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Monthly Archives: March 2010

Stromberg G-5


1952 Stromberg G-5 cutaway Photo: Kelsey Vaughn. In the world of archtop guitars, the Stromberg name represents the ultimate instrument – in size, at least – in the big-band era of the late 1930s and ’40s. The huge 19″ Master 400 and Master 300 models are worthy of their flagship status as the best-known and […]

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H&D, Running Dog, and Gibson

Downsize, Upmarket L-Style Guitar

In the July issue we looked at affordable L-style flat-tops for the acoustic blues player. This month, we look at similarly inspired instruments, but at a premium price point. All three are American-made, one comes from a cadre of skilled workers, one was made by the hands of a solo luthier, and the third is […]

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Retro Inspired Basses

Cool Looks, Classic Sounds

Danelectro Dano ’63 long-scale bass in Aqua. Photos courtesy of Evets. Danelectro Dano ’63 short-scale bass in Red Burst. Photos courtesy of Evets. Eastwood Club Bass in Sunburst. Photos courtesy of Eastwood. As with fashion, cars, motorcycles, music, and many other elements of current pop culture, today’s electric bass market is chock full of instruments […]

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Slim Bryant

Early Country Guitar's Last Man Standing

Slim Bryant Thomas Hoyt Bryant, known to family and friends as “Slim,” met Perry Bechtel in Atlanta 1929. “I heard your record, ‘Wabash Blues,’ and I want to play it just like that,” he declared. “I can teach you that in 30 minutes,” the older man responded. “But if you want to play ‘em all […]

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Marshall 1974X and 2061

Low-Watts Rock the World, Again

Marshall 1974X and 2061 In the world of guitar amplifiers, the word “Marshall” often conjures images of 100-watt stacks capable of producing ear-bleeding levels of tube-powered volume – the kind favored by guitarists who play stadiums. And while it’s true Marshall amps built their reputation by sharing the stage with the likes of Jimmy Page, […]

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G&L’s Climax & LB-100


G&L Climax (serial number B025855) in Emerald Blue finish. Carve on the back of the Climax.Photos: Bill Ingalls Jr. Instruments courtesy of Naffaz Skota (Climax) and Ryan Cass (LB-100). G&L LB-100 (serial number B031205) in Bel Air Green. In its first decade, G&L – the solidbody instrument maker created by Leo Fender after his departure […]

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Howard Leese

Heart-less But Guitar Laden

Photo: Rick Gould. Guitarist/ producer/ entrepreneur Howard Leese has come a long way since his early days with Heart in the 1970s. He was onboard when the band’s first hit single, “Barracuda,” swam up the charts, and was an integral member as they earned platinum record awards and sold-out concerts worldwide. And he was there […]

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ToadWorks Lil’ Leo and John Bull

OD, Spiced to Your Liking

Washington-based ToadWorks USA was founded by Ryan Dunn and Doug Harrison in 2001. They recently asked if we’d be hip to checking out their Lil’ Leo and John Bull units. Well, we like to think we’re hip, so of course we said, “Booyah!” (‘cuz that’s what you say when you’re hip, right?). Anyway, ToadWorks pedals […]

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The Gibson Les Paul Model


Photo: Robert Parks, courtesy George Gruhn. Its official name – Les Paul model – doesn’t do it justice. After all, Gibson has made over a hundred different Les Paul models through the years. But call it by its nickname – “goldtop” – and everyone knows you’re talking about Gibson’s first solidbody electric guitar. Like many […]

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Jules Shear – More


Jules Mark Shear is living proof that talented pop musicians who prefer to remain on the fringes can maintain a successful career without cowtowing to the winds of fad and fashion. On his latest release, More, Shear delivers songs that are as fresh, vibrant, and punky as his first release more than 20 years ago. […]

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