I haven’t been a guitar dealer for very long. I started buying and selling ES model guitars (and some others) as a hobby in the early days of Ebay. That was probably 1998. The first vintage guitar I bought off Ebay wasn’t even a Gibson-it was a 62 Epiphone Crestwood-cost me $550. I sold it a few months later for $1000 and decided that this might be a fun way to supplement my income as a film editor and director. For the next ten years or so, I bought and sold a few guitars every year-no more than 7 or 8 a year and started concentrating on my favorites-the ES thinlines. The problem was, I was accumulating a lot of really nice guitars. Problem, you say? Well, yeah. If you’re trying to make a few bucks, keeping the guitars you love is a bad business model and that’s what I was doing. When I decided to take the guitar dealer thing seriously (and wind down my editing business), I had to make some rules. Otherwise, I would end up with 100 guitars (and no money). So I made a rule.
Rule number one-and I don’t have a lot of rules-is DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH A GUITAR. That was me saying it very loud. And it applies to every guitar I get. And it’s not easy. There have been no less than a dozen guitars that I would love to have back but rules are rules. The blonde 59 Sheraton, the first red 59 ES-345, the red 59 Bigsby 335, the stop tail 59 355, the blonde 63 335, the 53 J-200 and at least one SG and a 69 gold top that sounded like no other guitar I’ve ever owned. Now there’s another in the house and it breaks my heart to think it’s going to go out the door. But, as I mentioned, rules are rules (keep telling yourself that). What does one do to cope with all the beauties that want to stay forever? Well, there are other vintage dealers who don’t have huge collections, but there are also plenty of dealers who do. I have no keepers. Not a one.
It’s pretty simple. I have loads of guitars in my collection and I play them all. The difference between my collection and most collections is that mine are all for sale. But I can play any guitar I want whenever I want. I always have a dot neck or two, a 64 and usually a few 345’s if I’m in the stereo mood. And there are Strats and Teles and the occasional Jazzmaster, early Epis, SGs and Les Pauls. So, I can play just about whatever I want just like the guy with the great collection. The difference is that mine keeps changing.
So, what is this guitar that’s messing up rule number one? It’s a 335 that checks off all the boxes for Charlie’s perfect guitar. Big, but no too big, neck. Blonde, of course. Nice figure that doesn’t scream too loudly (no sluts here). Thin top and shallow neck angle (I believe the shallow angle necks sound better). Well balanced PAFs and stop tail. It is simply the prettiest girl on the block…no the prettiest girl in town…no more like a super model you don’t have a prayer of dating. And not just a pretty face-a killer player with spectacular tone. Please don’t buy this guitar.