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Monthly Archives: February 2010

Albert Castiglia – These Are The Days


New York-born/Miami-raised Albert Castiglia is primarily, and by instinct, a blues man. But on his third album the one-time member of Junior Wells’ band displays a wide stylistic versatility along with his considerable guitar chops. As a singer, he sounds so much like John Hiatt in that when he steps slightly to the left of […]

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Johnny Rivers


Johnny Rivers on July 4, 2006. Photo: Elliot Cohen. When Bob Dylan names your version of one of his songs as his favorite of the more than 25,000 covers done over the past 40-plus years, that’s pretty high praise. However, Dylan offered that assessment of Johnny Rivers’ recording of “Positively 4th Street,” on Secret Agent […]

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Antonio de Torres 1863


1863 Antonio de Torres Antonio de Torres was the most important guitar maker of the 19th century, exerting an influence worldwide on the design and construction of the modern guitar that is unrivaled in the history of the instrument. His model has been in continuous usage since its creation in the mid 19th century and […]

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The Vox AC15 Custom Classic

A Classic Improvement?

Vox AC15 Custom Classic. In the lore surrounding Vox Amplification, the AC30 is the king of the hill, the alpha male, the one that first springs to mind. But history reminds us that when they were introduced in the late 1950s, the AC15 actually preceded the AC30 by almost a year, which makes it the […]

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Son Volt – American Central Dust


For Jay Farrar, these are the worst of times and the best of times, to appropriate and paraphrase a famous line. As a songwriter and musician with the spirit of a Woody Guthrie – or at least, the Carter Family – the economy and world woes provided the fire and fury for this comeback collection […]

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Eastwood EEB-1 and EUB-1

Horizontal Vibe

Eastwood’s EEB-1 and the EUB-1 Eastwood’s EEB-1 and the EUB-1 take their design inspiration from Ampeg’s quirky mid-’60s Horizontal Bass series, the brainchild of Dennis Kager, an amp technician and guitar specialist who worked for the company at the time. The Ampegs (the fretted AEB-1 and fretless AUB-1) had non-symmetrical double-cutaway laminate bodies with f-hole […]

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John Jorgenson

Continued Gypsy

John Jorgenson’s latest offering is French Gypsy jazz played by a California boy as recorded in Nashville and honed while touring the world over. Jorgenson’s fascination with the music of Django Reinhardt goes way back. He began playing Gypsy jazz three decades ago while gigging at Disneyland. By 2004, he was playing Django himself in […]

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The Gibson Les Paul Special


Technically this early-1961 is an SG Special, but for all practical purposes it’s still a Les Paul. Photo: Billy Mitchell, courtesy Gruhn Guitars. Instrument courtesy Gil Southworth. Gibson’s Les Paul Special was the last of the original Les Paul “family” of guitars introduced, and it was the first to lose the Les Paul name. But […]

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Roy Orbison

Unequivocally Essential

When Roy Orbison walked onstage, the black Gibson ES-335 around his neck wasn’t just for show. Orbison was a pretty good picker, and he holds down a good portion of the guitar on the sides from the Teen Kings and the Wink Westerners included in this comprehensive set. For his signature hits of the early […]

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Seth Lover

Humbuckers And other Lover innovations

A noted creator, Seth Lover’s achievements include numerous amplifiers and circuits, but none have been so highly recognized as his humbucking pickup, which became the Patent Applied For (P.A.F.) humbucker. The following is excerpted from an interview with Seth Lover conducted by VG’s Stephen Patt in 1996. At the time, Lover was working with pickup […]

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