What would you choose and why? Money is no obstacle for this discussion!
Remember, just one ... for the rest of your life. Period.
PS: I know it's a hard question, LOL. But, that's why it make an interesting point of discussion.
I find this to be a horrific question... I am becoming quite distressed at the suggestion of being left with only one guitar. I am so conflicted... If I choose one that I already own and love - what will I be missing out on down the road...??? If I choose one that I do not own yet and pass over the lovely ones I own, am I being disloyal??? What if the unknown to me guitar doesn't feel/smell/sound like I imagined?? Have I wasted my opportunity?? If I choose one of my precious guitars - what happens to the rest of them??? It is like choosing which one of your children should live!!!
On the other hand I played a Taylor 514ce one day that just reached out to my soul. The feel, the tone, the touch - everything just came together to make a very magical moment. We were in perfect sync. I could have played her all day... I was head over heels in love!!! Alas, I could not buy her at the time and I left her at the store. But I have thought of her often. Oh my, how often I have chided myself for not rushing right back to the store to make her my own... I have tried to find one like her everywhere I go... I have played numerous other 514ce guitars but have never had the same moment.
So I would choose to have that perfect guitar moment for the rest of my life - with that special Taylor 514ce - with a humidity/temperature controlled room/case to protect it - of course...
For me it would be a Yairi. Personally I love the feel and the sound, but also they are the most resiliant guitars I have ever seen. Even their all solid wood models. I have owned many and sold many in my retail establishment for years and have never seen one succumb to humidity damage. But mainly (in my opinion) I don't think you can find better craftsmanship out there. (again that's just my opinion)
Sobell MS African Blackwood.
The most versitile acoustic, and loudest, I have ever had.
I thought a lot about this after seeing the post, I think I would have to keep the old alvarez that I've had for 30 years. I have had dozens of guitars through the years and own a couple martins now but if i could only have one i would have to keep the alvarez.
I just noticed a year later, that I never even answered my own question ... :-0
Anyway, that's good because I've had a year to think about it and I've played a lot of different guitars over that time period.
The one guitar that I have played that I think would fit all my needs for the rest of my life would be the Martin D-18GE "Golden Era" ... it has pretty much everything that I want in a guitar.
First and foremost, it's a Martin Dreadnought ... it's made to last a lifetime and that's an important point. Next, it has a wide 1 3/4 inch nut, something I must have on all my guitars. It also has a 2 5/16 string spacing at the bridge. For me, combining those dimensions with a modified V neck and makes it an ideal "strummer / fingerstyle" combination.
Lastly, I love the 1934 "vintage" build and appointments. The Adirondack spruce top and the classic bracing close the deal.
This is the guitar for me if I could only have one.
I played with a guy last week who had a D-18 Clarence White edition. That was a dandy! Nice!
I'll post an uninteresting reply.... I'll take the one I know and love, my Seagull Maritime. I've played Martins and Taylors, but like the Maritime better. Perhaps not rational, but true...
Not uninteresting. Some people adapt and learn to work with a particular guitar. End up they get their own best sound from that guitar.
Kinda there with you. I've been playing my Seagull Performer for a couple years now, I'd be okay with it, if it came down to one guitar.
On the other hand, a Taylor 914 would be nice too. I'd adjust eventually.
The "only one" git is the Martin 1930 000-45 on page 82 of the October issue of Acoustic Guitar Magazine! Or maybe a mint Martin 1-17.
Ok...sorry...but I'm a sucker for nostalgia!
I have 3 that each fulfill different roles. The BTO Taylor LKSM would be the first to go because it's such a niche instrument. Deciding between my McAlisters would be utter torture. The D-18 clone is easily the finest dred ever and the 1 3/4" neck makes it versatile flatpicked or finger picked. If I *had* to make one guitar do all things I'd probably choose that one but the guitar I'm bonded most to is my McA 12 fret slothead cutaway Lucas body. Fortunately I don't *have* to make that choice.