July 27, 2015 in Historic Fenders

The Hellecasters 1997 Fender Signature Models

51499MQ-4RL._SL500_SY355_In 1990, two musicians sat down and talked about forming a guitar-focused instrumental music group with plenty of room to stretch out, but with serious focus and attention to melody and harmony. Soon these two guitarists – named Jerry Donahue (from Fairport Convention fame) and Will Ray (a session player from Virginia) – joined forces with The Desert Rose Band and Elton John studio/touring ace John Jorgenson, and The Hellecasters were born.

The trio of talented players named their group and together they started writing their own blend of guitar licks, riffs, and solos – in three-part harmony. Together, they quickly made a name for themselves, as plenty of gossip appeared in … Continue Reading

June 10, 2015 in Historic Fenders

Gilmour’s Strats Part 1 — #0001 White Stratocaster

tumblr_lha3he6LvS1qhzsyio1_1280The most frequently discussed guitar in Gilmour’s collection is the treasured 1954 white Stratocaster #0001, a guitar he acquired during a North American tour in 1975. The instrument is surrounded with speculation as to whether it’s authentically Fender Stratocaster #0001. Several respected guitar experts have taken a closer look at #1, and a mix of reports have indicated that the stamping of the neck and body are the same year (1954), but from different months (June and September specifically), while other reports declare that the instrument is completely original and attempt to dismiss the controversy.

The interesting history of the guitar itself goes something like this – the guitar was originally a gift from … Continue Reading

June 10, 2015 in Historic Fenders

David Gilmour’s Strats – A 3-Part Series

gilmour collage
Historically, you can find plenty of guitar legends that use a main guitar for decades, only to abruptly switch to a different guitar at another point in their career. From Eric Clapton’s “Blackie” and “Brownie” to Stevie Ray Vaughan’s “No.1” and “Lenny” – it won’t take very long for you to find an extensive group of guitarists known for wielding a specific six-string, but then they make the switch to something else, even if it’s only for a single album or tour.

Look no further than Jimi Hendrix to find a player that constantly changed his main instrument throughout his career, although he primarily reached for various late 1960’s Stratocasters. It’s … Continue Reading

May 19, 2013 in Gear Reviews

Fender Mustang Floor

Mustang FloorTake the front end, amp models and effecs models from a Mustang Amp and put them into a floor unit with an expression pedal, LCD display and 9 foot switches and you’ve got the new Mustang Floor. With a $199.99 street price ($399.99 MSRP) this bundle of goodness suits a variety of needs. Only one of which is a multi-effects unit. The Mustang Floor is also a modeling preamp with low-impedance speaker-emulated outputs for running direct to a PA system, a modeling preamp with line-level outputs for use with a power amp and speakers, a silent practice system with stereo headphone output and auxiliary input perfect for playing along with an iPod … Continue Reading

May 16, 2013 in Gear Reviews

Fender Mustang Amps V 2.0

Mustangv1-v2OK, so it’s been a couple of months since the ver. 2.0 Mustang Amps were released and it’s time we started doing some coverage of these revisions here. As a Mustang III owner, I personally, think this is one of the better low-cost Fender Amps. I mean, while we really love the tube goodness in the Super Champ SD we also find the upper level Mustangs extremely versatile to use at home, in practice, and at smaller gigs. So, what’s the ver. 2.0 Mustang got that the original model was missing?

Well, the most obvious changes, (see photos) besides newer (cheesier?) graphics, covering (v1 models had carbon fiber-looking vinyl and v2 … Continue Reading

May 15, 2013 in Gear Reviews

Fender American Vintage Series Features

Ever since the first reissues left the then new FMIC factory in 1985 Fender has spent more and more time trying to get the various “reissue” guitars and basses really right. What started as a Tele here and a Strat there is now a complete series of guitars the American Vintage Series.

Here, VP of Fender Guitars, Justin Norvell explains some of the Vintage Series features and what makes them special.

May 11, 2013 in Gear Reviews

Eric Johnson Compares his ’57 Strat to a new ’59 Reissue

You be the judge – according to Eric the new Fender American Vintage ’59 Reissue Strat sounds, feels and plays like his original 1957 Strat that’s famous for all those silky smooth EJ tones we’ve come to know over all these years. Let us know what you think via the comments below the video.

Maybe in the hands of Eric Johnson all Strats sound great? Could it be that “tone is in the hands?” But there is no doubt that the new Fender American Vintage ’59 Strat is a mighty fine example of Fender’s current crop of reissue guitars. Available everywhere for about $2,300 street price you can pick one up and do your best comparison for yourself.

Buy an American Vintage ’59 Stratocaster … Continue Reading

May 9, 2013 in Blog

Fender Custom Shop Ltd Editions, May 2013

DSC_8439Fender Custom shop just released a few of the most ornately detailed instruments its ever produced.  We’ll take a look at the Limited Jazzmaster Pro, Limited Custom Deluxe Jazzmaster, Limited La Cabronita “Luchador” Stratocaster, Limited La Cabronita “Gato Gordo” Jaguar and the Limited Relic 1955 Precision Bass.  Each Custom Shop instrument comes with its own certificate of authenticity, limited case, picks, polishing cloth, strap and a cable.

First up is the Limited Jazzmaster Pro.  It sits in the Pro Collection of the Fender Custom Shop.  It takes the best of both worlds both old and new and combines itself into a lean mean fighting machine.  It stays lean with a single … Continue Reading