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    You might get the idea that the band led by husband-and-wife team Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi are feeling a bit laidback on their latest effort. But listen again, and you’ll get a different impression completely. Songs ranging from folk to blues to good-old...

    Tommy Emmanuel

    Tommy Emmanuel cautions against using “the V word” – virtuoso – when describing his work. “I want to make musical statements that stand...

    Rivera Shaman Series Pedals

    Rivera Shaman Series Pedals Price: $299 each (street) Info: www.rivera.com. With roots stretching to the late ’70s, SoCal-based Rivera Amplification is best known for their handbuilt-in-the-U.S.A....

    La Baye 2X4

    1967, the Summer of Love. Everything still seemed possible, and anything went. No more war, racial and gender equality, Fresh Cream, the Beatles best...
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    3rd Power Amplification’s Solo Dream 1, Solo Dream 4, and Switchback 112

    Dream Babies

    3rd Power Solo Dream/Switchback amps Price: $1,899 (Dream Solo 1 combo); $1,699 (Dream Solo 4 head); $699 (Switchback 112) Info: www.3rdpower.com. Recording/touring guitarist, studio engineer, and industry veteran Jamie Scott made the metamorphosis into amp designer by learning to repair and modify Marshall heads. He quickly realized that he wanted amps to sound full, responsive, […]

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    Carol Kaye

    Think "Extensive"

    Contrary to what some aspiring bass players might think, the world’s most recorded electric bassist isn’t some modern-day L.A. dude purveying “NAMM chops” (to quote John Pattitucci) aplenty with the thumb and fingers of both hands flying all over his instrument. And they don’t have a custom neck-through bass (with five or six strings) and […]

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    Martin’s “12-Fret” 000-42

    Martin has never been a stranger to producing certain guitars in very limited quantities. But just how rare is the 12-frets-to-the-body 000-42? It has long been held that Martin has done a yeoman’s job of tracking its production through the years (few manufacturers have been so meticulous, especially going back so far), but it has […]

    Hard Rock Cafe

    Guardians of Grandeur

    The Men Who Tend to the Guitars of the Hard Rock Cafe

    “A lot of people think I go in [to a sale] with an open checkbook, but that’s not the case; we’re very strategic.” – Jerry Fraize When Peter Morton and Isaac Tigrett opened the first Hard Rock Cafe in London’s Mayfair district in 1971, they simply wanted to introduce American culture and cuisine – good […]

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    1944 Martin 00-28

    This Martin 00-28 is a highly unusual instrument. Made as part of a group of six created with shop-order number 366 (dated 12/14/1944) and bearing serial numbers 90002 through 90007, they were entered on the Martin shop order slip as 00-28G, indicating they were classical guitars designed strictly for gut strings. There is no indication […]

    Five Classic Amps

    Five Classic Amps

    A Tone-Spotter’s Arsenal To Cover It All

    When it comes to classic guitar tones – whether it’s blues through a Dumble, country through a Fender, rock through a Marshall, or jazz through a Roland – every player knows there’s a magical potion concocted of guitars, amps, and fingers. But, is it possible to cover the sonic spectrum of all genres with just […]

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    National Model N-720

    Star of an Era's End

    Most acoustic guitar players will likely show disdain for any instrument with a bolt-on neck. Even though there have been many great guitars – from Maccaferri (and before) to Seagull – sporting respectable versions. In my more naïve younger years, I used to attribute such ungainly guitars to Japanese manufacturers, or maybe the Italians, as […]

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    Divided By 13 BTR23C Brian Ray Signature

    English Flavor

    Divided By 13 BTR23C Price: $2,800 Info: www.dividedby13.com. After years of repairing and modding amps for himself and pals like Lyle Workman, Joel Shearer, and Corky James, guitarist Frederic Taccone began building amplifiers from the ground up to better meet his needs and those of his friends. Divided By 13 thus evolved with the philosophy […]

    Visual Sound’s H20 V3 Liquid Chorus & Echo and VS-XO Premium Dual Overdrive

    Visual Sound’s H20 V3 Liquid Chorus & Echo and VS-XO Premium Dual Overdrive

    A Step Further

    Visual Sound’s H20 V3 Liquid Chorus & Echo and VS-XO Premium Dual Overdrive Price: H20 V3 $199 (list); VS-XO $199 (list) Contact: www.visualsound.net Since bursting on the scene with its Visual Volume, Tennessee-based Visual Sound has earned a reputation for sounding great and for solid construction. The company has introduced the next step in its […]

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    Bill Kirchen

    Seeds, Stems, and a Tele-fied Legacy

    There’s ample revisiting in Seeds and Stems, Telecaster slinger Bill Kirchen’s third album for Proper America. Five of the 13 songs hearken back to his late-’60s/mid-’70s days with pioneer country-rockers Commander Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen. “Flip Flop,” “Womb To The Tomb” and “Rockabilly Funeral,” are longstanding favorites of his solo repertoire, as is […]

    Guild’s Orpheum Slope Shoulder 14-Fret Rosewood Dreadnought

    Guild’s Orpheum Slope Shoulder 14-Fret Rosewood Dreadnought

    Reviving the ’30s

    Guild’s Orpheum Slope Shoulder 14-Fret Rosewood Dreadnought Price: $4,999 (list); $3,799 (street) Info: www.guildguitars.com. Compared to Martin’s longstanding factory location in Pennsylvania, Guild’s acoustic guitar factory has been a gypsy. The company first produced guitars in Hoboken, New Jersey, before moving to Waverly, Rhode Island, then to Corona, California, followed by Tacoma, Washington. Today, New […]

    Ernie Ball’s MVP Volume/Gain Expression Pedal

    Ernie Ball MVP Volume/Gain Expression Pedal

    Total Control

    Ernie Ball’s MVP Volume/Gain Expression Pedal Price: $179 (list); $129.99 (street) Info: www.ernieball.com. Just when you thought you were done building the perfect pedalboard with all the coolest overdrives and time-based effects, you realize you need to control your sound. No doubt, a volume pedal is the way to go for controlling the volume of […]

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    Electro-Harmonix Epitome, Tone Tattoo

    Tone to the Third Squared

    The Electro-Harmonix Epitome, Tone Tattoo Price: $491.84 list (Epitome) and $292.35 list (Tone Tattoo) Info: www.ehx.com The concept is smart yet so obvious it’s a wonder no one came up with it sooner. With both the Epitome and the Tone Tattoo, Electro-Harmonix manages to cram three effects into a single housing. Did life just get […]

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    DigiTech iStomp

    Morph For Less

    DigiTech iStomp Price: $149.95 Info: www.digitech.com/istomp If you’re the type of gearhead who turns heel and runs from DSP effects, let alone any equipment with a lower-case “i” in front of its name, set your preconceptions aside and dig into the DigiTech iStomp – a hardware stompbox that can be instantly reconfigured into the pedal […]

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    Bob’s Playboy Pickers

    Bob Wills was, first and foremost, a fiddler. But he began his career in childhood, strumming guitar and mandolin chords at rural Texas parties and dances behind his father, ace fiddler Uncle John Wills. As leader of the Texas Playboys from 1934 to ’64, Wills not only helped define the guitar’s role in western swing, […]

    SCOTTY MOORE's GIBSON ES-295 Vinatge guitar Magazine

    Scotty Moore’s Gibson ES-295

    First Guitar of Rock and Roll

    Like a hound dog hit by lightning, the first notes of rock and roll blasted out of radios across the country in July of 1954, courtesy of Elvis Presley’s supercharged-hillbilly singing on “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky,” backed by Scotty Moore’s guitar. It was the twang heard ’round the world. That guitar […]

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    Mosrite Basses

    The Golden Decade: Ventures and Beyond

    Mention the Ventures to a pop-music aficionado and the conversation will likely focus on the surf-music phenomenon of the early 1960s or – if that person also happens to be instrument-savvy – the band’s affiliation with Mosrite guitars and basses. Though the partnership lasted only a half-decade, the Ventures have been perpetually associated with Mosrite, […]

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    The Band

    Live at the Academy of Music 1971

    The Band’s double-LP Rock of Ages was released in August 1972, their first live collection – as well as their last before they disbanded with 1978’s The Last Waltz. As phenomenal as their finale show was, guest stars and all, the earlier collection captured them at a creative peak and was a much more characteristic […]

    Traveler AG-105EQ

    Traveler AG-105EQ

    Savvy Traveler

    Traveler AG-105EQ Price: $499.99 (street) Info: www.travelerguitar.com When it comes to “travel guitars,” players are often forced to sacrifice size for portability and even functionality. Unlike many travel instruments that are simply miniaturized six-stringers, the Traveler AG-105EQ is a useful and playable instrument featuring a full-sized fretboard and a body that’s just two inches smaller […]

    Rosewood Dobro

    Rosewood Dobro

    In the 1930s, the original Dobro company went through a series of ownership changes and licensing agreements. It did not regularly publish catalogs, and its model numbers were typically also the price of a model, which may have varied from one distributor to the next. Specifications were not strictly followed. Consequently, it’s not surprising to […]