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#1: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 18:11:02 by Jazz Guy

Why does no one seem to play/like/own/mention the Gibson Barney Kessel
Guitars?

Even Barney Kessel didn't play them very often.

Here's a nice one:
<a href="http://www.gguitars.com/gib564380.html" target="_blank">http://www.gguitars.com/gib564380.html</a>

I have a smaller 16inch Barney Kessel Kasuga Japan copy from the 1970's
and to me it sound great, but obviously not as good as my 1949 Gibson
L4C.

Guy

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#2: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 18:37:16 by derek

I played a 68 a few months ago, and discovered a couple of things I
didn't like about it. First, it is a bit neck heavy. The headstock
is really big, and the body is pretty small, not well balanced to my
hands. Second, I thought the neck was too narrow for my preference.
Lastly, due to the long scale and the longer than usual headstock, I
have been told that it is tricky changing strings on the 4th and 3rd,
as you are running out of extra string to wind. Dunno if that is true
or not. The one I played had a cool vibe though, just not my taste.

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#3: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 18:44:31 by Starcaster

One word does it for me: Fugly

Sorry, just one man's opinion... well, probably not just one!

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#4: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 18:51:27 by Joe Finn

&quot;Jazz Guy&quot; &lt;<a href="mailto:RecordingMusic&#64;hotmail.com" target="_blank">RecordingMusic&#64;hotmail.com</a>&gt; wrote in message
news:<a href="mailto:1149264662.197901.135360&#64;j55g2000cwa.googlegroups.com..." target="_blank">1149264662.197901.135360&#64;j55g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...</a>
&gt; Why does no one seem to play/like/own/mention the Gibson Barney Kessel
&gt; Guitars?


Sound wise and in terms of playability this model is every inch a Gibson.
That characteristic neck profile and the way those humbuckers sing out is
something you don't get from other brands. Only a Gibson sounds and plays
like a Gibson. I've played the Barney model and it's a sweetheart; as fine
as wine.

I think the double cutaway is seen by many as at least a little eccentric.
This is the only thing I can think of that detracts from an otherwise
outstanding instrument.
.................joe

--
Visit me on the web www.JoeFinn.net

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#5: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 19:06:51 by markr

Joe Finn wrote:


&gt; Sound wise and in terms of playability this model is every inch a Gibson.
&gt; That characteristic neck profile and the way those humbuckers sing out is
&gt; something you don't get from other brands. Only a Gibson sounds and plays
&gt; like a Gibson. I've played the Barney model and it's a sweetheart; as fine
&gt; as wine.

You sound nostalgic there Mr. Finn. You wouldn't be contemplating a
switch now would you? :-D

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#6: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 19:07:47 by Mark Kleinhaut

Joe Finn wrote:
&gt; &quot;Jazz Guy&quot; &lt;<a href="mailto:RecordingMusic&#64;hotmail.com" target="_blank">RecordingMusic&#64;hotmail.com</a>&gt; wrote in message
&gt; news:<a href="mailto:1149264662.197901.135360&#64;j55g2000cwa.googlegroups.com..." target="_blank">1149264662.197901.135360&#64;j55g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...</a>
&gt; &gt; Why does no one seem to play/like/own/mention the Gibson Barney Kessel
&gt; &gt; Guitars?
&gt;
&gt;
&gt; Sound wise and in terms of playability this model is every inch a Gibson.
&gt; That characteristic neck profile and the way those humbuckers sing out is
&gt; something you don't get from other brands. Only a Gibson sounds and plays
&gt; like a Gibson. I've played the Barney model and it's a sweetheart; as fine
&gt; as wine.
&gt;
&gt; I think the double cutaway is seen by many as at least a little eccentric.
&gt; This is the only thing I can think of that detracts from an otherwise
&gt; outstanding instrument.
&gt; ................joe
&gt;
&gt; --
&gt; Visit me on the web www.JoeFinn.net

What Mr. Finn said! I owned/played one for a dozen years before the
custom/luthier/carved/floater bug bit me. Never shoulda sold it. Mine
was a '63 and they're a hell of a bargain if you can find one in good
shape.

www.markkleinhaut.com

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#7: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 19:21:20 by Tone

Derek wrote:
&gt; I played a 68 a few months ago, and discovered a couple of things I
&gt; didn't like about it. First, it is a bit neck heavy. The headstock
&gt; is really big, and the body is pretty small, not well balanced to my
&gt; hands. Second, I thought the neck was too narrow for my preference.
&gt; Lastly, due to the long scale and the longer than usual headstock, I
&gt; have been told that it is tricky changing strings on the 4th and 3rd,
&gt; as you are running out of extra string to wind. Dunno if that is true
&gt; or not. The one I played had a cool vibe though, just not my taste.


I think they are known for pencil thin necks. I think they are
(relatively) cheap due to the general agreement that they are ugly.
Not sure why 'the market' thinks that, I think they look great. A
little devilish maybe ;-)

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#8: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 20:34:38 by dannynikon1

Tone wrote:
&gt; Derek wrote:
&gt; &gt; I played a 68 a few months ago, and discovered a couple of things I
&gt; &gt; didn't like about it. First, it is a bit neck heavy. The headstock
&gt; &gt; is really big, and the body is pretty small, not well balanced to my
&gt; &gt; hands. Second, I thought the neck was too narrow for my preference.
&gt; &gt; Lastly, due to the long scale and the longer than usual headstock, I
&gt; &gt; have been told that it is tricky changing strings on the 4th and 3rd,
&gt; &gt; as you are running out of extra string to wind. Dunno if that is true
&gt; &gt; or not. The one I played had a cool vibe though, just not my taste.
&gt;
&gt;
&gt; I think they are known for pencil thin necks. I think they are
&gt; (relatively) cheap due to the general agreement that they are ugly.
&gt; Not sure why 'the market' thinks that, I think they look great. A
&gt; little devilish maybe ;-)

The very early ones, through the end of 1963 probably, had a neck joint
at the 14th fret, and nice wide, flat necks. I tthink these are much
better guitars than the later ones, which felt more like oversized
335's. I had a BK Custom from 1963 that was an outstanding instrument.

Danny W.

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#9: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 20:53:54 by dunlop212

Most Gibsons went to pencil necks in the mid-60s.

&gt;From the Gibson Guy site:

&quot;1960-1962: Thin neck back shape, even compared to today's standards
these necks don't have much wood behind the fingerboard and feel very
thin.
1963-1964: Larger neck shape, but still smaller than the 1950's
&quot;baseball bat&quot; style.
1965-1967: Most models have nut width dramatically reduced making the
neck feel very small. Back shape is about the same as the 1963-1964
era, but the narrow nut width makes these necks feel like &quot;pencil
necks&quot;. The pre-1965 neck width is around 1 11/16&quot;. The 1965 to 1967
neck width is 1 9/16&quot; or 1 5/8&quot;.
1968-present: Nut width increased back to 1 11/16&quot; and back shape
changed to 1963-1964 standards.
1970: Volute added to back of neck behind the nut.&quot;

There was also full depth double cut Trini Lopez model that looked like
a BK but had 6 on a side tuners.

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#10: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 21:47:35 by Greg clayton

The Nut width of 1 and 9/16th was used until halfway through 1969.[starting
around'66] These are the &quot;pencil thin&quot;necks people refer to.
What folks call &quot;1 and 5/8&quot; is usually 1 and 21/32 in other words a hair
less than 1 and 11/16th's These are found around late '64 and first half
of '65.
The early 60's usually have 1 and 11/16th nut width's.
Of course there are variations but I've found the above to be true 90% of
the time

Regarding the Kessel I think it's the Fugly factor too
I have tried a few that sounded and played great and if they had
had the single cutaway would be costing 2 or 3 times the price.
Greg

--
www.gregclayton.com
The official website of Jazz Guitarist Greg Clayton
&quot;dunlop212&quot; &lt;<a href="mailto:ed_hagen&#64;bellsouth.net" target="_blank">ed_hagen&#64;bellsouth.net</a>&gt; wrote in message
news:<a href="mailto:1149274434.617554.51730&#64;c74g2000cwc.googlegroups.com..." target="_blank">1149274434.617554.51730&#64;c74g2000cwc.googlegroups.com...</a>
&gt; Most Gibsons went to pencil necks in the mid-60s.
&gt;
&gt;&gt;From the Gibson Guy site:
&gt;
&gt; &quot;1960-1962: Thin neck back shape, even compared to today's standards
&gt; these necks don't have much wood behind the fingerboard and feel very
&gt; thin.
&gt; 1963-1964: Larger neck shape, but still smaller than the 1950's
&gt; &quot;baseball bat&quot; style.
&gt; 1965-1967: Most models have nut width dramatically reduced making the
&gt; neck feel very small. Back shape is about the same as the 1963-1964
&gt; era, but the narrow nut width makes these necks feel like &quot;pencil
&gt; necks&quot;. The pre-1965 neck width is around 1 11/16&quot;. The 1965 to 1967
&gt; neck width is 1 9/16&quot; or 1 5/8&quot;.
&gt; 1968-present: Nut width increased back to 1 11/16&quot; and back shape
&gt; changed to 1963-1964 standards.
&gt; 1970: Volute added to back of neck behind the nut.&quot;
&gt;
&gt; There was also full depth double cut Trini Lopez model that looked like
&gt; a BK but had 6 on a side tuners.
&gt;

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#11: Re: What's wrong with Gibson Barney Kessel Guitars?

Posted on 2006-06-02 23:16:33 by derek

There is a really nice 67 for your viewing pleasure at Gruhn's in
Nashville. www.gruhn.com

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