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Author Archives: Willie G. Moseley

Eric Clapton’s “Blackie”

 
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This may well be the most desirable Fender Stratocaster on the face of the planet. And it happens to be a beat-up mongrel assembled from parts taken from three 1950s guitars. Nevertheless, Eric Clapton’s “Blackie” is one of the most recognized celebrity-associated instruments in the history of the electric guitar, and it served Slowhand’s needs […]

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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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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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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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Kim Simmonds

Back to Basics with Savoy Brown
 
Kim Simmonds

Under the aegis of founder Kim Simmonds, Savoy Brown has always been a band “subject to change.” Formed in 1965, some of its incarnations went on musical tangents, but the blues has been its keystone genre. The band’s most recent album, Goin’ to the Delta, is a return to basic electric blues, with Simmonds reassuming […]

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Ian Hunter

New Music and a Mott Reunion
 
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Ian Hunter is upbeat when he discusses his newest album, Man Overboard, and the upcoming reunion with old friends in England for a series of 40th anniversary reunion concerts planned for this fall by Mott the Hoople, the legendary British hard-rock band Hunter fronted from 1969 to the mid ’70s. The album hints the veteran […]

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Peavey RJ-IV

 
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Peavey RJ-IV bass, serial number 04938996. Photo: Bill Ingalls Jr. Instrument courtesy of Naffaz Skota. Americans by the millions “know” Randy Jackson. But not many realize that his gig as one of three judges on TV’s “American Idol” is just the tip of (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 (more…)

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