An SG for JAZZ?

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by shamu1, Apr 14, 2013.

  1. shamu1

    shamu1 Active Member

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    I love the looks and feel of an SG, but I have very little interest in playing rock music or heavy metal, and the SG is typically known as a rock guitar. Right now I'm in the market for a Les Paul, but I see an SG in my future too.

    I'm a jazz fan, and I'm learning to play jazz guitar. Do any of you guys play jazz with an SG? How would you compare it to playing jazz with an archtop or hollow body?
     
  2. BlackSG91

    BlackSG91 Well-Known Member

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    I'm no jazz scholar, but I have dabbled in jazz quite a few times in my 25 years playing experience. An SG is perfect for jazz and I don't see any reason why not. I guess most people associate the SG with Angus Young of AC/DC and the whole rock thing which I find to be getting quite cliche. An SG is versatile in all genres of music. It also depends on the type of pickups you have in your SG as with any guitar. There are so many variety of pickups these days that you can install in your SG for the right sound you are looking for. Usually '57 Classics are the benchmark for SG pickups and seem to be the most popular. I have 490R/490T in my SG and they work great. The 490R makes a great sounding jazz pickup IMO. There's is another member on this forum, dbb, who can tell you all about jazz on an SG. He's our resident jazz expert! You can say he is a jazz enthusiast. ;) Here's a jazz clip on an SG. Hopefully this will enlighten you.:wave:

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c-ZUsPdFsZ0]Anthony John plays Jazz guitar - YouTube[/ame]
     
  3. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    An SG is an ideal jazz guitar; I have used several over the decades.

    Currently I have two SG copies, one with 57/57+ pickups, one with P90's. The P90's are great but the 57's are really great fat and thick and sound killer for all styles of jazz.

    Frankly I'd skip the Les Paul and go right to the SG. Better weight and neck access.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/DBB90

    I have several clips with SG jazz.

    http://www.everythingsg.com/forum/j...9-live-performance-57-humbuckers-sg-copy.html

    http://www.everythingsg.com/forum/j...9934-another-new-video-same-gig-last-one.html

    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.329834463719001.66202.118049998230783&type=3

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    +1 on that. I don't play jazz styles, but I like to hear it. Most of my performing these days is in Folk venues, and I really enjoy using my SG for that, played through a small amp at relatively low gain and volume. So Jazz tone makes a lot of sense to me and the audience likes it. So I play mostly clean and sweet, and use an overdrive pedal to let my SG get rude, for contrast.

    The SG does everything I ask it to. That seems to be the consensus on these boards. A friend of mine who plays in another duo in the same circuit uses a Telecaster the same way. He's a 'no pedals/plug straight in' kind of guy who makes his stand with a Telecaster and a Fender Pro Junior, and gets all his tones with pick attack and working his little finger on the volume knob.

    I've been corrupting him with my judicious use of pedals, and he recently bought a Vox VT-20+... He still plays clean clean clean but has a lot more arrows in his quiver using that. I respect this guy a lot, his name is Rod Capps.

    Anyway, I think you should play around for an afternoon at a guitar store and make up your own mind, which you will do anyway of course. Taking nothing away from traditional Jazz instruments like the Les Paul and the ES-335, I think playing Jazz styles on an SG makes a bold statement. The guitar can certainly do the job without fuss. For you it's only a question of preference.
     
  5. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    Col Mustard mentions his buddy with the Tele - that is the one of the "other" guitars I use for jazz that are not commonly called jazz guitars, that and a Peavey Strat copy.

    The Tele has a P90 in the neck, it makes a big difference in the jazz tone; the Peavey has Fender CS pickups.

    I do also have the typical jazz hollowbody guitars, but the SG and Tele are great fun for jazz gigs.

    Any of the Epi's mentioned would be great, it depends on what you like best. I am partial to their 335 type models.
     
  6. merkaba22

    merkaba22 New Member

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    I prefer an ebony fretboard for jazz myself and if you look there have been many variants that came that way -- some with 22 or 24 fret boards, some with 24.75" scale length and, less often, some with 25.5" scale lengths, the later scale length of which I also associate to jazz guitars, in general.
     
  7. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    A lot of the archtops had longer scales than 25 inches.
     
  8. weemac

    weemac Active Member

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    I've used my sg juniors plenty of times over the years for jazz. They seem to work fine!
    As they say its more in the fingers than the guitar...

    Eden.
     
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  9. Angry Tele

    Angry Tele Member

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    having an SG is the last thing keeping me from playing jazz. :dunno:

    hell I have 5 teles and I can barely play country.
     
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  10. sgtbeefheart

    sgtbeefheart Well-Known Member

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    A guitar is a guitar is a guitar.

    It's been known for people to play Jazz on a guitar.
     
  11. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    Admittedly so - but there are certain guitars that are associated with specific styles of music. SG's seem to be "rock" guitars, like a big hollowbody is a "jazzbox".
     
  12. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    I've even been known to play jazz on a ukulele .
     
  13. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    Are they differently appointed ?
     
  14. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    You're not alone - I do too, and it turns out what was considered "hot" uke playing was playing swing on the uke a la Lyle Mays.
     
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  15. Angry Tele

    Angry Tele Member

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    my teles? yeah I try to cover all the bases, although they mostly all overlap

    52RI=blackguard era (fred stuart blackguard pickups/ash body-maple board)
    CIJ Micawbre=early Broadcaster era (rumpelstiltskin 1950 pickups/ash-maple)
    Squier CVC=late 50s early 60s era aka Bakersfield (Fralin Stock pickups/alder-rosewood)
    MIM 60s=60s era ala Steve Cropper (Novak Stock pickups/alder-rosewood)
    Flatline Delta90=modern country era (Lollar p90 in the bridge, no neck pickup/alder-maple cap neck)
     
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  16. sgtbeefheart

    sgtbeefheart Well-Known Member

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    You may like this,

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKpk9SO7iLM]Definitive Jazz Ukulele!! - Abe Lagrimas Jr. - Autumn Leaves - YouTube[/ame]
     
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  17. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    I should have guessed...Autumn Leaves!

    Way cool!

    I like his style....
     
  18. old mark

    old mark Active Member

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    A big mistake many people make regarding the SG - that is is somehow a limited use guitar, suitable for a few types of music and nothing else.

    I have heard SG's being played in every style imaginable, and some I never imagined at all, and it handles them all very well, and I have no doubt there are still more styles out there it will be just fine with.

    The SG is a very good, versatile and extremely accessible PLAYER's guitar, with a huge tonal variety and great "feel".

    I never liked them for years without ever bothering to play one.

    As of yesterday, I own 2 1999 SG Specials, both black.

    I also have a big ol' "jazz" guitar. I play Scotty Moore style early rock & roll on it...at least I try to...Scotty is hard to cut.

    mark
     
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  19. 11ztwelve

    11ztwelve Active Member

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    Light, slim guitars with arguably better fret access than anything else out there. Why not? It's a guitar---play it
     
  20. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, Mark, Scotty Moore had that Travis/Atkins picking thing going on....
     

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