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Who the F is "Johnny A"?

posted Jun 29, 2014 01:01:53 by drew
Exhibit 1: http://www2.gibson.com/Products/Electric-Guitars/Archtop/Gibson-Custom/Johnny-A/Features.aspx

Exhibit 2: http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/Best-selling-Hot-Custom-Shop-Johnny-A-Signature-Electric-Guitar-with-Tobacco-burst-color-finished-Electric/813016_671764060.html

Is there seriously a guy named "Johnny A" who is enough of a somebody to merit having a signature Gibson model? Or is Gibson resorting to putting fictitious guitars on their site now to prank the Chinese into making copies that aren't really copies of anything?
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9 replies
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skunkherder said Jun 29, 2014 03:44:31
I don't know who half of the PRS signature guys are.
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TrickyRicky said Jun 29, 2014 08:06:48
Johnny A. is "one of the greatest guitar talents in the world" according to the Gibbo site. World gone mad.

I've seen these guitars on PRC sites and wondered which model they're based on. Too many others to consider though and not enough time, or money.
"For some, the safest thing is to steer clear of these guitars."
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TomS. said Jun 29, 2014 14:23:41
Apparently this guy,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnny_A.

But I am not familiar with him either, though it looks like he played with many famous acts.
[Last edited Jun 29, 2014 14:25:20]
This is my Chibson. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
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MichaelWamback said Jun 29, 2014 15:02:58
Looks like he's had a remarkable career playing with guys that used to be in famous bands. Somewhat of a bridesmaid character. Maybe guitar's version of the grim reaper - where players gig with him as their careers die off.
The two most important things to remember in life: "The only time it's acceptable to work with amateurs is if you are making porn." "If you want to work with clowns, join a circus."
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TrickyRicky said Jun 29, 2014 16:24:34
Another mystifying one is the Melvyn Franks Les Paul. Franks is a collector and Gibson have created a guitar for him too. I won't put a link in case they throw a fit.

Cathy, surpisingly, was listing a version recently.
"For some, the safest thing is to steer clear of these guitars."
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ChibsonsandMore said Jun 29, 2014 16:49:36
Kiefer Sutherland, yes the actor who plays Jack Bauer in 24, had a custom ES335 type (KS336) guitar.
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TrickyRicky said Jul 04, 2014 06:15:03
At least Sutherland people have heard of, though maybe not in a musical connection. These other geezers, Johnny A., Melvyn Franks and now Ed King and Gordon Kennedy (Google them) are so obscure that only collectors (or some kind of elite) will know them and/or place a humungous value on the Gibbo Custom Shop guitars that have been made in their honour.
"For some, the safest thing is to steer clear of these guitars."
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drew said Jul 05, 2014 08:16:17
I can understand using the collector-owners' names to market the high-priced clones of specific guitars -- Gibson has to identify them somehow, and what's the alternative? A catalog number? Some stupid name like "'59 Classic Archetypal Vintage Custom Weathered Iconic Tribute Burnished Sunset Sunrise Sunburst Variant 4"? It probably gives the orthodontists, hedge fund thieves, and spoiled rich kids who buy these things a charge to go around bragging about "I got the 13th Melvyn Franks and I'm on the waiting list for a Gordon Kennedy!" etc. because it's so Inside Baseball to even know who those guys are.

But putting out an artist's signature model when no one outside the artist's immediate family knows who the artist is makes no sense to me.

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drew said Jul 19, 2014 01:39:08
Well, you can't expect the owner of a pretend-celebrity signature edition guitar to go on stage without pretend-celebrity signature edition accessories, can you? Behold: the Johnny A. Signature Vintage Gold Edition VM-Pro Volume Pedal.
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