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  #16  
Old 10-07-2018, 06:56 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Iíve played an archtop since 1976 when I was offered a 1930 Gibson L-5 for $35.00. The cracked heel was easily fixed, and itís truly something special.

Iíve played several original Epiphone Olympics, years before hearing of David Rawlings, and they were very enjoyable to play, but an entirely different tonal pallet. Context is everything, and David understood that immediately.

The Ďquestí for replicating that aural experience is almost as fanatic as the followers of Nick Drake and the Guild M20, but I digress...

I can only imagine the virtual Ďthudí when David Rawlings switched to playing a vintage 17Ē DíAngelico...a real Forrest Gump runners moment when he said he was tired and decided to go home...

HE
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  #17  
Old 10-07-2018, 07:29 AM
Epiphonist Epiphonist is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silly Moustache View Post
Is there anybody on this corner of the forum who will admit that they got into archtops because of David R and his Epiphone Olympic(s) ?

(Apart from me that is).
I played archtops long before I first heard of Gillian and Dave - who are among my favorite musicians for almost 20 years now.
Dave's use of his small archtop definitely became a strong influence on my playing.
A 1933 Olympic and 1934 Zenith - both 13 5/8" wide little firecrackers - are the guitars I use most when playing acoustic.
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  #18  
Old 10-07-2018, 11:10 AM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
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Love David Rawling's playing, but I started on a gorgeous 40's Epiphone Triumph arch top I found in the garbage when I was 15 years old, 50 years ago. I played it for several years and then sold it so it could get into the hands of a jazz player, where it really belonged.

This is my dad's old Kay arch top that I broke the headstock off of when I was a teen. I carried the body around all this time until I realized it really wanted to be an octave mandolin.

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  #19  
Old 10-07-2018, 11:18 AM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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Originally Posted by Rudy4 View Post
Love David Rawling's playing, but I started on a gorgeous 40's Epiphone Triumph arch top I found in the garbage when I was 15 years old, 50 years ago. I played it for several years and then sold it so it could get into the hands of a jazz player, where it really belonged.

This is my dad's old Kay arch top that I broke the headstock off of when I was a teen. I carried the body around all this time until I realized it really wanted to be an octave mandolin.

hey, I did that with a Hofner :

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  #20  
Old 10-07-2018, 12:55 PM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
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Hi Silly,
Another great conversion! These older low-dollar ply archtops are perfect instruments for use as octave mandos.

Here's the Youtube demo of my Kay conversion. I found a take-off Taylor GS Mini neck that served as a quick and easy conversion.

https://youtu.be/fXlbFMIsDgA
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  #21  
Old 10-07-2018, 06:10 PM
gmr gmr is offline
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I canít truly say Dave Rawlings was my reasoning for an infatuation with archtop guitars, though I sure appreciate the music he makes with his. My first guitar was my Fatherís 1950 Gibson ES 125, given to me by my step mother when I was 12, about three years after his death. Not a great acoustic guitar tone but what a classic looking guitar.
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  #22  
Old 10-07-2018, 06:15 PM
ChrisE ChrisE is online now
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I love Dave and Gillianís music but Iím not into arch tops.
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  #23  
Old 10-08-2018, 04:17 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy4 View Post
Hi Silly,
Another great conversion! These older low-dollar ply archtops are perfect instruments for use as octave mandos.

Here's the Youtube demo of my Kay conversion. I found a take-off Taylor GS Mini neck that served as a quick and easy conversion.

https://youtu.be/fXlbFMIsDgA
Rudy,
That is outstanding! Great playing & phrasing!

HE
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  #24  
Old 10-08-2018, 08:33 AM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard Emerson View Post
Rudy,
That is outstanding! Great playing & phrasing!

HE
Thank you much, Howard. The Kay conversion has a 23-1/2" scale Taylor neck, so that makes it fairly easy to do the stretches on, although I'm going to do a 22" scale, as I think that will be an "ultimate" as far as being able to do fiddle tunes, etc.

Don't mean to sidetrack the Epi Olympic discussion, so back to business here.

I'm sure most Rawlings followers will have already seen the D'Addario interview, but those unfamiliar with it will gain a lot of understanding about how DR came to play his Epi Olympic:

https://youtu.be/PyWTzAoZhzE
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  #25  
Old 10-08-2018, 11:29 AM
rockabilly69 rockabilly69 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmr View Post
We just had the privilege of seeing Gillian And Dave in a small venue in OKC. I am a big fan of their music. Their vocals and their playing are so complimentary to each other.... itís uncanny, really. I bought one of the new Epiphone Olympic modelS when they came but sold it when we sold our home and I needed to thin my herd. I regretted it that day and still do. I know a lot of archtop affficianados are not fans of the new Epiís but for what they are, they do a very nice job, and I donít think the intent if them was/is meant to be a faithful copy of their originals, but even still, the Olympic is quite nice. And plugged in, that thing sounded big! Oh, and that was one of the better concerts we have ever seen. David and Gillian are incredibly gracious and kind, engaging, and supremely talented in their musical genre.
I love my Epiphone Olympic reissue, and after owning it for a few weeks I just brought it to my favorite setup guy. This guy works on all of my guitars, and I'm having him cut the nut down a bit and really give the frets a good looking over to have this guitar play lot butter. I have this done by him to ever guitar that I use on stage. The Olympic was good stock, but this guy has the touch.

It's funny, I own a lot of upper tier guitars, but I've been impressed with some "lowly" new Epiphones more than once. I have two friends with Masterbuilt acoustics that are both ridiculously good sounding. Not for the money as most people say, these guitars are just fantastic in every way. One is the mahogany backed OM style, the other, the mahogany backed advanced jumbo. I have another friend who plays a Sheraton II reissue as his main guitar and he owns a bunch of really nice USA built Gibsons. I also own an Epiphone Dot that sounds GREAT. I was testing out amplifiers in a store when day when someone handed me this Dot. Funny thing, all the amps sounded great, but when I plugged other guitars into the same amps the tone was gone. Winds up it was the guitar I liked. A good friend of mine went back to the store and bought that guitar for me He knew I wouldn't buy it because it said Epiphone on the headstock! That was over ten years ago, and I still have the Dot when many other guitars have come and gone! I can't count the amount of times when people have been in my studio and grabbed that guitar and were taken by surprise. And when I bought the new Olympic reissue it was the same thing, the same friend who bought me the Dot handed me the Olympic to show him and a new song I had just written. About an hour later, I shelled out the case and walked out of the store with it.
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  #26  
Old 10-09-2018, 07:59 AM
frankhond frankhond is offline
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That Epiphone sure sounds good when David plays it, but I tried it in a local shop and it did not work for me. It had that sound but the neck profile was too big for my hand and the whole construction just screamed "put me down". Acquired taste I guess. Glad David finally came to his senses and got a proper guitar so I can GAS for something I would enjoy playing ;-)
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Last edited by SprintBob; 10-31-2018 at 05:10 AM. Reason: Toned down the critical comments.
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  #27  
Old 10-09-2018, 09:10 AM
MC5C MC5C is offline
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Originally Posted by frankhond View Post
That Epiphone sure sounds good when David plays it, but I tried it in a local shop and it was complete crap. It had that sound but the neck was chunky in a real bad way and the whole construction just screamed "put me down". Acquired taste I guess. Glad David finaly came to his senses and got a proper guitar so I can GAS for something I would enjoy playing ;-)
You found a pre-war 1935 Epiphone in a local shop?
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  #28  
Old 10-09-2018, 09:25 AM
gmr gmr is offline
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Daveís Olympic is a 1935 original. Unfortunately the new Masterbilt models are not anywhere close to a true copy of those original models. I really liked my Masterbilt Olympic, and Yes, that neck profile is big but I found it actually really comfortable for my meager playing skills. I got used to it quite easily.

We saw Gillian and Dave in late August and the only guitars in sight were Daveís Olympic and Gillianís J 50... a few harmonicaís, and a very old and temperamental banjo.
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  #29  
Old 10-10-2018, 01:07 AM
rockabilly69 rockabilly69 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmr View Post
"Unfortunately the new Masterbilt models are not anywhere close to a true copy of those original models."
True the Epiphones use laminated woods on the back and sides, non-brazilian rosewood on the fingerboard, pressed instead of carved archtop, and other things that aren't vintage correct. But, surprisingly enough the parallel bracing on these reissues and the smaller 15" body do give you the midrange bark, almost resonator like tone of a vintage Epi. I find it is a very musical tone when sitting around looking for new licks to play. I've taken mine to a few gigs and have had some really positive remarks about the tone. And I play some pretty nice acoustics at these gigs and this little reissue just hangs! I especially like it after changing the strings to Monel!
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  #30  
Old 10-10-2018, 04:49 AM
frankhond frankhond is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MC5C View Post
You found a pre-war 1935 Epiphone in a local shop?
It was adverised as a original vintage epi, with a price tag to match. This shop has a couple guys that travel to the US (I’m in Sweden) a couple times a year and scour some secret markets. They brought it home because they like Dave too... somebody bought it pretty soon after so maybe it’s just me.
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