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Gibson “you have been warned”

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by 48thStreetCustom, Jun 17, 2019.

  1. gin: No I did not. I have been critical of Gibson and supportive of their employees. That was followed by some posters who misquoted me, ignored my previous posts and made a whole pile of assumptions about my politics. Of course I was critical of them.
    Looks like it's you who insists on continuing this "Crapfest".
    Have fun. Bye.
  2. Picton


    Aug 16, 2017
    Reading, MA
    Hard to argue with any of this, except to gently say that you've got a case of "should-itis." You're very correct in your prescription for what "should" happen, but I'd say it's very clear that modern Gibson has done nothing at all (over successive "leadership" groups) to convince any of us that that's what "will" happen. Quite the opposite, in fact.

    I'm not sure whether or not Gibbo goes out of business [again], and as I've said there's nothing we can do about it either way. If they do, it's their fault. If they don't, I see them meandering along in much the same way they have, only with a slowly decreasing base of consumers because here's the thing: they're doing nothing to grow brand loyalty in new buyers.

    So, long term, it's hard to have much faith in them. As I've said, every Gibbo employee should have been prepping their resumes long since. The smart ones will leave the company, and quality will spiral as the losses can't be made good.
  3. Mike Whitfield

    Mike Whitfield

    Apr 10, 2019
    Exactly all this.
    FRoss6788 likes this.
  4. Koshchei


    Mar 17, 2019
    Peterborough, ON
    You're totally right, of course. It's my experience that when given a choice between doing the right thing, and doing the batpoopie insane things, it falls around 80:20 in favour of batpoopie insane. I'd just like to be surprised for once.
    Picton, FRoss6788 and Mike Whitfield like this.
  5. Mike Whitfield

    Mike Whitfield

    Apr 10, 2019
    Pretty much, but Gibson management can still right the ship and get back on course, as did Fender. If they insist on maintaining this course where they expect people to buy Gibson because they have no other choices, then they're headed right back into irrelevancy and another bankruptcy, more good people will quit or lose their jobs, and we'll see what the next round of management can do. Music is as much emotion as science and the more potential customers become aware that Gibson is acting like bullies, the fewer who will want to be customers.

    Worst case is another bankruptcy after they've become so toxic that no one will touch the Gibson brand and the company gets split up into profitable Epiphone, with Gibson going away completely. In that case, look for a drastic expansion of Heritage along with a start-up or two as former employees try to leverage their skills into new companies. Hopefully if this happens, it's in boom times and not in a recession.
    Monterey Bay-ss and Picton like this.
  6. AboutSweetSue


    Sep 29, 2018
    Lebanon, TN
    That didn’t last long.
    Picton, FRoss6788 and Mike Whitfield like this.
  7. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    from what they're saying, it seems like they expect people to buy gibson based on their long history and iconic guitars/basses - in other words, not based on well made instruments they make now - or they're hoping they can create a lifestyle experience, which as you know, i sincerely doubt.

    and tomorrow they launch the new G45 for beginners. we'll see if my prediction is right and this will be basically an epiphone with the word "Gibson" on the headstock.
    FRoss6788 and Mike Whitfield like this.
  8. Mike Whitfield

    Mike Whitfield

    Apr 10, 2019
    I'm betting you're correct and the G45 will be straight outa China, especially since Currleigh did the same thing with Levis. (Third world labor/first world marketing is not a lifestyle I'd ever choose.) Not necessarily the end of the world - China makes some good guitars, although I've sworn off them for political reasons - but I suspect that once Gibson begins to brand Chinese instruments as Gibsons, the perceived value of Gibsons will drop like a stone. Might be worth weathering from a different nation as there are some very good guitars coming out of South Korea and Indonesia which aren't particularly politically toxic (except maybe for people who really really really hate Trump or Islam) and Gibson's previous ultra budget instruments haven't exactly been inspiring, and that would cannibalize Epiphone's higher end instruments. Personally I'd just give Epiphone an option with Gibson's head stock design and label it "Epiphone by Gibson", but as there's very little overlap between what I'd do and what they are doing. . .

    Wonder how one says "authentic" in Cantonese . . .

    EDIT: Turns out I'm wrong and the G45 is American-made, on the same assembly line as the J45. You may still be correct, as I don't know the differences in bracing and construction techniques between the two.
    NAMM 2019: Gibson launches Generation G-45 acoustics - Guitar.com | All Things Guitar
    At $999 for the Studio and $1,299 for the Standard, they aren't exactly what "beginner" brings to my mind. But I don't think those are necessarily bad prices for a big name American-made acoustic.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2019
    Picton likes this.
  9. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    I can’t begin to express how utterly disgusted I am with Gibson right now. Henry J. royally screwed up the company because he was arrogant and clueless. This new team is about to screw it up just as bad because they think they know better what Gibson’s customer base actually wants than it’s customers themselves do. And they think they can retool it to operate with a fashion industry mindset and succeed by putting form ahead of function.

    Henry’s ego didn’t understand or care what Gibson’s customers were looking for. This new team apparently does understand what Gibson customers want, but has decided they’re wrong, and has now set itself the task of convincing them otherwise. That takes an even greater level of egotism and arrogance.
    FRoss6788, Picton and Mike Whitfield like this.
  10. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    if the G45 is that, then what's the point? they already have the J15, which was released as a reasonably priced dread on henry's watch - then they pumped up the price on but is a truly wonderful and gorgeous guitar that sounds beautiful and is made partly with a sustainable wood - walnut. they could just lower the price back to the original price.

    most beginners i know start on a guitar that costs around $300 to $500, some at $199, and many start at that price because their parents have to pay for it. i guess the new CEO doesn't know much about people in general.

    i agree with most of what you said. but i don't think the new team does understand what gibson or guitar and bass playing customers want, and they didn't care enough to find out. they'll just do what they do, and they feel confident it'll work. according to the quote above yours, the G45 is going to be a "beginner" bass at $1000. in what parallel universe does a beginner on acoustic guitar spend $1000? you can get a solid top yamaha for under $300 that sounds good and the really great sounding seagull original S6 for $450.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2019
    Mike Whitfield likes this.
  11. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    I think they (like Henry) are hoping to trade on the whole “made in the good ol’ USA” and “a part of our American heritage” schtick do many companies that allowed themselves to fall behind the curve belatedly try to employ when they realize their products can no longer compete on their merits.

    They had plenty of input from their dealer network, suppliers, and client base when they took the helm. They actively solicited outside input. And anybody you talked to said they were telling Gibson the same thing. There was no mention of marketing mumbo-jumbo like “lifestyle” or “experience.” The message from the outside world was clear: focus on quality first and foremost; be attentive and responsive to your customer and dealer concerns, do what you can to contain costs, and don’t get distracted by anything else until Gibson is back on track and building great guitars across the board again.

    And supposedly that’s what they were committed to doing. But suddenly…this?

    I get the feeling some outside influence (some major stakeholder or creditor’s legal team perhaps?) entered into the picture and decided to show these musician types “how they do things in the big city” by pursuing every possible potential revenue source.

    Whatever. At this stage I no longer care what happens to Gibson as long as they’re going in their current direction.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2019
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  12. WhtMtnGrv

    WhtMtnGrv Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2015
    Los Angeles, CA
    Weren’t you leaving?
    FRoss6788 likes this.
  13. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    i believe they asked dealers and clients so it would make them seem engaged. they obviously didn't have any interest in applying all that input afterward.

    btw, the board and investors let henry put robo tuners on all those guitars after they knew they weren't selling. it could be they want more ROI faster, which is usually the way to guarantee less income in the longtime unless you REALLY know what you're doing.

    i guess i care what happens to gibson enough to be angry. they had a chance to do it right but at best they're careless. shouldn't they care what happens to their iconic brand?
    40Hz and Mike Whitfield like this.
  14. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Their brand by acquisition. Not necessarily their brand in terms of gut commitment.

    Sad thing is it’d be so easy to fix Gibson Guitars. Just split them off from the mothership and let them go back to being just a guitar company.

    Fixing Gibson Brands is a whole other thing.
  15. Picton


    Aug 16, 2017
    Reading, MA

    SO easy. But the new owners aren’t guitar makers.
    FRoss6788, 40Hz and Mike Whitfield like this.
  16. Tim Schnautz

    Tim Schnautz

    Jan 30, 2000
    FRoss6788 and Mike Whitfield like this.
  17. Mike Whitfield

    Mike Whitfield

    Apr 10, 2019
    I think the J-45 was all solid wood and Gibson probably decided that the problem was that the $1,700 price tag was too high for beginners. Thus the G-45, which is also spruce and walnut but uses laminates (I'm guessing the spruce top is solid though; a $1,000 laminate top guitar would be truly insane.) Unless the beginner is a doctor, lawyer, CXO, trust fund baby or high level bureaucrat, I suspect the G-45 will also be a poor seller. For instance, the Seagull Excursion solid spruce/walnut laminate body sells for around $400 and is also made in North America, specifically Canada which is hardly a third world nation regarding labor costs. A 150% up charge for the Gibson name (or USA versus Canada) seems to me to be a bridge too far even before Gibson descended into creepy madness, but I guess we'll see.

    It's also worth pointing out that Taylor and Martin, both companies whose acoustics have an even better reputation than Gibson's, have American-made versions for $800 or lower and beginner guitars in the $400 to $500 range. However, both companies are getting very cagey about telling you where a guitar is built as they are moving some production to Mexico so I'm unsure exactly how much of a premium Gibson is demanding. Martin in particular can no longer label anything as "made in America" because even their highest level guitars use some imported parts and materials. Except for Gibson's recent dip into dickery I'd pay an extra $200 to get a true made in American Gibson over a kinda made in America Martin, but I wouldn't pay a premium to get Gibson over an American Taylor as Taylor is probably the best big name acoustic made today IMO - even if it isn't a "lifestyle".
  18. Mike Whitfield

    Mike Whitfield

    Apr 10, 2019
    Again, just like politicians. We're having a listening tour to ask what our dealers and customers want, but we've already decided what we're going to do. We just want credit for listening without actually having to listen.
    Tim Schnautz likes this.
  19. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    The cynical realist in me says, just as soon as KKR sucks Gibson, and every competitor dry..............
    Mike Whitfield and Wisebass like this.
  20. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Your opinion strikes me as being far more of a realist than cynic. :):thumbsup:

    Wouldn’t surprise me at all if KKR is where the impetus for the recent resumption of Gibson’s IP lawsuits came from.

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