When I bought my fist guitar back in 2000 I chose it because my favorite color is green. It was an ugly Washburn with dual humbuckers and a rosewood neck. It sounded terrible. Not because it was a bad guitar but because I’m not a fan of humbuckers on a solid body. But that was the guitar I did most of my learning on. The foundation of my current skill set was forged by playing Smashing Pumpkins songs over and over on that ugly dissonant sounding guitar.
When I became a decent musician and knew just a tad more about guitars I went out and bought a Squier Stratocaster. This was a downgrade from my Washburn but it had two single coil pickups and came pretty close that trebbly Fender sound I loved. Eventually I became knowledgeable enough to know exactly what sound I wanted my guitar to make and I upgraded to another green guitar - a Fender Standard Strat with a maple neck.
Had I not known how to play guitar in the first place not one of those guitars would ever have sounded good. There were many times when I swore that if I had a better guitar I would be a better player. I had this crazy idea that as soon as I got that Fender I would be on stage playing for adoring crowds. But that never happened because its all about skill.
I’ve been playing guitar for almost a decade now and I finally see this issue clearly. Great songs aren’t hashed out on brand name expensive guitars, they’re created in your heart first. You can hand me a cheap beat up guitar and I’ll write a beautiful song people love on it while someone who needs their Fender 1950’s Buddy Holly Reissue to write a song will churn out crap. (more…)