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darkandrew

Where did all the Yamaha SG guitars go?

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I was watching an 80s special on TV last night and noticed that pretty much everyone was playing a Yamaha SG of one sort or another. Given the Yamaha SG's popularity in the early 80s, I was wondering where they all are today and why they don't pop up more often? 

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Always fancied an SG 2000 after seeing Big Country using them but they were out of my price range then and the 2000 is still out of my price range now ☹️

I suspect that most people who have the 80s SGs are hanging onto them but they are less visible on TV/stage (both the older players and the guitars). There is a current SG model but I've not seen one anywhere.

I spotted an SG200 last week in my local pawn shop at £229 and did consider it (except that I already own a Les Paul).

Andy

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32 minutes ago, bassbiscuits said:

I saw Black Star Riders a few years ago and Vivian Campbell was playing a Yamaha SG with P90s. 

He had the best guitar sound of the entire gig. 

P90s for the win.

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One of the lads I knew at school had one that as far as I can remember he borrowed from his dad. I always thought it looked pretty nice whenever the school put on one of their show nights for all the school bands and musicians. Shame the lad in question was an awful guitarist.

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Yamaha tried to renew interest in them a few years back, introducing some new models (the one with the P90's for a start). Unfortunately, they just didn't seem to catch on, or importantly, gain much promotional support. Yamaha released the RevStar around about the same time, and that seems to have gained far more promotion than the reissued SG's.

Whether it's a cost thing or what, I don't know. Most of the SG reissues were MIJ, and so were not cheap. In fact that they were priced against Gibson LP's and the "mid range" PRS guitars, as well as some smaller "boutique" manufacturers, which can't have helped, especially as the competitors were boasting figured timbers and other more cosmetic flourishes etc., etc. Rough deal? I think they kind of lost momentum in the early 90's, especially when the LP style guitar market was picking up again.

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I think PRS maybe took over the market that the Yamaha SGs created. Maybe Gibson did as well? The Yamaha seemed to come about at the time Gibson were in the depths of their Norlin-era. The SG was a Les Paul killer (alongside the Ibanez Artist), but still quite a heavy beast with only a nod to ergonomics. I guess there isn't such a need for them when a PRS will cover a lot of Gibson country, and a bit of Fender as well, in a more ergonomic platform, while still looking fairly traditional?

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Jake Burns played a Yammy SG for much of the classic Stiff Little Fingers stuff. The O'Neill brothers also played them in the Undertones, though iirc Sean defected to a Gibson LP when the money came in. 

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I think they suffered in the UK from association with 80s pop... once that was less fashionable, nobody wanted Yamaha SGs. Certainly by the late 80s they were less visible in guitar shops.

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Big Yam SG fan - many of my 80s guitar heroes (Adamson, McGeoch etc) were Yamaha players, and I always wanted one.

Not 100% sure but I think Yamaha stopped production in the late 80s, probably because more traditional guitars like these were selling less well in favour of SuperStrat types. There have been a few short-lived/limited reissues but these have tended to be very expensive, and not particularly accurate to the original specs or designs.

Earlier this year I was lucky enough to get hold of an SG1500 (which was always my favourite model, aesthetically) for a really silly-bargain price. It's gorgeous!

SG1500F04.thumb.jpg.3c7b10c4dcdde36567dbecf83852204e.jpg

And as for where they all went - if you've been in the market for one, it appears a guy in the North-East has most of them - and at his prices, he'll be keeping them!

Edited by Bassassin
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On 01/12/2018 at 17:20, Bassassin said:

Big Yam SG fan - many of my 80s guitar heroes (Adamson, McGeoch etc) were Yamaha players, and I always wanted one.

Not 100% sure but I think Yamaha stopped production in the late 80s, probably because more traditional guitars like these were selling less well in favour of SuperStrat types. There have been a few short-lived/limited reissues but these have tended to be very expensive, and not particularly accurate to the original specs or designs.

Earlier this year I was lucky enough to get hold of an SG1500 (which was always my favourite model, aesthetically) for a really silly-bargain price. It's gorgeous!

SG1500F04.thumb.jpg.3c7b10c4dcdde36567dbecf83852204e.jpg

And as for where they all went - if you've been in the market for one, it appears a guy in the North-East has most of them - and at his prices, he'll be keeping them!

That is indeed a lovely example - would it be rude to enquire how much of "really silly bargain price" you paid for It?

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On 15/11/2018 at 17:38, songofthewind said:

Santana used to play a very fancy SG2000, I think.

He did; as memory serves, it was very much customised to his tastes, and significantly influenced the guitars PRS made for him later on/.

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On 16/11/2018 at 01:38, songofthewind said:

Santana used to play a very fancy SG2000, I think.

And he enjoyed a brief flirtation with an Image/MSG as well to which the PRS Santana model bears more than a passing similarity.

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