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With proper gypsy jazz guitar technique, will the Epiphone masterbilt deluxe give a gypsy jazz tone?
It's more of a traditional archtop acoustic with the ticker top and sides, shorter scale and played with heavier strings, so its dynamics will be somewhat different. I don't think the tone will be as dry or project as much for lead playing, but I don't see why it couldn't be used for rhythm. I think some might argue that anything could be used for this genre but I wouldn't count on it sounding like a selmac style guitar.
I've been following these various recent threads on archtop jazz boxes and gypsy jazz. I'll just point out that Dudley Hill from Pearl Django played a Gibson L5 exclusively. You can certainly hear it in his playing but there is no question that he could swing! Loved his playing and it didn't sound out of sorts at all in the context of this music.
I went into the acoustic section at guitar center one time and I saw that Epiphone Masterbuilt. I didn’t hesitate, I grabbed it off the wall and busted out some Minor Swing! It was the gypsy jazz equivalent of stairway to heaven, right there in Guitar Center. Hehe
anyway, it sounded awesome both lead and rhythm. The sound though made me move towards Charlie Christian licks.....not so Django, but interesting, hip, and fun nonetheless
As far as acoustic archtops I think it's really more a question of volume and cutting power in the high register for leads. Archtops typically are a lot quieter in the high register than a Selmac (generalization).
Tone is subjective and a lot of it is technique. If you like the way it sounds go with it.