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EARLY BIRDS

As a buyer for his family’s chain of music stores, Sammy Ash recognized something special when a young Paul Smith showed up with hand-made guitars in 1984. Instinct told Sammy to set aside a few of the first PRS instruments ever made. Here’s a look. Classics is powered by SamAsh Music Stores. Read Now!


Kid Carves it up!

Proving that tone is less about fancy gear and more about feel, Kid Ramos used his home-modded Fender Squier Mini Strat with pickups from an Epiphone Sheraton, a piece of chromed-steel, and a Vox Pathfinder turned up just so to play his slide part from “Dance Like I Should,” from his new collaboration with Johnny Tucker, “75 And Alive.” Kid plays a ton of great guitar on the album; read our review in the January issue. Read Now!


EARLY BIRDS

As a buyer for his family’s chain of music stores, Sammy Ash recognized something special when a young Paul Smith showed up with hand-made guitars in 1984. Instinct told Sammy to set aside a few of the first PRS instruments ever made. Here’s a look. Classics is powered by SamAsh Music Stores. Read Now!


Kid Carves it up!

Proving that tone is less about fancy gear and more about feel, Kid Ramos used his home-modded Fender Squier Mini Strat with pickups from an Epiphone Sheraton, a piece of chromed-steel, and a Vox Pathfinder turned up just so to play his slide part from “Dance Like I Should,” from his new collaboration with Johnny Tucker, “75 And Alive.” Kid plays a ton of great guitar on the album; read our review in the January issue. Read Now!


“The first song I learned on guitar was ‘House of the Rising Sun’ by the Animals.” The statement could have come from literally thousands of fledgling guitarists in ’64, when the record shot to #1, or in the decades since. It was the perfect vehicle – five chords, each arpeggiated so you heard every note […]

Airline Bojotar

Hybrid G-String Machine

There’s something about the Airline Bojotar that makes one ask, “What if Keef had added a high-G banjo string to the bass side of his five-string Tele?” With a scale length of 24.75″, the Bojotar’s strings are tuned G/D/G/B/D (low to high) and sit on a 1.5″ nut. A sixth string, tuned to G, is […]

5 Basses That Shook the World

Rattle and Roll

In the 1930s, few bassists in popular forms of music felt the need to extract more volume from their uprights. Then came rockabilly and rock and roll – two forms where the stationary “doghouse” didn’t fit the dynamic. Fortunately, Leo Fender knew just what was needed.

Cort’s Sunset I and II Feature

Cort’s Sunset I and II

Jonesin’ For Tone

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 Simmons AXE Electric Bass, Cort covers a lot of territory. Cort’s new Sunset series includes the models I and II chambered-body electrics. Both […]

Scott Henderson

Scott Henderson

Vibe Station

On his new album, Vibe Station, Scott Henderson once again redefines fusion within a groove-heavy power trio format. As always, the blues informs his jazz-rock workouts with virtuosic jabs of rock edginess and humor. Despite Henderson’s obvious talents, he’ll be the first to say he’s all about hard work and intestinal fortitude. Famous for his […]

Orange VT1000 Valve Tester

Orange VT1000 Valve Tester Price: $499 Info: www.orangeamps.com. Many a Vintage Guitar reader has a stash of tubes lying about their music room/workshop or in a box in a closet. The problem is knowing which are trash and which are treasure. Orange Amps’ VT1000 valve tester promises to answer that question. The VT1000 is designed […]

Bumblefoot

Prog Shred Ain’t Dead

After bursting onto the scene in 1995 with the screwball shred classic The Adventures of Bumblefoot, Ron Thal (a.k.a. Bumblefoot) has shape-shifted his playing, adapting to the hard rock of Guns N’ Roses for Chinese Democracy, the alt rock of Art of Anarchy, and he recently joined Jeff Scott Soto, Billy Sheehan, Derek Sherinian, and […]

Eric Krasno

Front Man

Because Eric Krasno isn’t quite busy enough performing 188 dates a year with Soulive, moonlighting with the band Lettuce, or producing Norah Jones and Aaron Neville, he recently felt the need to release a solo record. Blood From A Stone positions the eclectic songwriter/guitarist front and center for the first time as a singer. Soul […]

1938 Supertone Gene Autry Roundup

In the depths of the Great Depression, people turned to entertainment for distraction. Not that there was much to be had when cash was in short supply, but two inexpensive forms were the radio and the movies. On the radio, one pleasure would have been listening to one of the many “barn dance” variety programs […]

Readers’ Choice Awards Inductees 1990-Today

Vintage Guitar magazine has been honoring those who inspired and awed us as guitar players, fans, and listeners by inducting great players, instruments, and innovators into the VG Hall of Fame. We also choose Album of the Year, Artist of the Year, and Players of the Year. Who and what goes into the VG Readers’ Choice Awards has always been determined by the readers of VG.

Michael Bruce

Eighteen Again

Before there was an Alice Cooper, man and solo artist, there was the band called Alice Cooper. From 1969 to ’74, it cranked out seven influential albums with the dual-guitar attack of Michael Bruce and the late Glen Buxton. Bruce contributed many of the band’s anthemic smashes, such as “I’m Eighteen,” “Be My Lover,” and […]

Elliot Easton

Star Board: Elliot Easton

Elliot Easton’s “Pedalboard” Though Elliot Easton enjoys his loaded full-size Pedaltrain board, his new band, The Empty Hearts (with Clem Burke, Wally Palmar, and Andy Babiuk), does a lot of fly-in concerts, so… “Since I have to schlep my stuff to the airport, it’s gotta be lightweight!” he said. “My pedal boards are built by […]

ToneConcepts, Nels Cline Co-Op on Goo Distortion Pedal

The ToneConcepts Goo distortion pedal was designed in cooperation with guitarist Nels Cline. It has controls for Volume, Shininess (tone), and Viscosity (gain), a cast-aluminum Hammond housing, and an all-analog circuit on PCBs hand-made in Toronto using through-hole components tested for tolerance. Its aesthetics are inspired by the 1958 film The Blob, with graphics representing […]

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Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo

Endless Echo

Like politics, religion, and overdrive pedals, echo boxes are sure to incite staunch views, heartfelt arguments, and perhaps even fisticuffs. But Strymon’s El Capistan is one worth fighting for. To get the squabble started, this pedal creates analog-inspired echo via DSP (digital signal processing) technology. If you’re an enemy of all things unnatural and digital, […]

The Prestige Classic TBK

Hidden Treasure

One of the best-kept guitar secrets, Prestige is a small Vancouver-based operation that has flown under the radar for 18 years. The company farms its own tonewoods, which are shipped to Korea, where the guitars are built then shipped back to British Columbia, for finishing and hardware installation. Its Classic TBK model is a slimmed-down […]

Mark Knopfler

Straitforward

Very early in life, Mark Knopfler had a connection with music. His mother cared for the family while BBC programs like “Listen with Mother” played on the radio with its child-oriented stories, songs, and nursery rhymes. But it was an uncle named Kingsley who had the biggest impact on young Mark’s informal music education when […]

Nate Najar

This Is Nate Najar

Nate Najar plays accessible jazz on a classical guitar and applies classical technique to match. This album showcases the music veteran playing a variety of tunes that range from Chopin’s “Prelude in E Minor (op.28 no.4),” Chick Corea’s “500 Miles High” and “Chick’s Tune,” as well as Jobim’s “Insensatez (How Insensitive)” and “O Morro Não […]

Singleton Guitars Capella

Shining Bright

Mark Singleton holds the distinction of being a smokin’ guitarist as well as, for the past 24 years, a builder of boutique guitars and basses. One side of the coin influences the other, with Singleton’s real-world playing experiences informing his colorful guitar and bass designs. Located at the simpler end of the Singleton lineup, the […]

Charlie Ballantine

Midwest Expressive

Befitting a guitarist from America’s heartland, Charlie Ballantine’s mixes jazz, folk-rock, surf/instro, blues, pop, and country into a simmering pot of guitar sound and style. His instrumental work is beautiful and complex, ranging from melodic journeys to raging heavier sounds. Charlie’s latest CD is Where is My Mind?, a strong album that marks him as […]