I've never tried a guitar with built in effects. I have seen a few for sale over the years, and have seen them profiled on this blog. This is the first time I've seen or heard of Condor Corperation guitars.
All in all this specimen is a pretty typical 1970s era Japanese Strat copy, only it comes with on-board effects including a phaser, distortion, booster, and what appears to be a treble booster.
At $135 Canadian this would be a cost effective way to try this kind of setup.
R. W. Haller
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This looks like an interesting guitar competition and festival being held this Fall in the Milwaukee area:
The Wilson Center Guitar Competition & Festival is an annual, multi-genre competition which features four different categories—Rock/Blues, Fingerstyle, Jazz, and Classical. Four competitions, one festival. Contestants compete for $22,000 in prize money!
The performer list looks interesting as well. Ana Vidovic will perform on Thursday, August 13. Troy Stetina and Jonathan Kreisberg will perform on Friday, August 14. And, Leo Kottke and Antoine Dufour will perform on Saturday, August 15. I’ve seen Vidovic perform before, and she is a fantastic guitarist and performer.
If you want to compete, you need to get your application in by May 1. Good luck!
Since releasing their debut EP entitled Lust in Diamonds in 2013, Los Angeles-based metal band Legal Tender has been pretty active on their local Hollywood scene.
Fans able to attend the live shows have had the opportunity to catch a few new songs, one of which is the single “Swallow Your Soul.” Recently, Legal Tender dropped an official music video for the track, which features guitarist Frankie Lindia shredding on his Charvel So-Cal.
Check it out after the jump.
Join The Martin Owners Club family!Martin Owners Club enrollment continues! We included a special perk for the first week in March. Renew your membership before March 6th, and you'll be entered to win one of twenty FREE 2016 memberships. Drawing exclusive for new members will be announced soon! Benefits include: 20% off at the 1833 Shop, a chance to attend an Evening With Chris Martin, and much more! The cost to join or renew is $45. To #JoinTheFamily or renew your membership, click here.
One Month Closer To Owning a Ed Sheeran X Signature Edition
Preorder continues for the Ed Sheeran X Signature Edition. Ed has already performed on The Grammys, Late Late Show, and BBC with the second signature edition model. We are sure there are many more performances to come in March. To learn more about the model, click here. To preorder your Ed Sheeran X Signature Edition, click here.
"Seth Avett & Jessica Lea Mayfield Sing Elliot Smith"
Martin Ambassador Seth Avett will release an album with Jessica Lea Mayfield in March. The album will include covers of famous Elliot Smith songs. "Seth Avett and Jessica Lea Mayfield Sing Elliot Smith" will be released on March 17th. For more information and to preorder the album, click here.
Chuck Ragan Brings His Tour To Europe
Martin Ambassador Chuck Ragan will bring The Pedal Down With The Camaraderie tour to Europe. The tour kicks off March 18th through April 7th. For more information on the tour, click here.
We've looked at the Tokai Talbo before, but here is a newer one that is not made of aluminum.
I'm having a hard time finding anything not to like on this Tokai Woody Talbo. It has a great unique body shape that is both modern and retro at the same time. I love the Hamilton Green colour, which is very seafoam or surfy. I also like the look of the replacement pickguard that is, according to the seller, too flexible for a secure mounting of the pickups. That would be an easy fix or replacement.
Currently listed on eBay for $559.99 US
© 2015, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.
Robben Ford has announced a new album titled Into the Sun that will be released on March 31.
Into The Sun, which follows last year’s critically acclaimed A Day In Nashville and 2013’s Bringing It Back Home, explores the breadth of Ford’s sophisticated, visionary writing and playing, creating a new chapter in his brilliant musical history. The album features a coterie of guests: Allman Brothers guitarist and Gov’t Mule frontman Warren Haynes on “High Heels And Throwing Things,” slide guitar guru Sonny Landreth on “So Long 4 U,” Americana and blues icon Keb’ Mo’ and pedal steel wizard Robert Randolph on “Justified,” vocal sensation ZZ Ward on “Breath Of Me,” and gritty Southern rock newcomer Tyler Bryant on “Stone Cold Heaven.” Niko Bolas, whose credits include Neil Young, John Mayer and Keith Richards, engineered.
Sounds like an interesting collection of guest artists. I’m looking forward to hearing this.
Check out the EPK:
Another week, another guitar related Kickstarter project, but as with every crowdfunding project I share on Guitar Noize I think this is a cool idea. As guitarists we all know what it’s like, you go to your mates house, a guitar store, or you are at band practice and you lose your pick. Snap Pick aims to remedy this problem by creating detachable picks for your keyring made with Delrin and in different gauges, simply snap one off (that means something very different where I come from but I’m sure you are more mature than me) and play.
The Snap Pick® was developed by Willis Houck, a professional sound engineer with over 30 years experience running live sound. The solution to this problem came to him one day in November of 2009 after lending out his last spare pick. That day he made his first rough sketches, and started developing prototypes of the Snap Pick® design.
He applied for both a patent, and trademark, and has been awarded patent # D694,811S, and trademark # 4436766 International Class 15. Over time he created a variety of molds, and tested prototypes using materials commonly used by leading guitar pick manufactures.
The Snap Pick® is now ready for production. This Kickstarter campaign has been created to enable Willis to create three new production molds, and produce their first manufacturing run for consumers.
You can back this project by clicking on the widget below:
The post Snap Pick® Detachable Guitar Picks For Your Keyring appeared first on Guitar Noize.
All photos copyright Peter Hodgson, 2015
Vladimir Bobri, The Segovia Technique, 1972
I got back to work on a close copy of a 1930 Santos Hernandez guitar yesterday by glueing on the so called "fan bracing", as you will notice, these braces are nearly parallel to each other, and the transverse braces to the top.
When I got up this morning I un-cinched the clamps and discovered that the top had a definite twist to it.
Hmm. Bad glue up technique on my part and the humidity had dropped from 39% to 29% overnight, not good for a guitar top or my nerves. That is the problem with working at lutherie this time of the year, especially during and right after a big snow storm, the relative humidity can really drop. The humidifier can't keep up.
I needed to run errands this morning, when I got back I split the transverse braces off the top and shaved the remnants down to the glue.
Then I made new braces.
I clamped the top down to the work board and glued on transverse brace number one, once the glue was set then I glued on the wide flat brace closest to the neck.
After that, time to walk the dogs and make dinner.
The brace below the sound hole has a 1/16th of an inch arch to it to help dome the top.
Doming the top gives the guitar a real voice, one that has volume and character. It's like a drum head, you want it tensioned to be loud.
When I glue this brace on I usually use two slats as backing cauls and a C clamp at each end. Then I push two shims in between the slats to force the top to the brace and the glue.
This action is what can cause twisting.
Tonight, I used the slats, but I started by clamping in the middle, the a C clamp on each side of the Quik Grip, and continued on down to the ends of the brace.
I couldn't see any twisting or winding to the top.
Then it was a little trim work on some laminated all walnut cam clamps, which I should work on tomorrow..
and then double check the neck. If all goes well I can bend the sides tomorrow and attach the top to the neck.
Now it's bed time.
It's not that late, maybe nine o'clock, but I never could work late into the night, even in college I couldn't work on term papers past 11pm. Back then I had an electric typewriter that could erase the last ten words that you typed, I thought I was lucky to have such a beast.
Still, I have a jar full of incense cedar bodied pencils that are more fun to use than any computer.
By: Robert Cavuoto
Two of hard rock’s most notable figures have partnered up for a new project.
Iconic vocalist and guitarist Michael Sweet of Stryper and guitar hero George Lynch of Lynch Mob and Dokken have joined forces to form the new supergroup Sweet & Lynch. Joining them on bass are James Lomenzo and Brian Tichy on drums.
A CD where there is no filler, only melodic rock songs created with an ear towards the greatest eras of rock ‘n roll – the ’70s and ’80s, that include songs that showcase the two musician’s abilities like on “Only to Rise” with George’s Van Halen-esque riff or on “Dying Rose” with Michael’s soulfully smooth voice.
I caught up with Michael Sweet to talk about what went into making this CD and his views on the music industry as it relates to rock and metal!
Robert Cavuoto: Did you and George ever sit down or talk about the scope of the project, or map out the details of what it should sound like?
Michael Sweet: We never did. Serafino Perugino of Frontier Records sent me an email asking me if I wanted to sing on a project he was putting together with John Levin of Dokken. One thing led to another and I suggested working with George Lynch. Serafino loved the idea. I offered to produce the CD and here we are.
George and I never sat down face to face to figure out what we were going to do. Once he agreed to be part of it, we brought James Lomenzo on bass and Brian Tichy on drums. Right out of the gate George started sending me riffs. I would weed through everything until we got 12 solid song ideas. It was then my job to write the lyric and the melodies. I had to take those one minute ideas and turn them into four minute songs.
Robert: I have to imagine converting a minute riff to a 4 minute song is no easy task, as all the songs on the CD are pretty detailed and intricate.
Michael Sweet: It’s really interesting how it all came together, plus me being a bit of a magician.
I would get a riff with an intro, a verse, a chorus and then it would literally shut off. I would then have to take this really cool riff and write the parts that weren’t there, like the turnaround, the outros, and the sections for the solos.
Some of the stuff he sent me had a little more, but most were just 60-90 seconds. Once I wrote those sections I went into the studio and cut and pasted his guitar parts into the layout of the song.
No one really knows this, until now; I copied George’s guitar tones and then would play the bridge I had written and drop it into the layout. I would piece it all together to make it work and flow into the song. It ended up working.
It took me a solid week of 8-10 hour days to complete. Then we mastered it, went to my house to do the vocals and sent it to George for solos and the tasteful nuances within it. Once that was all done, we mixed it.
I didn’t put down much guitar, maybe a solid rhythm on some stuff, while on other songs I didn’t touch, like “Only to Rise.” That’s a signature George song, it wouldn’t be right for me to mess with that.
But songs like “The Wish,” “Strengthen in Numbers,” and “Love Stays” I had some leeway. George’s playing is always there.
Then Brian and James came out and I basically let them do what they felt for each song. There were times they would ask if a part was too much and I would say “No more, cut loose and go for it” and they did.
We would listen to the song, and then they would go to the room and track together. In 75 minutes we would have the drums and bass parts for each song. We did four songs a day and then would grab a nice dinner. We completed twelve songs in three days. They came to the table every bit as George and I. The CD shines due to their energy.
Robert: Is it easier to create a CD the way you described or get everyone in a room at the same time for the entire process?
Michael Sweet: I don’t know if there is an easier process. I’m major OCD and ADHD and it applies to the way I write and make records. I obsess over everything, so it’s never an easy process for me. Everyone else is always saying it’s done and sounds great, but I’m always the guy coming in the room saying, “Let me hear that again.” [Laughing]
Robert: When you play live, will you be playing guitar with George?
Michael Sweet: I’ll be playing guitar, I won’t be soloing as George will get the spotlight on that.
George Lynch is one of the best players ever! I’ll possibly do some harmonies and most of the rhythm parts.
Robert: Do the songs lend themselves to singing and playing simultaneously?
Michael Sweet: Most do, some don’t like “Only to Rise.” That will be George playing and me running around doing the frontman thing.
Robert: Can you tell us when tour dates will be released?
Michael Sweet: I hope we get some this year. The tricky part is aligning everybody’s schedules, which seem to be almost an impossible task. But we are trying hard to pull it together. I would love to see 16 dates hitting NYC, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Maybe a few overseas dates, as well. I think it would be cool to do something because the fans want to see it live.
Robert: The songs have a lot of energy and excitement which would translate well in a live setting.
Michael Sweet: Also taking it a step further, to do a second CD with these guys. I think this one surprised us by the response and success. Because of that I would love to do another CD.
Robert: Every time I listen to the CD I find a new song that I love, right now, my new favorites are “Strength in Number” and “Only to Rise.” What can you tell me about them?
Michael Sweet: “Strength in Number” was one of the riffs that I came up with. We were lacking a few songs and George was busy. I was playing around with that riff at home and thought it would be pretty cool to add on this CD. I sent the idea to George and he added his flair and it turned into a really cool song. I hear a little Def Leppard and Led Zeppelin in it. It’s an interesting song with a unique vibe. Sonically, I think it is one of the best and a favorite of mine.
Robert: A hidden gem on the CD is the last track “Only to Rise” which has a Van Halen vibe off of 1984. Tell me about it and why it was used as the title, but the last track on the CD?
Michael Sweet: When George sent me the riff and called me to ask what I thought, we both felt the same about it. It had a “Hot for Teacher” or “Light up the Sky” vibe to it. We didn’t do a lot of guitar or vocal over dubs, we wanted to keep it simple, as it has a live feeling to it.
It was last because it felt right within the sequence of the songs. We tried it as the first track and in the middle and it didn’t feel right. When you are listening to the CD to see how one song flows into the other, it flowed best where it is. It is a little odd but it sits nice.
Robert: With radio stations not playing new rock and no real video music channels to speak of, is it frustrating as a musician to put on an amazing CD like this and then struggle to have it be heard?
Michael Sweet: Yeah, I get a bad rap of being so honest about things that I come across as being arrogant or cocky, but it’s not the case. If people hung out with me for a day they would see that it’s more about being confident.
The point I’m trying to make is that we are making the best music in my career. I’m not afraid to say that. No More Hell to Pay, was the best Stryper CD of our career. Some would disagree which is fine, but I do think that if it came out in 1988 it would have outsold To Hell with the Devil.
Same with Only to Rise, had it came out in 1988 to 1990 I think it would be a hit CD. It could have gone gold or platinum!
But in today’s music world, it’s lost because of the over saturation of music with so many bands. Back in the ’80s there were a few hundred bands and now there are 10,000. I’m not speaking against that, music is an art and we all have that right to expression.
It is sad that the bands that were very successful and rose to the top have to really fight hard to make it back to the top with their music these days. Back in the ’80s music lasted; they wouldn’t fall off the charts after the first week. One week and they are done. Your first week out is “THE” week, after that goodbye. It’s disheartening.
I sometimes get let down as a fan when I buy a CD and there are only two or three spectacular songs and the rest is filler. After we signed our record deal I always said there is not going to be any filler, but yeah, there is sometimes.
I always make it my goal for no filler, every song has to stand on its own and every song has to be great or otherwise it’s not going on the CD. That’s just my mentality and I’m surprised that some bands don’t think that way. Anything I do, whether with Sweet & Lynch or Stryper or my solo CD, I go out of my way to make sure every song is a good song.
Robert: What’s your take on the Grammy’s overlooking rock and heavy metal?
Michael Sweet: It’s really crazy. I’m a fan of all types of good music. When I hear a song I don’t care if it’s R&B, country or whatever. If it’s a good song, it’s a good song. You have to recognize and respect it regardless of what type of music it is. I think rock is the best music and involves the best players and song writing. I may be opinioned here [Laughing]. I’m sure people will be reading this going, “What an arrogant jerk!” But, I think I’m right and a lot of people would agree with me.
The sad thing is that rock is so overlooked these days. We have to figure a way out of this fast, to get it back on top again. As long as bands keep making CDs that are better than their last, then fans will come around again. Unfortunately, there are a lot of good bands that are putting out crap. You A/B it to their glory days and it doesn’t compare. That’s a big part of the problem, maybe they stopped caring. Put a little more into it lose the pride and the ego in thinking you can still write hit songs.
You can work with co-writers or figure out how to put something out that rivals the old days. Fans will come back and radio will play good music. Maybe I’m dreaming, but think it is as simple as that. If you make a great CD, they will come!
Robert: Speaking of making quality CDs, give us an update of the status of the Stryper CD.
Michael Sweet: It will be reminiscent of No More Hell to Pay; I hear flavors of that as well as songs that sound similar to it. We pushed the envelope and it is going to blow people away. We have a six minute song with four different tempos changes. It has a section like Priest, Maiden, and Metallica. We are doing stuff that is experimental, but at the same time we are not going off path.
Robert: I want to end the interview with a funny question. Did you ever consider using you first names for the band versus last names?
Michael Sweet: [Laughing] We should have gone with George Michael, it would have been cool. I don’t think we could have been sued because that’s our real names [Laughing].
We went back and forth on the names, Lynch & Sweet, Sweet & Lynch. The label seemed to like Sweet & Lynch. George and I didn’t like it, as we didn’t want to use our names. We considered Only to Rise as a name. The label wasn’t as excited for that and pushed hard for Sweet & Lynch. We didn’t want to ruffle feathers and [wanted to] make the label feel involved.
U.K. rockers Young Guns have an impending album called Ones and Zeroes coming out June 8, but the band recently offered a taste of the new music with a stream of the track “Speaking in Tongues.”
Get your Young Guns fix after the jump.
NPR recently talked about the venerable Fender Stratocaster in Weapon of Choice: Why the Stratocaster Survives:
The Fender Stratocaster turned 60 last year. When it came out of the factory in 1954, it didn’t sound — or look — like any other guitar. Leo Fender’s small company was looking to improve the Telecaster, its groundbreaking solid-body electric, first introduced three years earlier. But far more than a tweak here or there, Fender created an entirely new instrument that’s become almost synonymous with the phrase “electric guitar.”
It really is amazing how much the Stratocaster changed the landscape of guitars in the 50s and 60s. It’s hard to imagine a modern electric guitar without the legacy of the Stratocaster paving the way.
I can certainly appreciate and enjoy the simplicity of the Telecaster, but for me the Stratocaster will always be my primary musical weapon of choice. I’m glad Leo kept tinkering and listening to players. I think he designed the perfect guitar with the Stratocaster.
Ed Sheeran Celebrates His Birthday With 2nd Signature Edition
Martin Ambassador Ed Sheeran gave his fans a present on his 24th birthday! Ed announced his second signature edition guitar- the Ed Sheeran X Signature Edition. Ed will be donating 100% of his proceeds to EACH. To learn more about the model, click here.
ACM Finalist Thomas Rhett!
Congratulations to Martin Ambassador Thomas Rhett! He is an ACM New Artist of the Year finalist. The final round of fan voting will begin on April 8th at 3PM. To learn more, click here.
Colbie Caillat On Guitar Center Cover
Martin Ambassador Colbie Caillat is on the cover of the February issue of the Guitar Center Catalog. You can find Colbie's exclusive interview with Guitar Center here.
Cody Simpson Performs "Driftwood"
Martin Ambassador Cody Simpson posted a live acoustic version of his single "Driftwood" to his YouTube page last week. You can watch the performance here.
Every year since moving to the new factory in 2011 Suhr have held a party at the same time as Winter NAMM with live performances from Suhr artists such as Pete Thorn and Ian Thornley and this year saw the return of my fellow Sydneysider James Norbert Ivanyi who has recently released a stunnning second solo album ‘The Matter Circumvention‘ and Andy Wood who recently released his second solo album ‘Caught Between The Truth And A Lie’. Both guitarists are incredibly versatile in different ways, James with his progressive Metal roots and Andy with his bluegrass roots. As a bonus, accompanying Andy on a fetching green drip finish Suhr was none other than Ben Eller, guitarist, teacher and general entertainer with an excellent and hilarious series on YouTube called ‘This is why you suck at guitar’ which you can check out here – https://www.youtube.com/user/BenEllerGuitars.
Above is a video featuring James Norbert Ivanyi playing the track ‘Thumb Trick’ from his latest album. Below is Andy Wood and Ben Eller below playing “Got a light”:
The post Suhr Factory Party 2015 Videos with James Ivanyi, Andy Wood & Ben Eller appeared first on Guitar Noize.
One of my favourite recent albums is Marilyn Manson’s The Pale Emperor (and you can read my review of it in Beat magazine here). Manson seems to have been creatively reinvigorated by new collaborator Tyler Bates, composer for the films 300 and Guardians Of The Galaxy among other things. The Pale Emperor takes Manson into some dark places that seem more personal and raw than anything he’s done before. And Manson’s set at the Melbourne leg of the Soundwave festival was informed by this new approach. With Bates as band leader given free reign to choose his own drummer (Gil Yaron) and second guitarist (Paul Wiley) and with Twiggy Ramirez on bass, Manson’s old material has been recast with hints and hues from the Pale Emperor material. While nobody can guess how long Manson will follow this particular musical path, I hope he stays in this zone for a while and explores what this band can do.
All photos copyright Peter Hodgson, 2015.
Sheptone Pickups are builders of vintage and boutique electric guitar pickups and they have just unveiled the Alnico Blues single coil pickups. There are some samples of these new pickups in action on the Sheptone website and they sound great.
“Based on their very popular AB Custom Stratocaster pickups, the Alnico Blues set is for players wanting a fuller, less aggressive pickup with all of the tone and character of their popular AB Customs. The Alnico’s are wound in the late 60’s spec range using 42 enamel wire, beveled Alnico 2 magnets, and are available in vintage, modern, and flat stagger versions. With an average DCR in the mid 6K range, and each pickup wound for its specific position, this set is a great choice for maple necks or those wanting a brighter sounding guitar.”
To learn more about Sheptone and the new Alnico Blues pickups, please visit www.sheptone.com.
Retail: $160 USD per set of three or $60 USD each.
Wampler Pedals unveiled the Plexi-Drive Deluxe at this year’s NAMM show, and the pedal is being officially released this week on February 27. This new pedal is an updated version of Wampler’s Plexi-Drive and features a three-band EQ and a foot-switchable Tubescreamer-type boost circuit. Also added is a bright switch for customizing the tone for your specific amplifier.
Here is demo-master Mike Hermans demoing the pedal:
I’m a big fan of Wampler pedals, and I think this will likely be the next addition to my pedalboard. You can purchase the pedal directly from Wampler or from your favorite boutique pedal retailer.
In the early 1990s I lived in a very rural part of Canada. With a lot of lakes, trees, and wildlife its hard to complain. However, it seems I missed out on a lot of things that were going on in the guitar world.
Take this Heartfield RR-58 for example. Drawing influences from all over the place these guitars were the product of a joint company created by the American and Japanese branches of Fender.
I love the TV yellow-ish colour and the simple layout. Nice setneck design and a pushbutton 10db boost with l.e.d. indicator.
Apparently they made a version in green as well, thus piquing my interest even more so.
© 2015, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.