The Paul Butterfield Blues Band

Got A Mind To Give Up Living: Live 1966
Rare, Bluesy, and Beyond

A surprisingly large contingent of people in high school or college in 1965 will tell you that less than two years after the Beatles’ big-bang appearances on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” the album that really changed their lives was the eponymous Paul Butterfield Blues Band. In fact, their lives were probably altered before the end

Scott Holiday

Unrivaled Son

Regardless of the state of pop or rock music, it’s invigorating when a group comes along to remind us what rock and roll sounds like when it’s written from the soul, played from the gut, and delivered with conviction. Offering all but the smell of the hot EL34s, Rival Sons’ latest album, Great Western Valkyrie,

Headway EDB-2 Equalizer Direct Blend Preamp Home Main

Headway EDB-2 Equalizer Direct Blend Preamp

Make Way

Headway EDB-2 Equalizer Direct Blend Preamp Price: $475 (retail)/$320 (street) Info: www.headwaymusicaudio.com. Designed in England and manufactured in Korea, the Headway EDB-2 is a 5.75″ x 3.75″ x 1.5″ box with a feature set that makes it ideal for acoustic guitarists who need an ultra-low-distortion connection to a PA or sound-reinforcement amplifier. The EDB-2 has

JORDAN BOSS TONE

Jordan Boss Tone

Little Fuzz with the Big Buzz

In the august and revered Hall of Fame of Fuzz, the Jordan Boss Tone deserves a prominent pedestal. Perhaps it should be in a cabinet of cute curiosities. Or maybe it’s as a memento mori, an example of a dead end in the search for overdriven guitar tone bliss. Either way, there should be a

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Elliot Easton

Different Directions

Lefty guitarist Elliot Easton has chosen a different route for his most recent musical venture, but its sonic direction should come as no surprise to any fan who has followed his long career. Easton Island is a collection of instrumentals that showcase the melodic sensibilities of the guitarist and his current musical associates in Elliot

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Godin’s A4 and A5 Ultra SA

Brave New Basses

Godin A4/A5 Ultra SA Price: $1,395 (A4 Ultra SA fretted); $1,645 (A5 Ultra SA fretless) Info: godinguitars.com. For years, Godin Guitars has been finding creative ways to improve guitar and bass design, often by working directly with musicians. This has resulted in numerous breakthroughs typically packaged in traditional-appearing instruments. A good example is their A

Adrian Legg

Adrian Legg

The Wizard of Strings

Aside from witty asides on social issues, natural disasters, and Renaissance history, Adrian Legg’s formidable fingerstyle and deep musicality remain his calling card. His latest album, Dead Bankers, continues the bedazzlement. On “Marco’s Bounce,” you put a piece of foam under the strings to create a percussive effect. I owe the foam trick to [Brazilian

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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

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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

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’53 Gibson Les Paul Junior

Gibson’s records tell us the Les Paul Junior was introduced in 1954. But here we have what appears to be a 1953 example. This instrument has no serial number on the back of the peghead, though the tone and volume pot codes indicate they were made in 1953, and the guitar differs in specifications from

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Guild Standard Series Acoustics

Legacy, Cont’d?

Founded by a jazz guitarist as jazz-box builder, the Guild company also built a solid reputation with its ’50s acoustic guitars. The brand’s profile as an acoustic builder was certainly given a you-can’t-put-a-price-on-that bit of exposure when Richie Havens hammered on a D-40 in front of 400,000 people at Woodstock! Another unforgettable Guild gig was

Gibson EH-150

An Odd Gibson EH-150

10 Strings, Lap-Style

Lap-steel guitars were the first commercially available electrics – ancestors of the guitars we plug in today, regardless of their shape. The popularity of Hawaiian music in the 1930s had a great deal to do with a surge in popularity of lap steels – and quickly after, the introduction of Spanish-style steel-string and electric guitars.

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1949 Bigsby Tenor

1949 Bigsby Tenor. Photo: Kelsey Vaughn, courtesy George Gruhn. By the advent of the solidbody electric guitar in the 1950s, tenor guitarists were a dying breed. Consequently, electric tenors are relatively rare, and a tenor guitar made by solidbody pioneer Paul Bigsby is one of the rarest of all electric guitars. And if that’s not

Demeter FZO-1 Fuzzy Octavulator

Demeter FZO-1 Fuzzy Octavulator

Fuzz Flavors

James Demeter has a long history in the amp and effects biz. His project-boxed/Dymo-labeled Tremulator pedal pre-dates the ’90s boutique pedal explosion by more than a decade. During his 30 years of 100-percent analog designs, Demeter has produced everything from studio-quality rack effects and multichannel tube amps to a wide variety of first-class vintage-flavored stompboxes

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Forty Quid of Klunk

Tales of the Harmony Bass

Duh-Duh-Duh-Duh-Duh, Klunk! It’s not the most artful musical introduction, but it was effective. And by the time a screaming Hammond organ slides in over the pounding bass-and-drums, most listeners are hooked. The song is “Gimme Some Lovin” by the Spencer Davis Group, and the 1966 record is a showcase not only for the vocals and

KJ Audio Hanwell 50

KJ Audio Hanwell 50

Shake The Walls

KJ Audio Hanwell 50 Price: Head $1,900; cabinet $1,600 Contact: www.kjaudio.com No apologies: Minneapolis-based amp designer Kristopher Johnson’s Hanwell 50 boutique amp is built to rock. The amp was inspired by the four-input, 50-watt Marshall JMP MKII Master Volume amps of the mid ’70s, but Johnson hot-rodded this, modded that, and made his own monster

Electrifying Sounds of Post-War Guitar

Road to Rock

The Electrifying Sounds of Post-War Guitar

Fans often mark the beginning of rock and roll as either Elvis Presley’s Sun Sessions or Bill Haley & the Comets’ “Rock Around the Clock,” both recorded in 1954. But three years earlier, in early March of 1951, Jackie Brenston & His Delta Cats were credited on a 78-rpm single called “Rocket 88.” Played in

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Pete Huttlinger

A Narrative (and album) From the Heart

To call Pete Huttlinger a survivor is an understatement. The notable Nashville fingerpicker has fought back from a major stroke and end-stage heart failure to record the most important album of his career, McGuire’s Landing. The effort began years ago, and Huttlinger had recorded some of its tracks before being sidelined by his health. A

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Fender Deluxe Reverb

Vintage Guitar magazine Hall of Fame 2011 Instrument

In the June ’07 issue of VG, amp profiler extraordinaire Dave Hunter said of the Fender Deluxe Reverb, “If guitarists were to vote for the one ‘best amp for all occasions,’ [it] would very likely earn a majority decision’.” And while this year’s nominees in the VG Hall of Fame “Instrument” category pitted the “DR”