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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here’s something Ive been thinking about & would like to know what some of you think:

Now that Dave Guardala has been arrested in Germany & charged with conning people out of thousands of dollars, most of you would agree that he is in fact, nothing but a con artist, I started to think….

Before Dave G. came on the scene, in the early 80s, the idea of a $250 plus mouthpiece was unheard of. Most mpcs were $100 or less. Dave was the one who really changed people’s perceptions and got them to consider paying “big bucks” for a sax mpc.

Guardala, in essence, created the whole custom sax mpc market & paved the way for the mpc market we have today, with people shelling out $500, $750, or even $1,000+ for a piece, without blinking an eye.

So I’m thinking…what if it was a CON all along? What if the whole expensive mpc thing is all based on a CON, Dave’s original con, the con of getting sax players to think that good mpcs are worth that much & that, if it costs that much, it must be great, because it was elaborately crafted by a Magic Mpc Wizard like Dave, someone who knows all the secrets of this esoteric field of endeavor??

Not that they werent very good mpcs, but that people would be willing to pay that kind of bread. Its the hype factor.

What if it’s all a con? All those great mpcs, back in the 50s & 60s, didn’t cost big bucks, even if inflation & historical dollar values are taken into consideration.

What if it’s just all based on a con? Dave Guardala’s first & lasting con?

A con, created by a now revealed con artist.

Any thoughts?


Ps> I’m relatively new here & am really enjoying SOTW, cheers all!!
 

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Consider the investment in tools, a space for working, the materials, and the labor involved in hand-making one mouthpiece to a precision specification. Consider the time involved building skills and storing knowledge. All the mistakes you have to eat as you learn. Consider all that.

Next, given all that, ask yourself what you would have to charge for a custom mouthpiece in order to make it worth your time and effort.

Then consider what a plumber charges, a dentist, an auto repair shop, a lawyer.

Finally, stick a plastic stock piece that comes with a student horn in your mouth and decided what the custom piece is really worth.

Some things can't be cloned. If they could, the Chinese would be stamping out great pieces and charging peanuts for them.
 

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So you're saying that Guardala pieces could have been Taiwanese (they started a little earlier that the China thing....so must have been Taiwanese...) Knock-offs all along?

Oh, Man! If that was true and someone would find out for sure :D ....just imagine the face of all those who paid and are paying (and will be paying an increasing rate for a long long time) the full wack for this pieces of brass whose Guardala Mida's touch turned into gold.
 

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Where can I find some info about him being arrested?!

btw, maybe he's allowed to make mouthpieces in jail^^

I would drive there and buy one :)
 

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I'm trying to think of an appropriate joke about Dave's current living situation, refacing, and being "acquainted" with some fellow inmates in the biblical way.

:scratch:

Anyway, I'm a sax player, not a comedian.
 

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Chicken 'Lil said:
Anyway, I'm a sax player, not a comedian.
Either way, feel free to take Artistic License when making Guardala jokes...
 

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ChuBerry47 said:
Oh so that is why mouthpieces are so much. I think maybe that is why Michael Brecker switched to Jody Jazz.

Huh?

He played his Guardala early 80's - death. There is a picture of him using it in the liner notes of "Pilgramige".
 

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Martinman said:
Huh?

He played his Guardala early 80's - death. There is a picture of him using it in the liner notes of "Pilgramige".

You must be a little tired Martinman...that looks like something called a "joke",
someone needs to get out of the shed once in awhile...:|
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
You guys have missed my point.

My point has nothing to do with the cost of manufacturing custom mpcs, etc.

My point is, getting people to pay that much in the first place. Changing their perceptions about the value of something. Making them think differently about an item that so that they could want to pay 3 or 4 times for what, in the past, they were used to paying much less for.

For example, a toothbrush is considered by everyone to be in a certain price range, no matter what kind it is, but for a company to come alone and introduce a highly expensive toothbrush, at a price range that was never charged before, THEN be able to persuade the public to buy it at that price, THEN create a whole industry of other companies making a similarly priced product.

That’s my point. Creating a market.

But was it based on a real need, or just Dave’s CON & sell-job?
 

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AdrianMolina said:
You guys have missed my point.

My point has nothing to do with the cost of manufacturing custom mpcs, etc.

My point is, getting people to pay that much in the first place. Changing their perceptions about the value of something. Making them think differently about an item that so that they could want to pay 3 or 4 times for what, in the past, they were used to paying much less for.

For example, a toothbrush is considered by everyone to be in a certain price range, no matter what kind it is, but for a company to come alone and introduce a highly expensive toothbrush, at a price range that was never charged before, THEN be able to persuade the public to buy it at that price, THEN create a whole industry of other companies making a similarly priced product.

That';s my point. Creating a market.

But was it based on a real need, or just Dave';s CON & sell-job?

Electric toothbrush anybody? It does more than a regular toothbrush, like not hurt your teeth if you have super sensitive teeth.

A Guardala does things a Ling does not, like play super bright.


And if that Jody Jazz thing was a joke I didn't get it...
 

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No, DGs mouthpieces are the real deal. It was not just marketing hype and bait and switch. He delivered a quality product. What is a shame is that there were/are several other makers trying to cash in on the new market without delivering the high end goods.

While high end mouthpieces did not really exist for sax players until then, we were just playing catch up to what is commonly available to other musicians. Flute playes have long had hand-made flutes that are very pricey. Custom head joints often cost more than the flute.

I'm surprised high priced hand made saxes are not more popular. But this may be due to top of the line factory made saxes having enough hand adjustments made to them that they adequately satisfy the wants and needs of players.
 

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AdrianMolina said:
For example, a toothbrush is considered by everyone to be in a certain price range, no matter what kind it is, but for a company to come alone and introduce a highly expensive toothbrush, at a price range that was never charged before, THEN be able to persuade the public to buy it at that price, THEN create a whole industry of other companies making a similarly priced product.
Why create an imaginary toothbrush analogy when we have the real deal? Tennis shoes.
 

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I see your point, Adrian, and I think it's interesting. I obviously don't know if Dave intended to create a crazy saxophone-oriented con-game from the beginning of his career, but, based on how things have ended up, it certainly is food for speculation, if nothing else.

I'm sure Guardala's handmade pieces are good. But Brian Powell will take a stock piece and turn it into a great-playing, high-end piece of equipment for 65 bucks (or however much the mouthpiece guys charge these days, probably not much more than that). Adam Niewood opened my Soloist C* into an .085, and it's my main alto piece now, absolute masterwork. That cost a hundred. Not a thousand. I agree that the many-hundreds-of-dollars-for-a-mouthpiece thing is silly, considering how good I've heard people sound on stuff that isn't expensive.
 

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Martinman said:
Huh?

He played his Guardala early 80's - death. There is a picture of him using it in the liner notes of "Pilgramige".
I dunno. Phil Barone came on here a few weeks after Brecker's death talking about how Mike actually like the Barones more than the Guardalas but how he felt a loyalty to Dave. Hmmm..... :cool:
 

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Agent27 said:
I dunno. Phil Barone came on here a few weeks after Brecker's death talking about how Mike actually like the Barones more than the Guardalas but how he felt a loyalty to Dave. Hmmm..... :cool:

Well, we can all trade conjecture on what he liked, but he used the Guardala.

Don't forget Doc Tenney's Links that Brecker liked too.
 

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well said as usual mojo. bobby dukoff could have had this product first if he cared about craftsmanship. the original dg mpcs is merely a well made dukoff
 
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