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Monthly Archives: February 2004

Les Paul

Birth of a Guitar Icon
 

Photo: David Schenk, courtesy of Gibson. Fifty years ago, Gibson’s new Les Paul Model was quickly becoming one of the company’s most popular guitars, and (though there was no way of knowing it at the time) was on its way to achieving mythical status in the realm of the electric solidbody. With the recent observation […]

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Peterson VS-1 Tuner

The accurate, real-time tuner goes mobile
 

Most guitar techs will tell you that there has always been a void between small battery-powered tuners and full-blown rotating disc strobe tuners; the small ones are not all that accurate or steady-reading, while rotating disc tuners are big and cumbersome. That’s where Peterson’s Virtual Strobe Tuner (VS01) now fills the void. The company calls […]

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Brad Gillis

Weekends and Warriors
 

The California aggregation known as Night Ranger came to prominence in popular music during the advent of MTV, but few realize the band existed earlier with a slightly different moniker. Guitarist Brad Gillis has also played with Ozzy Osbourne, and has been accumulating an admirable collection of vintage guitars to use in his recording projects, […]

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Howard Alden – My Shining Hour

 

This is the kind of playing I would give parts of my body to master. It’s just Howard, his guitar, and a batch of great songs. And, Howard has mastered them. And to the best of my knowledge he’s still got all his body parts. Talk about chordal knowledge. Talk about chops. Check out “Gone […]

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Roomful of Blues – The Blues’ll Make You Happy, Too

The Blues'll Make You Happy, Too
 

Rounder has launched a new Heritage Series that kicks off in righteous fashion with this retrospective of Roomful of Blues’ seven Rounder albums. In guitar terms, this collection covers Roomful of Blues from the journeyman days of Ronnie Earl to today’s Chris Vachon. These are the best of the best, 14 rafter-shaking numbers from the […]

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Martin Taylor – In Concert

In Concert
 

After finishing Gershwin’s “I Got Rhythm” – following his tongue-in-cheek, herky jerky, impossible-to-snap-your-fingers-to intro with a laughably fast walking bass figure, over which he somehow threads both melody and comping chords (simultaneously) – Martin Taylor says of the composer, “He’s probably turning in his grave now.” In truth, however, Taylor is a composer’s dream come […]

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Tom Principato – Not One Word

Not One Word
 

Tom’s put out some stuff on record before, and it’s been pretty good. This one’s a little bit different. As the title says, there’s not one word. It’s all instrumental, and Tom does a great job of letting his Strat do his talking for him. The thing you notice on first listen is the killer […]

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Bay State Parlor Guitar

Play It In Any Room!
 

The parlor guitar. Designed by Mr. Parlor? No. First manufactured by the Parlor, Inc? No. Endorsed by the well-known recording artist, Parlor? Now don’t be silly, of course not! Then why call it a parlor guitar? The answer is more complex than it sounds, but a parlor guitar was played in the parlor. What? Let’s […]

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Sean Watkins – Let It Fall

Let It Fall
 

Sean Watkins is one third of the young Grammy-nominated supergroup Nickel Creek. Along with his sister Sara and mando phenom Chris Thile, they’ve lit up the festival circuit with fresh musical energy. Let it Fall is Sean’s first solo album, and it showcases his superb chops and mature musical sensibilities. All but one of the […]

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Dolly Parton – Little Sparrow

Little Sparrow
 

When honky-tonk hero Merle Haggard found himself in the unlikely role of pop star, with the hits “Okie From Muskogee” and “The Fightin’ Side Of Me,” he wasted little time using his increased clout to pay his respects to idols like Jimmie Rodgers, Bob Wills, Hank Williams and Lefty Frizzell – and to this day […]

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