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  #1  
Old 07-31-2012, 02:37 PM
rocketdude rocketdude is offline
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Default Is the D28 mostly a bluegrass-guitar?

Looking for other people's opinions is maybe the worst thing you can do...and I've always been told to choose and play what I like myself.

Still, after reading the same thing almost everywhere...seems to me that people play mostly bluegrass on their D28. D35 has become the songwriter's guitar, HD28 the most versatile guitar blabla and so on.

I cannot afford many different guitars, and don't have enough room to store them in either. I've got two guitars, one GS Mini (for outdoor campfire/travelling/misc use) and a regular D28 for indoor and more special occasions. I play all styles, but mostly pop and rock from the 50s, 60s and 70s. And perhaps a Meat Loaf ballad late in the evening. Bluegrass takes about maybe 1% of my playing time.

Still, people (often) claims that the D28 is the ultimate bluegrass guitar...and that's what they mostly play on it today. Am I right?
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Old 07-31-2012, 02:45 PM
dawhealer dawhealer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketdude View Post
Looking for other people's opinions is maybe the worst thing you can do...and I've always been told to choose and play what I like myself.

Still, after reading the same thing almost everywhere...seems to me that people play mostly bluegrass on their D28. D35 has become the songwriter's guitar, HD28 the most versatile guitar blabla and so on.

I cannot afford many different guitars, and don't have enough room to store them in either. I've got two guitars, one GS Mini (for outdoor campfire/travelling/misc use) and a regular D28 for indoor and more special occasions. I play all styles, but mostly pop and rock from the 50s, 60s and 70s. And perhaps a Meat Loaf ballad late in the evening. Bluegrass takes about maybe 1% of my playing time.

Still, people (often) claims that the D28 is the ultimate bluegrass guitar...and that's what they mostly play on it today. Am I right?
I play anything and everything on my HD-28. Flat pick bluegrass, strum, fingerpick, even play a little Villa-Lobos and Tarrega on it.

Depends on what YOU like coming out of it.
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Old 07-31-2012, 02:45 PM
L20A L20A is offline
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The Martin D-28 is a great all around guitar.
The reason it is called a Bluegrass guitar is because the prewar D-28 guitars were loud and could be heard along side banjos.

Some prefer the D-18 with mahogany sides and back but both are guitars that can hold their own in many settings.

Be proud of your D0-28 and play it well.
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Old 07-31-2012, 02:47 PM
HHP HHP is offline
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Probably very little music has not been played on a D-28 at one time or another. They are popular in bluegrass but keep in mind that popularity include D-28's of all variations and ages. Most would consider the "ultimate" bluegrass guitar a pre-war D-28.
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Old 07-31-2012, 02:54 PM
dablues dablues is offline
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The Martin D-28 (and D-18) does have a reputation as a "bluegrass guitar" but as others have already said, there is a lot of other music that can be played on that guitar.
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Old 07-31-2012, 03:01 PM
brianmay brianmay is offline
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I have a D-28 and don't play any bluegrass ( sometimes wish I could). I strum, flat pick and finger pick it - it's fine and a great guitar.

My particular favourite for fingerpicking though is my 000-28 (particularly suitable).

But, frankly, it's only YOUR opinion that matters.
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Old 07-31-2012, 03:05 PM
kydave kydave is offline
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Quote:
Still, people (often) claims that the D28 is the ultimate bluegrass guitar...
Leave out the word "bluegrass" and I'll go along with that statement.

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Old 07-31-2012, 03:08 PM
upsidedown upsidedown is offline
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Wonder if I could just piggy-back my question to this post and ask, why is the D-35 considered the songwriter's guitar?

Last edited by upsidedown; 07-31-2012 at 03:08 PM. Reason: correct a typo
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Old 07-31-2012, 03:16 PM
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ljguitar ljguitar is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketdude View Post
...Still, people (often) claims that the D28 is the ultimate bluegrass guitar...and that's what they mostly play on it today. Am I right?
Hi rocketdude...

I hate being carded or stopped and asked for official ID...I hope we don't have to start carrying licenses to be allowed to play certain styles of music on our instruments.

Best bluegrass I've heard in person was on a Tony Rice model SantaCruz Dreadnaught, and it was awesome. To be sure the Martin-esque influence was present.

I learned to fingerstyle on a D-28 and it was mine for 17 years, and served me well till I discovered guitars which served my style better. That was not the weakness in the D-28 but the capabilities of the other guitar to provide things a D-28 is not designed to do.

That D-28 is now over 40 years old and hopefully serving someone well somewhere. Bet it still sounds great as it ever did.



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Old 07-31-2012, 03:45 PM
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Yes, the Martin D-28 is often used in Bluegrass music.

No, it should not be limited to that use.

No, I don't think of this guitar as "mostly a Bluegrass guitar." It's too versatile for that in my way of thinking.

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Old 07-31-2012, 03:51 PM
Hambone Hambone is offline
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I own a D28MM and a D18A and I'm not a grasser. They are great for anything.
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Old 07-31-2012, 03:52 PM
architype architype is offline
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The D-28 is limited only by the ability of the player...as is any guitar. It is a great instrument and it can make beautiful music in any genre.
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Old 07-31-2012, 04:17 PM
Misty44 Misty44 is offline
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Back when I began playing, the D-28 and D-18 were about the only big Martin dreads to choose from until the D-35 came along in 1965. So the D-28 was used by many people regardless of style. If you played bluegrass, those two models were also ideal for producing loud rhythms and cutting leads.

Almost every folksinger I listened to played either the D-28 or D-18 (many for fingerpicking like Paul Simon and Judy Collins and Joni Mitchell and three guys named Crosby Stills and Nash), including Bob Shane of the Kingston Trio whose D-28 adorned every album cover they made and made Martin junkies out of many of us kids.



As for the D-35, it's deep rich cascading harmonics and overtones make it ideal as an accompanist for the solo singer, and has been the primary tool of some pretty good singer/songwriters.







and even some Las Vegas rockers:



Quote:
D28 is the ultimate bluegrass guitar...
It was at one time because it had no competition, but today there are many great "bluegrass" guitars from other builders as well. Ovation tried to break into that market, but even with the best bluegrass guitarist endorsing them, they never got very far:

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Old 07-31-2012, 04:26 PM
hello people hello people is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upsidedown View Post
Wonder if I could just piggy-back my question to this post and ask, why is the D-35 considered the songwriter's guitar?
Just the other day the guy who sets up my guitar held my D28 and says 'I can sure tell why they call these the songwriter's guitar'...I was like...'...'.
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Old 07-31-2012, 04:57 PM
Ryan Alexander Ryan Alexander is offline
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