by Jef | Approximate reading time: 2 Minutes
Instagram Joe Bonamassa Echopark Guitars fiasco

Instagram Joe Bonamassa Echopark Guitars Flying V fiasco  ·  Source: Instagram/Joe Bonamassa


Joe Bonamassa has publicly called out Gibson Partnership Program member Echopark Guitars on the poor quality of a boutique guitar the company built for him. The guitar, which cost thousands, had problems with the finish, he says in an Instagram post published yesterday that’s since been removed. Given that Joe and Gibson/Epiphone have a close relationship, how will this play out for Echopark and its own ties to Gibson?


1958 “Amos” Flying V replica

Joe Bonamassa has no problem speaking his mind via his hugely popular Instagram page. Now the legendary guitarist has called out what he says was poor work on a guitar he commissioned from Echopark Guitars. The boutique company charged him $7000 for a Flying V, he says, yet after a while the finish “fell off” the instrument.

The post itself has since been deleted, but here’s an excerpt:

This is so uncool I can’t even begin to tell you.. @echoparkguitars. First of all, the guitar is an unsanctioned, non approved, unendorsed copy of my 1958 GIBSON Flying V named Amos. Forgetting that for a minute… I had Gabriel @echoparkguitars build me an Amos replica for overseas touring two years ago and he charged me $7000 dollars for it. After the finish began to fall off the guitar because he did not use the right or enough pour filler on the mineral streak laden Korina body, I sold it. Joe Bonamassa

Will this cause any problems for Echopark as official Gibson Partnership Program members? You’d have thought that Joe Bonamassa saying bad things about a guitar he bought from you might cause problems with your relationship with Gibson.

Joe Bonamassa Echopark Guitars statement

Joe Bonamassa Echopark Guitars statement screen shot from now deleted Instagram post

Finish problems

Interestingly, the thread on The Gear Page contains a link to an internet sale that appears to be for the very same guitar Joe referred to. But there’s no mention of any problems with the finish. We have to assume that Joe or Rumble Seat, the reseller, had any defects the guitar may have had fixed before selling it on.

In any case, Joe’s Epiphone Amos Flying V was a successful model, with all 1,500 units sold. If Gibson can get a guitar like that out the door for under a grand, what happened with the Echopark Amos at nearly ten times that price? Echopark should probably issue a statement of some kind to explain their side of the story…

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37 responses to “Joe Bonamassa: $7000 Echopark Amos Flying V replica had finish “falling off””

  1. Martin says:

    Of course this shouldn’t happen on a $7000 guitar but instead of contacting Echopark guitars regarding the paint and have them fix it, he decides to use his fame and make it into a public spectacle, just to hurt Echopark. That’s a dick move if you ask me.

    • Echopark deserves to be hurt. Go the the gear page, read the horrendous customer service stories, look at the examples of shoddy workmanship and read the many stores of undelivered guitars. Why anyone would buy one of those is beyond me.

    • floey b says:

      the guitar was $5000, discounted. why lie? because the whole thing is a lie. joe’s entire story is fake. he loved that flying V. he told everyone how much he loved it. his selling of the guitar, which people have speculated about, had nothing to do with the integrity of the guitar. which is why no issues were disclosed and why it sold for a huge profit at $12500, originally asking $15000.

      joe slams a masterpiece rare korina V, hand made, by his chosen builder.
      instead of posting actual fake news, why don’t you ask richard fortus, jimmy vivino, dave catching, etc would they think of these masterpiece V’s? or simply look at joe’s emails to gabe which constantly praised the guitar. the guitar was unbelievably good. and here we have an actual tabloid article contrasting everything joe has ever said about that masterpiece guitar. how about an article with all the praise Gabe was given over it? because that praise, which is all in writing, is perfectly in line with the other people who have these guitars. there are many people who buy expensive hand made guitars who have no idea how to play a guitar. we know joe’s motivations for selling the guitar had nothing to do with the guitar.

      the finish wears easily on all hand-made, non-plastic guitars, who use very intentionally light finish and old school, rare lacquer. they scratch chip, flake, crack, cheque. that’s the point. they are not coated in plastic or fake lacquer like 99% of guitars out there. they are not plastic-coated like the joe b signature flying V. he will talk up, defend his plastic coated, assembly line hunk o junk, but will lie and slam a masterpiece. sounds like a really level headed guy.

      there is no flaw with joe’s guitar. i have played this guitar. i discussed this guitar with joe in costa mesa. i discussed this guitar with gabe on the day it was conceived, right after he got the call from joe, while i was standing in the queens museum. this whole story is pointless, tabloid fabrication. the only goal here is to lash out hurt echopark, a mom & pop, that’s it. joe is a corporate guy, coated in plastic. gabe hit joe and joe hit back. only difference is, joe lied. gabe’s post is authentic. joe’s post is lies, it’s a sore loser post. he’s greedy. he’s petty. he’s a hoarder. he’s a celibate.

      echopark guitars is a massively rock n roll brand. why would a celibate want a rock n roll guitar? joe perry is echopark guitars. don’t forget, gibson hired echopark to make gibsons. and joe gets the epiphones. the amos epiphone. must be real proud!!!!!

      joe b has no place at echopark, in hindsight it’s quite obvious. it’s a rock brand. these are rock guitars. this was just nature taking its course. it’s natural selection. joe doens’t fit. he’s the guitar center dork. he’s the the white guy with no style trying to break dance. he tries to hide behind his blues cruise hat and sunglasses, but he can’t hide from these lies. joe’s post was emotional because he was so upset at being made fun of, and shows real signs of insecurity. he lied about the price! no big deal. we are all insecure. gabe’s post is run of the mill; a master craftsman making fun of a machine made piece of crap. joe is half a man for lying. just own it, son. own your indonesian plastic. be proud. don’t lie and say that it’s a better guitar. or wait… are you fans really that stupid?

      what he doens’t realize is that he will always be made fun of, so long as you play scales for a living and plays fake rock music. talk about adult contemporary. elevator music for a nursing home. hand made guitars are not for everyone. joe bonamassa is not rock n roll. my 82 year old father in law loves joe b. and so does his 75 year old wife. i bought them joe B tickets for the saban theater a few years ago. it says it all. it speaks volumes. leave the hand made guitars to the rockers, joe. you can stick with the chinese or what have you, coated in plastic. slamming a masterpiece and talking up a piece of plastic. you are not rock n roll and don’t think for a second that you play in a rock n roll band. it’s uncanny. it’s just unbelievable. joe couldn’t handle a real rock n roll machine. it was too much for him. the fact

    • Joe says:

      JB was got mad because Echo Park owner Gabriel dissed a guitar line JB was selling because it was not made in America. JB retaliated and went after EP saying that the Flying V that they made for him had a bad finish. Hypocritical because JB used the EP Flying V for his entire tour (thus he loved how it played and said so-a lot) then he sold it for a massive profit (note if it was a bad guitar and JB sold it for a massive profit whose the bum). The GP stuff was started by a guy who had an issue with his EP and then went on a campaign to ruin the company. Note neither he nor any of the other GP commenters (most of whom never even owned an EP) EVER discuss PLAYABILITY and that’s because it they play great. Like owning a vintage. Also you see few positive comments on the GP thread because GP shuts down positive posters. It happened to me. And yes I own an EP. Nothing plays like it. The only opinion that matters is your own. Play an EP and you’ll be sold.

  2. Don says:

    Valuable information! I bought one of the Epiphone “Amos” guitars, and couldn’t be happier with it! Huge bang for the buck, even compared to guitars that I’ve bought for over 5x the amount. After reading the saga about Echo Park guitars on one of the forums, and seeing pics of some of the work, I hope Gibson is going to step up and make sure that EP’s representation of their brand isn’t going to hurt them.

    • Dane says:

      Actually, Epiphone is a subsidiary of Gibson, so if anything this episode makes Gibson look good, not bad.

      • Don says:

        Gibson just licensed the use of their name to Echopark Guitars. This Echopark/Gibson relationship could make Gibson look really bad. Epiphone has really stepped up their game, and has been hugely beneficial to Gibson’s reputation.

    • floey b says:

      if you’re happy with an indonesian machine made, plastic coated guitar, which you like to compare to guitars costing 5X more, then keep sniffing the glue. have at it. don’t give up. you have no business on any level, looking at $7500 guitars, and certainly no business discussing them. it’s not something you would comprehend. the guitar you bought is not collectible and it’s coated in plastic, and it’s aimed at poor people. $899 at guitar center, used, right now, joe b flying V. it’s an insult to flying V players across the globe. that dork…. the V is a man’s guitar. are we seriously having this conversation. why are you here? bang for the buck? are you selling import used cars for a living by any chance? quit making false equivalencies.

  3. So the one he sold for $12,500 on that Gear Page link is defective? Seems like a pretty good profit he made on it.
    It looks well worn, like most customs these days. What’s the deal with the V on the left in the picture? I like the way that one looks better. Is that a white limba custom model?

  4. Janne says:

    It’s been made known that the good Echoparks from years ago were built by Mike Lipe.

  5. Merman9393 says:

    Why would a Gibson endorsee need to buy a guitar that is cloned from one of his own guitars from EchoPark guitars? I assumed an endorsee that had signature models would have, at the very least, access to discounted units to use as “tour support”. Paul Stanley of Kiss was provided dozens of Marauders to smash on stage back in the late 70’s, so I would think Joe could get a Gibson Custom Shop V for this European tour.

  6. Detroit rock says:

    Join the discussion…

  7. Detroit rock says:

    Frankly I think the facts should be straightened out before people jump on an internet post to unleash. Echopark makes some of the best guitars on the planet, and joe is a solid legendary player. Both these guys just missed the point because it was done on social. Do yourself a favor hold echopark guitars in your hand and then make your statements….Gibson was brilliant in finding this true DETROIT product. I hope Gibson continues to get back to its Michigan roots and improves there brand which took a bad hit in the bankruptcy. These echopark guitars are a work of art ….ask a real player or an amateur ….straight up rock city fire…haters can hate all day they just don’t know shit

  8. Tommy Quirk says:

    First of all, you’re not getting the full story from this article. This entire thing started when EchoPark asked the question “American made or Chinese made” in an Instagram post. The picture posted was of an EP ’58 Albert V and the Chinese made JB Amos. Joe Bonamassa lost his mind and completely over-reacted to this post. There was absolutely no malice intended toward Joe nor did it say anything derogatory about the Chinese made Amos.

    If JB had an issue with his EP guitar, why didn’t he reach out to Gabriel to correct it? He then sells it (at a profit) for $12,500 to some unsuspecting person? Respectfully, that story doesn’t add up.

    Here’s my last thought on the matter. Let’s stop buying sweatshop guitars.

    • Gabriel says:

      Thank you so fucking much for having some balls! I have a ton of emails directly between joe and myself where he is calling me The King Of Vs,complimenting how amazing the instrument is and comments about how he loves the finish, tone,weight pickups, neck. Hes sent me photos and videos of him on the road with it.. his tech even did a spot on it from the road. Nothing but compliments!
      When we moved to Detroit in 17 his manager Roy approached me and we signed a contract for J&R promotions to Sell my instruments via their platforms.
      I should publish the thing..
      We had an agreement that gave them 30% and they had 3 months to build their site and launch it.
      They started to stall after the contract was signed.
      We got 90 days into it and ide paid for legal,website design and all the photography and the J&R team still could not finish their site and the terms of the contract .At that same time in 17 Joe and Roy were trying to put together a financial group to attempt to purchase Gibson .
      I had heard from his attorney that he sold the V in order to get in the good graces of Henry!! That is the truth..
      He ordered the guitar from me because Gibson would not make him one!
      The attorney representing a very close associate of mine and for many years a personal client.
      I’ve held off on this because hes a Pagent child who has always been spoiled and now hes famous for being what..a guitar collector??? Calls himself the King of the Blues?? Really???
      He was and probably still is selling a signed lithograph of my work ,bragging about how great it is ..on his website for $599.00 to my knowledge hes sold 1000 copies to date..
      When I asked him directly he just said that he didn’t need it anymore and he actually asked me to replicate his second one a short time later..
      There’s a video of him playing it at the royal Albert hall .. I believe that title is Angel of Mercy
      Check it that guitar tone to any of his other guitars..
      I dont know anyone who can name a single song hes contributed to the landscape and… honestly. Without his manager would never know who he is!!!
      Daddy Bonna did a fine job raising young Joe Kardashian…

      • Yo! says:

        If this is actually Gabriel and not one of his insta-sycophants, why don’t you post on The Gear Page and address the numerous examples of poor craftsmanship?

      • floey b says:

        it’s true that Joe was trying to buy Gibson.

        This here “gear news” article is literally fake news. twisting reality to get an article to get clicks. it’s tabloid journalism. No facts, no real actual information, no references, no backstory.

        Joe B was on the rag, and butthurt over Gabe’s fierce wit and slam of the “Chinese” flying V. Korean you say? I’d rather have a Chinese. Frankly a run of the mill post for Echopark, who has every right to slam machine-made guitars, particularly overseas ones. That’s the whole point. You are so unspeakably dense, Joe. You’re the one who decided to sell out. You sold the good one, and now you get the Chinese one. Gabe is right. It’s par for the course, son.

        It really stung, didn’t it, Joe? That’s the point. It was supposed to sting. You sold Gabe’s guitar, which you loved. And you sold it for a big profit. And you disclosed no “issues” at the time of sale. This is not news. In a time when half the market is relic guitars you’re PUBLICALLY whining about imaginary finish issues? After profiting? Oh man, a real class act. No. you’re attempting harm at a builder who slammed you. We, who build, finance, own, sell and create REAL hand made guitars, have every right to slam your chinese garbage. And your pasty tasteless ass gets to take it. That’s the business you’re in. You are acoustic fodder for old people who don’t know any better. Your signature guitar is a machine made import. That’s the path you’ve chosen.

        Who in the world would want a Korean anything? China is much closer to the USA. Our brothers. Our land is build on Chinese everything. anyway, Joe’s B instagram slam was a real, actual personal attack, and in complete violation of instagram policy, therefore removed. In his instagram post, he exposed 3 lies and made a personal attack! Why isn’t that news? Why aren’t all Joe’s emails incessantly praising Gabe & The V news? Now that’s news. Gabe’s instagram slam post was authentic and pure, with pure motive. Just another day at Echopark, a real hand made builder. You sell a masterpiece (your words, not mine) for a huge profit? Dude, Joe. You have classic upstate new york blinders on. Leave LA. you don’t fit in. Get a girlfriend (boyfriend?) Get some perspective, gets some style, get a clue. Guess what, we can see through your lies and your BS story. it’s sad when a professional shows that deep inside, he’s a hurt little boy, one who menstruates on a regular basis.

        After all this Joe then has the audacity to claim some kind of ownership rights on the V design. I have discussed this all at length with real guitar collectors, other people with real V’s. Sorry for Joe, but we can see through your BS. This is brand of entitlement and specialness you will only find in Hollywood. This is not the NY Joe, it’s the insecure whiny Hollywood inner child Joe. The audacity. Who in the world do you think you are? Joe B and John Mayer need to start a band. On the Rag blues. A match made in heaven. All the whining and entitlement makes for a great fake “blues” sound. Better go practice my scales! Gotta learn the blues!

  9. Janne says:

    Gabriel Currie is a moron that can’t even spell… let alone make a good guitar.

    • Mark G says:

      Everyone check out the Echopark Guitars Nightmare thread on TGP to get a great look into Gabe’s shoddy workmanship, with photographic proof and all. Disclaimer, it’s pretty shocking.

      • Yikes! I read as much of it as I could before incredulity took over. Didn’t realize it was THAT bad.

        • floey b says:

          it’s not. it’s no different than any other forum. cars, watches, guitars. it’s a bunch of losers. it’s a tiny, insignificant percentage. they can’t play guitar. they don’t know what a hand made guitar is. they don’t know shit. it…… is not bad at all.

    • floey b says:

      einstein couldn’t talk until he was 3. many great salespeople, and great artists, can’t spell. it’s actually more a point to gabe’s genius as an artist. he dyslexia has nothing to do with building guitars. jerry seinfeld is dyslexic. you seem to have a real problem with it. shaming people from a keyboard who have a real and true learning disability. you sound like quite the human.

  10. Tyr says:

    Cheap Squires put Echopark “instruments” to shame.

  11. Joe says:

    Actually kind of awesome that Jb liked and used the guitar so much that he wore the paint off of it. If you ask me it’s an endorsement for Echopark. In fact that kind of wear is ushually an upcharge

    • floey b says:

      there was no finish issue with this guitar. we know for a fact. and if there was, it would’ve been disclosed at the time of sale. joe b was simply on his period…….again. no wonder he’s got the blues!
      joe’s “on the rag” blues.

  12. floe b says:

    well, well, well. so echopark, who does perhaps the finest finishes in the business, with the best lacquer on earth did a poor finish job on joe’s guitar? YEA RIGHT.

    hmmm. tell me then why, when joe b went to sell the guitar did he not disclose any of this “flaw”. by joe lying about this finish issue, after he sold the guitar, he’s basically calling himself a scumbag, one who doesn’t disclose a flaw to a buyer. also, joe bonamassa got a discount on this guitar, and only paid $5000, not $7000 as he claimed. he’s lying about that too. we’ve seen the invoice for the guitar. we’ve read the emails. we’ve read every single email exchange between gabe and joe, where joe says that gabe “hit it out of the park”, over & over again. the invoice, the price, the payment, the before & after. everything is all in writing. frankly, joe couldn’t shut up about how much he loved the guitar, and it’s no surprise because these V’s are insanely good. impossibly good. joe sold his guitar out of spite, and perhaps didn’t want to be caught with a “copy” while trying to buy gibson guitar company. inventing stories about finish flaws, after you sold the guitar? what a genuine and absolute wanker. bona fide. joe wankermassa.

    in addition, i have spoken to joe personally, at the costa mesa guitar show, about this flying V. he said gabe is a “good guy, and does great work”. interesting how gabe’s entire brand is built on aging, old wood, etc. and someone complains about a finish issue? joe must be on his period again. what a pussy. buys a guitar for $5000,
    lies and says it was $7000, then sells it for $15000, then complains about it. this is who you’re dealing with folks. this is your grandpa’s guitar hero. no integrity.

    joe’s butthurt soreness over other issues, like trying to buy gibson guitar company (that’ll be the day), or maybe trying to do a signature run on gibson flying V’s, only to be denied and wind up with true garbage econo epiphones.

    do you want real o chinese? huh? no thanks, joe.

    joe b is lying about quite a bit here. blatant, flat out lies. he has a lot of followers and knows people will believe him. he is butthurt because a master builder, an artist, made fun of his piece of garbage “signature” epiphone.

    it’s all in writing, folks. and joe sold a $5000 guitar for $15000, w/out disclosing a single thing wrong with the guitar, because we all know THERE IS NOT A SINGLE THING WRONG WITH THAT GUITAR. we have it in writing, all these emails praising gabe and praising the amazing flying V copy of Amos. joe, you will go down in flames once your emails get out. bold faced wanker and a liar.

  13. Tom says:

    Joe was probably pissed off the mineral streaks made it harder to sell this one as a poorly aged original like the “landfill” V he hooked someone up with.

  14. Ted says:

    Bonamassa defamed echopark and then sold the same guitar FOR A PROFIT using his name and not disclosing any defects. Anyone that stands behind such a loser deserves to be his next victim. The guy has attacked countless people. FOr instance the assault with guitar when Bonamassa chose the side of a seat jumping drunk over the paid ticket holder cancer victim whose seat it was. He’s a complete fool.

  15. phil says:

    7.5K for a guitar???? Is it gona be delivered by a topless Eva Mendez?You gotta be fokking kiddin me

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