I don't know the answer to that but are there many outside of the classical arena that play a Strad?Originally Posted by (futrconslr @ May 21 2004, 12:46)
[QUOTE]Are they worth $150K? Well, apparently so. Will they be worth more in the future? Who knows. Is this just a bubble? Who knows, and furthermore, who cares? Supply and demand will always determine the price of a specific thing, and as much as we might not like the result, things will remain the same.
Remember, there ain't no more of them being made.
If I spent 150K I would care if they were worth it or not. I would also care if I were buying an instrument during a "bubble".....especially if what I were buying was supposed to be rare and collectable. They are not making Edsels anymore either. I am sure you can buy one for 150k.
Yeah, Keep calling me Hillbilly........
Loar and his team were striving to build the ideal mandolin for classical repertoire when they perfected the F-5, but the instrument never seemed to catch on with its intended niche market. I remember an interview in Mandolin World News with classical mandolinist Hugo d'Alton in which he excoriated the F-5--Loars or otherwise--for serious classical music. Most contemporary classical players seem to prefer the round-back instruments in the style of Calace or Embergher, or flatbacks in the Lyon & Healy style. If the classical mandolin repertoire ever achieved the kind of international popularity that bluegrass is currently enjoying, and if there were a widely recognized mandolin idol playing a roundback hatchet, then I suspect you'd see the prices of those instruments rise dramatically, too.
The Loar is an easily recognizable benchmark for excellence that has been hailed by at least three of the most influential mandolinists of the 20th C.: Apollon, Monroe, and Grisman. Their imprimaturs bestowed added value on instruments with pretty high intrinsic value to begin with, and the market has taken care of the rest.
For really inane prices, check out the fees that vintage stock electrics fetch. Original '59 Les Pauls have been known to fetch upwards of $350,000, for example.
Just one guy's opinion
You may care, Joel..........
But I don't believe that the majority of the folks who purchase these instruments place the value on the dollar aspect. I think they buy them because of what they are..... the pinnacle of mandolins.
I am having a hard time accepting that the people that buy these instruments because they are the pinnacle would buy them if they didnt expect to get their investment out of them...Charlie....I would think that you, if anyone, would know that most of the guys that buy these instruments are businessmen/women at least at some level. I dont believe for a minute that someone would buy a loar for 150k if they didnt think they could get their money back. I could be wrong but practical experience and general observation of the human condition tell me otherwise. Pull your horns in, I didnt slam Gibson. I think you guys are ok.:D
Yeah, Keep calling me Hillbilly........
i certainly appreciate the historical value of the Loar to BG music and that some of its affecionado's are well healed enough to push the value to new daily highs, but again this should not necessarily cause any of us of modest means great concern. i attended a recent festival at which many of the top national acts performed. needless to say there was many a fine mando picker on stage and in the campground. the best sounding mando on stage (i thought) was played by Mike of Nothin' Fancy and is made by Mr. Darby Boofer of NC. Darby's price for an nice looking F-5 is up to 2K. I recently bought a Kimble A model for about 2k that's pretty awesome. A young'n in the campground was playing a Doyle Lawson that sounded great. So not to worry, the tone can't be kept in a bottle.
I don't think it's just about tone though, it is about having the original one and only. It's like owning a 57 Chevy Bel Air. Today they make good cars that drive better than a 57 chevy and in fact are easier to maintain faster handle better etc etc.
But when you cruise down the street in a 57 Chevy Bel AIr convertible, it is a totally different feeling than driving down the street in a 99 Accord....
But you could own a handfull of 57s for the price of a Loar....but she wouldn't sound nearly as good playing Muleskinner.
Originally Posted by (futrconslr @ May 21 2004, 12:46)
Personally, I play Irish/Celtic stuff.. and yes, the sound of a Loar is spectacular in that venue. I might have a hard time talking some of my friends into believing that, but I certainly believe it now. The couple of shots I've had on them that were long enough to "get it" (ie get the feel of the instrument and figure out some of the great stuff it lets you do).. well, there's a reason folks were so barmy about them in first place. They are really fine sounding instruments.
However, they do not have sole claim to "killer mandolin tone". The Gilchrists, Nuggets, and many other makers' output are just as wonderful, and in their own unique ways.
Ah, the internet.
I wasn't being ugly, Joel (I promise). Inflection is a hard thing to convey on a keyboard.
Wonder what those "Derringtons" will be worth in 75 years........
"Remember, there ain't no more of them being made."
"...not to worry, the tone can't be kept in a bottle."
"I don't think it's just about tone though, it is about having the original one and only."
I think y'all have hit on it here. Scarcity will always drive demand. If you combine scarcity, utility, and identity as a status symbol, you've got the recipe for continuing demand. Add to that a growing pool of players, collectors, and investors, and it's pretty sure the price ain't dropping any time soon.
But there's no reason to grouse about anything-- we're living in the golden age of mandolin building. We are smack in the middle of some of the greatest luthiery in history (including Gibson's own output), a perfect time when knowledge and skills are peaking while great quality tonewoods are still available. You don't need $100k, or even $20k, to own a world-class instrument, so jump in there and get tomorrow's collectable now!
Flowerpot, you are absolutely right! (IMHO)
I see all these "I don't think the Loar tone is suitable for style 'xyz'!" proclamations.
Methinks, as the pinnacle of mandolin design, the Loar tone is suitable for anything and everything. I think Dave Apollon would dang near agree, don't you?
His Dawgness may agree too
Let me get this straight ... If someone [with a ton of extra money laying around] spends 150k this year on a Loar [one of those little'ol guitars], it could be worth 250k in a couple of years (according to some pretty darn knowledgable folks)?
Hmmm. No wonder they say "the rich get richer, and the poor don't get Loars", or jack, or something like that.
With that kind of appreciation predicted, if you have the money [or the ability loan it from someone], you would be crazy NOT to buy it.
-- Mandorado --
All this talk of vintage Les Pauls, Chevys and Loars reminds me of a time capsule of a city where all things American made are vintage. It's a large city about 90 miles south of Miami. (being an American I'll leave it at that) I spent a couple of weeks there 6 years ago. I took in a lot of local music and I recall two mandolin players. (I was not a mandolin enthusiast at the time and knew very little about them) One of the mandolins was a bowlback and probably locally made. The other was a F-style Gibson (I remember noting Gibson on the peghead, didn't know F from A at the time) and almost certainly pre-1959. Could it have been? The fellow playing it would have probably gladly traded me for a shiny new one.
Vintage les pauls seem to go for a lot more than a loar and there are alot more of them around and they have held their value. I think the reason this subject causes tension is because we are talking about bluegrass music and big money, two concepts that are completely alien to each other. It reminds me of a joke someone once told me about a Polish fellow who planned to get rich playing bluegrass music.
[QUOTE]I wasn't being ugly, Joel (I promise). Inflection is a hard thing to convey on a keyboard. #
Thats true. Ill tell you what Charlie, next time I am out your way, around quitting time I will buy you the poison of your choice!
Yeah, Keep calling me Hillbilly........
Sounds good to me.
You're close, come on by.
I do believe William Place,Jr, Dave Apollon, Walter K.Bauer,Albert Bellson were into the Loar thing long before Big Mon hit the first lick on "Rocky Road Blues" that cold day in 1945. All the pickers who would have liked one even back then could not beg, borrow or steal one as even then they were custom ordered either by dealers or individuals and slowly made. As evident today to land a used one the original owner had to die.
Even Monroe had to settle for a used one.
57 Chevy BelAir ain't that rare. Now a 57 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham, that's rare! Less of those around then Loars. Using the electric market is a good example to prove the point that Loars ain't got there yet! That current one at Elderly seems to have quite a few miles on it too! Picked enough to wear out the frets and wear the back of the neck. Add to that the lost pickguard and the Virzi tone reducer still in it that would make a really nice one go for over $150K. $250K in 5 years is coming.
[QUOTE= (joshro78 @ May 21 2004, 12:34)]I was hoping you'd see the sarcasm in my statement. The Dude and Duff take me where I want to go.I'll settle for my Dude and Duff for the time being.
Settle for a Dude! That's hilarious. You settle for a Kentucky not a Dude.