32 PREMIER GUITAR NOVEMBER 2009 www.premierguitar.com
A New Era for PRS
In a surprising announcement at Experience
PRS, PRS Guitars discontinued 13 models and
a number of finish options in their product line.
This year, the company is celebrating their 25th
anniversary, and is releasing 11 new 25th anniversary models.
“We’re coming to the end of an era,” said
The models discontinued as of September 29 are:
Paul at the Experience PRS press confer-
ence. “Within a year from now, almost
everything we make except artist models
will have been changed ... almost like when
Marshall went from small logo to large logo,
The new models feature a new headstock
design that departs from the Paul Reed Smith
signature. The 25th anniversary models fea-
ture a silhouette of the company’s famous
eagle symbol with a small “25th” logo.
• Custom 22
• Swamp Ash Special
• ME 2
• 513 MT
• SC 245
• SC 250
• Sunburst 22
• Sunburst 245
• HB I
New models include many 25th anniversary
• SC HB I
• 513 STD
• Santana MD
The company is also discontinuing the colors
Blue Matteo, Tortoise Shell, Orange, Scarlet Red,
Black Sunburst, Natural, Vintage Yellow and Gray
Black. As of January 1, the famous paisley amp
pattern will also be discontinued.
variations of the discontinued models:
• 25th Modern Eagle II
• 25th Modern Eagle III
• 25th Santana
• 25th 305 Limited Edition (305 pieces)
• 25th Hollowbody II CB
• 25th Singlecut Hollowbody II CB
• 25th Swamp Ash Special - NF
• 25th Custom
• 25th McCarty - NF
• 25th SC 245
• 25th 513 MT
• 25th Mira 245
New finishes are Black Slate, Fire Red Burst,
Matteo Mist, Charcoal Burst, Evergreen (with
natural back), and Grandma Hannon Pink (305
and 513 Swamp Ash only).
Gibson Unveils a Hendrix Strat-Style
Guitar ... NOT!
The last week of September proved to be
an interesting week for the folks at Gibson
Guitar in Nashville, TN. First came the news
that the iconic guitar company was partnering with Janie Hendrix and Authentic
Hendrix, LLC, to produce a brand new series
of Strat-style Jimi Hendrix signature guitars.
That’s right … Gibson was set to unveil
to the world a Strat-style guitar with Jimi
Hendrix’s name on it.
Imagine Ford announcing a new Camaro,
or Chevrolet unveiling a new Mustang …
get the picture?
The fact that it was a Jimi Hendrix signature guitar almost made it palatable, but …
The stunning announcement was first reported by several music news outlets, including
preimerguitar.com and musicradar.com, and
that’s when things got interesting. Almost
immediately, hundreds of onliners began
leaving, shall we say, unenthusiastic remarks
in the comment sections of the web pages
announcing the news.
Here’s a sampling of the comments that
appeared at premierguitar.com:
“What a disaster on both ends. If the Hendrix
estate wanted to make a few bucks on a project like this then Fender would have been the
natural choice. Gibson really blew it. Someone
sure did underestimate the Hendrix/Strat connection. But don’t worry boys and girls whatever items were produced will be airbrushed
over and be sold at Guitar Center under the
Epiphone brand.” – Ismael
“Whoever conceived this is obviously lame as
far as being knowledgeable about this market.
Most likely it was conceived by out of touch
marketing folks that have no clue about [what]
they are doing...it will seriously dilute Gibson’s
reputation and market image, continuing to
make it a second tier instrument company
that will never recapture the position it once
had as a premier American musical instrument
company. Lame!” – DK
“ATTENTION GIBSON: It has come to our attention that the brown acid circulating around is not
good. Under no circumstances should guitars be
designed after taking the brown acid!” – D-Day
“This is wrong on so many levels. The guy in
charge must not have a shred of class. I can’t
believe it. This is a new low for the Gibson
company.” – Teddy Bear
Frankly, we don’t really know what happened.
Maybe the contract between Authentic Hendrix
and Gibson hit a snag, or maybe some of the
corporate folks at Gibson got wind of the comments. Either way, four days later every mention
of the Gibson Hendrix Strats—including product
pages, press photos, disapproving comments,
etc.—were gone from the company’s website.
Everything had vanished into thin air. Poof!
Of course, we’re not rushing to judgment here.
But our assumption (hope) is that Gibson finally
received the results of all the focus groups
conducted prior to the launch of these ill-fated
guitars, which—of course—weren’t favorable
and lead to the decision to pull the plug on the
whole enchilada. That’s what good marketing
departments do, right?
Or maybe it was all just a dream?
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