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Tag Archives: features

Duke Robillard

Doing Things His Way
 
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Mix one part blues, one part jazz, one part swing, stir in some rock and soul, bring to a simmer, and you have Duke Robillard ala mode. In his 35 years in the music business, Robillard has learned to do things his own way. Though a stint in the Fabulous Thunderbirds brought him closer to […]

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Heil Talk Box

 
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When Peter Frampton began using the Heil Talk Box in 1974, he remembers it being viewed with skepticism as an “alien effect.” Similar contraptions had been around since 1939, but few people recognized them or their otherworldly capabilities. Frampton had yet to record with it, so when he used it onstage, it caused a furor. […]

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Cort’s Sunset I and II

Jonesin’ For Tone
 
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Cort’s Sunset I and II Price: $1,195 (Sunset I), $750 (Sunset II) Info: www.cortguitars.com When Cort isn’t busy making guitars and basses for major musical instrument companies, they’re hard at work building some pretty cool instruments under their own name. From jazz boxes to the Gene (more…)

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Dave Haskell

Wings and Strings
 

Plenty of improbable stories involve guitarists making first records amid peculiar circumstances. But few match Dave Haskell’s journey to Pivot Point. A retired airline pilot who dallied in music professionally in the 1970s and ’80s before turning his attention to flying, Haskell’s trip started with his dad’s (more…)

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Electro-Harmonix Epitome, Tone Tattoo

Tone to the Third Squared
 
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The Electro-Harmonix Epitome, Tone Tattoo Price: $491.84 list (Epitome) and $292.35 list (Tone Tattoo) Info: www.ehx.com The concept is smart yet so obvious it’s a wonder no one came up with it sooner. With both the Epitome and the Tone Tattoo, Electro-Harmonix manages to cram (more…)

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Gibson Style J Mando-bass

 
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Decades before Audiovox or Leo Fender dreamed of making a fretted electric bass, Gibson started manufacturing fretted acoustic mando-basses that were tuned the same as an upright bass. Joe Spann, author of Spann’s Guide to Gibson 1902-1941 has assembled serial and work-order number information documenting Gibson’s production prior to World War II, which indicates mando-bass […]

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Gretsch Roots Collection: Jim Dandy Flat-top, Dixie 6 Guitar-Banjo

Back to the Country
 
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Gretsch Roots Collection: Jim Dandy Flat-top, Dixie 6 Guitar-Banjo Price: $239 retail (Jim Dandy Flat Top) and $499 retail (Dixie 6 Guitar-Bajo) Contact: www.gretschguitars.com Cynics inclined to dismiss Gretsch’s Roots Collection as a crass ploy to hop aboard the current (more…)

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Gibson Firebirds

 
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Say the words “custom color” to a collector or enthusiast and most will think of “Fender.” But Gibson had its own multicolored baby – the Firebird. Born in 1963 and put to rest in ’69, the Firebird was Gibson’s third full-line attempt at the solidbody market. While it did not do as well as the […]

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Holy Cripes

Holy Cripes! The Story of Jerry Garcia’s Last Guitars
 
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Steve Cripe left a unique legacy in the annals of music history. He was not a guitar player, not a songwriter. In fact, you may not even know his name. But the guitar builder became part of the fabric that makes up the story of the Grateful Dead when he built guitars for the legendary […]

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Tommy Smith

Leogun’s Led Zep Connection
 
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Some of the loudest buzz – literally and figuratively – in music surrounds the London-base power trio Leogun, fronted by guitarist/vocalist Tommy Smith. The band’s neo-retro sound has drawn comparison to Led Zeppelin, but Smith is influenced by a long list of names. “I’m lucky I was brought (more…)

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