Tag Archives: overdrive

Leslie West

Hangin' With Unusual Suspects
Leslie West

In deciding who to hit up to play on his new album, Unusual Suspects, Leslie West put a lot of thought into his musical and personal connections. And he’s justifiably proud of the recruits; decades-long friend Steve Lukather, Billy Gibbons, Slash, Zakk Wylde, who affectionately refers to West as “Dad,” and labelmate Joe Bonamassa, who […]

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Peavey Forum Basses

Durable, Dependable
Peavey Forum

In his 2003 book, American Basses, author Jim Roberts noted that for all of Peavey’s innovative offerings in the 1990s, “…the company hadn’t forgotten their regular customers,” specifically citing the company’s mid-’90s Forum as a “good old meat-and-potatoes bass.” The Forum series did indeed exemplify the builder’s efforts to adhere to founder Hartley Peavey’s mantra […]

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Gretsch Jet Firebird

One of the flashiest Jets in the Gretsch Company’s Air Force

Given the number of jet-related model monikers in Gretsch’s 1950s and ’60s catalogs, one might get the impression the company built airplanes. There were the flashy “fighters” like the Duo-Jet, Silver Jet, and Jet Fire Bird. Then there were the sturdy, reliable “tankers” represented by laminated archtops like the Corsair and the seldom-seen Jet 21. On the “commercial” […]

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Spectrum 5


Joining playful mid-’60s cultural icons such as the Ford Mustang, NBC’s “The Monkees,” the Beatles’ “Nowhere Man” and Cassius Clay, the Teisco Del Rey Spectrum 5 was the high-water mark of original Japanese design from the era. It’s also one of the most sought-after import guitars (more…)

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Frank Gambale


Frank Gambale has had an amazing career playing the music he loves. From being the go-to guy for sweep-picking, and later replacing Al DiMeola in Return To Forever, Gambale drops jaws wherever he goes, and whether playing straight jazz, instrumental rock, or contemporary fusion, he plays from the heart and head. Gambale’s current project is […]

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Luther Dickinson

Acoustic Odyssey
Luther Dickinson

When Luther Dickinson isn’t writing and performing with the North Mississippi Allstars or on the road with The Black Crowes, he plays the acoustic guitar – and lots of it. He recently released an acoustic instrumental record called Hambone’s Meditation, a project called The Wandering featuring (more…)

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Roland Micro Cube

Mighty Mouse

Roland Micro Cube Price: $130 (street) Info: www.rolandus.com. Every once in a while you have to pinch yourself and thank your lucky stars to be a guitarist in the 21st century. The Roland Micro Cube is a good illustration of this phenomenon; a dinky, portable (more…)

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Gretsch Rancher


“A spectacular model in real he-man outdoor Western finish with powerful appeal for Hill-billy and Cowboy bands.” This is how Gretsch first introduced the Rancher Jumbo – offspring of the 1940s Synchromatic models – in its 1955 catalog. The triangular (or “French”) sound hole has been seen on most Gretsch flat-top guitars from wartime to the […]

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Budda Verbmaster 112

Versatile 18-Watter
Budda Verbmaster 112 Home

Budda Verbmaster 112 Price: $1,800 (street) Contact: budda.com As part of its Hand-Wired series, Budda has reissued the tube-rectified Verbmaster 1×12 combo that differs from similarly powered amps because it’s a two-channel with reverb and a second (hotter) input. The Verbmaster uses the same (more…)

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Doug Doppler

Art Appreciation, Import-Style - Doug Doppler’s Ibanez Collection

Doug Doppler recalls how, at age five, his first swimming lesson fell on the same day as his first guitar lesson. Beyond mere coincidence, there is no connection between the two. Nonetheless, these days, Doppler is “swimming” in guitars – specifically, vintage Ibanez. Doppler is an (more…)

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