You have no doubt seen top rockers or local giggers sporting an axe with a wild fray of steel wire flailing around the headstock. Why can’t these guitarists (or their techs) take the few extra seconds to snip the string ends off? Answers seem to vary, but I suspect that many guilty players think this looks cool. I have encountered some reasonable answers, where players say they had to change strings in a hurry and didn’t have anything to cut with. Restringing while in the middle of a gig definitely gets a pass. I have heard guitarists claim that keeping the extra string saved their behind by allowing them to reuse the broken string. ….Okay. I have even heard tone snobs claim there is a tonal difference from not cutting the guitar strings. ….And now you lost me.
Lets set aside the MacGyver-esque makeshift string antics and unsubstantiated claims for a moment. Do long, dangling guitar strings actually look cool? I answer with a resounding no, something reminiscent of a Grumpy Cat in his prime. You wouldn’t let your kids run around with their hair looking like that. You wouldn’t mess with a guy or girl whose downstairs area looked like that. So why would do your sweet guitar like that? I want you to look at your guitar, address her by the female name you gave her (please tell me you named her), and tell her she is getting the spa treatment she deserves.
Now back to the excuses. Reusing broken guitar strings? How about just carrying a few extra sets in your guitar case. They are not that big and do not cost much. We even sell a low price all-in-one restringing tool that comes with cutters too here– it will also fit in your guitar case. You could also bring a backup guitar if you do not have to worry about someone running off with it while you are on stage. If none of these rational arguments appeal to you, then do it before you cut up your hands and poke your eyeballs out.
I know, rock is all about being edgy and in your face, doing things differently, breaking the rules, etc. But the greats achieve this with their sound- not just their look.