Sunday, May 18, 2008

Big Guys

No, not big like me (XXLXT), big musically. Not just well known - They put out a big, far-reaching sound.

Some big guys are playing my stuff. They didn't ask for it, I kinda pushed it on them. I have felt recently that some of my builds have hit a tone spot that I was looking for personally. I felt that I needed to share some of this secret.

An opportunity came up when a nationally, well actually world-wide known group, came to town last November. I'm a big fan of theirs and wondered if they'd look over a guitar from a local builder before the show. I played my cards right and was rewarded with one of the guitarists playing my Telecaster for 5 tunes that night including the 2 encore songs. I got to hang with them after the show and discover what a neat and gracious group they were. Regular guys with the same love of music and of course the gear that we all must continue to search for as it is part of our passion with the music.

The player refused to take my custom home with him, graciously avoiding what I'm sure he thought I'd regret as an overwhelmed fan trying to be a big-shot. I had no problem either way, he was just too nice.

I had talked with the bassist first and mentioned that I had a new bass just about done that would promise the much sought after "woody tone of tones". He went along with my gear talk, his eyes somewhat sparkling with the same gearhead enthusiasm that I had, and said this to me:

"You think I need better tone?" Well, no. His was right. I loved the sound he got from his rig. A Fender Jazz bass into an Ampeg stack. It was VERY close to what I'd been searching for. I was surprised at that combo getting that sound. Maybe, he knew something I didn't? Hmmm...
Anyway he was a hoot to talk to and very nice. I hoped that I didn't offend him with the offer of possibly having a better, or at least different bass for him to try sometime.

This spring I got the opportunity to hand off the Tele and the new P-bass to their stage manager. Another giant among men and musicians. He makes the guys mentioned above sound as good as they do. It's a lot of work and he seems to have it down to a science.

He gave the instruments to the band members to demo. I started seeing them pop up on peoples' Flickr and Photobucket pages when they posted concert pics. VERY cool. I've gotten some reactions from the guitarist and I'm waiting to talk to the bassist. They are very busy touring and I'm very patient.

Hopefully I can post some of their reviews here in the near future. Just know that I'm enjoying the hell out of this. I love playing my builds and I have some of my stuff in a lot of folks hands. All of you that play my stuff - your opinions really matter, whether you're in a big famous group or playing in the garage. Thanks for your input over the past 9 years. I'm having a blast.

Thursday, May 15, 2008


"Always read something that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it."

- P.J. O' Rourke