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    Joe Bonamassa sends best wishes to Vintage Guitar on it’s 30th anniversary

    Joe Bonamassa used his ’55 Strat plugged into his stage rig – two tweed Bassmans and two high-powered Twins dialed waaayy down – to send best wishes to “Vintage Guitar” and founder/publisher Alan Greenwood to help mark the magazine’s 30th anniversary. He also gives credit where due for his gear obsession! Keep up with Joe at www.jbonamassa.com


    James Elkington tweaked the paradigm when he began working at a luthier shop before hitting his stride as a guitarist. Born and raised in a small English village northwest of London, his interest in the guitar blossomed relatively late. “It seemed the coolest instrument on offer and, as most of us guitar players have found

    Gibson ES-Les Paul

    ES-Les Paul

    F-hole with soul

    ES-Les Paul Price: $2,799 to $3,199 (list) Contact: www.gibson.com Gibson’s latest version of the Les Paul isn’t the first with f-shaped sound holes. Various Florentine models have been offered, but this semi-hollowbody makes a greater effort than its predecessors to thread the needle between the Les Paul and ES-335. The result is an interesting guitar

    Jay Jay French and Eddie Ojeda

    Jay Jay French and Eddie Ojeda

    The Un-twisted Tale of Stay Hungry

    Step back with us, please, to 1984; Paul McCartney gets dinged for possession of cannibis in Barbados, Carl Lewis collects four Olympic gold medals, Geraldine Ferraro becomes the first woman to receive a major-party nomination for Vice President, and late that spring, glam-rockers Twisted Sister released their watershed album, Stay Hungry. The band had been

    Guild in the Post-Fender Era

    Guild in the Post-Fender Era

    Round and Round She Goes

    Since its beginnings in 1952, Guild has gone through many changes in ownership, location, marketing approach, and design philosophy. In the course of a change in ownership and three moves, the Guild line has seen major changes in materials, structural specifications, equipment, personnel, and techniques. It has been a strange odyssey, indeed. When Fender bought

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    Tony MacAlpine

    Post-Modern Neo-Classical

    If you’re going to play neo-classical guitar, nothing beats having a conservatory education. Guitarist Tony MacAlpine has that and is partially responsible for the neo-classical shred boom of the 1980s. But don’t hold that against him. While guitarists have imitated his style, MacAlpine raises the bar by challenging his own abilities and compositional vision. His

    Brian Bromberg photo

    Andy Brown Quartet and Brian Bromberg

    Direct Call and Full Circle
    Two of the Best in Jazz

    Not every jazz guitarist who plays solo can also blow in a group context, and vice versa. Some adept at both include Tuck Andress, Joe Pass, Johnny Smith, George Van Eps, and Earl Klugh. Martin Taylor is arguably at the top of the solo heap, although he’s shown equally impressive facility backing Stéphane Grappelli and

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    Louis Electric Buster

    Beyond Deluxe

    Louis Electric Buster Price: $1,595 (street) Contact: louisamps.com. Lou Rosano has been building amps in the Fender vein for more than 17 years. His first build wound up in the hands of the late Danny Gatton, and other greats who have played through his Louis Electric amps include Keith Richards, John Fogerty, Jorma Kaukonen, and

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    Arbiter Fuzz Face

    When Jimi Hendrix released his first album, 1967’s Are You Experienced, he launched a new level of guitar heroics as well as a sartorial fad for ruffled shirts and band jackets. He also fed a fashion for fuzz. One of Jimi’s main weapons was the Arbiter Fuzz Face, a cheap, crude fuzz box that would

    Fab Four’s Big Three

    The Beatles’ “Ed Sullivan Show” Guitars, 50 Years On

    For Americans, the legend of the Beatles has a very specific starting moment: 8 p.m., February 9, 1964. That Sunday evening 50 years ago, the group appeared for the first time in the U.S. on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” and spurred a phenomenon. The broadcast was watched by the largest television audience tallied up to

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    25 Most Valuable Guitars

    Data compiled by Alan Greenwood and Gil Hembree Vintage Guitar is marking 25 years of publication with a year full of cool giveaways and features. This month, we continue the celebration with a list of the 25 guitars that, thanks to certain players, songs, and the laws of supply and demand, have become exceedingly valuable.

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    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

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    Cimarron Guitars’ Model P

    From the Parlor to the Stage

    Cimarron Guitars has being making custom instruments since 1978 in the dry, mild climate of southwest Colorado. The company’s Model P guitar gets its name from its parlor-guitar-sized body (“parlor” guitars were popular in the late 19th/early 20th century, when small social events often occurred in parlors where music was played; the instruments typically were

    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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    ZZ Top

    The First 20 Years, Un-Remixed

    Usually, the hook with boxed reissues is that they include previously unreleased songs, alternate takes, live material, and maybe some extra tchotchkes like rare photos, revisionist essays, or poster reproductions. Sometimes it’s remixed versions of familiar hits. It’s rare that the main attraction is un-remixed albums the way they came out 40-odd years ago –

    Dean Zelinsky Tagliare Z-Glide Custom

    Dean Zelinsky Tagliare Z-Glide Custom

    Future Tense

    Every so often, a builder gives the art of guitar design a firm shove into the future. The Dean Zelinsky Tagliare Z-Glide Custom certainly fits into that category. On the surface, it’s a high-performance “super Strat” with basic features that should seem familiar, but this solidbody aims to pack the features of two or more

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    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

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    Standard in Custom

    Schecter’s Custom Shop Marks 35 Years

    Riding high after 35 years with an array of original instruments, an impressive artist roster that started early with Pete Townshend and Mark Knopfler, and a line of high-gain amplifiers, Schecter Guitars has come full circle. Established as Schecter Guitar Research by David Schecter in 1976, the company began repairing guitars and selling parts to

    ’Bursting with Surprises

    ’Bursting with Surprises

    Celeb Guitars Make a Splash at U.K. Guitar Show

    Peter Hoarty and his wife, Gail, have been hosting guitar shows in England since 1998, when they rented space to sell a few of the 50-some vintage amps and more than two dozen guitars that had begun to flow out of the couples’ house and into their garage-cum-music-room. “I began collecting valve amps at a