REVIEW: Mayones Regius PRO 7

Mayones Guitars have been around for decades but in recent years they’ve really risen to prominence, partly through better distribution, partly through home high-profile players such as Periphery’s Misha Mansoor, and partly because the world is finally catching up to their extremely high quality. You can ogle photos of a Mayones online all you want but that doesn’t tell you the whole story: they feel as great as they look, and you get a definite sense of ‘Daaaaaamn that’s a high-quality guitar’ when you pick one up. Read More …

My Interview With Albare

Albare-mainI recently had a great chat with jazz guitarist Albare for Australian Guitar magazine, which you can read here. Albare is a Gibson endorser, a pioneer of Acid Jazz and a lifelong devotee of jazz. I particularly like what he had to say about improvisation: “In the Talmud it says the distance between the head and the heart is the longest in the world. So for a musician to go from the learning and the understanding back to the giving through the heart, it’s a life experience. So what goes through my head? Here’s what goes through my head: I think about my mother. I think about the sea. I think about things that calm me and take my mind away. Read More …

Jackson Custom Shop SL2H Dakota Red

SoloistCheck out this bad boy from the Jackson Custom Shop: the SL2H Dakota Red. I don’t know if it’s purposely designed to recall that cool Soloist Steve Vai used in the film Crossroads – there are a few differences here, particularly the bridge colour and the electronics layout – but they’re similar enough to make me want to pick one up and wail on Eugene’s Trick Bag. As of this writing there’s one on here, and there’s a list of dealers here. I’m not sure where the rest are hiding or if they’re already snapped up yet. I hope whoever buys them plays the hell out of them. Read More …

REVIEW: Schecter Blackjack SLS C-1

The Blackjack SLS range includes a variety of models with similar specs but across different body shapes, hardware features and string counts; the single cutaway Solo-6, the eight-string superstrat-style C-8, the Tele-like PT, the Floyd Rose-loaded V-1 FR V… they’re all unmistakably Schecter but they each offer something slightly different to each other. What unites them is that ‘SLS’ – it stands for Slim Line Series. These guitars feature a thinner arched top body measuring 45mm deep for a lighter feel. And many players swear by the tonal qualities of lighter guitars.

[geo-out country=”Australia” note=””]Buy the Schecter Blackjack SLS C-1 from Guitar Center[/geo-out] Read More …

Fender announces George Benson signature amp

Wow! George Benson has incredible taste in guitar gear, and now he’s partnered up with Fender to unveil a new signature Hot Rod Deluxe combo.



Signature amp and cab especially fine-tuned for jazz guitarist George Benson

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.  (Oct. 1, 2012) — It is with great pride that Fender announces the release of the GB Hot Rod Deluxe combo and GB Hot Rod Deluxe 112 Enclosure – two elegant performance machines designed in close collaboration with Grammy Award-winning jazz guitar virtuoso George Benson.

“When I plug my guitar through this amplifier, it gives me everything I’m looking for: punch, power and tonality,” said Benson. “The fact that Fender allowed me to design the covering and the amplifier’s looks is outstanding.”

Read More …

COOL GEAR ALERT: Schecter Blackjack SLS C-1

Yesterday a Schecter Blackjack SLS C-1 arrived to review for a guitar mag. The review won’t be published for a while but I thought I’d give you a sneak peek. It has a mahogany body with three-piece maple neck, ebony fretboard, 24 Jumbo frets, a set neck with Ultra Access carve (which looks and feels like a neck-thru), a TonePros TOM bridge with thru-body stringing, and either Seymour Duncan active Blackouts or passive Seymour Duncan Full Shred and Jazz humbuckers with coil split. It plays quite nicely and sounds great (the review model is the Full Shred/Jazz version, and it sounds very lively, chunky and articulate – I’m thinking of getting this pickup set for my Buddy Blaze 7-string prototype), and frankly… it looks cool! Check out the ‘Hell’s Gate Skull’ inlay at the 12th fret, which you can see below on the Blackjack SLS PT model.


Sweet & Lowdown screening in June

Since I Heart Guitar has such a widespread readership I don’t often post news that’s so very city-specific, but here in Melbourne the fourth annual Jazz On Film season is almost upon us at acmi (the Australian Centre for the Moving Image). This year the programme is based on the works of two artists: composer Terence Blanchard and writer/director/actor Woody Allen. Among the films selected is Sweet and Lowdown, which tells the story of fictional gypsy jazz guitarist Emmett Ray, who forever lives in the shadow of Django Reinhardt. It’s one of Allen’s lesser-known movies but it’s well worth watching (if you can stand a bit of not-quite-accurate guitar-miming from star Sean Penn, who does a pretty good job all things considered). All of the guitar solos are actually played by guitarist Howard Alden, who also coached Penn on playing the guitar for his role in the film. If you’re in Melbourne (or will be on June 8), book your tickets here. If not, you can get the film on

More info on Jazz On Film here.