Strats.

All things guitar, Les Pauls, Strats, Teles, Tokai, Ibanez etc. etc. etc.

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Slowy
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Strats.

Post by Slowy »

I played a Strat exclusively for 16 years, turning it from a mint example into the well worn thing I sold to Molly. I retained an American G&L Legacy that is to this day a perfect tool. It's lovely to play and if you want a Strat sound, any Strat sound, it's right there.

I know what I like in a Strat. If I was to buy another Fender, I'd be amazed if it wasn't an Eric Johnson signature. They feel the same as the 1954 Anniversary I sold to Molly and it just feels right to me.

What I'm getting at is Strats have always been a pragmatic and slightly intellectual exercise for me; a power tool that needs to fulfill a job description. I'm wondering if there's a Strat that can put passion into the mix and how I'd go about finding it.
I naturally feel more passion for acoustics because I'm wired that way. (I wish I wasn't; good acoustics make R9's look cheap!)

This musing has been triggered by the cheap old Yamaha I bought. It has limitations and problems but it makes me happy and inspires me to address its issues which I will do. I haven't played with another person for nearly a year now and my criteria for a good electric seems to have shifted a bit. Rather than instruments that sit well in a mix and are controllable on stage, I want things that make me want to pick them up at home and put a silly grin on my face.
Beyond a critical point within a finite space, freedom diminishes as numbers increase. This is as true of humans as it is of gas molecules in a sealed flask. The human question is not how many can possibly survive within the system, but what kind of existence is possible for those who so survive.

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Re: Strats.

Post by jeremyb »

Worn makes a huge difference, mine came pre-worn despite being new, then I changed the electrics to get the toan I wanted, its a journey!
Slowy wrote: That's the problem; everything rewarding is just such hard work. Regret takes much less effort.

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Re: Strats.

Post by Molly »

I could spec a Strat to very, very fine detail. It doesn't exist off the peg.

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Re: Strats.

Post by kdawg2a »

Slowy wrote: Fri Feb 23, 2024 8:06 pm I played a Strat exclusively for 16 years, turning it from a mint example into the well worn thing I sold to Molly. I retained an American G&L Legacy that is to this day a perfect tool. It's lovely to play and if you want a Strat sound, any Strat sound, it's right there.

I know what I like in a Strat. If I was to buy another Fender, I'd be amazed if it wasn't an Eric Johnson signature. They feel the same as the 1954 Anniversary I sold to Molly and it just feels right to me.

What I'm getting at is Strats have always been a pragmatic and slightly intellectual exercise for me; a power tool that needs to fulfill a job description. I'm wondering if there's a Strat that can put passion into the mix and how I'd go about finding it.
I naturally feel more passion for acoustics because I'm wired that way. (I wish I wasn't; good acoustics make R9's look cheap!)

This musing has been triggered by the cheap old Yamaha I bought. It has limitations and problems but it makes me happy and inspires me to address its issues which I will do. I haven't played with another person for nearly a year now and my criteria for a good electric seems to have shifted a bit. Rather than instruments that sit well in a mix and are controllable on stage, I want things that make me want to pick them up at home and put a silly grin on my face.
Strats are great guitars. They sound good, they feel nice to play, they're easy to mod if you need something different from them. Despite the fact that when they first came out they looked like they were from the moon, they're the most common guitar in the world so they seem a little boring now.
Maybe what your finding with the Yamaha is it has more limitations than the Strat and you're responding to them. I've always found that using imperfect guitars makes me fight a little more and their limitations force me to be a little more creative. There's nothing wrong with a PRS but those reasons mentioned mean I've never gelled with them.
1935 Martin D-45, 1942 Gibson Southern Jumbo,1950 Fender Broadcaster, 1954 Fender Strat, 1958 Gibson Moderne prototype, 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard.
1958 Fender twin, 1965 Vox AC30, 1966 Marshall JTM 45, 1977 Dumble OD Special.
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Re: Strats.

Post by Aquila Rossa »

Probably over half of my favourite players primarily played a mostly stock Stratocaster, e.g., Rory Gallagher, early Dave Gilmour, Jimi Hendrix, SRV, or early Ritchie Blackmore, etc. Over half of the ones that did not play a Strat played some form of heavily modded Strat or super Strat, e.g., Dave Murray, Eddie Van Halen, Jake E Lee, and Yngwie J Malmsteen etc. It's a prolific design.

A Strat has a quite unique sound that most guitar players get to know and can identify by ear in a record without seeing the guitar.

One thing I have noticed is many of the improvements made to Strats by Fender over the decades, or by players can have the effect of making them sound less Stratty. Leo was trying to be the Henry Ford of guitars. A decent product that's mass producible and mass affordable, rather than master built and custom shop unaffordable. The choices he made back then resulted in the identifiable sound of the Strat. Maybe not always the best choices, but choices that added up to make that sound. Maybe not the best sound either, but it is what it is and no other guitar design can quite sound that way.

Six screws holding down a finicky tremolo with stamped steel saddles that have finicky little hex screws. A bolt on neck intended to be disposable. Single coil pickups that were noisy and did not have a very strong output. No tone pot to tame the very bright and thin sounding bridge pickup. Not much break angle over the nut. Et cetera. It all added up to that Strat sound. We can improve on all that stuff, but it might not sound as much like a Strat.

I like them when others play them, but less so when I play them. I have had a few of them over the years, but always sell them due to them not being played. The closest I have got to getting on with one is my Mexican Standard. I think I know why now. Narrower string spacing than the US ones I had. It feels more comfy to me. I have slightly Yngwie-Gilmour-fied it though, so it is less Stratty sounding.
Last edited by Aquila Rossa on Sat Feb 24, 2024 10:15 am, edited 8 times in total.

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Re: Strats.

Post by murky »

I feel the question that needs answering first is, are you:

Toyota -> Lexus?

or

Toyota -> 67 Mustang Fastback?

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Re: Strats.

Post by olegmcnoleg »

Slowy wrote: Fri Feb 23, 2024 8:06 pm I played a Strat exclusively for 16 years, turning it from a mint example into the well worn thing I sold to Molly. I retained an American G&L Legacy that is to this day a perfect tool. It's lovely to play and if you want a Strat sound, any Strat sound, it's right there.

I know what I like in a Strat. If I was to buy another Fender, I'd be amazed if it wasn't an Eric Johnson signature. They feel the same as the 1954 Anniversary I sold to Molly and it just feels right to me.

What I'm getting at is Strats have always been a pragmatic and slightly intellectual exercise for me; a power tool that needs to fulfill a job description. I'm wondering if there's a Strat that can put passion into the mix and how I'd go about finding it.
I naturally feel more passion for acoustics because I'm wired that way. (I wish I wasn't; good acoustics make R9's look cheap!)

This musing has been triggered by the cheap old Yamaha I bought. It has limitations and problems but it makes me happy and inspires me to address its issues which I will do. I haven't played with another person for nearly a year now and my criteria for a good electric seems to have shifted a bit. Rather than instruments that sit well in a mix and are controllable on stage, I want things that make me want to pick them up at home and put a silly grin on my face.
I'm with you on the EJ. That's the best Fender-made Strat I've owned for playability, features & useful tones. The bridge tone control is a big advantage. The neck is beefy. The only thing I like more is the Tom Anderson classic :-)

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Re: Strats.

Post by blackstratblues »

The EJ is the best production model Strat currently. You could find them for 1200 USD all day.
After getting my first, I bought 2 more ;)

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Re: Strats.

Post by olegmcnoleg »

blackstratblues wrote: Sat Feb 24, 2024 12:36 pm The EJ is the best production model Strat currently. You could find them for 1200 USD all day.
After getting my first, I bought 2 more ;)
I stupidly traded mine, wish I still had it.

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Re: Strats.

Post by Slowy »

murky wrote: Sat Feb 24, 2024 10:04 am I feel the question that needs answering first is, are you:

Toyota -> Lexus?

or

Toyota -> 67 Mustang Fastback?
The USA has yet to make a car that I have the slightest desire to own so I guess that answers the question. :D
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Re: Strats.

Post by Slowy »

Molly wrote: Fri Feb 23, 2024 10:27 pm I could spec a Strat to very, very fine detail. It doesn't exist off the peg.
You're the man to ask:
I like the EJ Strats because to me, they feel like my old one (do you still have it?)
How would you compare it to the EJ's you've had?
Beyond a critical point within a finite space, freedom diminishes as numbers increase. This is as true of humans as it is of gas molecules in a sealed flask. The human question is not how many can possibly survive within the system, but what kind of existence is possible for those who so survive.

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Re: Strats.

Post by Molly »

Slowy wrote: Sun Feb 25, 2024 6:37 am
Molly wrote: Fri Feb 23, 2024 10:27 pm I could spec a Strat to very, very fine detail. It doesn't exist off the peg.
You're the man to ask:
I like the EJ Strats because to me, they feel like my old one (do you still have it?)
How would you compare it to the EJ's you've had?
Aside from the radius and fret size they're very similar. The EJ also has a quarter-sawn neck. I'm not fond of that. Pretty but to me there's an immediacy to QS that I don't like. Sounds like cork-sniffy arse but that's my feeling about it.

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Re: Strats.

Post by Slowy »

https://www.trademe.co.nz/a/marketplace ... 4572642372

This has got me intrigued. I have a lot of respect for Godin and this is supposedly their best work. Opinions?
Beyond a critical point within a finite space, freedom diminishes as numbers increase. This is as true of humans as it is of gas molecules in a sealed flask. The human question is not how many can possibly survive within the system, but what kind of existence is possible for those who so survive.

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Re: Strats.

Post by jeremyb »

Slowy wrote: Mon Feb 26, 2024 4:08 pm https://www.trademe.co.nz/a/marketplace ... 4572642372

This has got me intrigued. I have a lot of respect for Godin and this is supposedly their best work. Opinions?
Its a shame it looks like your Nan's sideboard!
Slowy wrote: That's the problem; everything rewarding is just such hard work. Regret takes much less effort.

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Re: Strats.

Post by Slowy »

jeremyb wrote: Mon Feb 26, 2024 4:09 pm
Slowy wrote: Mon Feb 26, 2024 4:08 pm https://www.trademe.co.nz/a/marketplace ... 4572642372

This has got me intrigued. I have a lot of respect for Godin and this is supposedly their best work. Opinions?
Its a shame it looks like your Nan's sideboard!
No. My Nan's sideboard is Oak. I have it here. I like oak.
But it does look like it should be sitting in a leather armchair with a Romeo y Julietta cigar and a glass of fine cognac.
If you play a guitar with your eyes, get a flametop Lester. :D
Beyond a critical point within a finite space, freedom diminishes as numbers increase. This is as true of humans as it is of gas molecules in a sealed flask. The human question is not how many can possibly survive within the system, but what kind of existence is possible for those who so survive.

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