Monday, 30 June 2003

Win a Fender John 5 Signature Custom Shop Telecaster guitar

...unless you live outside of the United States in which case you can **** off.

Oi Fender!!!! This ain't fair.

Friday, 27 June 2003

I have started putting together a guitbass from old Stratocaster parts. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Whilst we're on the subject, see also this interview with The Presidents of the United States of America.

Tuesday, 24 June 2003

Monday, 23 June 2003

Guitar Project - Tele "Bits-O-Caster" guitar

Do you remember this unfinished project from last year?

Well... We had a go at finishing her off this weekend, and she's done and plays beautifully!
Tele Bits-O-Caster
Tele Bits-O-Caster
Tele Bits-O-Caster

As I explained earlier the body is an old Telecaster type that I'd bought off eBay. It had been in storage for Who knows how many years, and despite having one or two minor knocks, had not ever been used. It required some extra routing of the pickup cavities as they weren't quite deep enough for the pickups I wanted to install, and we had to drill holes for the strings thru body and for the jack socket on the lower bout.

Because of the way in which the original body routing had been carried out, I was unable to use a standard design Telecaster scratchplate on this, because a channel from the bridge pickup to the control cavity would not have been covered up. I traced the outline of the shape I wanted from a real Tele scratchplate, then extended the design (using a dinner plate to continue to top curve!). We used some attractive tortoiseshell scratchplate material bought from and cut this to the desired shape using a fretsaw.

The pickups are a chromed Gibson style P90 at the neck position and a Seymour Duncan Stratocaster-style pickup in the bridge position, so this guitar is certainly not wimpy in the sounds department. The P90 allows for some nice jazzy tones, and overdriven it can get quite bluesy.

The neck - as has been explained earlier - came from a Encore "Guitarist" model instrument which was offered for sale in the pages of Guitarist magazine in the 1980s. I did consider removing the logo, but decided in the end that I quite liked the novelty of keeping the old Guitarist magazine logo on the headstock. This original Encore guitar was quite a cheapy - I bought it in a very sorry state for £21. Right from the beginning the only part I intended re-using was the neck as it was a well-made neck and in very nice condition, with a very pleasing satin feel to the back of the neck. It just so happened that this neck fitted the Telecaster style body perfectly, so I decided to marry them up.

Having said that, a friend of mine - who helped me on this project - took the old Encore body away "just to play around with" and has refinished and re-sprayed it. I have found another neck, and it looks like we're going to get another guitar out of this too! - no prizes for guessing what this does! Damned useful though.
Lefties Anonymous - The life of a left-handed guitarist, by John Tucker.

Friday, 20 June 2003

Another site to help you date your vintage instruments - Vintage Guitar Info - loads of great stuff on here!
Line 6 Unveils HD147, the Evolution of Modern Guitar Amplifiers
Axe Dater - Rickenbacker, Gretsch, Gibson, Guild, G&L and Martin serial numbers. There are links to Fender guitar and amp daters but these seem to be dead (or is it just me?).

Monday, 16 June 2003

Bunker Guitars have an intriguing instrument called the Touch Guitar.

They say that:
"When visiting our showroom you may be treated to a live demonstration of the Touch Guitar! We'll even teach you how to play a lick or two so you can experience, for yourself, just how easy it is to play this wonderful instrument. You will be amazed that, in 5 minutes, you can actually play bass and guitar together. Even if you have never picked up a guitar or bass before!"
A bold claim, I feel.

Nevertheless, it all looks very interesting.
Am I really the only one who HATES Paul Reed Smith guitars? I just find them so utterly tasteless. To me, they are like pieces of pointlessly expensive but not particularly attractive furniture. It's all about appearances, quilted tops, flamed maple, etc, etc. And the prices are silly. If a guitar was worth thousands I'd be scared of picking it up in case I made a mark on it, let alone actually playing the bloody thing.

Here is a particularly gross example selling on eBay at the moment.

If someone has £14,500.00 that they are willing to spend on that, then they must have more money than either taste or imagination.

Update: That VILE guitar sold for £7,500... as I said there are some tasteless people out there.

Friday, 13 June 2003

You'd think there'd be more guitar-based weblogs considering the popularity of the instrument.

Here's an excellent example - Djangology - charting one man's journey in becoming a gypsy jazz guitar player.

Monday, 9 June 2003

Les Paul, the man behing the myth!Happy Birthday to the legend himself, Les Paul, 88 years old today.
The Log - the guitar that started it all.
Les Paul interview from the guys over at the Les Paul Forum.
From 1999, Les Paul: The Jinx Interrogation by Denver Smith (who really should have done a little research, because he asks some stupid questions!)

Thursday, 5 June 2003

Stick-on pads stifle guitar feedback - smart device actively damps out acoustic amplification shrieks.
This guitar will show you how to play - no strings attached
Pedalling into the record books ...
A Guinness world record is hardly the epitome of rock'n'roll. But veteran guitarist Ace ensured he lost no credibility with his successful attempt yesterday. having set the record for using the largest number of effects pedals, the former Skunk Anansie strummer promptly smashed up the Fender Stratocaster he was playing and set it on fire. The attempt was the final word in a discussion he had with students at the Brighton Institute of Modern Music, where he is a tutor. For the seafront attempt, he played Deep Purple's Smoke On The Water while 'bending' each note with 85 pedals - creating a noise 'like Concorde taking off'. 'We had all the students down from the college cheering,' said Ace, whose solo album Still Hungry is out this month. 'We are all going to the pub to celebrate.'
METRO, 5 June 2003

Update: Here is the same story as reported by Ananova although they claim that 100 pedals were used.

Wednesday, 4 June 2003

Lately, I have found myself looking wistfully at Gibson Flying V guitars. I used to hate these years ago, linking them in my mind to cliched heavy metal acts. But, I've now grown to love them and would derly love to own one. Anyhoo, a quick search on the web finds this fabulous site: The Gibson Flying V website

Monday, 2 June 2003

YET ANOTHER Hendrix guitar goes up for sale. They seem to be springing up everywhere - check your attics, closets, under the bed, etc. You may have one too!

Sunday, 1 June 2003


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