Which Type of Guitar Buyer Are You?

February 28, 2020 3 min read

Which Type of Guitar Buyer Are You?

It sounds painfully obvious to say it, but if you’re a Thalia fan, then you’re a fan of guitars. 

And you probably own a few of them, too. 

As we all know, the right number of guitars to own is always one more than you currently have. Yes, there are individuals that have a monogamous relationship with one instrument. But we’re betting that the majority of readers have a couple of six strings on the go at any given time.

We all like to buy guitars. However, not all guitar buyers are alike. In our experience, there are three kinds of guitar buyer out there. And, there are pros and cons to each approach.    

The Kid in the Candy Store

When you’re a kid in a candy store, you want to sample everything that the guitar market has to offer. Whether it’s a semi-hollow, double neck, baritone or baroque guitar, you need it in your collection. 

The major upside to being a Kid in a Candy Store is that you end up with lots of guitars. But, buying guitars as often as you do means making some compromises. If you’re a six-string slinger who wants a bit of everything, there’s a ceiling on the amount you can spend per instrument. Yes, you have the most guitars, but they’re not always the best guitars.

You’ve also got the headache of justifying each additional guitar purchase to your spouse. We understand why the Les Paul with the P90s is different from the Les Paul with Humbuckers that you already own. Unfortunately, they probably don’t…

 

The Endless Swapper

The Endless Swapper shares some characteristics with the Kid in the Candy Store, but they differ in one key respect. The Endless Swapper purchases instruments at about the same rate as the KITCS, perhaps even faster. However, while the KITCS is a hoarder of all things strung, the Endless Swapper is often done with an instrument almost as soon as they’ve bought it.

The advantage to this approach is that the Endless Swapper is rarely lacking in capital. Indeed, if they’re a savvy shopper, they’re often making a profit on their purchases and using that to fund the next instrument. As a result, they buy better guitars than the KITCS, while still getting to sample a wide range of gear.

And the downside? The Endless Swapper is almost never satisfied. They’re constantly searching for the next guitar revelation, but rarely content with the instrument they end up with. Even worse, they’re prone to seller’s remorse. You often don’t realise you’ve got a good thing until it’s gone, and the Endless Swapper is guilty of selling on axes they really shouldn’t have. 

The Big Spender

Unlike the Kid in the Candy Store or the Endless Swapper, Big Spenders don’t buy guitars very often. But when they do, they do it in style.

Big Spenders favour the finer things in life; custom shop models, custom builds and vintage icons. And, they’re not afraid to splash the cash on them either. Their thinking is, “why buy a Porsche every year when I can have a Ferrari every ten?”

The biggest plus to being a Big Spender is that you end up with some seriously nice guitars. You only play the crème de la crème; the instruments in your collection are the envy of many a guitar player out there.

On the flip side, though; you don’t get very many of them. Variety is the spice of life after all, and the Big Spender never samples the range of guitars that the KITCS or ES does. Also, when you’re a Big Spender, every guitar purchase is a serious decision. Spur of the moment purchases, impulse buys and serendipitous pawn shop finds are few and far between for the Big Spender, who has to agonise over the pros and cons of each buy. When you’re spending big money, it’s not just a guitar; it’s an investment.

Which type of guitar buyer are you? And are there any other types we didn’t mention in this post. As always, share your stories in the comments.   



Also in Fingerboard Stories

What is the One Gig You Wish You’d Seen?
What is the One Gig You Wish You’d Seen?

October 28, 2021 2 min read

Then there are those artists that I can still see live today, but wish I had witnessed in their imperial phase. To have seen the Stones in ’69 or ’72, supporting the releases of landmark albums like Let it Bleed and Exile on Main Street would be nothing short of exhilarating. Or to catch Dylan in the turbulent mid-1960s, on the cusp of electrifying his sound and completely changing the game.
Master of Puppets: Revisiting Metallica’s Masterpiece
Master of Puppets: Revisiting Metallica’s Masterpiece

October 21, 2021 3 min read

“When I saw two kids who worked there in London wearing T-shirts of a local San Francisco band, I knew I was onto something. When I heard their record, I knew they were the one band that could sell to both mainstream and underground metal audiences.”
The Story Behind Willie Nelson’s “Trigger” Guitar
The Story Behind Willie Nelson’s “Trigger” Guitar

October 15, 2021 3 min read

In the early days of his career, Willie Nelson went through a variety of guitars. Nelson was signed to RCA records, and that meant that plenty of guitar manufacturers were lining up to gift him instruments to test. Willie started out on Fenders, experimenting with Telecasters, Jaguars and Jazzmasters, before switching to Gibsons. Then, in 1969, the Baldwin Company offered Nelson one of their 800C Classical Acoustic-Electrics, complete with a Prismatone pickup and amp.