on the couch. 

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Yeesh .. coulda sworn that we killed those things off in a field in Bethel, NY in Aug, 1969 :)

Actually I have an Ovation Balladeer that I never used because it is  ... well ... acoustic. Can't say that I was/am ever happy with the instrument

Do you have a Sam Ash or GC nearby? They have acoustic rooms where you can play just about anything to see if it is for you

Played an open mic last night with an SG and a JS-8 e-band. went over well. Tonight I played another open mic where it was all acoustic (Played piano myself). All the other guys had nice , expensive acoustics. None of them could play at all (or sing)

let us know what you end up with. I am interested in a review

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10 hours ago, The Crimson King said:

Yeesh .. coulda sworn that we killed those things off in a field in Bethel, NY in Aug, 1969 :)

Actually I have an Ovation Balladeer that I never used because it is  ... well ... acoustic. Can't say that I was/am ever happy with the instrument

Do you have a Sam Ash or GC nearby? They have acoustic rooms where you can play just about anything to see if it is for you

Played an open mic last night with an SG and a JS-8 e-band. went over well. Tonight I played another open mic where it was all acoustic (Played piano myself). All the other guys had nice , expensive acoustics. None of them could play at all (or sing)

let us know what you end up with. I am interested in a review

Thanks for your response/thoughts.  Yeah, I have been playing a few parlor guitars at GC and a couple of local guitar shops.  Actually might buy a slightly damaged Recording King off eBay.  For $50 bucks I can get all I want out of the parlor (POS).  Right now, still favoring the Art & Lutherie.

Congrats on your gig.  Yeah, never fails that the guys who show up with killer/expensive gear usually suck.

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12 hours ago, The Crimson King said:

Actually I have an Ovation Balladeer that I never used because it is  ... well ... acoustic. Can't say that I was/am ever happy with the instrument

 

You don't want that thing lying around your house if you don't like it. It's like... a fire hazard or something. You should give it to me.  :-D 

 

2 hours ago, munchmemory said:

Yeah, never fails that the guys who show up with killer/expensive gear usually suck.

I'm not a great player by any means, but I feel like I sound a lot better when I try out expensive gear. I still suck and everything, but it's a more pleasant-sounding suck. 

I have zero experience with those parlor-sized guitars, but I've tried a few Dean acoustics in my day and never had a bad time with one. And I'm kind of a Martin homer, so I would also say you can't go wrong with anything from them. 

Also I'm in agreement with you guys that hitting the acoustic room at GC (or whatever shop is close to you) is the best way to figure things out when you're looking for a new guitar. I could spend all day messing with the acoustics at Guitar Center. It's almost as fun as annoying the staff with a few ear-splitting "May I Help You" riffs on the main floor. 

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6 hours ago, Bombdirt said:

 

You don't want that thing lying around your house if you don't like it. It's like... a fire hazard or something. You should give it to me.  :-D 

 

I'm not a great player by any means, but I feel like I sound a lot better when I try out expensive gear. I still suck and everything, but it's a more pleasant-sounding suck. 

I have zero experience with those parlor-sized guitars, but I've tried a few Dean acoustics in my day and never had a bad time with one. And I'm kind of a Martin homer, so I would also say you can't go wrong with anything from them. 

Also I'm in agreement with you guys that hitting the acoustic room at GC (or whatever shop is close to you) is the best way to figure things out when you're looking for a new guitar. I could spend all day messing with the acoustics at Guitar Center. It's almost as fun as annoying the staff with a few ear-splitting "May I Help You" riffs on the main floor. 

Thanks for your words of wisdom, Bomb.   I still get pissed every time I hear/read anything related to Martin acoustics. Had one back in the 70s until a chick I broke up with took it on her way out of my life.  Still smarts like a mudder effer.

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1 hour ago, munchmemory said:

Thanks for your words of wisdom, Bomb.   I still get pissed every time I hear/read anything related to Martin acoustics. Had one back in the 70s until a chick I broke up with took it on her way out of my life.  Still smarts like a mudder effer.

Ugh. Just reading that bums me out. I've had exes threaten to smash my guitars, and a handful have used them for their own personal clothing racks, but I've been fortunate in the bitter girlfriend category when it comes to my music stuff. 

My wife would never mess with any of my guitars out of spite. If she got that angry, she'd walk right past them and take a rusty machete to my penis while I was sleeping. I'm not sure which option is more favorable... probably not the penis one. 

Better in the long run to get the Martin-stealer out of your life but it's still a tough pill to swallow. That guitar would probably be worth a couple grand today and sound awesome. Not to bring up bad memories, but do you remember what model it was? 

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12 hours ago, Bombdirt said:

Ugh. Just reading that bums me out. I've had exes threaten to smash my guitars, and a handful have used them for their own personal clothing racks, but I've been fortunate in the bitter girlfriend category when it comes to my music stuff. 

My wife would never mess with any of my guitars out of spite. If she got that angry, she'd walk right past them and take a rusty machete to my penis while I was sleeping. I'm not sure which option is more favorable... probably not the penis one. 

Better in the long run to get the Martin-stealer out of your life but it's still a tough pill to swallow. That guitar would probably be worth a couple grand today and sound awesome. Not to bring up bad memories, but do you remember what model it was? 

illK6U.gif

 

I can't for the life of me remember the model.  It was given to me by a friend of the family back in the late 60s.

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On 8/29/2018 at 11:13 PM, The Crimson King said:

Yeesh .. coulda sworn that we killed those things off in a field in Bethel, NY in Aug, 1969 :)

Actually I have an Ovation Balladeer that I never used because it is  ... well ... acoustic. Can't say that I was/am ever happy with the instrument

Do you have a Sam Ash or GC nearby? They have acoustic rooms where you can play just about anything to see if it is for you

Played an open mic last night with an SG and a JS-8 e-band. went over well. Tonight I played another open mic where it was all acoustic (Played piano myself). All the other guys had nice , expensive acoustics. None of them could play at all (or sing)

let us know what you end up with. I am interested in a review

Ovation’s are the worst sounding accoustics, for accoustics 

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3 hours ago, HighPitch said:

Lol whats a parlor guitar? Just an acoustic?

Generally dont like em but i feel i should own one. At least for camping. The one i like is the ovation elite with the maple nech thats very slim. Could have got one on cl for 300 but ive sern em used for 500

I guess you need a camping guitar. Parlor guitars can only be played in the parlor :) 

Of course your basic VG v-guitar and GT Boss multi FX have some nice acoustic patches

The one I always wanted was a Godin nylon string with the Roland 13-pin installed

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9 minutes ago, southparkcpa said:

I bought a Seagull at a Pawn shop 2 years ago for $350.    It’s got a sticker of about 600.    VERY nice whore house guitar.  BUT I LOVE my Taylor 810.   

Props.  Big props, my friend.  That is a friggin' score.  I have had my eye on a Seagull acoustic for a while now.  Great value for the money but must folks have never heard of them.  Also owed a Norman (another Godin division) many years ago.  Had a very sweet tone.

Like the Art & Lutherie I'm looking at, Seagull is another branch of Godin Guitars.  Godin's entire operation is top notch.  Mostly all Canadian wood (which they harvest responsibly) as well as being crafted in Canada.  

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On a similar note.... Ever hear of first acts guitars ? You know the cheapest out there.... Wal mart.... For kids... The worst right

Well turns out they USED to be a very nice guitar builder. I went to check out a amp for sale and the guy had an early first act explorer. Neck through body, binding, mother of pearl. I couldnt believe it. 

I guesd they make more money selling 50000 cheapies vs 100 high enders

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6 hours ago, HighPitch said:

On a similar note.... Ever hear of first acts guitars ? You know the cheapest out there.... Wal mart.... For kids... The worst right

Well turns out they USED to be a very nice guitar builder. I went to check out a amp for sale and the guy had an early first act explorer. Neck through body, binding, mother of pearl. I couldnt believe it. 

I guesd they make more money selling 50000 cheapies vs 100 high enders

That's actually pretty interesting; I was not aware of the history with First Act stuff. I guess the quality craftsmanship versus mass production angle is a huge decision for guitar companies (and a lot of companies in general) and affects their brand recognition forever. There's immediate profit in getting your product out there to as many new guitar players as you can on the largest scale possible, but the people who stick with it and become lifelong musicians will move on to another brand once they get a bit of experience and realize what else is available. 

First Act is now the Natural Light of guitars, for better or worse. Cheers. 

54963764.jpg

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On 8/31/2018 at 8:12 AM, munchmemory said:

I can't for the life of me remember the model.  It was given to me by a friend of the family back in the late 60s.

Ah, that stings even worse. Those 60s Martins are the sh*t from what I hear. I will go full A-Team and track it down for you. And there's only like a 40 percent chance I will accidentally destroy it in an explosion. 

tumblr_oksau6mHwI1u501aoo1_400.gif

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On 8/31/2018 at 3:23 PM, HessStation said:

Ovation’s are the worst sounding accoustics, for accoustics 

I've played a few Ovations over the years and they seem to be hit and miss depending on the situation. An acoustic/electric running through a decent sound system in a mid-sized venue does pretty well from my experience. (But don't pay any attention to that statement @The Crimson King; you should remain frustrated with yours and give it to me.) :-D

The thing that I have trouble with on Ovations (and I'm sure there are some other brands which are like this as well) is with the slippery clamshell back. If you're not careful those suckers will slide right down your thigh when you're sitting down playing and make you look like a complete @sshole. My musical abilities make me look like enough of an @sshole; I don't need any additional assistance in that particular area. :-P 

8-1.jpg

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On 8/31/2018 at 7:23 PM, HighPitch said:

Lol whats a parlor guitar? Just an acoustic?

Generally dont like em but i feel i should own one. At least for camping. The one i like is the ovation elite with the maple nech thats very slim. Could have got one on cl for 300 but ive sern em used for 500

They are just what an affordable family acoustic guitar would be back in the 30s.  Most of the classic blues or folk artists played on them.  Just smaller scale (think of a Martin 0-000) and easier to pick up and play sitting on the couch or, I suppose, on a camping trip.  Neck is usually joined at the 12th fret, not the 14th.  Also not as loud as a dreadnought.

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