Is An SG A Gorgeous Guitar?

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by NMA, Jan 30, 2020.

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  1. donepearce

    donepearce Well-Known Member

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    I agree about the Mustang - it is not a good looking car. Not keen on Paltrow's looks either - she looks hard-faced.
     
  2. NMA

    NMA Well-Known Member

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    Nah, up until '74 the Mustang was the best looking car on Earth.

    And Ms. Paltrow is pretty darn hot. Yes, I have heard the horror stories about her personality, but that doesn't take away from her physical beauty.
     
  3. fos1

    fos1 Active Member

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    Back in the 70s when I went to Paula's Music, i didn't know which guitar I would purchase. Paula's was a large store at the time and had an excellent selection of guitars.

    After looking for quite some time, I found a cherry red Gibson SG. It was the best looking guitar in the store. Cherry red SGs are still the most beautiful guitar on the market!

    fos1
     
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  4. PixMix

    PixMix Well-Known Member

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    So this is exactly why the saying de gustibus non disputandum est exists. It's truly a matter of taste, 100% subjective preferences.

    Ricks are proven to be quality instruments, recorded on many legendary tracks, but here we are - talking aesthetics. Having said that, I think I would rock this one, especially if it had a darker fretboard.

    [​IMG]
     
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  5. gball

    gball Well-Known Member

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    I did mention that I don't like the way the play or sound either...just sayin'
     
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  6. PixMix

    PixMix Well-Known Member

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    I have never held one on my hands.
     
  7. Weaselcoon

    Weaselcoon New Member

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    It took me a little over 20 years of guitar picking to appreciate the understated and often overlooked elegance of the SG.
     
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  8. gball

    gball Well-Known Member

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    The necks feel like a chopstick to me.
     
  9. PermissionToLand

    PermissionToLand Well-Known Member

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    Not graphic. Industrial design. Which refers to physical products like automobiles, sneakers and yes, guitars.

    If not for people with finely tuned design sensibilities like Ted McCarty, Larry Allers, Bill Mitchell, Larry Shinoda, Giorgetto Giugiaro and so on, you would not have such timeless designs as the Les Paul, SG, Stingray Corvette, Lotus Esprit, and so on. I always find it remarkable that laymen insist there is no such thing as expertise in design because any liberal art is inherently subjective. If that were the case, there would be no consensus on remarkably ugly cars like the Pontiac Aztek or gorgeous ones like the Jaguar E-Type.

    Also, you started a thread about guitar design, and now you're balking at the suggestion that somebody brought up principles of aesthetic design? That's like starting a thread asking what is the best bridge design for transmitting energy and protesting when an acoustic engineer comes in and opines.

    You don't need training to like a design, sure. But it equips you with the tools and knowledge to look at design with a more critical eye. You begin to notice details that you didn't before, and more importantly, how they work together visually. Take something like a car; simply widening the headlights does not only affect how the headlights look. It also reduces the space around them so that those surfaces look narrower now, and across the entirety of the front fascia, it visually widens the design because, generally speaking, horizontal elements widen and vertical elements narrow.

    The side vents are not abstract shapes though. I assume you meant arbitrary, but they are not arbitrary either. They bookmark a character line that defines the side profile, breaks up the empty space without cluttering it and slims the physique by allowing the waist to taper in. They also mirror the shape of the quarter window directly above them and generally sit at the angle of the wheel cutout.

    [​IMG]

    The body is also not out of proportion. In fact, a long hood and short deck is near universally considered the proportions to strive for in automotive design.

    Your point is that an entire field of professional career and study is useless? Again, I find it amusing the hubris with which people will insist their opinions are just as valid as an expert's when it comes to anything remotely involving liberal arts, but would never try to tell an electrical engineer their opinion on wiring a circuit is invalid because "let's not bring a field of study into electronics". It's a classic Dunning Kruger effect; you don't know what you don't know. Saying "don't bring a field of study into looks" is simply saying "don't think critically about this subject".

    This is an absurd strawman, and I think you know it. You cannot speak for designers (hell, I am one and I have not attempted to claim my opinions reflect those of all designers, I have simply offered my observations. Again, the hubris...).

    There is no such thing as perfect design. But as soon as you make a decision that you find her attractive, you have made a critical assessment of the aesthetics of her face. That is exactly what designers do; critical assessment of aesthetics. It is one thing to say someone is being too critical and offer counter arguments to the specific criticisms they offer. It is another thing entirely to just hand wave away any and all criticism whatsoever.

    It's also funny that you would make that particular strawman when I started my first reply with the qualification that imperfections can in fact be charming in a quirky way. It's almost like you weren't really engaging with anything I said at all...
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2020
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  10. Von Trapp

    Von Trapp Active Member

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    No, I certainly don't believe that because that is in no where even near what I said. But if you insist, I have a candy apple Diablo and in my humble opinion there simply is not a more beautiful guitar in the whole world, which is why I got it.
     
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  11. NMA

    NMA Well-Known Member

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    Yes.

    Useless in regards to guitars...rock and roll guitars. Look, if you were constructing a new guitar, then perhaps one's "entire field of professional career and study" would come in handy.

    But if I am simply buying a guitar, exactly how does one's field of study (your field of study) enter into that decision? Are you aware that the majority (I'd say 99.999%) of people that buy guitars do not have a PhD in industrial design. So, yes, you are correct when you point out that I feel "an entire field of professional career and study" is useless. It is useless. Useless to those who buy guitars (other than you and your work colleagues who might buy guitars).

    As I pointed out, it's only rock and roll. We buy our guitars due to a combination of these four reasons:
    - the tone
    - the cost
    - which players played them
    - the looks
    That last one, the looks, is purely subjecticve. You are applying absolutes to that category. You are using your field of study to make claims such as the body is too wide. Well, I say it's not wide enough. One doesn't need a degree in design to come to that conclusion. It's just the way I see it.

    By the way, though I didn't agree with one word of your post, I enjoyed reading it.

    And, don't get me wrong, I do feel there are absolutes when it comes to beauty. Gwyneth Paltrow, the 1968 Shelby GT500 Mustang, the Eiger, the Rickenbacker 381v69 featuring the German Carve in a FireGlo finish:

    [​IMG]
     
  12. papagayo

    papagayo Well-Known Member

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    My new 2000 SG Ltd Edition is gorgeous , that is what my friends say.


    [​IMG]


    Gorgeous SG Supreme


    [​IMG]

    SG Select


    [​IMG]
     
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  13. pancake81

    pancake81 Well-Known Member

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    Well I feel like we are getting a little heated here, although still functioning at a level with respect.

    This is meant to be for a laugh, so take it with a grain of salt. But For me, when I see an SG... I see this

    [​IMG]

    And when I see a Rickenbacker, i see this.

    [​IMG]

    As it’s been mentioned so many times. Aesthetics are personal. Maybe you see what I am talking about, maybe you don’t...

    *in all fairness I could have been a lot ruder with the photos*
     
  14. arcticsg

    arcticsg Well-Known Member

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    :lol::rofl:[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
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  15. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    all right you guys...

    I'll mention something here that no one else has: (I like to do that)

    Listen: We have a lot more in common than we differ.

    I read all the posts here so far, and in the spirit of fun.
    Because that was the original idea anyway. The OP said so.
    Me, I'm a guitar slut, so I like them all. *grins

    So yes, SGs are Gorgie-ohso... that's just a fact.
    And they've been in constant production since Kennedy was president.
    Debby Harry & SG.jpg
    Famous people seem to like them fine...

    If we didn't think SGs were gorgeous we wouldn't hang out here.
    If lots of other players didn't think so, they would have been discontinued ...
    so Gibson could sell more expensive Les Pauls that sound much the same. *don't get us started on that topic

    Anyway, the Gibson SG was a unique design from the beginning.
    SGs are NOT Les Pauls, even the ones that have a decal pasted on
    them that says so. SGs have a unique tone, or some of them do.
    (mine do, of course)
    IMG_1097@100.jpg
    There's really nothing else like it... oh some copies, like the viper etc...
    But there ain't nothin' like the real thing, baby... Epiphone SGs do very
    well in their own arena. And there's a place in the world for the workingman's guitar. Which is what I have above. It's the opposite of an
    over decorated and overpriced electric guitar of any kind.

    And there's a place in the world for that.

    There's something about my SGs that transcend all the "nuts and bolts"
    jargon fueled descriptions. There's the way it makes me feel.
    luna 12-24-17@100.jpg
    Body Upper Bout@100.jpg
    And that is so subjective that many of us can't even express it in words.
    Look at these curves, man there's nothing else like it.
    We can express it in music, no matter what skill level we have achieved.
    April 17 top@100.jpg
    April 2017@100.jpg
    And that's the way it should be. These two remarkable guitars have effected me a lot deeper than I expected. But I was instantly attracted to each of them for reasons I can't fully explain. I'll just tell you the
    feeling is powerful. And when I can translate THAT into music, I'm
    doing what the designers surely HOPED the player could do. And I'm
    doing what I was hoping I could when I pulled out my MasterCard and
    paid for each SG.

    That's the way I feel, anyway. But I'm still a guitar slut, so I have
    other guitars I play, and they all make me feel something very deeply.
    What it is... that's hard to put in words. But it's real, and it's very
    powerful. Talkin' bout the Fender Bass now... More than a feeling...
    The Fender bass has got the bottom line.
    onstage2012.jpg
    We could have the same conversation about the 'good ol' Telecaster,"
    In production since Truman was President... like 1951. And still making
    great music in modern times. It might be hard to define a more
    perfect guitar than the SG, or the Telecaster.
    10 onstage01-05-13@100.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2020
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  16. donepearce

    donepearce Well-Known Member

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    We have a different aesthetic this side of the pond.
     
  17. donepearce

    donepearce Well-Known Member

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    Not universal at all - that is a very parochial thing to say. I understand that this has for a long time been an American aestheitc, but here in Europe (damn, I can't say that any more) it simply isn't. It looks ridiculous and mis-proportioned. I live in London, so my car is chosen to fit our busy streets and make getting from one place to another. My recent cars have been an Audi RS4, a Porsche Carrera4, and a Ford focus. All great looking cars, and none featuring a long deck. My current London car is this

    abarth.jpg

    It fits through London gaps like no other car, goes like a scalded cat (had it chipped to 200BHP) and makes me grin every time I drive it.
     
  18. brazilnut

    brazilnut Well-Known Member

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    I think mine's pretty damn gorgeous.... IMG_9271.JPG
     
  19. Joncaster

    Joncaster Member

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    I never found them gorgeous until I found mine,
    but before that I started seeing the striking beauty of them when the guitarist for a band I was in played one.
    He had a way of holding it, just the right height on the strap, made me look at them in a way I hadn't before (Tele player for years).
    So when I picked up the one I have now, I was just going through the new arrivals, just checking it out.

    What gets me about them now (now that I fully appreciate the form), is the way the neck and body join, the balance in your hand.
    Something about the thin body and bevels is very sexy, with a long neck...it's not squat or chunky like a les paul can feel, not block-ey or stout like a Tele.

    I've come to realise too that a lot of the magic in Gibsons is the neck/body and neck/headstock angles.
    They make it seem like the whole thing is a taut bridge, a knife-edge balance.
    The SG brings out that quality of fulcrum vs springiness, more than other designs.

    It's often the butt of jokes, but that almost instable design, the angles and fragility, lend to it being an intrigue.
     
  20. Von Trapp

    Von Trapp Active Member

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    I have to say even though it's an opinion thread it has some interesting points from all sides which I enjoyed. One thing that struck me is that if you check against the deign maxim "Form follows function" then the SG is the only guitar in the Gibson line following this. That's not to say that a for instance a V isn't kickass. but for FFF, it's SG by a mile against any of the others.
     
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