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Category Archives: Classic Instruments

Cole Eclipse Pro Special

 
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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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Teisco Del Rey Basses

’60s Egalitarianism from Japan
 
Teisco Del Rey Basses

Teisco Del Rey basses from the 1960s are exemplary of the Japanese-made instruments that swept into the American market like a tsunami during the “guitar boom” – and were the primary contributor to the demise of America’s budget-guitar industry. Which means, of course, that an untold number of American teenagers played instruments like these. During […]

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Maestro Rover R0-1

The UFO of Rotating Speakers
 
Maestro’s Rover R0-1

To record “Little Wing,” Jimi Hendrix plugged his Stratocaster into his usual amplifier, then did the unthinkable; he ran guitar signal into an organ speaker – a Leslie rotating-speaker cabinet. Inventor Donald Leslie had designed the unit for Hammond organs, offering a swirling, otherworldy sound ideal for church services, scary or watery sonic effects for […]

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Gibson GA-200 Rhythm King

 
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Preamp tubes: two 12AX7, one 12AY7, two 6BJ8, two 6SK7, one 6V6 (used as a voltage divider) Output tubes: two 6550 Rectifier: GZ34 Controls: Ch1: Volume, Treble, Bass; Ch2: Volume, Treble, Bass, Compressor Speakers: two 12" Norelco/Phillips twin-cone speakers Output: (more…)

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Beyond the Parlor

Part One: The Guitar in Non-Anglo America
 
Beyond the Parlor

Ed. Note: In this series, Tim Brookes attacks the common argument that the guitar in 19th-century America was small, quiet, and suitable only for young middle-class ladies playing in parlors. Part one explores what was arguably the most extensive and skillful guitar culture of the day – the generally forgotten guitar in non-English-speaking communities. The remainder […]

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National N-275

 
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Gibson is widely known for its guitars, mandolins, and banjos, but many are unaware the company built instruments for nearly 30 brands for several distributors and music store chains, primarily from the 1920s through the early ’40s. Some of the best-known names include Kalamazoo, distributed by Gibson, and Recording King, which was distributed by Montgomery […]

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Standard in Custom

Schecter’s Custom Shop Marks 35 Years
 
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Riding high after 35 years with an array of original instruments, an impressive artist roster that started early with Pete Townshend and Mark Knopfler, and a line of high-gain amplifiers, Schecter Guitars has come full circle. Established as Schecter Guitar Research by David Schecter in 1976, the company began repairing guitars and selling parts to […]

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Gibson Tal Farlow

 
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The Tal Farlow is one guitar in a quartet of full-depth Gibson Artists models first cataloged in the early 1960s. Introduced in ’62, it was based on the ES-350 – the guitar Farlow used with Red Norvo and his own trio in the mid ’50s. A truly professional instrument, built in the tradition of ’50s Gibson […]

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Doublenecks and Triplenecks

California Weird Factor - Doublenecks, Triplenecks
 
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If you mention doubleneck or multi-neck guitars to your average guitar player, the first thing they’ll likely think of is Jimmy Page playing his Gibson EDS-1275 with Led Zeppelin, or Rick Nielsen and his floor-length five-neck Hamer with Cheap Trick. But few people, even amongst guitar players, realize that the multi-neck guitar has a storied […]

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Alvino Rey’s “Mini” Gibsons

 
Alvino Rey’s 1936 Gibson mini guitar Vintage Guitar magazine Home Main Big

Alvino Rey’s 1936 Gibson mini guitar. From (more…)

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