5 shocking blues guitars under $230…need I say more? These guitars were all chosen because 1) they are under $230, 2) they have the right tone for blues guitar playing, and 3) they have style and attitude and scream the blues.
After looking at guitars from dozens of brands, I settled on these 5 guitars because they sound great for the price, in fact, they sound so good I was shocked at their price!
Additionally, these guitars were picked to show that you don’t need to spend an arm and a leg to have a great guitar to start playing on. Starting guitar doesn’t need to be an expensive investment, and these guitars prove you can find quality for a good price.
Also on this episode of Acoustic Tuesday, I’ll talk about 5 upgrades you can make to your acoustic guitar to level up the sound. I also want to share with you an incredible blues guitarist by the name of Charlie Hicks. All that and more is coming up on Acoustic Tuesday!
As always, you can catch Acoustic Tuesday at 10 am every Tuesday in these four places:
- Acoustic Life YouTube channel
- We Play Every Day Facebook Community
- Get show notes emailed directly to your inbox.
- Listen to audio-only below or in iTunes
Gretsch Jim Dandy ($169) – https://www.gretschguitars.com/gear/build/acoustic/g9500-jim-dandy-24-flat-top-guitar/2704000503
https://youtu.be/V0YHUcLe4mc – Hear the Gretsch Jim Dandy in action
Recording King Series 7 ($169) – https://www.recordingking.com/rps7
https://youtu.be/dtR-x3KXpWs – Hear the Recording King Series 7 Parlor in action
Yamaha FS800 ($199) – https://usa.yamaha.com/products/musical_instruments/guitars_basses/ac_guitars/fg_fgx/index.html
https://youtu.be/jie4shtEaXM – Hear the Yamaha FS800
Fender CP-60S ($199) – https://shop.fender.com/en-US/acoustic-guitars/parlor/cp-60s-parlor/0970120032.html
https://youtu.be/Gkd5aJtRn44 – Hear the Fender CP-60S
Recording King Dirty 30s Series 9 000 ($229) – https://www.recordingking.com/ros9ts
https://youtu.be/2VaaontpHv4 – Hear the 000 Recording King Series 9 in action
https://youtu.be/8zAmkQsnzJE – Hear the original version that inspired the remake
https://www.instagram.com/davidandthedevil/ – Follow David and the Devil (Charley Hicks) on Instagram
https://youtu.be/hiGfrs3uNn0 – When Death Comes For Me
https://youtu.be/7XfdE_Y-PIY – Beehive Blues
https://youtu.be/tYW8TKCpab0 – Up Jumped the Devil (David and the Devil)
https://youtu.be/03mGRiQYS1c – Down In The Swamp (David and the Devil)
5 Easy Upgrades to Level Up Your Guitar
5 – Experiment with a new pick material or style
4 – Check out some different strings. Between different alloys, gauges, and brands the tonal options are endless
3 – Swap the plastic nut and saddle for bone to increase the volume, tone and articulation of your guitar
2 – Swap out your bridge pins for wood or bone to better your tone and also the health of your guitar’s bridgeplate
1 – Add a soundhole pickup so you can open up the door to experimenting with effects and other tonal options.
In the Trivia, I believe it is WOOLWORTH, not Wolworth
Hey Tony, just finished episode #143. You talked about the Recording King made by Gibson and sold by Montgomery Ward. BUT! What can you tell us about the Silvertone? That was the very first guitar I ever owned. GGU!
Great show Tony! Great survey of your top 5 guitars under 230.00. I would like to suggest the RECORDING KING SERIES 7 SINGLE 0.I have been looking for a smaller sized guitar with great tone and projection. The series 7 single 0 just sounds great on their web site : Recording Kings.com and is priced at 149.99 US. Its a black cutaway, solid top adirondack spruce and mahogany back. I’m trying to find this guitar in Canada but haven’t found it yet. Wish me luck! @Tena S
In the 5 Blues Guitars segment, what song is Jon Rauhouse playing on the Gretsch at 1:39? thanks.
Howdy Tony. Thank you for another great show and the inspiration for me to join T.A.C. and pick my acoustic guitars back up after 10+ years of not touching them. I really liked the section about guitar upgrades because I’m working towards turning in one of mine into a shop for many of the upgrades you gave out. One question on upgrading the saddle, would it be worth doing not only a bone saddle, but also would it be smart or worth it to go to a compensated saddle as well as bone? Thank you for any help and feedback you can provide. Keep up the great work and keeping this thing real and fun. Guitar Geeks Unite!
Low and Behold, 5 upgrades, and I hit 4 of the 5 before the show.- Bridge Pins- Plastic to Ebony (12) or Bone (Dread); Experiment with Strings- all three; Sound Hole Picup- Angel on the 12, Black Angel on the Dread; Bridge and Nut, Plastic to Bone- 12. Most amazing of all, I was able to do it all, so thanks, Tony.way, so far, changing the picks doesn’t help my sound or quality. It is still below the best acoustic life I wish to lead.
Thanks for this episode Tony, somehow I got sidetracked and ended up listening to Ry Cooder and Taj Mahal.
Tony, check out the Orangewood Oliver Jr. I bought the Jim Dandy and it is not nearly the guitar as the Oliver Jr. So I sent the Jim Dandy back and bought the Oliver Jr.
I bought the Yamaha FS 800 when I started this course based on a Wirecutter.com review. I am so happy. I cannot believe that this guitar only cost $199. It is beautiful and sounds wonderful. (But I still have my Harmony Rocket hollow body electric that I got in 1970 when I was 12!)
Funny you should mention the Jim Dandy. I got one last month and so far I really like it. It doesn’t have the big body sound of other makers. BUT, for simple bluesy tone and basic good looks this one works for me. 😉 I also switched out the strings and noticed immediate improvement.
I bought a Jim Dandy recently, I’m very happy with it! I want to change the strings, but I wasn’t sure what brand or gauge to get. I would appreciate any info you could share.
I switched to a set of EXP16 Coated Phosphor Bronze Acoustic strings (12-53 gauge)
Great show[! Informative an great guitar playing.
I’m especially impressed by the Yamaha & Fender models – VERY nice tone for under $200. I wonder how playable these 5 guitars are. That’s the one thing you didn’t mention.
I have a couple guitars with metal bridge pins, any opinion of those?
Um…”practicing your Dad jokes” because… Is there a new guitar geek bun in the oven about to join us in a few months? Hmmn?
My friend has the Jim dandy, I have the Martin dread junior , the Martin is double the price though but worth it ………..