Taylor T5-S1

Year: 2006
Finish: Blue Edgeburst
Origin: USA
Acquired: 2006
Mods: Schaller straplocks
Still owned: Yes

The Story: I like pretty things. I also like pretending I know what I’m doing when it comes to tone, but I really don’t. But I did realize that buying lots of solidbody guitars with humbuckers in them was going to get me basically the same sound over and over again. I loved the Taylor acoustic I got in late 2006 and I’d seen some info on the hollowbody T5. I played one down at Gryphon and instantly fell for the feel – I didn’t even plug it in, I just loved the neck and the action. I became semi-obsessed and then got lucky by finding a stunning blueburst just the way I wanted it – maple top, chrome hardware, simple dot inlays – on eBay right around Christmas. I’d never paid anywhere near this much for a guitar before, let alone one I hadn’t played, but I had a good vibe about it from the listing, and after I bought it, I found out the guy selling it wasn’t a dealer, he was just a big guitar nut in Texas with better taste, more money, and even worse impulse conrtol than me. Ultimately, when the bidding was over, I got a really good deal. I also promised Kat that I would sell three others in exchange for this one — and I made good on that!

More than any other guitar, I found that this one renewed my interest in trying to play well. I really kind of fell in love with guitar all over again. The only problem I’ve found with the T5 is that it made several other really lovely guitars in my collection obsolete in terms of function, and to be fair to Kat, I agreed to sell or trade them away. The guitar is fully hollow, with Expression-system-style acoustic sensors mounted internally as well as two humbuckers (the neck pickup is hidden) and a five-way selector switch, so it’s got plenty of tonal options. You can dial in a nice Gretsch or ES-335 vibe, but honestly, the T5 kind of sounds like a T5, and I think that’s a good thing. The bad thing: They now make a 12-string model and I want one of those, too. In complementary Red Edgeburst, please!