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Folk Guitar

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jbow88
(@jbow88)
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Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 4
Topic starter  

Hey! So, I have recently started picking up folk guitar, and I am thinking about getting a new guitar some time in the next several months. My price range will probably be around $800 or so, and I am wondering what I should be looking for in a folk guitar. Any suggestions on brands, styles, materials, et cetera?


   
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Blue Jay
(@blue-jay)
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Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 1630
 

Hi "j". What size would you like, and what style would best suit you? Concert size, bell-shape, dreadnaught or jumbo?

Any cutaway or electronics on board? Thinkin' Takamine already. :wink:

Any preference in length of scale, short 24 3/4" or std. 26 1/2"?

Basically, where do you live; does your "hey" mean U.S.A.? :lol:

You could get a really nice Martin out of Pennsylvania. :D

Here's my take on woods. Rosewood back & sides for a deeper, full, woody timbre. Mahogany tends to be brighter. Maple is brighter and punchier even moreso, IMO.

For the top, solid spruce or Engleman Spruce for a good balance, nice & even from basses to vibrant or shimmering trebles. Cedar offers bright, pronounced midranges, yeah more color and emphasis on the mids, I think.

Like a bird on the wire,
like a drunk in a midnight choir
I have tried in my way to be free.


   
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lue42
(@lue42)
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Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 356
 

Seagull.

'Nuf said.

:)

My Fingerstyle Guitar Blog:
http://fsguitar.wordpress.com

My Guitars
Ibanez Artwood AWS1000ECE-NT
Schecter S-1 30th Anniversary Edition
Ovation CS257
LaPatrie Etude
Washburn Rover RO10


   
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jbow88
(@jbow88)
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Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 4
Topic starter  

Yeah, I am from the U.S. I would like a cutaway, and I wouldn't mind an acoustic-electric. I think I would prefer a longer rather than shorter guitar. As for style, I really don't know. I haven't played on that great a variety of guitar types, so I'm not sure which I would prefer. Any thoughts? And as long as we're at it, any suggestions for strings? I am still experimenting with them...


   
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Rich_Halford
(@rich_halford)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 225
 

Theres a lot of great guitars around for that money, so it would be good to know more about what you like, what you have now and so on.

Having said that, this guitar looks like a lot of guitar for the money:

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Epiphone-Masterbilt-EF-500RCCE-Fingerstyle-Acoustic-Electric-Guitar-519154-i1427379.gc

I haven't played one mind, just read good reviews. I tried a Yamaha once, something like an LL16 or some such and it was awesome for that sort of money.

Good luck with your search.


   
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lue42
(@lue42)
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Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 356
 

My favorite acoustic strings right now are "Silk and steel"... I have tried a couple of brands, and don't have a preference. I highly recommend trying a set!

My Fingerstyle Guitar Blog:
http://fsguitar.wordpress.com

My Guitars
Ibanez Artwood AWS1000ECE-NT
Schecter S-1 30th Anniversary Edition
Ovation CS257
LaPatrie Etude
Washburn Rover RO10


   
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Blue Jay
(@blue-jay)
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Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 1630
 

Good description now to work with - you'd like a cutaway with electronics.

That Epiphone at the Guitar Center link looks really good. And here is Seagull's answer or similar offering: http://www.guitarcenter.com/Seagull-Performer-Cutaway-Flame-Maple-High-Gloss-QI-Acoustic-Electric-Guitar-581750-i1447873.gc

I have been very satisfied with every Seagull and Godin product that I have owned, though I'm not the one who recommended it here. They stand up to their reputation, and the product delivers.

I've just sold my Takamine A/E, less than a year old, no reason, just to make space, and moreso because a lady wanted it and was able to put it to good use. Anyhow, there are plenty of good Tak's out there, but I think that Seagull stacks up better for the price - they certainly have less, or maybe no flaws. They are built in North America too, and they seem already adapted to our climate.

However I continue to play Gibson and Garrison acoustic guitars, which have remained over the years while others have come and gone. I've tried to experience and work with as many brands as possible, and then... it's not relevant, but they go to good homes, all "spruced up". :lol:

Garrison is my main A/E now and forever maybe, I got it from my daughter, and I would have recommended it, but they have been acquired by Gibson and discontinued or evolved per these links. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garrison_Guitars and http://www.gibson.com/allaccessfeatures.aspx?aliaspath=/zTrash/AllAccess/Gibson%20Announces%20Acquisition%20o

There are so many string brands to try as well, however I buy D'Addario acoustics (light) most often; no more Martin or Gibson sets which don't seem as bright IMO. Depends on which sound you like. Occasionally I get John Pearse phosphor bronze for something really bright, but that's because I like brightness or sparkle as opposed to mellow or muted. :roll:

Like a bird on the wire,
like a drunk in a midnight choir
I have tried in my way to be free.


   
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Anonymous
(@anonymous)
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Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 8184
 

play as many guitars as you can, then hopefully you will be able to answer the question yourself. i could recommend larivees or takamines or guilds, and someone else could recommend martins or alvarez or gibson or whatever, but the best answer is to just play as many as possible until you can decide for yourself.


   
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Scrybe
(@scrybe)
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Joined: 15 years ago
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play as many guitars as you can, then hopefully you will be able to answer the question yourself. i could recommend larivees or takamines or guilds, and someone else could recommend martins or alvarez or gibson or whatever, but the best answer is to just play as many as possible until you can decide for yourself.

+1

Ra Er Ga.

Ninjazz have SuperChops.

http://www.blipfoto.com/Scrybe


   
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KR2
 KR2
(@kr2)
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this guitar looks like a lot of guitar for the money:
http://www.guitarcenter.com/Epiphone-Masterbilt-EF-500RCCE-Fingerstyle-Acoustic-Electric-Guitar-519154-i1427379.gc

I'm interested in this topic too . . . and have a question.
This guitar is called 'fingerstyle'.
What attributes does it have that would make it fingerstyle?
If I'm interested in finger picking as a style of playing, is this type of guitar better?
(OK, that's two questions.)

It's the rock that gives the stream its music . . . and the stream that gives the rock its roll.


   
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David Hodge
(@davidhodge)
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Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 4472
 

All this is, of course, a matter of personal taste, but in general, most people find a guitar to be more "fingerstyle" than strumming for one or more of the following reasons:

Non-dreadnaught style body - usually gives the guitar a more balanced sound across all tones from bass to treble. Dreadnaughts tend to be boomy in the bass and the middles get a little lost. Classical shaped guitars - "folk style" or "jumbo" that are less boxy and have a more pronounced hips and waist are usually preferred.

Wider fingerboard - again, the closer something is to a classical (made primarily for fingerstyle), usually the more people find it a friendlier fingerstyle guitar. Strings that are a little more widely spaced than the typical acoustic give you more room to work the fingers on both hands. The slightly wider fretboard is a major reason some people really like (and others really don't like) Seagull guitars.

Solid cedar top - many people find cedar to have a mellower and smoother sound than solid spruce tops. The distinction does make some choose a cedar top guitar as their "fingerstyle" guitar.

As mentioned, none of this is written in stone, but you will often find these reasons mentioned by people when they are looking for a guitar that they want to primarily use for fingerstyle playing. It's not necessarily "better" - more importantly, having a guitar with all this will not make you a better fingerstyle player. When you get to be one, it may help you find the sound you're looking for.

Hope this helps.

Peace


   
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KR2
 KR2
(@kr2)
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Hope this helps.

Yes it does.
The wider fretboard makes sense too.
Thank you, David

It's the rock that gives the stream its music . . . and the stream that gives the rock its roll.


   
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jbow88
(@jbow88)
Active Member
Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 4
Topic starter  

Thanks! I am still going to search around a bit and play a variety of instruments before I settle on one, but now I have a place to start, and I feel much better going into it with a little more background information. Quick question, though. Someone mentioned silk and steel strings. I have never ran into them before. Are they a brand or a style? And what are their defining features?


   
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lue42
(@lue42)
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Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 356
 

Silk and steel are just a type of string, not a specific brand.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strings_%28music%29#Winding_2

Here is one example:
http://store.daddario.com/category/144860/Silk_&%3B_Steel

I highly, highly recommend trying a set... for the cost, it is worth it.

My Fingerstyle Guitar Blog:
http://fsguitar.wordpress.com

My Guitars
Ibanez Artwood AWS1000ECE-NT
Schecter S-1 30th Anniversary Edition
Ovation CS257
LaPatrie Etude
Washburn Rover RO10


   
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