Fender Stratocaster and Routemaster bus 60th anniversay collaboration

Routemaster themed Stratocaster

Routemaster themed Stratocaster

Fender and Transport for London are celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Stratocaster guitar and London’s famous Routemaster bus. The two companies are partnering on a bus emblazoned with Stratocaster imagery, which will serve London’s 24 bus route, and 25 limited edition Stratocaster guitars, which incorporate key design features of the iconic double-decker.
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Suhr Shiba Drive Reloaded: review

Suhr Shiba Drive Reloaded

Suhr Shiba Drive Reloaded (click for larger image)

In 2009, Suhr released the Shiba Drive. My son recently bought the “reloaded” version, which is an update to the original pedal, tweaked to create something more amp-like, with a tighter low-end, focused mids and 50% more gain than the original Shiba Drive. The Reloaded version is a great overdrive pedal for players of Blues, Jazz and Rock.
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Offset Mastery Bridge: a must for players of Jazzmaster and Jaguar guitars

Jazzmaster with Offset Bridge by Mastery

Jazzmaster with Offset Bridge by Mastery (click for larger image)

I have long been a fan of the Fender Jazzmaster. I love its quirky circuit switching, offset waist and range of tones. But I don’t own one for the simple reason that the bridge is a bit crap. Its the only weakness in an otherwise stellar guitar. Recently, however, a chance encounter led me to discover the Offset Mastery Bridge, a beautifully engineered replacement for the stock Jazzmaster bridge. All of a sudden, the acquisition of a Jazzmaster makes perfect sense.
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Gibson introduces “undercut, fret over binding” for 2014 models

Finally, after all these years, Gibson introduces undercut, fret over binding. This will be available on all 2014 models – except the Les Paul Traditional. I have never been a fan of nibbed frets, which have been a key feature of Gibson’s bound-neck guitars for generations. They present a number of problems.
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Gretsch Rancher G5034TFT: madness or genius?

Gretsch Rancher G5034TFT

Gretsch Rancher G5034TFT (click for larger image)

Just released, the Gretsch Rancher G5034TFT has got to be the most distinctive looking guitar I’ve seen in a long time. An acoustic with Fideli’Tron™ pickup and a Bigsby® B70G tailpiece with a “wire” trem arm – completely mad, but utter genius.
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Fender Custom Shop unveils Custom Collection models for 2014

1964 Closet Classic Jazzmaster

1964 Closet Classic Jazzmaster close-up (click for larger image)

The Fender Custom Shop has announced its custom collection models for 2014.
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Guitars Rebellion and Fanos in Paris

Guitars Rebellion showroom window

Guitars Rebellion showroom window (click for larger image)

I just spent a wonderful weekend in Paris with friends. We were there to attend the “Vigneron Independant”, a trade fair for indepenedent winegrowers. But while in Paris I took the opportunity to visit Guitars Rebellion, where I met CEO Vincent Beinis and played a glorious Fano JM6.
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Little Hurricane: a sonic tour de force

Little Hurricane: Anthony “Tone” Catalano and Celeste “CC” Spina

Little Hurricane: Anthony “Tone” Catalano and Celeste “CC” Spina (click for larger image)

Little Hurricane is a “dirty blues” duo from San Diego, California. Formed in 2010, the band consists of Anthony “Tone” Catalano, on lead vocals and guitar, and Celeste “C.C.” Spina, on drums and backing vocals. Their songwriting is faultless, their hooks are catchy and their sound is exquisite.
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Fender reissues lost gems: Coronado and Starcaster

Fender Coronado and Starcaster

Fender Coronado and Starcaster (click to view larger image)

Fender has reissued some of its most fabled and desirable instruments, the Starcaster and Coronado, extending the range of models that comprise the popular Modern Player series.
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Fano Alt de Facto JM6 – probably the best guitar I have never played

Fano Alt de Facto JM6 Shell Pink

Fano Alt de Facto JM6 Shell Pink (courtesy of Fano Guitars) click for larger image

The Fano JM6 is probably the best guitar I have never played. And I mustn’t play one. Not for a while anyway. Otherwise I’ll want one even more than I do now. I recently bought a Koll Jr Glide and the purchase of another boutique masterbuilt guitar so soon after the Koll would not go down well with my long-suffering wife.
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