PRS = Studio more than stage
I know this is an old thread, but I just caught it and wanted to toss in my .02. True that you don't see them at "Rock Concerts" so much, but pro players and in particular studio guys who need to get lots of sounds - but want to do it with an instrument they're totally comfortable playing - DO dig on PRS guitars. I really think that's Paul's core market, and it's largely word-of-mouth They've done some things to get into the hands of more 'hobby' players and weekend warriors, and they sell a significant number of guitars so those attempts are not in vain, but at the end of the day the guy who posted about expectations - Look, sound, etc. is right on. Live performance from the big clubs to sheds to arenas is still a Les Paul, SG, ES, Strat, Tele - maybe a Jazzmaster or jag thrown in for good measure... but it's still all about tradition. Classic rock. It's not a big deal if a "Live Rocker" doesn't quite get that first bend on his strat all the way up to pitch - after playing a Gibson for a couple of songs - because the scale and tension is a little different. Second time around he'll nail it, and even if it's being recorded for a "live album" there will be a chance to fix it up post-production. I hope that makes sense. Moving between different guitars onstage does take chops because they're all a little different - but nothing is hyper-critical in a live show (as long as you don't totally blow it and play a clinker..). So no big deal to play an ES-335 on one tune then grab a drop-tuned strat for #2 and then hit the doubleneck 1275 for a little 12-string action... It's all part of the show, and the players in the audience also LOVE seeing all the various axes come out. Peter Frampton has spoken extensively on this topic in various interviews. Also - we want to see Clapton with a Strat, Angus Young with an SG, McCartney with his "Beatle Bass" etc etc.
Originally Posted by Boogeyman
The studio, especially hourly gigs like recording TV commercials or other "utility" guitar playing recording gigs are nowhere near as forgiving. The name of THAT game is definitely "Time is Money" . Producers need to get the session down in one take, and on to the next. Playing the music perfectly (usually sight-reading) and getting it down in the first take is only half the battle. The "quirks" of someone's 'favorite Strat' or "Vintage Les Paul" - ( weird intonation issues, clicks, rattles, hum, fret buzz, scratchy pots - whatever) can ruin a session or at best cost a lot of money to correct later. All that spells "unprofessional" and "unnecessary hassle". I'm certainly not one of them, but it's amazing to watch a real pro in action. They come in, set up quickly, knock it out perfectly in one or maybe two takes - and it's on to the next thing. A high-end PRS with the right electronics, set up perfectly for that player is a tremendous studio tool. They can become 100% in-touch with the instrument from the standpoint of scale, string tension, intonation, etc. - and still able to get the entire necessary palette of sounds from a convincing Les Paul 'classic rock' to high-gain metal to ES type jazz to a single-coil strat/tele sound and so forth. I've played a G&L F100-2 since 1981 for the same exact reason. It's nowhere near as sophisticated as, say, a PRS 408, but it has all the required single-coil/P90/humbucker/in-out of phase sounds available, making it unnecessary to switch guitars during a session or a gig. While on the subject of "tonal Chameleon" - Paul Jackson (Tonight Show/Jay Leno) plays a PRS 513 the last I knew (now he has a signature model) - but those were absolutely about "any sound - any time" and he has to move fluidly between almost anything you can think of on the show.
Anyway - that's my .02. High-end PRS stuff has already caught on amoungst studio/broadway players. Eventually I suppose a couple of "stars" will show up playing PRS and they'll start to get the "live guitar" cache of a Strat or LP. Every kid will be rushing out to buy an SE version of their favorite rocker's PRS.
- Cheers -