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    Nate Westgor Salutes Vintage Guitar.

    Nate Westgor, head honcho at Willie’s American Guitars, grabbed some great guitars to send best wishes to VG in honor of the magazine’s 30th anniversary. Check it out as he noodles on a ’55 Fender Esquire, a Gibson Custom Shop ’59 ES-355TD, a Fender Custom Shop Caballo Tono Ligero, and a rare ’63 Gretsch Nashville “two-tone.” Keep up with Nate at http://www.williesguitars.com/

    James Patrick Regan Honors Stone Temple Pilots’ Dean DeLeo and More!

    James Patrick Regan grew up being influenced by all kinds of music from many sources – radio, TV, MTV, etc. So it’s no surprise he absorbed licks like those offered here in belated honor of birthday boys Dean DeLeo (of Stone Temple Pilots) and Rick Springfield (be sure to catch James’ surprise tribute at the end!). “I’m using Dunlop Super Bright Strings into a Dr Z Carmen Ghia amp and my Trailer Trash pedalboard with an MXR Distortion+ and a Keeley compressor, all wired with George L’s cables,” he said. Keep with James and his band at www.thedeadlies.com/


    Santana IV

    This lineup reunites Carlos Santana with guitarist Neal Schon and other members of the 1970–1973 Santana band, reigniting their unique mix of Latin-rock, soul, jazz-rock fusion, and heavy Afro-Cuban beats. Listen to “Shake It” for a modern spin on old-school Santana, Carlos jamming on the wah-wah for the main track, while Schon is let off

    Dan Auerbach

    Black Keys’ Road Map Back to Blues, British Rock

    Forget about the classic quartet. Forget the power trio. Forget any preconceived shortcomings you may have concerning a rock-and-roll duo. There’s no denying it – the Black Keys crank out impressive noise. As one half of the band – drummer Patrick Carney – once joked, “We’re normally a 12-piece jazz big-band, but the other 10


    Railhammer Hyper Vintage Humbucker

    Poles Apart

    Railhammer Hyper Vintage Humbucker Price: $139 list/ $89 direct Info: www.railhammer.com Developed by Joe Naylor of Reverend Guitars, Railhammers are passive humbuckers that use a combination of pole pieces on the treble side and rails on the bass side. It’s an interesting motif with an effective purpose. The Railhammers’s six oversize poles under the treble

    Durham Electronics’ ReddVerb

    Durham Electronics’ ReddVerb

    ’Verb, Extra Saucy

    Durham Electronics’ ReddVerb Price: $219 (list) Info: www.durhamelectronics.com Take it from Redd Volkaert; good reverb is hard to find. And that’s especially true if you’re gigging on the road and don’t want to lug an amp with a built-in spring reverb, let alone a stand-alone tank. Enter Alan Durham. He not only designed the Durham


    Jack Bruce

    Shadows and (Erstwhile) Short-Scale Basses

    Veteran bassist Jack Bruce is back in action with a new album and tour. Best known for his membership in the legendary British trio, Cream (with Eric Clapton and drummer Ginger Baker), Bruce has stayed active over the decades, and his dynamic bass playing and searing vocal style are inimitable. In a recent conversation with


    Gibson SG Les Paul

    Classic shape that filled big shoes... for awhile

    In 1961, Gibson replaced its Les Paul series with a new line of lightweight, ultrathin, all mahogany, double-cutaway solidbodies the SG (for solid guitar). Developed under the aegis of Ted McCarty and introduced as the “new Les Paul,” the SG heralded new directions and a new marketing emphasis for Gibson; trends exemplified only two years

    Riversong Guitars Tradition One Performer

    Riversong Guitars Tradition One Performer

    New Tradition

    Riversong Guitars Tradition One Performer Price: $3,299 (list) Contact: www.riversongguitars.com Occasionally, a luthier’s innovation defines a new acoustic guitar sound. The Riversong Tradition One Performer blends modern build techniques, visionary design, and Canadian timbers to achieve a sonic profile as unique as Django’s Maccaferri or Bukka White’s National. On the surface, the Tradition One Performer

    Les Paul Remembered

    Les Paul Remembered

    When news of the passing of Les Paul spread through the guitar community August 13, reaction was swift and heartfelt. Claimed by complications of severe pneumonia at a hospital in White Plain, New York, Paul was 94. His name is synonymous with Gibson’s early solidbody electric guitars, and for a time he was one of

    Butch Walker

    Butch Walker

    Hummingbirds and Ghosts

    Butch Walker readily admits that when it comes to his life as a musician, performer, and producer, he has some decidedly “first-world problems,” like when a guitar he’d like to use on a song (or to photograph for a magazine spread!) happens to be at his Nashville studio instead of his other one, in L.A.


    Arteffect Bonnie Wah

    Cry No More!

    Israel-based Arteffect’s new Bonnie wah pedal is an accurate re-creation of the highly soughtafter vintage Vox Clyde McCoy wah. The “Clyde wah,” you’ll recall, was designed to help guitar players sound something like a trumpet player manipulating a mute on their horn. Clyde McCoy, the man, was a player known for employing the technique, and


    The “Last” Trainwreck?

    Ken Fischer’s prolonged illness and subsequent death at the age of 61 remains one of the great tragedies of the guitar-amp world. Aside from the fact he was a good soul taken too soon, if this rare and genuine tube-amp guru had enjoyed better health and greater longevity, he would most likely have blessed the


    Cole Eclipse Pro Special

    Straight-from-the-catalog instruments are fun – and reassuring – because you know exactly what you’ve got. But there’s another kind of thrill – and satisfaction – when you find something that’s totally off the radar, something that presents a mystery to be solved, like this circa 1913 Cole’s Eclipse banjo, which sports a Washburn headstock and

    Vintage V52 Icon

    Vintage V52 Icon

    Cost-Effective Twang

    Vintage V52 Icon Price: $459 Info: www.jhs.co.uk The U.K.-based distributor John Hornby Skewes offers guitars under the brand Vintage that cater to a market interested in traditional sounds and old-school looks. The V52 is the company’s take on the ’50s-style Tele. A striking guitar that hearkens to the days of pompadours and early rock that


    Paul Gilbert

    Mr. Big Takes it Down a Notch

    Paul Gilbert and the crew that makes up Mr. Big – bassist Billy Sheehan, drummer Pat Torpey, and vocalist Eric Martin – reunited a couple years ago on the heels of a Gilbert gig at the L.A. House of Blues where he, Sheehan, and Torpey jumped onstage together. Digging the vibe, they soon called Martin,

    Elliot Easton

    Star Board: Elliot Easton

    Elliot Easton’s “Pedalboard” Though Elliot Easton enjoys his loaded full-size Pedaltrain board, his new band, The Empty Hearts (with Clem Burke, Wally Palmar, and Andy Babiuk), does a lot of fly-in concerts, so… “Since I have to schlep my stuff to the airport, it’s gotta be lightweight!” he said. “My pedal boards are built by

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    25 Most Valuable Effects

    Text by Dave Hunter Data compiled by Alan Greenwood and Gil Hembree Vintage Guitar is marking 25 years of publication with a year full of features. This month, using data compiled for The Official Vintage Guitar Price Guide 2011, we continue the celebration with a list of the 25 most valuable effects. 1. 1966 Dallas

    Retro Guitar MelodyBurner

    Retro Guitar MelodyBurner

    Bite and Bark

    Retro Guitar MelodyBurner Price: $999 (options available) Info: www.melodyburner.com In the realm of hot-rodded cars, there’s a cool genre known as rat rods – old, relic’d automobiles that sport a lowdown vintage vibe. Meet the rat axe. Retro Guitar’s MelodyBurner is a similarly cool guitar that also bites as loud as it barks. This Junior-styled


    Babicz Octave Blue Flame

    Flaming Glory

    When a vintage-minded guitarist recollects cracking open the case of a big ol’ hollowbody and catching a glimpse of flame, minds wander to dreams of Gibson ES-5 or Kay Jimmy Reed Thin-Twin axes. As one unboxes the Babicz Octane, many of the same emotions are stirred, given the classic look of the hollowbody beauty’s flame-maple

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    Larry Parypa

    Sonics Thunder

    “I never thought this would happen to us all these years later,” marvels Sonics guitarist Larry Parypa on the reception the band is getting on its current tour. On what should’ve been be a slow Thursday night at the Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, the band played to a packed house of patrons young enough