What Will Gibson's Bankruptcy Mean For It's Guitars? | Warehouse Guitar Speakers

What Will Gibson's Bankruptcy Mean For It's Guitars?

What Will Gibson's Bankruptcy Mean For It's Guitars?

Hi Gang, I promised a blog on what the speaker frequency range spec truly means ... but that'll have to wait.  We just got the news that Gibson has indeed filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy (reorganization). The question that leaves for all of us guitar folks is "What will that mean for the GUITARS?"  That's a big question, let's discuss it!

So, overall the word seams to be that folks generally think this will be GOOD for Gibson's actual guitars moving forward.  One blog I just read states  "The good news is Gibson will now focus more on its popular guitar brands" ... a determination made by the fact that In a statement, Gibby CEO Juszkiewicz said, “The decision to re-focus on our core business, musical instruments,".  Bla, Bla, Bla ... who cares what he SAYS?  Here is my take:

I've lived in Nashville, home to Gibson's offices and manufacturing facilities, since 1985 ... or in other words since BEFORE Mr J & Co. even BOUGHT Gibson.  Yep, I was here for the last awful Norlin years, and for the glorious early 1990s when folks like JT Ribboloff brought Gibson back from the dead and restored everything that was GREAT about Gibson.  I was here to watch the Memphis factory mature to the point of having a team in place that was truly making some of the finest guitars Gibson had EVER made, even in the glorious pre-Norlin years. 

Gibson in 1992 was a glorious phoenix rising from the ashes!  So, can it happen again?  Well ...

My opinion, no, it can't ,  Why?  Well, they've already lost everything that matters:

  1. The Memphis factory is gone and it ain't coming back, nor will most of the quality luthiers who worked there and Gibson knifed in the back.
  2. They've let the majority of their top-shelf staff go here in Nashville, too ... and once again, they were treated so badly that I don't see them ever returning with Mr J at the helm.
  3. They have totally lost the value of their brand name.  Honestly, the guitars of the last few years are nowhere near as bad as the worst of the Norlin guitars ... but the Norlin era was ... and this is IMPORTANT ... pre-internet.  And so, while there are tens of thousands of rants in cyberspace on how bad Gibson guitars are NOW, there was no such outlet in 1979!
  4. And last, there are now several companies who have been "making Gibson guitars better than Gibson does" for many years ... can you say Paul Reed Smith?

I LOVE classic/vintage Gibson guitars, and I'd LOVE to see the company return to glory, and so I hope I'm wrong.  I will say this, I certainly don't see Gibson regaining any decent Status without the departure of Juszkiewicz, the guy who MADE the problem just ain't gonna be the guy to FIX it!

05/15/2018 10:51pm

As for the quality issues I have been reading and reading and reading all these stories about how bad Gibson guitar's have become. It took me A while to say I am going to buy one and so I did. So here is the truth about the quality of a new Gibson guitar. Out of my American Hss Strat -PRS Santana-Ibanez Premium-G&L F-100. This new 2018 Gibson Tribute T is by far the best guitar in my collection. Out of the box it was perfect All I had to do was lower the string height A bit and that was it. frets perfect no edges. My feelings is this the Net is A scary place you get 1 person that don't like something it spawns more people that don't even own the product to come out and they complain about it as if they are having this problem. The more people pick up A good guitar, The less they believe in the negative words that have been written.

05/23/2018 11:24am

Yes ... but ... for every story like yours there are about two horror stories! 2015-2017 were the worst years, and by '18 Gibson reversed some of the most egregious of it's poor design "updates". I also have snatched up several Les Pauls from the dreaded 2013-2017 period because they were soooo inexpensive (used) ... but in my case only one of them arrived worthy of the Gibson name. However, in each case I was able to make them into good guitars by removing offending parts (tuners, circuit boards, etc) and doing some serious work on frets/setup.
Another note, your excellent guitar may well have been made, at least in part, by someone Gibson has since fired :-(

05/31/2018 12:56am

I too bought a new 2017 Tribute Les Paul and I think it is marvelous. The tone, feel, finish and the “vibe” were all there. Love it. Add the fact it was a measly $799, I had to make sure the price tag hadn’t been switched out.
I bought a new Flying V in 2016. The finish, feel and balance of the guitar is awesome but he PAF’s and the controls killed it. So I installed a set of EMG’s. Saved! A fully bound and glossy mahogany American Gibson V for $1000 is a bargain in my mind.
Being on a bit of a spending spree....I just bought a 2015 Les Paul “Less”. It has locking tuners instead of the computer tuner and a Tusk nut. At the moment, it is my go to guitar because of the thin body and awesome pickups (whatever it has in it) and a wide bound neck. Again, a fully bound, wide neck, mahogany body American Les Paul for $1000. This will become one the classic Gibson’s in the future guaranteed. Gibson was on the right track, let’s hope they really do get back to their core.

By the way...I have a Blackhawk on order thru GC. I thought it sounded awesome on your Deluxe shootout. Can’t wait to give it a go.


06/01/2018 12:02pm

I bought a new 2017 Tribute last year. It is a great guitar all around. Fit, finish, tone, setup...everything is top notch. Love it. In 2012 I bought a new Les Paul Junior Custom with soaps. Again, everthing is top notch. Creamy tones with a bound neck. Does it get any better? In 2016 I bought a Flying V Pro new and again, fit, finish, binding everything is great...except the PAF’s sounded horrible and the pots are terrible. Easily fixed with some EMG’s. Last month I bought one of the “dreaded” 2015 Les Paul’s, but this one is different; a Les Paul “Less +” . This is by far the best Les Paul I’ve ever had. Excellent wood, fret work, binding, tone, three knobs and a split switch. It has Grover Tuners and a Tusk nut mod (which takes nothing more than two screws to do). This is a future classic.

If Gibson can pick up where they left off, just on a smaller scale, they will be back.