Welcome back my friends!
I hope you all had great Holidays!! The Onlineguitargenie is back and full of great guitar related info and specials for you in 2015. In this post we will look at the importance of a very basic part or you guitar gear, your guitar strap!! It may be one of the last things you think about when buying a guitar but it may just be the item that saves you a lot of money and grief in the long run.
Guitar players originally sat down to play in the early years as they were mostly relegated to the rhythm section in a big band in the 20s 30s and 40s but as soon as we started seeing C&W singers with guitars slung around their shoulders at the grand old opry in the 40s and 50s and with the advent of the R&R guitarists and lead singers who played guitar were catapulted to the front of the stage, we saw the need of a quality strap to hold the guitar over the shoulders of the player and allow him to play comfortably.
The early guitar straps were mostly made of a small narrow leather strip with some sort of adjustment buckle and a cord to tie it around the headstock just under the strings at the top nut. The body had a strap button that you would attach and secure the other end of the strap to.
Of course straps as well guitars began to evolve rapidly in the 50s and 60s, their demand increased tenfold and thus the need for better quality and innovative guitar straps. Companies like Ace, Bobby Lee models etc were manufacturing wider straps made of leather and woven materials along with shoulder pads to help cushion the load of heavier solid body guitars. Guitar companies such as Gretsch were issuing leather straps with intricately etched western motifs. Guitar straps also made a change to a simpler and more secure double strap button system, both attached to the guitar body. Guitar straps by the major guitar companies like Gibson, Fender, Martin etc were also being engraved and stitched with their companies logos and used for marketing & advertising.
In today’s market their are many choices of materials for guitar straps, Leather,Nylon etc with a vast choice of designs and colors. Vintage and modern looks, creative artwork and company logos abound.
You will need to look at the type of guitar you will be using your strap on to select the right model, acoustic, electric, nylon, perhaps a mandolin or banjo. Each model has it’s proper model that will match the guitars style, size and weight. Prices range from $5.00 for a cheap economy nylon strap to Thousands of $$$$ for hand etched leather straps .
I always recommend wider leather straps for heavier solid body guitars such as Gibson, Dean, BC Rich etc, to cushion the load on the players shoulder, guitars on the lighter side such as Fender, Gretsch, G&L can use the narrower models made of various materials.
That’s all for now my friends see you next time for another magic carpet ride around the amazing world of the guitar. Visit my store for some very hard to find vintage parts at great prices, just click on the Guitar parts shop tab on the home page!!