As I sit here and type, I am so excited about playing the guitar tonight. I have never actually played a high quality guitar, so today has been a first. And what’s even better is that I have an entire story to go along with the purchase of my new guitar, so I’ll tell you all about it now.
Today, we had to head out to Bangor, Maine for some running around. One of the places I planned on visiting, among others, was a guitar store called Northern Kingdom Music. I have never actually been in a real guitar store before, besides the time I went to the East Coast Music Mall when I was much younger. I’m going to say that that far back doesn’t count. Anyway, today’s guitar store was really nice. It was chock full of all types of guitars and I was sort of overwhelmed. Along the back wall were all styles of electrics and along the side wall were the acoustics. I was looking for a new acoustic, so I only briefly scanned the electrics. I’ll have to save that whole thing for another day.
Over the past two months, I have been salivating over a Taylor 114e. This guitar is what’s called a Grand Auditorium and it features a more narrow body than more traditional looking guitars. The reason I was interested in this particular model so much was because of it’s “brighter” resonance. Because of the narrow center of the body, the sound really jumps out. I must have watched at least a hundred videos which really sold me on the whole idea.
The thing is, as of late, my Epiphone has been treating me pretty well. All the buzzing the strings have been doing has all but disappeared. I made a few adjustments a while back and things have been good. It still needs to be set up in the worst way, but as far as practice goes, I can’t complain too much. So basically, I really didn’t know if I was going to purchase a new guitar today, even though I had been planning on doing so for months. I think my real goal was to simply touch some and try my best at playing them. I wanted to see what was out there.
I entered the store, looked around and started talking to a very nice sales guy. After asking, he pointed me to the Taylor 110e, which is the dreadnought version of the grand auditorium (larger body, more bass). I asked him what someone who hasn’t been playing for that long does to try one of these guitars out. He told me to sit down and start playing. No one judges when it comes to guitars. So, I sat down and did just that. I played what I knew and believe it or not, I played for over 15 minutes, just with that guitar. Then, I got up and tried a different guitar and played for another 15 minutes. And then I did that again, with a different guitar. I played four guitars in all for over an hour. I completely lost track of time, but I did discover that I wasn’t a fan of the Grand Auditorium body style. I also discovered that I absolutely adore the Martin DRS2. It comes with a Dreadnought body and it sounds just perfect. After playing it in every variation I knew, I admitted to myself that I loved it and that I had to take it home with me. I was calling my name. It’s just so damn nice and so solid feeling in my hands.
There really is a difference between guitars out there and I’m happy that I got a chance to play some of them. What I thought I would like, I actually didn’t like and what I thought I didn’t want, I actually wanted. Also, guitar stores are the best. No one cares how new you are and how terribly you play. I just sat on that chair and played like I was at home. I went through some scales and played all the notes I know and then I played though all the chords I know. I did that about a dozen times on each guitar until I settled on the one that sang to me. What a fun experience.
I think what I’m most pleased with is that I now have two guitars. If one has to go into the shop for a repair, I can still play the other. Also, I’m happy to now own a real guitar. I feel like it’s somehow an investment. This one is solid wood, so there’s no laminate. It’s got great parts and hardware and I’m so pleased with it. It also came with a hard case, which is an incredible perk. I was going to get this guitar anyway, but that put me over the top.
So, if you don’t here from me for a while, it’s because I’m busy playing. Don’t worry, I’ll get tired sooner or later.