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Author Archives: Willie G. Moseley

The G&L El Toro

 
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At the beginning of 1983, Leo Fender was just more than three years into his last guitar-manufacturing venture when he decided to diversify the company’s bass lineup. Until that point, G&L had marketed the one-pickup L-1000, the two-pickup L-2000, and the no-frills SB-1 and SB-2 models – all with fairly traditional, straightforward designs. The brand’s […]

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The Guild Starfire Bass

 
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In the mid ’60s, Guild took its knocks for making guitars that looked “inspired by” Gibson models. Fans of the brand think the sterotype is unfair, of course, and certainly, many Guilds from the era have their own intrigue. One very good example is the Starfire Bass. Guild was founded by musical-instrument importer/distributor Al Dronge […]

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The Rickenbacker 4000

 
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The model 4000 was not only Rickenbacker’s first foray into the electric-bass market, it was decidedly different from Fender’s Precision – the original electric bass. Beyond frets, four strings, and their role in a musical combo, they have little in common. In the 1950s, F.C. Hall forged Rickenbacker into a modern guitar manufacturer. Striving to […]

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Fender Precision Bass

The “Final” Configuration
 
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The Fender Precision Bass was the first commercially successful solidbody electric bass. Played somewhat like a guitar and sporting a fretted neck, the “P-Bass” won over players in almost every genre who previously had to contend with the cumbersome upright bass. In its original configuration, the instrument, introduced in 1952, had a maple neck with […]

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Dewa Budjana

Fusion/Progressive/World Music from Indonesia
 
Dewa Budjana

Back home in Bali, Indonesia, guitarist Dewa Budjana is noted for his work with the pop band Gigi, but recently, he has also been collaborating with noted Western drummers and bassists on a series of instrumental jazz and fusion albums. A fan of John McLaughlin’s work (more…)

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Humble Pie At the Fillmore

Frampton Reflects
 
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By the time Humble Pie reached “breakthrough” status in the U.S. thanks to its live album, Performance – Rockin’ the Fillmore, Peter Frampton had departed and begun to beat the odds by forging a successful solo career. “When the album started selling like hotcakes, I wondered if I’d (more…)

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Ed Sanner

Fuzz Redux
 
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While not well-known in California guitar lore, Ed Sanner’s electronics designs have been heard by millions of guitar fans, and he has recently returned to building unique stomp boxes. Sanner didn’t take up guitar until the age of 18, but his interest in electronics began earlier. “I used (more…)

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Kay Jazz Special and Value Leader

 
Kay Jazz Special

Kay entered the electric bass market in the mid 1950s with the K162, which later morphed into the similar K5965 (VG, March 2011), and while each met with a modicum of success, in 1960, the Chicago-based instrument maker introduced two near-polar-opposite four-strings. The epitome of the aesthetic excess for which Kay’s electric basses became known, […]

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Remembering Ronnie

Phillips Finishes Guitarist’s Final Recordings
 
Ronnie Montrose

Ricky Phillips has many fond memories of his friendship and musical association with Ronnie Montrose (1947-2012). The bassist is finishing a recording project by the late guitarist on which he had participated prior to joining Styx. Montrose and Phillips met in the early ’80s, but didn’t collaborate until 20 years later, when Montrose needed a […]

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Jack Bruce

Surging Septuagenarian
 
Jack Bruce

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 […]

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