Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 04:04 AM Thread Starter
 
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Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Heres a hot topic for ya!

A recently got my hands on a early Soloist (pre JEM series), with the full works Seymour Duncan pickups original Floyd Rose (with cut out behind the trem!) thru neck ebony fingerboard MOP sharkfin inlays etc..

However upon picking up my 777VDY I began to notice some striking similarities...

- Body shape and contours are VERY similar (but Jackson hugs the ribs more)
- Neck dimensions where uncannily similar but the jackson is a touch thicker
- Scalloped away heel for better access (same cutting method)
- Cut out behind trem to allow pull up

I seriously suggest you bite the bullet and play them side by side, it really will amaze you HOW similar they are, and we know Vai was playing (and still has) jackson soloists at the time he came up with the Ibanez JEM.

Is there something accurate about this assumption or are my findings inaccurate?
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post #2 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 05:26 AM
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

More like the DK.
Steve asked Ibanez to build him a DK to his speck, they did and he signed on the doted line.
Pre-Jem there was no Ibanez with DK body shape/contours and now the RG/Jem line is a really well build DK alternative with little "silly" cosmetic extras.

This is well publicised but in 86/87 all guitar companies that aproached Steve with endorsment deals wanted him to play a full production model and Ibanez were prepared to make him a guitar up to his speck.
What I make from that is that had Jackson taken onboard all his silly requests for routing/colours/electronics/inlay onboard, we would have been on the JCM forum right now bigging up the Jackson Jem.
Ain't no doubt about that.

Last edited by dex; 01-20-2014 at 10:41 AM. Reason: :)
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post #3 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 03:14 PM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dex
What I make from that is that had Jackson taken onboard all his silly requests for routing/colours/electronics/inlay onboard, we would have been on the JCM forum right now bigging up the Jackson Jem.
couldn't agree more. ibanez, and esp for that matter, have graduately phased out jackson's status in hard rock. just look at esp's endorsee list today.
I liked jackson guitars for a long time. This brand is in bad shape because of poor management decisions like that. I have no idea what fender is doing with them. fender seems to be more interested in charvel line.
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post #4 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 03:27 PM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

"fender seems to be more interested in charvel line."

then Fender is going to be bummed because Wayne Charvel is notorious for checking all the guitars himself and making sure stuff is up to snuff. Fender likes to crank stuff out. this is why I would never pay big money for a Fender artist model or even a drool-inducing Gretsch Stezer. Fender owns Gretsch too...)

Fender is about assembly line. Wayne Charvel is a true craftsman. just my .02

Last edited by ginsu777; 03-01-2005 at 03:53 PM.
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post #5 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 03:42 PM
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Thumbs up Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

I still respect Jackson guitars. I think the USA models are exceptional instruments and hold their own against the comptetition.
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post #6 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 04:10 PM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ginsu777
... because Wayne Charvel is notorious for checking all the guitars himself and making sure stuff is up to snuff.
Not anymore. Wayne Charvel doesn't have anything to do with Charvel Guitars anymore. He now builds and markets his guitars under the name Wayne Guitars.

-R
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post #7 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 04:51 PM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ginsu777
"fender seems to be more interested in charvel line."

then Fender is going to be bummed because Wayne Charvel is notorious for checking all the guitars himself and making sure stuff is up to snuff. Fender likes to crank stuff out. this is why I would never pay big money for a Fender artist model or even a drool-inducing Gretsch Stezer. Fender owns Gretsch too...)

Fender is about assembly line. Wayne Charvel is a true craftsman. just my .02
Last I heard, Gretsch still makes their own instruments.

They are owned by Fender, not run.
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post #8 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 08:07 AM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

The Jackson Soloist/Dinky (and Charvel guitars) were the original "super-strat" guitars, so it only stands to reason that the JEM/RG models are an evolution of that design.
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post #9 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 08:43 AM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Jackson guitars are simply amazing. They have a really good line of products and in my opinion, its actually better than the current Ibanez line. Just look at the number of different models they have, colour options, bridges. When I look at the current Jem series, I see nothing that I want to buy. White/Gold? Not my style. What else is there? That god awful textured black finish or the blue/white model. Eeeek! The RG series is better, but overpriced IMO.

Too bad artists are going where the money is. Even Dave Mustaine is now with ESP. I wonder what Fender will do for the Jackson name. Probably destroy it like they did with all the other brands they bought out (Guild comes to mind).

F.M.
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post #10 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 09:28 AM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Fender apparently started either thinning out or completely dropping Jackson endorsements, overhead and all - they are a corporation you know. So, I wouldn't necessarily blame guys like Mustaine for leaving for the money, it's likely that it's Fender didn't see the money in the endorsement deals so they dropped them. Like the ever rumored Jason Becker guitar that was apparently supposed to be made by Jackson, but once Fender took over, no dice.

As far as the original topic, it's no secret that Vai played a Jackson or 2 before going to Ibanez, so I can see the body shaping and some other similarities. I'm not real sure about the trem recess, though. If Jackson did make them before 1987, maybe they got the idea from Steve anyway, since he had it in some for or another on a few of his pre-Jem guitars:

http://www.jemsite.com/axes/model/charvel.htm

http://www.jemsite.com/axes/model/perfomance.htm

Just my stupid 2 cents that nobody asked for...

Although, I do agree with ozzyguitardude - Jacksons are nice guitars, well, the nicer ones anyway, their Korean stuff isn't very good.

D
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post #11 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 10:21 AM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

I believe the first person to chisel away underneath the back of his Floyd was Brad Gillis of Night Ranger.
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post #12 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 10:25 AM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Did anyone make a recessed trem, before Vai? I don't remember... I've heard various things regarding Fender and Jackson, but I do know that it's still the same guys building the guitars, so that shouldn't be any different. I've heard many people say that they are still at least as good as they ever were, and, from the ones I've played, I'd have to agree. Most people wouldn't say the same for Ibanez...

As for the original question, I do think that the Jem/RG was an evolution of the Jacksons that Vai played. He put what he liked about his old Grover Jackson built Charvel(Green Meanie), and his Soloists together, along with some more of his own ideas, and out came the Jem. That's my take on it, anyway.
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post #13 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 11:04 AM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ozzguitardude
The RG series is better, but overpriced IMO.
I don't see how you can call them overpriced for the quality - perhaps prices on a new one don't suit you, but I hardly find them overpriced. And used? Find a better deal than the often traded $300-or-so RG's sold used around these forums all the time.

Don't get me wrong; I like Jacksons as well, and I own an '89 Charvel custom that came from their Texas shop back when Wayne Charvel was still mildly involved in that operation. But the damn thing is so delicate, I hesitate to do more than record in my home studio with it. To contrast, my RG's have seen numerous gigs, travel often, one of them has even been to Jamaica and back, and never missed a beat. Every time I remove my Charvel from the house, something fails on it. If it wasn't so pretty (and it was my first really good guitar) I'd sell it.

-R
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post #14 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 12:14 PM
 
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Smile Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jemaholic
I still respect Jackson guitars. I think the USA models are exceptional instruments and hold their own against the comptetition.
They make poor 7-strings though where the top b string is way into the
fretboard and the high e is off the fretboard because of some string alignment
problems or something. I know a few people that have 'em and they look cool
but look like they were built poorly. Ibanez rules.
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post #15 of 68 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 12:57 PM
 
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Re: Did Vai reinvent the jackson soloist?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluestreak
Not anymore. Wayne Charvel doesn't have anything to do with Charvel Guitars anymore. He now builds and markets his guitars under the name Wayne Guitars.

-R
you are right, i was thinking WAYNE guitars. I forgot he sold the name and all

Quote:
Originally Posted by nocluejimbo
Last I heard, Gretsch still makes their own instruments.

They are owned by Fender, not run.
I disagree. If a company OWNS a company, they are going to have a pretty good say as to how the guitars are MADE. that being said, i do not know the details fo the corporate arrangement. but suffice to say, Fender is a HUGE multinational company that is about the BOTTOM LINE. that does not bode well for Gretsch guitars.
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