DGN custom guitars paragon standard Price: $3,000 (base) Contact: DGNcustomguitars.com. For the past few years, luthier Dan Neafsey has been making a name for himself from his small workshop in southern Connecticut, and for good reason. The instruments from DGN Custom Guitars are customized, hand-made, and of very high quality. One of his newest models is

The Rolling Stones

Blue & Lonesome
Rolling In The Blues

Mick Jagger’s famous 1968 statement – “What’s the point in listening to us doing ‘I’m A King Bee’ when you can hear Slim Harpo do it?” – has been a (sometimes) credo for the Rolling Stones. Why indeed? Except for the fact that the Stones have time and again proven they can indeed play the

Peter Stroud and Audley Freed

Two Guys, Many Guitars, One Big Hat

Many a noteworthy rock and roll band from the Cotton Belt has been propelled by guitar-playin’ good ol’ boys with names that ring through music lore in (sometimes) poetic-sounding tandems – Allman and Betts, Collins and Rossington, Caldwell and McCorkle, Petty and Campbell, Hlubeck and Roland (or Holland!), Medlocke and Hargrett, Van Zant and Carlisi,

1942 Martin D-45

The Martin D-45, offered by the company from 1933 through 1942, is well-known as the Holy Grail of acoustic guitars. While players and collectors may argue whether it is the absolute best guitar ever made, in terms of value, it easily outdistances any other acoustic model in the vintage market. Ironically, the D-45 was not

Home Feature Image

Larry Alan Guitars’ The Harlot

Siren Song

Hot idea: pack a sturdy-yet-petite 1590B casing with specially selected parts rendering a powerful, variable guitar overdrive, add a couple of vintage-look knobs, a titillating pinup-girl graphic, and call it The Harlot. On second thought, include a pinup graphic inside the meticulously wired box. That’s right, there are two pinup girls. We know – we

Jack Bruce

Jack Bruce

Surging Septuagenarian

Bassist/vocalist Jack Bruce, who turned 71 in May, recently released Silver Rails, his first solo album in a decade, with songwriting help from several longtime collaborators. Bruce recruited numerous guitarists for the project, as well one of his offspring, and the results exemplify the styles of the participants. “I was thrilled that all of the

Alex Lifeson

Rush Keeps Rollin

“A lot of critics perceived us as being pretentious,” says Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson of his band’s early years. “We were not representative of where they thought rock was heading.” • Responding after being asked about a comment he made in the award-winning 2010 documentary Beyond The Lighted Stage(“We always felt it was us against

Strymon’s DIG Dual Digital Delay

Diggin’ In

Offering the heart and soul of those crystal-clear first-generation 1980s digital delays, California-based Strymon’s DIG Dual Digital Delay provides not only three classic digital voicings, but dual cascading or parallel delay times.  Housed in Strymon’s standard  4×4.5×1.17″ anodized aluminum chassis, the DIG features rear chassis-mounted ¼″ In/Out and Power jacks, including a single Mono/Stereo TRS input

Martin 0-42

The Martin 0-42

Through the years, Martin’s dreadnought, OM, and 000 guitars may have gained the most notoriety. But for the sweetest and best-quality sound, Martin itself recommends the size 0, exemplified by this 0-42. There’s obviously a catch to that statement, since only two of Martin’s current offering of over 200 models are size-0 guitars. The recommendation

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

Home Feature Image

Mu-FX Octave Divider

The Mu Is Back

This is rocket science. Or at least as close as a stompbox gets. Sure, building a pedal that tweaks a guitar’s signal around and about isn’t exactly putting a man on the moon. But then, when an effects mastermind like Mike Beigel launches a new box, it’s almost guaranteed to propel your sound into the

Home Feature Image

Steve West

Life Since “Louie, Louie”

What constitutes a Guitar Hero? Is it Hendrix or Van Halen, or is it your seminal six-string inspiration? Or what about someone whose solo on an iconic hit is forever engrained in your head? The latter category is where you’ll find Steve West, lead guitarist on Paul Revere and the Raiders’ classic version of “Louie,

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

Frenzel FM-DP1 Tube Preamp

Old-School Bang Without Breaking the Bank

For five decades after he built his first guitar amp in 1952, Jim Frenzel designed tube and solidstate equipment for the military, FAA, and Texas Instruments. But it wasn’t until 2001, after his retirement, that he returned to tube guitar amps. Frenzel’s philosophy is pretty straightforward; he designs and builds amps that easily dial up

Carr Amplifiers’ Lincoln

Hot Rod

Carr Amplifiers has a fine reputation for high-quality, boutique tube combos with tons of vintage style and panache. Their gear offers point-to-point wiring, tasty tone circuits, high-grade components, and dove-tailed cabinetry, all the things tube connoisseurs crave. The Lincoln is their latest offering, a swank-looking 1×12 combo based on a mint 1964 Vox AC10 that

Blackstar’s HT Series Pedals

Gain to the Third Power

Blackstar Amplification is known for its successful Artisan, Series One, and HT amp lines. Its new HT effects line includes boxes for delay, reverb, modulation, distortion, drive, and boost. All pedals in the series use a heavy-duty 6.25″ x 4.75″ x 2.25″ die-cast chassis with top-mounted controls, side-mounted 1/4″ jacks, tube window, on/off stompswitch with

Mesa/Boogie Mark Five: 25

Mesa/Boogie Mark Five: 25

Stage, Studio, Etc.

Mesa/Boogie Mark Five: 25 Price: $1,299 (list) Contact: www.mesaboogie.com Housed in teensy cabinets, so-called “lunchbox” amps are all the rage, and to varying degrees do a nice job of living up to the phrase “Don’t let size fool you.” Mesa/Boogie’s entry in the category is the Mark Five: 25, a full-featured/switchable-output head weighing less than

Eric Krasno

Eric Krasno

Funk, Soul, and Jazz

Eric Krasno is on a roll. The guitarist in the soul-jazz organ trio Soulive moonlights with the funk ensemble Lettuce, co-produced The London Soul’s upcoming record, and lends his production talents, playing, and songs to a slew of other artists; he most recently produced a new album by Aaron Neville. Then, there’s a new solo