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Author Archives: Michael Dregni

Mu-FX Tru-Tron 3X

Get Tha Funk Out
 

The Mu-FX Tru-Tron 3X Price: $369.63 Contact: www.mu-fx.com. Think funk. Think Bootsy Collins’ wacked-out Parliament Funkadelic Space Bass lines. Think Stevie Wonder’s wah’d Clavinet on his ’73 hit “Higher Ground.” Think Mu-Tron III. The secret mastermind behind that sound was engineer Mike Beigel, creator of (more…)

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Ernie Ball Volume Pedal

 

In the early years of Dire Straits, Knopfler utilized a Morley volume pedal before switching to what became his mainstay, the venerable Ernie Ball unit. In crafting his subtle guitar sound, Mark Knopfler relied on one of the most basic musical elements – volume. And the lack of it. From his early days with Dire […]

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Arbiter Fuzz Face

 
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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 (more…)

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Heil Talk Box

 
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When Peter Frampton began using the Heil Talk Box in 1974, he remembers it being viewed with skepticism as an “alien effect.” Similar contraptions had been around since 1939, but few people recognized them or their otherworldly capabilities. Frampton had yet to record with it, so when he used it onstage, it caused a furor. […]

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Whit Smith

Rhythmic Rendezvous and the Hot Club of Cowtown
 
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For its latest album, Rendezvous in Rhythm, the Hot Club of Cowtown has stepped back in time. Guitarist Whit Smith plays acoustic jazz echoing the work of his heroes including Allan Reuss and Django Reinhardt. The result is a sweetly swinging collection of vintage jazz with a modern twist. True to its cattle-punching moniker, the […]

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Eric Clapton and Friends

The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale
After Midnight
 
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Eric Clapton has worn many a hat during his career. English bluesman, psychedelic guitar god, downhome roots rocker, even ’80s big-suited popmeister. In recent decades, he’s added another chapeau to the curious collection: tribute artist. We all owe a debt to those who came before (more…)

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Steve Cropper

Homage to Lowman Pauling
 
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All but forgotten today, with his low-slung guitar, stylish rhythm licks, and tasty leads, Lowman Pauling was one of the great guitar heroes of the ’50s. Guitarist for the R&B doo-wop band the 5 Royales, not only did Pauling pick melody lines and play leads, (more…)

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Big Star

#1 Record, Radio city, Live In Memphis
Shining Even Brighter
 
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Big Star’s star shone only briefly. The band formed in Memphis in 1971 around guitarists-songwriters Chris Bell and Alex Chilton, and then blazed out by ’74 despite rave critical reviews and two stellar albums. But the band’s renown has only ascended from (more…)

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Steve Lowenthal and James Cullingham

Dance of Death: The Life of John Fahey, American Guitarist and
John Fahey’s Blues
 
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John Fahey is to the solo acoustic guitar what Jimi Hendrix was to the electric. Endlessly inventive, pioneering, and genre-defining, he was the player whom all subsequent guitarists had to listen to. Many of the 40 albums Fahey cut between 1959 and his death in 2001 are available in one form or another. But his […]

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Tom Feldmann

No Need to Sell Your Soul
 
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“And the Oscar goes to…” If they gave out Academy Awards for the best guitar instructional film, Tom Feldmann’s latest on Robert Johnson would be a shoe-in. We rarely review instructional videos, but this one is something special. And it’s more than just a how-to guide: it’s an in-depth, (more…)

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