fbpx

Almost No One Cares About The Gibson SG Anymore…

No One Cares About The SG Anymore
[DISCOUNT] SAVE 10% ON The Mastering Framework

An icon of rock, metal and doom, it would appear that the once-beloved Gibson / Epiphone SG is now no longer a popular choice for guitarists



Angus Young played one, Tony Iommi too. For sheer practically and playability, it is kind of impossible not to like the Gibson SG. From the way the neck is implemented to its iconic double cutaway design, the guitar is THE sound behind many, many iconic riffs and albums. 

For metal, for rock and roll, for thrash, the SG has been a staple since it first hit the market way back in 1961. 

Black Sabbath, the metal band’s metal band, the band directly responsible for doom metal as a genre, Metallica, and practically every other modern / classic / legacy band playing today, led by Tony Iommi’s genre-creating guitar wizardry, used Gibson SG and SG-style models exclusively. Iommi remains loyal to the SG today. 

But in 2024 – and for the past several years or more – the SG appears to be dying. No one is searching for it online, you don’t really see anyone playing them anymore, and despite the plethora of awesome (and affordable) Epiphone SG models available, it would appear that guitarists have now moved on from the SG. 

Almost No One Cares About The Gibson SG Anymore…

How do I know this? Using Google Trends as our data source, arguably the best indication of whether something is popular or not, billions of people use Google search every day, we can see that the overall search trend for both Gibson and Epiphone SG guitars has declined significantly. 

Numbers represent search interest relative to the highest point on the chart for the given region and time. A value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term. A value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. A score of 0 means that there was not enough data for this term.

Overall Trends:

  1. Both Gibson SG and Epiphone SG show a general decline in worldwide interest from 2004 to 2024.
  2. Gibson SG consistently has higher interest levels compared to Epiphone SG throughout the entire period.
  3. Seasonal patterns: Interest tends to peak in December for both models, likely due to the holiday shopping season.

Comparison:

  1. In 2004, Gibson SG had about 4 times more interest than Epiphone SG (88 vs. 21 in January).
  2. The gap between the two models narrowed over time. By 2024, Gibson SG had only about 2 times more interest than Epiphone SG (22 vs. 11 in April).
  3. Both models experienced similar rates of decline, but Gibson SG saw a more pronounced drop in interest levels.

Notable Changes:

  1. Interest in both models peaked in December 2004 (Gibson SG at 100, Epiphone SG at 29) and then steadily declined.
  2. Gibson SG saw a sharp drop from 88 in December 2007 to 78 in January 2008, possibly due to the global financial crisis.
  3. From 2010 to 2011, interest in both models decreased more rapidly compared to other periods.
  4. The decline in interest slowed down from 2012 to 2016, with relatively stable levels for both models.

How The SG Compares To Les Paul, Stratocaster & Jazzmaster 

Fender Meteora vs Fender Telecaster

Obviously there are WAY more models and guitar styles than the Les Paul, Strat, and Jazzmaster. But these iconic models are what most people – experienced or new – know best, so I figured it’d be interesting to see what global search volumes showed about interest in these “styles” of electric guitar over the past 20 years. 

Key observations:

  1. Telecaster: Remained fairly steady around 4-5 throughout the period, showing consistent popularity. Slight decline from 5 to 3 in the late 2010s.
  2. Les Paul: Started high around 11-13 in the early 2000s. Gradual decline over time to 5-6 range by 2024. Remains the most searched brand, but has seen a significant drop.
  3. Gibson SG: Was at 2-3 in the early 2000s, then dropped to 1-2 for most of the period after 2010. Much lower popularity compared to Telecaster and Les Paul.
  4. Epiphone Les Paul: Steady at 2 until around 2012, then declined slightly to 1 after that. Lower popularity than the Gibson models.
  5. Jazzmaster: Consistently the lowest at 1 throughout the entire time period.

Overall, the Les Paul stands out as the most popular brand, but has experienced a substantial decline over the 20 year period. The Telecaster held relatively steady as the 2nd most popular. The other 3 brands remained consistently lower in search popularity in comparison.

The data suggests an overall decline in search popularity for these major guitar brands over time, especially after the early 2010s. This could potentially reflect changing musical tastes, competition from other brands, or other market factors over this timespan.

Is An SG Guitar Worth Buying? 

Epiphone SG Standard

We’re big fans of the SG here at ELECTRIKJAM. From its design to its neck to the many, many variations it comes in, the SG is one of the best beginner, apprentice, journeyman, and master guitars around. 

Tonally, it is at home playing everything from jazz and country to metal and sludge. You honestly will not find a better workhorse, so if you’re considering buying an SG – either a Gibson or Epiphone – here’s a breakdown of why Chris and I rate this style of electric guitar. 

24 Reasons Why The Gibson / Epiphone SG Rocks

What Guitar Does Tony Iommi Use
  1. Iconic Design: The SG’s double-cutaway body shape is instantly recognizable and has been a rock staple for decades.
  2. Lightweight Comfort: Weighing in at just 6.9lbs, the SG is significantly lighter than a Les Paul, making it easier to play for long sets.
  3. Fast Neck: The SG’s slim, wide neck and shaved-down neck heel make it one of the fastest guitars to play.
  4. Affordable Quality: Epiphone offers high-quality SGs at a fraction of the price of a Gibson.
  5. Alnico Classic PRO Pickups: These pickups deliver classic humbucker tones perfect for rock and metal.
  6. Versatile Sounds: Coil-splitting allows you to get both humbucker and single-coil tones from your SG.
  7. 24.75″ Scale Length: The slightly longer scale length adds brightness and clarity to your tone.
  8. Easy Upper Fret Access: The double-cutaway and 22nd fret neck joint make it a breeze to reach the higher frets.
  9. Reliable Hardware: Epiphone’s LockTone bridge and Graph Tech nut ensure solid tuning stability.
  10. Multiple Models: From the affordable SG Special to the high-end Prophecy, there’s an SG for every budget.
  11. Inspiring Finishes: Choose from classic Cherry Red to eye-catching Pelham Blue and everything in between.
  12. Slim Taper Neck Profile: The fast-playing slim taper neck is comfortable for all hand sizes.
  13. Solid Mahogany Construction: The SG’s mahogany body and neck provide a warm, resonant tone.
  14. Perfect for Metal: The SG’s sharp attack and sustain make it a favorite for heavy genres.
  15. Doom Metal Favorite: Bands like Black Sabbath and Electric Wizard have made the SG synonymous with heavy riffs.
  16. Dual Volume & Tone Controls: Sculpt your sound with individual volume and tone knobs for each pickup.
  17. Killswitch Compatible: The 3-way toggle switch can be easily modded for stutter effects.
  18. Stage-Ready: The SG’s light weight and contoured body make it comfortable to play standing up.
  19. Studio Workhorse: Track big rhythm parts and soaring leads with ease in the studio.
  20. Epiphone Quality Control: Epiphone’s consistent build quality means you can buy with confidence.
  21. Improved Electronics: 2024 models benefit from refined wiring and components.
  22. Gig Bag Included: Most SGs come with a custom-fitted gig bag for safe transportation.
  23. Strap Locks Included: No need to worry about your SG slipping off your strap during performances.
  24. Join Legendary SG Players: Follow in the footsteps of Tony Iommi, Angus Young, and Robby Krieger.

How Is A Gibson SG Different From An Epiphone SG? 

Gibson Tony Iommi SG Special

When comparing Gibson SGs to Epiphone SGs, the main differences lie in the quality of materials, craftsmanship, and electronics. Gibson SGs are made in the USA with premium woods, hardware, and pickups, resulting in superior tone and playability. However, this comes at a significantly higher price point, with Gibson SGs typically costing $1,500 to $3,000 or more.

Epiphone SGs, on the other hand, are made overseas with more affordable materials and components. While they may not quite match the refined feel and sound of a Gibson, Epiphone SGs still offer excellent value for money, with prices ranging from around $400 to $900.

Within the Epiphone SG lineup, there are also notable differences between high-end and low-end models. Entry-level SGs like the SG Special ($399) feature more basic pickups and hardware, as well as a bolt-on neck construction. Mid-range models like the SG Standard ($449) and SG ’61 Maestro Vibrola ($549) offer upgraded pickups, a slimmer neck profile, and vintage-style appointments.

At the top of the Epiphone SG range, you’ll find premium models like the Prophecy SG ($899) and the Limited Edition 1961 SG with Maestro Vibrola ($749). These guitars boast high-end features like Fishman Fluence pickups, Grover locking tuners, ebony fretboards, and superior build quality that rivals Gibson SGs at a more affordable price point.

[LEARN FROM A PRO]

Master Your Music To A Professional Standard Even if You’re A Total Beginner

This step-by-step framework is the exact process I use to master music professionally. It is the culmination of 20+ years of experience, condensed down into a single, easy to follow workflow

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest