What’s New In Guitar Stores Part Two

Epiphone Dot Cherry

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Part Two
I know you guys will like this story:

Gibsons Smell Like Cupcakes?

I walk into the local Guitar Center and this tall salesman greets me in the guitar department. I ask him, “what’s new?” He starts in about Les Paul’s new coil splitting feature and goes on to say how he really loves the Les Paul because of how they smell. “Ahhh… What?”

“They smell like cupcakes,” he says. He grabs one off the wall and shoves it under my nose. “Take a whiff.” I’m really pretty skeptical but I take the guitar and smell it all over like a believer. The thing smells like vanilla! Faint, but definitely there. I look at him. “Vanilla,” I say. “Cupcakes,” says he. “Every time I unpack an order of Gibsons, I get hungry.” He swears they are scenting the cases.

I fired off an email to Gibson and will let you know what they say.


Epiphone Dot CherrySpeaking of Gibson, or rather Epiphone, I played a Dot Cherry guitar. I wanted to play a 335 but they didn’t have one. So I played a Dot! I’m in love with this guitar. My only criticism of this particular guitar is that the edge of the fretboard looked like plastic but was actually Rosewood with tons of clear finish on it (no binding). I loved this thing! Any sound from Wes Montgomery to Slash was easy. “Lucille” tones were a snap. A little country twang? No Problem. The Dot is a real winner. At $399, this guitar is a “must play” if you are shopping for a mahogany, through body neck with hollow wings and a pair of “buckers.” BUT, by all means, go to a store and play one, find the one you like and buy THAT one.

I firmly believe that all guitars have their own personalities. Put 2 guitars side by side, whether Strats, Teles, Les Pauls, Dots, or any other brand, and they will not play the same. I played 6 Strats before I found “the one.” For that reason, I will not order online. I go in and play.

Squier Strat

I played a Fender Squier Strat that was the absolute pits. The tremolo was bottomed out on the body so tightly I could hardly move it. I was surprised because I’ve seen some pretty good reviews of these. I’m a Stratkat and did not like this guitar. So, I went over and played a Squier Tele. This baby was a joy to play… great setup, great finish and less money. A couple of years ago, at Christmas time, I was in San Antonio, TX and spied a Road Worn, Squier Tele, brand new, for $135 at the Sam Ash store there! I’m still kicking myself for not buying it.


In the “acoustic room,” I checked out the latest and greatest from Martin, Gibson, Taylor, Takamine, Ovation, and Fender. I have a gorgeous Ovation Troubadour (blue, burled maple top) that handles my aggressive playing without too much complaint. I really like that guitar.

Since I’m here in Huntsville, Alabama, I plan to visit the other stores here, too. Look for more soon.

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Doug Knight

Our “Man on the Street” reporter, with his “What’s New in Music Stores?” series, resides in Coos Bay, OR. You can find him on Friday nights at The Small Events Center at OrCoast Music in Coos Bay.

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10 years ago

BTW, all. Be sure to check out the new FORUMS link at the top of the page!!

10 years ago

Thanks fore the replies, guys. I don’t actually think they are scenting the cases. I thought it was the fabric or something else that they use in the cases and, naturally, it scents the guitar a little. I never thought about the lacquer, Christoph! I’ll bet you’re right.

I have not heard from Gibson, by the way. I didn’t expect to, actually.

Christoph Hammann
10 years ago

About that smell: it’s the nitro lacquer. Yeah, it’s addictive.

10 years ago

This is nothing new. My 2009 Gibson Les Paul Case, which I rarely use so it stays closed most of the time, still smells like vanilla. Rickenbacker also does something similar as a sweet pleasant smell has come with 2 of mine.

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