NEWS: Eastwood Breadwinner Tribute

Wow! I’ve heard rumours that Eastwood were hoping to reissue the Ovation Breadwinner, and it seems this is as close as they’re gonna get – the Breadwinner tribute guitar.

There are a few changes compared to the original Ovation classic (especially the headstock), but ya gotta hand it to Eastwood for making it happen. Electric Light Orchestra tribute bands, start your credit cards.
CLICK HERE to see real vintage Ovation Breadwinner guitars on eBay.

Here’s the press release.

Eastwood Guitars debuted the new Breadwinner tribute guitar at NAMM 2009 last month to much praise and excitement. The distinctive shape and unmistakable look of this classic model is a showstopper. It brings back memories of the most diverse cast of players like no other guitar, including David Cassidy, Glen Campbell, Robert Smith, Colin Newman, Wally Bryson, Steve Marriot, Tom Morello and Ace Frehley. We can’t imagine that crowd has anything else in common other than the weird and wonderful Breadwinner.

The Breadwinner is available in white or black with white pickguard. The unique form fitting solid mahogany body and 24 ¾” scale maple neck with rosewood fingerboard and 1 11/16″ nut, make this guitar one of the world’s most ergonomic designs with unsurpassed comfort and balance. The cutaway shape allows full access to the 24th fret. This is the first Eastwood model to feature Active Mini Humbuckers with a 3-way and an active on/off switch. The Breadwinner comes with a traditional custom hardtail or an optional Strat style tremolo bridge. To protect this six string 70s dream-machine, Eastwood has created a custom fit deluxe hardshell case, which will be included with the first 48 guitars (so order today).

“The Breadwinner has been one of the most requested models that fans have wanted us to recreate”, stated Mike Robinson, President of Eastwood Guitars, “and from the response at the NAMM show, it will become a very popular model for Eastwood”.

The Eastwood Breadwinner tribute guitar is in stock now and is shipping worldwide.

For more information, visit their web site at

NAMM 2009: Airline ’59 Custom Series

Whatever one’s opinion on Jack White, it can’t be denied that the popularity of The White Stripes a few years ago worked wonders in prompting Eastwood to revive Airline guitars (and for the record I dug White Stripes, so don’t mistake my flippancy for cynicism). After several years and a lot of great reviews, they’re zeroing in even closer to the ultimate modern Airline reissue.

Press release time:

Eastwood Guitars debuted their new AIRLINE® ’59 Custom Series guitars to rave reviews at NAMM 2009 earlier this month. The Airline ’59 Custom 2P and 3P are the first guitars in the new Airline Custom Series and have elevated the quality reputation of Eastwood Guitars to a whole new level.

The ’59 Custom guitars deliver many new features to the AIRLINE brand. These guitars feature a unique rubber binding which surrounds the entire body, and replicates the esthetics of the original Airline Res-O-Glas guitars. Additional cosmetic details include a striped pickguard, aluminum tone switch plate and available NOS Valco knobs. Both the ’59 Custom 2P and the ’59 Custom 3P guitars are fitted with the high output Airline Vintage Voiced Single Coil pickups. These models ship in the new Vintage Style Deluxe form-fit AIRLINE hardshell case with steel plate logo.

“It has been five years since I asked our engineering team for that rubber binding”, stated Mike Robinson, President of Eastwood Guitars, “and I can say it was definitely worth the wait. Over the past six years, our AIRLINE series has built a great reputation for playability and tone, but now we are setting a new standard in guitar esthetics with the new ’59 Custom Series”.

The Airline ’59 Custom 2P is available in red and the Airline ’59 Custom 3P comes equipped with a BIGSBY tremolo and is available in black or seafoam green. Both new models are in stock now and are shipping worldwide.

For more information, visit their web site at

NAMM 2009: Schecter 8-string

This just landed in my inbox… now THAT’S the stuff. Want!!!

The new Schecter Hellraiser C-8 has 8 strings (the lowest is tuned down to F#, but I figure that if you’re going to go that low anyway, you might as well tune it down to E so you can play octave-down power chords, Drop-D-style.
By the way, check out that ad copy: “A custom designed Hip-Shot bridge that DOES intonate…” Who could they be taking a dig at there? The only other production 8 strings I know of are the
Ibanez RG2228
, which has the genius FXEdge bridge, and the ESP/LTD Stephen Carpenter models. Hmmm…

NAMM 2009: Sparrow Von Drat

Despite my well-known geekiness for pointy shred axes and stuff, I’m not shy about admitting I love old-school axes with that Made In Japan, pawnshop-prize charm, and this is one of the charmiest I’ve seen in recent times. Sometimes you’ve just gotta put down that sleek Ibanez RG and pick up something that looks like it was drawn for a cartoon. Especially if it’s avocado green.

Man, now I want Mexican food.
Press release:

Sparrow Guitars is proud to have introduced the Von Drat surf guitar at the 2009 NAMM Show. The Von Drat is the newest addition to Sparrow’s family of retro guitars which includes the Big Daddy, Primitive, Rat Rod and Twangmaster models. The Von Drat debuted at the 2009 NAMM Show Hall D Booth #3394 in Anaheim, California from January 15-18th 2009 at the Anaheim Convention Center.

The Von Drat joins Sparrow’s Rat Rod and Twangmaster as available in the premium “Continental” line. Made in Vancouver, BC Canada, the Von Drat surf guitar features Burns Tri-Sonic pickups, Grover tuners, bone nut and Wilkinson tremolo. With an alder body, maple neck and rosewood fingerboard, the Von Drat is a 21-fret, 12″ radius, 25½” scale length guitar with the volume and tone top-hat knobs and three-way selector switch located at the lower bout for versatility and playability. The Von Drat is currently available in Tudor Black and Avocado Green, with custom pickguard.

The guitar is the namesake of Toronto, Canada-based surf outfit The Von Drats. The Von Drats were hired by Sparrow Guitars to play an event as part of the 2008 MIAC Show in Toronto, Canada and became instant favourites of Sparrow staff. From that meeting, Sparrow President Billy Bones began planning and designing what would become Sparrow’s Von Drat guitar.

For more information, visit their web site at

NAMM 2009: EMG gold and silver pickup covers

This year at NAMM EMG introduced gold and silver covers for their pickups. Previously the only time I’ve seen EMG pickups in anything other than black was on Kirk Hammett’s Les Paul. Other new goodies include a new line of pickups called the X Series, and an Alexi Laiho set which includes his favoured passive humbucker and a gain boost.

Here’s part of EMG’s review of NAMM: 

Team EMG is back from the 2009 NAMM Show and without a doubt we had a blast. The reaction to our new products was a resounding success. If you haven’t heard we are now offering high quality Chrome and Gold cover caps for our 81, 85 and 60 models which generated considerable excitement.

In addition to this new option, we also have a new line of pickups called the X series which has been highly anticipated and that we are betting will blow players minds with its increased headroom paired with the traditional EMG tone that has become iconic to musicians the world over.

The final new release is Alexi Laiho’s shredding new signature set, the ALX w/ABQ gain boost, which is composed of a signature passive HZ humbucker paired with a 3-band EQ/gain boost mounted on a push pull pot. This new set is incredibly versatile and was developed in conjunction with Alexi himself. You want his tone? This will get you that much closer!

Besides featuring EMG’s new and existing product lineup, we had some very exciting artist appearances, scheduled and unscheduled, that were just icing on the cake and made our booth THE place to be. Some of the artists hanging out included Kerry King, Alexi Laiho, Steve Lukather, Sergio Vallin, Marcus Henderson and many many others.

Read more here.

NAMM 2009: Electro-Harmonix Voice Box

I first read about this on the Twitter feed of, so make sure you go check out that very cool site.

Here’s the new Electro-Harmonix Voice Box, a combined harmonizer and vocoder. Want!!!

Take it away, press release:

The Voice Box packs a multi-functional vocal synth processor into a tough and compact chassis. Sing, and you’ll have a troupe of backup singers following you in perfect harmony. Or use the built-in vocoder to unleash classic synth-robot sounds. Diana Ross had the Supremes, Brian Wilson had the Beach Boys, Kraftwerk had The Robots. You have the Voice Box.

The harmony processor creates 2- to 4-part harmonies directly from your vocals, in the same key as your accompanying instrument. Studio-quality reverb lets you independently add depth to your dry and harmony vocals.

The focused 256-band articulate vocoder, designed by the same EMS genius who made vocoding famous, features adjustable harmonic enhancement and controllable formant shift.

Plug in your mic and your instrument, and let your new voice — or voices — be heard!

Harmonically matches any electric instrument you plug into it

Professional quality pitch shifting algorithm produces realistic harmonies

The Low & High Harmony independently produces two harmony notes: 3rd and 5th

9 accessible programmable presets

Natural GlissandoGender Bender knob allows for male/female formant modification

Built-In Mic Pre with Phantom Power & Gain Switch

Balanced XLR Line Output: Interface directly with any mixing board or A/D converter

US96DC-200BI power supply included

Read more at the Electro-Harmonix website.

While you’re there, check out this very interesting article about their Golden Throat talkbox.

CLICK HERE to see talk boxes on eBay.

CLICK HERE to buy the Danelectro Free Speech Talk Box from Musician’s Friend

CLICK HERE to buy the Dunlop Heil Talk Box from Music123

CLICK HERE to buy the Rocktron Banshee Talk Box from Music123