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  #1  
Old 01-07-2019, 08:36 AM
mark2b mark2b is offline
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Default A guitar for Mark Knopfler's folk style

I'v been playing guitar for many years but never played any folk style, nor do I own an acoustic guitar (have only electric and nylon).

I really like Mark Knopfler, especially his "celtic folk" style(he is the very reason I began to play the guitar, 13 years ago). Albums from his solo career such as "Tracker", "Get Lucky", and "ragpicker's dream" are my favorite.

I started learning his songs as well as some Country Blues and Ragtime tunes (Blind Blake) which influenced Mark's music. I currently play on my nylon string guitar, but it doesn't really suit for that job, thus I am on the look for an acoustic guitar.

These are the guitars I have in mind: Yamaha FG800, Alvarez AD60, Seagull S6 or Maritime, Sigma DR-28H, Sigma Hummingbird, Taylor GS mini, Gibson J15 and a low end Martin of sorts.

Do people here have any experience with the guitars I listed and be kind to share them with me please?

So far, I only had the chance to play the Yamaha and the Gibson, the latter which, quite disappointed me. I own a Les Paul and like its short scale, and the J15 certainly looked and felt like an expensive guitar, but didn't sound like one.

Last edited by mark2b; 01-07-2019 at 08:59 AM.
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Old 01-07-2019, 09:49 AM
jpmist jpmist is offline
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Ah, a fellow Knopfler fan, I am as well.

I've been following Knopfler since "Sultans of Swing" and have a bunch of "educational" videos on Youtube with my covers of several of his songs. (Search "youtube jpmist") I enjoy his fingerstyle playing quite a lot.

That said, I'm sorry I don't have any experience with the list of guitar's you have in mind, but quickly scanning them I notice they're mostly dreadnaught type bodies and I'm hoping to steer you away from those. It's said you can play fingerstyle on any guitar, and I'm not qualified to argue against that, but small bodied 12- frets give you a very focused note without fighting the sustain of the other strings and overtones of the note itself.

Scanning some concert pics off google, many of the acoustics he plays are OOO/OM sized and usually 12 fret models. I note a Martin OOO type 12 fret model most of the time – the pic below is him playing "Privateering" on one in concert.



Good luck with your search, DM me if you want to chat about his work. Am looking forward to seeing him in concert this September!
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Old 01-07-2019, 09:54 AM
lt20dbl lt20dbl is offline
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He plays his 12 fret, 000-40 Mark K. Sig model and a Martin dread as well as a Gibson j 45. ,I am sure he owns many fine guitars and it's more the indian than the arrow.
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:29 AM
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He's got a 1935 Martin D-18 and 1938 Gibson advanced jumbo also.
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:34 AM
mark2b mark2b is offline
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Thanks jmpist!

Mark Knopfler indeed uses his signature ooo Martin guitars, however I noticed he does it mainly on stage.

Whenever I saw him playing by his own, such as in this clip, he uses either an old Martin D18 or Gibson Advanced Jumbo, thus the list I created
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:50 AM
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I'm also a massive fan of Mark Knopfler, and graduated to acoustic guitar from electric. Amongst many other fine guitars, Mark also plays a Sefan Sobel Martin Simpson Signature model.



However, I wouldn't worry too much about what you're playing it on. Try out as many guitars as you can, and go with the one which feels, plays and sounds good to you!

Cheers,
David
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:53 AM
Shortfinger Shortfinger is offline
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Yamaha LS-16 A.R.E.

Folk-sized, passive pickup, pre-aged engelmann top, beautiful sound, beautifully made.

$800 new, about $600 used in mint condition.

Yammie doesn't sell these with hard cases, so get yourself a good case.

Or get the LS-TA transacoustic like mine. Same guitar but with the magic sound machine inside.
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Last edited by Shortfinger; 01-07-2019 at 11:02 AM.
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Old 01-07-2019, 10:55 AM
emtsteve emtsteve is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mark2b View Post
Thanks jmpist!

Mark Knopfler indeed uses his signature ooo Martin guitars, however I noticed he does it mainly on stage.

Whenever I saw him playing by his own, such as in this clip, he uses either an old Martin D18 or Gibson Advanced Jumbo, thus the list I created
The 3 songs in this clip are a few of my favorites of MK's. I also have been heavily influenced by his work and strive to develop even 1/10th of his skill.

As far as guitars, if you get a chance to try a Martin 000-15SM 12 fret I think it might get you close to that tone. The 15's are mahogany tops but have a sweet tone and the 12 fret model adds a bit of bass and bark. If you can find one used I think the price may be agreeable.

Also, I wouldn't hesitate to use a dread such as a D-18 or J-45. Mark's D-18 in the clip sure seems to work fine!

Good Luck!
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Old 01-07-2019, 11:57 AM
merlin666 merlin666 is offline
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This is a classic video, but should not be missing in a thread about MK guitars:

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  #10  
Old 01-07-2019, 12:14 PM
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The Gibson J-15 has a quick delay played unplugged, similar to the J-45. I don't use my J-45 for Celtic. It's better for blues and rags. The Celtic tune in my signature is played on an all mahogany Guild D-120ce dread that I picked up for around $450. New they sell for about $800. If you really want to go folk/Celtic you'd look at Lowden or Avalon imo. I wouldn't consider the guitars you listed. The all hog Martins are nice too.
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Last edited by TBman; 01-07-2019 at 12:25 PM.
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Old 01-07-2019, 12:39 PM
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Hi Mark2B

First of all Hello and Welcome to the Forum! Glad you jumped in with a thread.

Lots of love for Mark K here in the forum.

I'd think for his acoustic music, you'd want a guitar with a really good setup (for easy playability), great projection, decent sustain, full-fat high end (so the trebles don't get bitter), and decent bass.

That leaves a lot of room for choices, and he certainly has not limited himself to one guitar, nor even one type (acoustic, electric, slide etc). And he's devoted to each of them and skilled on them.

Have you seen this video…he offers a lot of info in under 15 minutes with a lot of examples and 'aside' style comments.



Hope you find the guitar of your dreams…




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  #12  
Old 01-07-2019, 12:55 PM
mark2b mark2b is offline
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Thank you, Larry!

I'v been watching this video for several months now on a daily bases, as well as an older version of it (link). It really helped me to understand what influenced Mark on the first place and how he came up with his music style and techniques. Sometimes I put the speed to 0.5 in order to figure out what he is doing with his fingures.

To me, the best video showcasing Knopfler's solo acoustic skills is the Tracker album documentary (link)
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Old 01-08-2019, 03:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mark2b View Post
Thank you, Larry!

I'v been watching this video for several months now on a daily bases, as well as an older version of it (link). It really helped me to understand what influenced Mark on the first place and how he came up with his music style and techniques. Sometimes I put the speed to 0.5 in order to figure out what he is doing with his fingures.

To me, the best video showcasing Knopfler's solo acoustic skills is the Tracker album documentary (link)
A warm welcome from another big fan of MK.

I will be very interested to learn what you finally choose. And here is another great video that sheds light on his style and choices - https://youtu.be/a3SgyZSYz4Y

Col
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Old 01-08-2019, 06:33 AM
dkstott dkstott is offline
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I think you could hand Mark Knopfler just about any acoustic guitar and it would sound like his style when he played it.



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  #15  
Old 01-08-2019, 08:19 AM
musicman1951 musicman1951 is offline
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I would disagree with your premise. Any time you suggest that a certain style of music can't be played on a certain style of guitar someone here will post videos of three different players doing just that extremely well.

So get what you like. You've already discovered that you don't like them all. Find a guitar in your price range that pleases your ears and pay for a good setup. Then play whatever you like on it.
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country blues, fingerstyle guitar, folk guitar, knopfler, ragtime

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