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#1950235 - 05/29/08 10:01 PM Guitar Covers
80sMetalHead Offline
Member

Registered: 05/29/08
Posts: 3
Hate to throw anyone under the bus...but you asked:

* Before I became a subscriber I would base my decision to buy your magazine on who was on the cover at least 90% of the time.

* When the cover with Slash arrived last month I was shocked to see a guitarist I was into on your cover instead of another dinosaur who hasn't made an album in at least 30 years that more than their small niche audience remembers.

* Finding an artist interview or a gear review that either interests or helps me has been the exception and not the rule. The only ones that really stood out to me were the articles on Brad Gillis, Slash & Steve Stevens, the pedal board one and this months distortion box review.,,that's only 5 articles in almost a year.

* When it came time to renew my guitar magazine subscriptions I decided to renew Guitar World....and not to renew Guitar Player. Why? Because your competitors are doing a better job of balancing the classic guitarists from bands I liked from then
( ie: KISS, Maiden, Crue, Pantera, ZZ Top, Van Halen, GNR, Zep, Zakk, Slayer, Satriani, Vai etc) and the bands I like from now ( Lamb of God, Slipnot, Avenged Sevenfold, System of a Down, etc)

* John Fogerty? Al DiMeola? Pat Metheny? Allen Holdsworth? No disrespect intended to these guitar titans...but the cover? Really?

* Only slightly less puzzling is using the the Fab Five over & over again: Page, Clapton, SRV, Santana, Hendrix...again, great artists that deserve much respect...love them all...but enough is enough.

* No tabs? No CD? Few lessons?

Now here's the kicker to my rant:

* I'm not a kid...turning 50 this year.

* I'm in media with my specialty being sales marketing...so I have an idea of what's involved in doing something that gets people to open their wallets.

Your new packaging, the artists you put on the cover, the obscure artists and jazz guitarists you do articles on...all the articles on ACOUSTIC guitarists...it all screams "Old Guy Mag".

If it smells like it...if it looks like it....it usually is what it is. No offense intended.

If you want to be a niche magazine for classic rock guys and jazz heads keep doing what you are doing. If you want more subscribers put artists, articles, gear reviews, lesson & tabs in your magazine that appeal to the mainstream guitar player...cool gear that our heroes are actually using, articles on established bands or new bands that a lot of people actually listen to and tabs to all kinds of songs...from White Stripes to Ozzy to Zep to Green Day to Hendrix to Mars Volta.

Another thing... at the Iron Maiden concert I went to last night I saw almost as many kids under 20 as geezers over 40...and I saw lots of guys my age at the 2nd stage at Ozzfest a few months ago too. Don't be a typical corporation that assumes you know what we are all into...in reality most of us are into a little of everything.

Don't assume all young guitarists under 20 listen to either Metal or Emo. I've met a great deal of them that worship Pink Floyd, Rush, Maiden, AC/DC as much as I did at their age. You really need to get to know these kids and their multi-generational music interests...as my generation continues to age they are your new subscriber base.

Give me, my band mates & my friends a reason to subscribe,,, and I promise we will...it's that simple. To break it down to the simplest terms....succesful sales figures are always the result of great packaging AND great content. Know your demographic....give us what we really want...and we'll buy it.

And I'm spent...thank's for the soapbox.
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#1950244 - 05/29/08 10:26 PM Re: Guitar Covers [Re: 80sMetalHead]
Kramer Ferrington III. Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 05/12/05
Posts: 9412
Loc: Wellington, NZ
 Originally Posted By: 80sMetalHead
your competitors are doing a better job of balancing the classic guitarists from bands I liked from then
( ie: KISS, Maiden, Crue, Pantera, ZZ Top, Van Halen, GNR, Zep, Zakk, Slayer, Satriani, Vai etc) and the bands I like from now ( Lamb of God, Slipnot, Avenged Sevenfold, System of a Down, etc)


Uhm... so the competition balances old metal and hard rock bands with new metal and hard rock bands?

Thank God that's the only music out there! ;\)
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#1950250 - 05/29/08 10:33 PM Re: Guitar Covers [Re: Kramer Ferrington III.]
80sMetalHead Offline
Member

Registered: 05/29/08
Posts: 3
That's not the point I was trying to make bro...was referring to having a nice mix of the old and the new, the known & the obscure in general.

Obviously my musical tastes don't extend to everybody...would never expect it to. Just the easiest way for me to present my opinion...that's all.
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#1950256 - 05/29/08 10:54 PM Re: Guitar Covers [Re: 80sMetalHead]
Editor Boy Moderator Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 05/14/01
Posts: 368
Loc: San Mateo,CA,UNITED STATES
Thanks again to all for the helpful comments.

From the basic data, it seems obvious to me that GP and GW must and should remain as different as possible. That's a duh, of course, and the situation gives the guitar community a clear choice -- which is a good thing. 80sMetalHead is more into GW, and that's totally cool. GW covers his interests better than GP -- no shock there. Some others like GP for its stylistic diversity, and that stance is just as cool.

Specific artists aside, if you were given 12 months of issues to plan, how would you divide the following cover subjects?

[1] Artist
[2] Gear
[3] Lesson
[4] Applications (such as the recent Pedalboard issue)
[5] Specialty (such as the 50 Greatest Guitar DVDs or 101 Great Guitar Moments)

Just for an example, I might say that a good mix would be 7 Artist covers, 2 Lesson covers, 1 Applications cover, 1 Gear cover, and 1 Specialty cover.

But what's YOUR best mix?

Thanks, as always, for playing!

Cheers,
Mike

P.S. -- I WILL post our tentative cover-planning strategies on this forum once all the data from readers is compiled.

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#1950262 - 05/29/08 11:10 PM Re: Guitar Covers [Re: 80sMetalHead]
Kramer Ferrington III. Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 05/12/05
Posts: 9412
Loc: Wellington, NZ
 Originally Posted By: 80sMetalHead
That's not the point I was trying to make bro...was referring to having a nice mix of the old and the new, the known & the obscure in general.

Obviously my musical tastes don't extend to everybody...would never expect it to. Just the easiest way for me to present my opinion...that's all.


Sorry, mate. Was just yanking your chain, as they say. \:D
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#1950267 - 05/29/08 11:27 PM Re: Guitar Covers [Re: Editor Boy]
80sMetalHead Offline
Member

Registered: 05/29/08
Posts: 3
Well said. Never meant to imply that GP should copy GW's format ...just stating that a little more mainstream material would appeal to a potential subscriber that is not as familiar or into the more stylistic players.

My Cover Subjects would be broken down as

* 4 Artist Covers (1 Per Quarter, how about pairing up a classic star with an up & comer?)
* 3 Gear Covers (How about annual guitar/amp/effect shootouts? Or best guitars or amps under $500/$1,000? Or most unusual gear issue on what is available for the experimenting types out there? ) Or a NAMM Coverage issue that really lets us know what is coming out and going away? Or An Artists Signature Model issue? )
* 2 Applications issues ( Getting a pro amp tone? Setting up your guitar on your own? Changing string? Adjusting whammy/vibrato bar? Pick-up install? )
* 2 Lessons ( A Novice issue and an Advanced issue)
* 1 Specialty Issue ( How about an annual Reader Vote on what the issue should be about?

Yes, I do sit around thinking of this stuff all day lol...thanks again for allowing our input.
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