Best City for Guitar Shopping?

gibsonofabitch

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I've been playing guitar for 20 years this month and to celebrate, I thought I'd indulge and splurge a little bit and get a custom shop gibson. The only problem is, in the bay area, there are no stores that really have any inventory of gibson custom shop guitars, maybe a white les paul custom or a white sg custom reissue

With that being said, which city has a legitimate/the best gibson scene? The two that stick out to me are Los Angeles and Nashville. I dont mind making a trip out of it. The only caveat is that they have customs and plenty of them.

Thanks for your input!
 

ErictheRed

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Definitely Nashville of the places I've visited. Maybe somewhere on the west coast if you're more into Fenders, Portland was good as well.
 

Thunder Dump

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+1 on Nashville. Lots of quality choices.
 

cooltouch

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My first reaction was also Nashville, but another option is that huge guitar show that is held in Dallas each May. Unfortunately, this year's show has come and gone. Next year's is May 5-7. Here in Houston, the city's largest Gibson dealer -- and at one time the largest in the USA -- makes a point of attending that show every year. Apparently, they do very well at the show.

One thing about these big shows, whenever you have a huge number of vendors under one roof, prices will drop. So if there are any large shows in your general area, it might be well worth your while to attend. Back in a former life, I used to buy and sell camera gear. I lived in LA at the time and would attend the local shows to buy and sell stuff, but there was this big annual show up in San Jose that was a not-to-be-missed event that would draw dealers from around the country and buyers from around the world. Even though prices would get pretty cut-throat, the sheer volume in sales was more than enough to offset the tighter margins I had to deal with. So, just sayin' -- these big shows are worth attending if you can find one in your area.
 
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smk506

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I’ve lived in LA and I live in Nashville, I’d give a slight nod to LA.

But if you’re looking specifically for a custom shop LP and you want to make an experience out of picking one out of many, you should check out somewhere like wildwood or Dave’s or something. One of the custom shop mega dealers or whatever they’re called.
 

gball

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Los Angeles and Nashville. Hands down. Go to the places where all the pros are.
 

moreles

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I doubt if you will find much stock of Custom Shop guitars anywhere right now. I live outside of LA and in my experience the brocks/mortar retailing of new guitars is at a low point, though there are lots of shops if you don't mind traffic-jamming your way around the metropolitan area to see a few instruments each in a number of shops.
 

delawaregold

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Have you considered a Vintage Les Paul guitar?
Something very special about 60 year old wood.
 

cooltouch

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That Houston dealer I mentioned above is Fuller's Guitars. Take a look at their Gibson selection:


Most of their prices are way too rich for my blood.
 
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