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Tag Archives: features

The Vox Saturn IV

 
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In the mid 1960s, England’s Vox company was in the right place at the right time. Buoyed by frontline British Invasion endorsers such as the Beatles and American bands such as Paul Revere & the Raiders, the instrument/amplifier maker signed deals with almost every popular band. Even one-hit-wonders such as Music Machine (“Talk Talk”) brandished […]

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The Peavey ValveKing II Micro-head 20-Watt Amplifier

Royal Rock
 
The Peavey ValveKing II Micro-head 20-Watt Amplifier

The Peavey ValveKing II Micro-head 20-Watt Amplifier Price: $429.99 Contact: www.peavey.com Famous for their sturdy build and quality overdriven sounds, Peavey’s original ValveKing amplifiers were marketed to musicians who required great plug-in-and-go tones that wouldn’t send them to the poor (more…)

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Neil Giraldo

Road Routine
 
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The hard-driving husband-and-wife rock act that hits the stage as Pat Benatar and Neil “Spyder” Giraldo is responsible for more than a handful of stalwart classic-rock jams. For the past 15 years, Benatar and husband/guitarist/producer/co-writer Giraldo have spent many of their summers touring, then scratching (more…)

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Gibson Johnny Smith

 
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In 1961, Gibson’s Johnny Smith model not only associated Gibson with one of the most popular guitar stylists of the day, it also brought high-quality amplification and high-quality acoustic sound together for the first time. From Gibson’s first electric “Spanish” guitar, the ES-150 of 1936, Gibson had fashioned an electric guitar by cutting a hole […]

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Rivera Shaman Series Pedals

Holy Tones
 
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Rivera Shaman Series Pedals Price: $299 each (street) Info: www.rivera.com. With roots stretching to the late ’70s, SoCal-based Rivera Amplification is best known for their handbuilt-in-the-U.S.A. tube amps. Not to be overlooked, however, are the firm’s pedal offerings, specifically their Shaman series of effects boxes. (more…)

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Johnny Smith

An American Treasure
 
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Jazz guitarist Johnny Smith died at his home June 11, 2013, two weeks shy of his 91st birthday. Arguably the most respected and revered guitarist of the modern era (1950 to present), Smith was sincerely humble and reserved about his extraordinary talent. In 1999, his peers and friends celebrated his career with a gala at […]

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Demeter Mighty Minnie Pedalboard Amplifier

Mighty Fine
 
Demeter Mighty Minnie Pedalboard Amplifier

Demeter Mighty Minnie Pedalboard Amplifier Price: $899.99 Info: www.demeteramps.com Years ago, backstage after a concert, slide-guitar virtuoso Sonny Landreth mentioned to renowned amp designer James Demeter that it would be nice to be able to do fly-in dates without having to rely (more…)

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Supro S6651

Supro S6651 Big Star
 
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Don’t we guitarists just love gear that looks like it was salvaged from our mom’s kitchen circa 1961? Give us something in high-gloss pastel, with Formica styling, gas-cooker knobs, plenty of chrome, and an emblem lifted off a fridge door and we go weak in the knees every time. When it comes to kitchen kitsch, […]

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Will Lee

Letter Winner
 
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Musicians being artists and artists needing to express themselves, it says something that Will Lee’s new album, Love, Gratitude & Other Distractions, is only his second in 20 years (his first was 1993’s Oh!). Mostly, it speaks to the fact that since James Brown is no longer with us, Lee may well now be the […]

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Vintage V52 Icon

Cost-Effective Twang
 
Vintage V52 Icon

Vintage V52 Icon Price: $459 Info: www.jhs.co.uk The U.K.-based distributor John Hornby Skewes offers guitars under the brand Vintage that cater to a market interested in traditional sounds and old-school looks. The V52 is the company’s take on the ’50s-style Tele. A striking guitar that (more…)

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