Hey gang! Joined TAC last Saturday hoping to learn skills to improve my overall guitar knowledge and apply it to my electrics I've been learning on... and apparently I got inspired enough to get my first acoustic guitar! I'm blaming Guitar Center for having a %15 off President's Day sale 😉
So Sunday I dragged my little Princess to GC and traded in some old gear I wasn't really using and bought a Luna Heartsong. Was actually headed there to see a Breedlove mahogany but the website lied and they didn't have one in stock. So I took my Luna home and started playing around with it. Did little research here and there. Actually, a lot of research here and there... and come Sunday afternoon... just wasn't feeling the Luna. So I'm within 30 miles of 3 different Guitar Centers and I called another one to see if they had the one I was originally wanting to try. Nope. They didn't have one either. Don't ever trust GC's website.... call the store! BUT! They had a Breedlove Pursuit Concert with a solid cedar top and laminate mahogany back/sides. They also had one with a spruce top and bubinga back/sides. I'm thinkin... bonus! Two that I can check out and see if I like them better. 🙂
My wife got home from work around that time so she could stay with the Princess and I still had a couple of hours before they closed so I packed up my Luna and headed in a different direction. Fortunately for me, Frank and Ernie, two wonderfully helpful gentlemen who play MUCH better than I do, just happened to be hanging out in the acoustic room checking out guitars. So for the next two hours we went through quite a few and I ended up deciding on a Breedlove Pursuit Concert CE. Since it was a little bit pricier than the Luna, I had brought another piece of gear to trade in hoping to make up the difference. However, since I had just bought the Luna that day at a different store... I couldn't exchange it because it hadn't cleared the system yet. So I ended up purchasing the Breedlove, planning on returning the Luna the next day for a refund.
But the story doesn't end there... The one thing Frank and Ernie both agreed on was the neck on my new Breedlove wasn't the best in the world. One of the guys at GC had adjusted it a bit but both of them were a little dissatisfied with the end result but agreed that new strings and a professional setup would most likely improve the playability. And since the Pursuit had a solid top... I'm thinking it was a better choice and worth the risk.
So I get home and start playing on my new guitar. Do my first finger picking lesson EVER on Monday night and feeling like it's a good start! All the while though, Frank and Ernie's opinion of the neck of this thing is tugging at the back of my brain. I may not know a ton about acoustics, but I do know that you can get gems and you can get duds from just about any brand/maker of any kind of instrument... especially in the lower price ranges. Plus the fact that cedar is a bit softer than spruce and reportedly more susceptible to dings, and my 3yr old Princess likes to play with Daddy's things... I start second guessing myself again.
Monday rolls by and I couldn't make it to GC to do the return. Tuesday... I'm doing more research and I catch one of Tony's reviews talking about guitars and solid tops and back and sides. So I hop back on GC's website to see what else they might have in stock at my original store because I wasn't looking at the Pursuits at that time. Not to mention that they extended the Pres Day sale by another day. Bonus again! So I call the store, because the website lies.. and they let me know that they have a Pursuit Concert in the bubinga, which by the way both Frank and Ernie really disliked..., and a Breedlove Stage Concert listed for not too terribly much more than the bubinga which was in my price range after trading in my gear. So I check the site. The only Stage Concert they had advertised was listed for $280 more than what was quoted on the phone. But it looked like everything I was looking for. Solid sitka spruce top with solid Indian rosewood back and sides.
EXTENDED LUNCH BREAK!!!
Drive back to the original GC with two guitars in tow now... Get a staff member named Eric to play the bubinga Pursuit... I played it... Still didn't like it. Played a couple of others in the price range and none of them sounded or played any better than the cedar Pursuit I had already purchased. Then I spotted the Stage Concert hanging up at the very top of the wall. Sure enough... it had the more expensive price tag. Bummer. Oh well, while I'm here... might as well have him play it and give it a try myself. Wow... what a difference. Had so much more of a full sound than the others I had played up to that point. Action felt great. Only buzzing on the frets was due to my lack of skill. Was brighter than the cedar but the presence it had was so much more. Let's just say it made me want to play an acoustic more than any other I had tried.
So I asked the very helpful Eric if they had any other Stage series in the store because supposedly there was one lying around at this quoted price. He checks the system and nope... no others in the store. So on a hunch, I asked him to add the one we had played on a ticket and see what it rung in at. BAM! $200 cheaper than what was listed on the tag! Apparently the "deluxe" bag that came with it was $80 and tied into the price. LOL. But now we have a dilemma... The %15 off coupon doesn't work on sale items. Bummer again! Luckily though... the brain pan was working that day and realized that there is a difference in GC's system between "marked down" and "on sale". So I handed the very helpful Eric the coupon and sure enough! Knocked it down by %15! So now the total price of this wonderful guitar was actually less than the combined total of the two guitars I had to return! I even had $5 left over to apply towards a new set of strings. 😀
So now I am the proud owner of a Breedlove Stage Concert guitar that, in my opinion, sounds wonderful. And I'm sure it will sound even better once I get it set up and some new strings on it. Apparently the reason it was marked down was because it had been on the wall for a while so the strings have seen fresher days.
So I'm excited to start playing! And I'd like to thank all the folks who've replied to my intro message for all of their encouragement and salutations 🙂
And since I can't find a ton of recent info on Breedlove guitars... I'd like to hear anyone's opinion on them who either have played or own one. Cause let's face it.. if you made it this far in this post, you've probably figured out that I like to have all the info I can get on instruments I purchase. 🙂
Thanks for reading and cya online!