What is with Takamine and country musicians? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2014, 04:27 PM Thread Starter
 
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What is with Takamine and country musicians?

I just bought a Jasmine/Takamine nylon string and for the money the thing is really good. Even though it's a laminated top, it still a very good sounding guitar.

I have noticed, maybe just like Ibanez RGs and Jacksons are and have been very popular with metal, that there's a lot of country players with Takamines. Sure, rockers Pete Townshend and Bon Jovi are big on them, but Taks are almost a staple in country. It's almost a cliche with a cowboy hat, a Takamine, and a Fender Telecaster as things you can find when it comes to stars in modern country. In the really old days, I would say Martin and Gibson were the go to acoustics.

Does anybody who is into country know the back story? I do know the back story with Wizard necks and Edge trems for metal and that's obvious, but why Taks and country?
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2014, 09:45 PM
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

I used to work at a music store that was a Takamine dealer. I agree that in terms of bang/buck they are pretty good. Definitely not my favorite when it comes to what I look for in an acoustic, but I think (and this is where there's a big differentiation) they work really well plugged in, so they are geared more as an "acoustified" electric guitar. From what I've seen with the country acts that use Takamine, they aren't there to go for a "great acoustic sound" like Jackson Browne's live albums, but more for a texture to a huge stadium. In this case it's feedback resistance, etc. that count far more.

I know there are some odd choices for Takamine endorsers like Bon Jovi, Glenn Frey, and John Jorgenson.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-13-2014, 01:30 AM
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

I echo what fenderbender4 said...

Being British, country isn't in my soul, but as I understand it, the use of Taks comes from the need to have a good electro, rather than a good acoustic. At the time that country became nu-country and Garth Brooks was becoming its biggest star, Takamine was the most reliable high end electro acoustic that you could get... Whether he popularised it or he followed someone else, I don't know.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-15-2014, 01:27 PM
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

Maybe I'm too cynical, but I'd bet it's a financial thing. Tak probably just said "Use whatever you want in the studio, but use our stuff in print/videos and we'll give you money" I have a hard time believing Martin, Gibson, whoever else couldn't make a guitar every bit as good a Takamine for electric playing.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-15-2014, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

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Originally Posted by elcid View Post
Maybe I'm too cynical, but I'd bet it's a financial thing. Tak probably just said "Use whatever you want in the studio, but use our stuff in print/videos and we'll give you money" I have a hard time believing Martin, Gibson, whoever else couldn't make a guitar every bit as good a Takamine for electric playing.
The electric EQ on Gibsons and Martins have been excellent for many years now and there's nothing wrong with them. I think maybe it's a copycat thing. Why do so many country players use Telecasters? There are so many guitars that can get that sound but it's just a cliche, and butterscotch on top of that. To me it would just look weird these days to see a country electric player with a Jackson, PRS, Schechter, strat or Les Paul or playing acoustic with Martin, Gibson, or Ovation. While there are country stars with lots of other stuff, the Taks and Teles seem so prevalent it's almost as if Takamine and Fender gave all the country artists endorsement deals they couldn't deny. The only other maker I saw get a lot of inroads in country disproportionately compared to the guitar market were Peavey guitars in the 1980s.

When I watch American Idol all of a sudden one year every acoustic player had a Taylor. It became obvious at some point that there was an agreement made between the TV franchise and Taylor Guitars.

Ibanez is huge in metal now and in the past and I don't think it's so much getting paid by Ibanez but the Wizard necks and Edge tremolos. You can get a good shredder workhorse in a Jackson, Charvel, Schechter, ESP, or Dean but at every price point, Ibanez seems to get the metal vote more than any other, especially for instrumental metal. There was a time that Shrapnel Records seemed to be an Ibanez advertising campaign. I love Ibanez but if I had a Jackson Dinky USA Series, Charvel Govan, ESP MII, or Dean Mustaine I wouldn't complain and if somebody can't play and sound good on those, it's on the player not the guitar. Ibanez goes the extra step in the tiny details and thus the popularity of playability of a Prestige RG.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-15-2014, 04:57 PM
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

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Originally Posted by jono View Post
I echo what fenderbender4 said...

Being British, country isn't in my soul, but as I understand it, the use of Taks comes from the need to have a good electro, rather than a good acoustic. At the time that country became nu-country and Garth Brooks was becoming its biggest star, Takamine was the most reliable high end electro acoustic that you could get... Whether he popularised it or he followed someone else, I don't know.
Lol, I have to agree there, being Irish it's not in my soul either, but have you noticed it's popular in rural areas, particularly the further north you travel. Always facinates me, it seems to strike a chord with people in rural areas in the British Isles, I mean the closest most of these people have been to a desert or prarie was a hosepipe ban in june and the closest they've been to a horse is the frozen foods cabinet in Tesco. Surely in these islands the rural folk should have a music of their own about the beautiful ewe that stole their heart and rounding up a posse to get some travellers off their land.

A good friend of mine here is a country player and his guitar room is Taks and Teles galore, he looks at my axes with a certain disdain, "electric nose pickers" I think is the term he uses.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-15-2014, 06:20 PM
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

Quote:
Originally Posted by elcid View Post
Maybe I'm too cynical, but I'd bet it's a financial thing. Tak probably just said "Use whatever you want in the studio, but use our stuff in print/videos and we'll give you money" I have a hard time believing Martin, Gibson, whoever else couldn't make a guitar every bit as good a Takamine for electric playing.
I may be WAY off the mark here but when Taks rose to prominence in the 80s were the Gibson and Martin guitars known for their electros? Back then I wasn't really interested but the only ones I recall knowing about were Takamines and ovations...
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 09:38 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

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Originally Posted by jono View Post
I may be WAY off the mark here but when Taks rose to prominence in the 80s were the Gibson and Martin guitars known for their electros? Back then I wasn't really interested but the only ones I recall knowing about were Takamines and ovations...
Gibson and Martin, both of which I had were not known for their electros. Their strength then were only in unplugged sounds. However, Ovation and Takamine, both now a part of Kaman were noted for being plugged in at higher volumes without being known for acoustic only tone. That being said they aren't bad unplugged and have improved greatly.

But today is great in that you could go with any one of the four and get good acoustic and good plugged in sounds. I tried a USA custom year Ovation that was truly amazing unplugged.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 09:54 AM
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

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. . . the closest they've been to a horse is the frozen foods cabinet in Tesco. . . .
Dude, your entire post is funny but this was hilarious! Thanks for making me laugh this morning . . .

Peace

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

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Originally Posted by Laobi View Post
Lol, I have to agree there, being Irish it's not in my soul either, but have you noticed it's popular in rural areas, particularly the further north you travel. Always facinates me, it seems to strike a chord with people in rural areas in the British Isles, I mean the closest most of these people have been to a desert or prarie was a hosepipe ban in june and the closest they've been to a horse is the frozen foods cabinet in Tesco. Surely in these islands the rural folk should have a music of their own about the beautiful ewe that stole their heart and rounding up a posse to get some travellers off their land.

A good friend of mine here is a country player and his guitar room is Taks and Teles galore, he looks at my axes with a certain disdain, "electric nose pickers" I think is the term he uses.
Country and western music in the USA borrows from bluegrass which borrows from the music of England, Scotland, and Ireland so there's some connection even though it may be hard to see at times.

Also when you look at somebody who dominates country like Taylor Swift, it's become pretty hard to separate this from any sort of pop on the US or UK charts. Taylor more than anybody has crossed this mainstream pop music barrier better than any before her. She doesn't take her popularity in the UK for granted:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aanv-bVDjy0
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 12:27 PM
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

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Originally Posted by Laobi View Post
Always facinates me, it seems to strike a chord with people in rural areas in the British Isles, I mean the closest most of these people have been to a desert or prarie was a hosepipe ban in june and the closest they've been to a horse is the frozen foods cabinet in Tesco. Surely in these islands the rural folk should have a music of their own about the beautiful ewe that stole their heart and rounding up a posse to get some travellers off their land.
LOL... You certainly have a way with words! Even I have hard time connecting with modern country music, being an Irish/American Indian from the desert southwest. I do have a soft spot for old country though, and REAL old western music w/upright bass, fiddle, harmonized vocals.

Takamine makes a pretty darn good guitar for the money. I bought this one for less than $200 used, but in like new condition. Sounds great unplugged and plugged in...

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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 12:36 PM
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

hmm,, not a plastic round back either I see! nice!
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-16-2014, 02:04 PM
 
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Re: What is with Takamine and country musicians?

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LOL... You certainly have a way with words! Even I have hard time connecting with modern country music, being an Irish/American Indian from the desert southwest. I do have a soft spot for old country though, and REAL old western music w/upright bass, fiddle, harmonized vocals.

Takamine makes a pretty darn good guitar for the money. I bought this one for less than $200 used, but in like new condition. Sounds great unplugged and plugged in...

Wow, nice guitar. I agree, I get some of the old country, some of Johnny Cash's songs telling stories of pain and love and I heard some good tracks on a GTA V radio station which were hosted and chosen by Jesco White, but most stuff just leaves me cold, like modern R&B, Gangsta Rap etc., I understand the origins come from a mixing of NW European folk and blues. It just has no resonance for me, I think the older artists knew how to enjoy themselves and get themselves into trouble occasionally, they had more experience to write about. Perhaps it has become sanitised, I just find it too generic and preachy.

Great guitar though, I'm on the hunt for a nylon string acoustic, was thinking of an Ibby, but Rich recently said the Ibby acoustics are beautiful but crap, may ask my C&W friend to recommend a Tak, I'm looking for something exactly in the €200 price range. On the music thing, I need to start a new thread, I have too many questions
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