The J200: the rest of the story

So, a couple weeks ago, I wrote about my long love affair with Gibson J200 guitars, ending with the admission that I’d purchased an L200, the diminutive Emmylou Harris version of the classic Gibson icon. Subsequently, the eBay seller informed me that the guitar had been lost or stolen, and returned my funds. I was, of course, crestfallen, but quickly recovered and fell back on Plan B: Bernunzio Music in Rochester NY had a ’91 “J200 junior”. Some perspective: A regular J200 has a 17″ lower bout, the Emmylou L200 had a 15″ lower bout, and the J200 junior has a 16″ lower bout. This means that it was essentially a J185 in a J200’s clothing.

This was fine by me, since I’m not that big a guy, and, like many of my contemporaries, I’ve been heading away from large-bodied guitars. In addition, this “junior” was a rosewood model, and I’ve always liked the rosewood J200s over the maple ones.j200-12-19-13

So, it arrived in short order, and, lo and behold, it had the best aspects of that J200 sound, without what I consider to be the worst aspects. Now, in my book, a guitar built in 1991 is almost new…old guitars were built in the ’50s or before. I feel that way because I’m really gettin’ old. The fact of the matter is that a 22 year old guitar has had some time to mature, and this baby fits the bill. Here’s a Rev. Gary Davis tune for demonstration purposes:

So, all’s well that ends well, and I may finally have the sunburst J200 I’ve craved all these years! It joins my Proulxs, Ken Miller, Rockbridge, and Myers in my gallery of great guitars…

Merry Xmas, and I hope all of YOUR guitar dreams came true today as well!


Posted on December 25, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Very happy to see that in your hands and I know you must be as well. I played a Guild F 50 R for years that this reminds me of. Play in good health. Rob

  2. Nice sounding, and looking, guitar there, Rolly. As I’m in same age-range, I know what you mean about vintage guitars; I have largely the same take on it! I always sort of reckon it takes about 20 years to wear in and open up a bit! I’ve had stuff shipped out to me by Bernunzio in the past. They always seem pretty reasonable to me, together with Elderly, Lark Street and 3-Bee Gary from Asheville NC – one of the best! Did you ever come across Chuck Egner (Hi Strung Music) up in Leavenworth WA? He was a nice guy with good deals. Only met him once – always bought online from him – when passing through. Sadly, he seems to have disappeared.

  3. Rolly, Beautiful instrument! Thanks for the Rev. Gary Davis demo, good to hear such a tune on a cold winters morning. By the way………………..did I see a cat on the couch behind you? Looks like he (she) enjoys good guitar music too. Best to you and Jan. Dave


  4. Good for you Rolly! Sometimes things have a way of working out.

    Don Freborg FP-Lurker (I’m the guy who bought the Clarence White book from you a while back)

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