Let’s Talk About Stratocasters

lets-talk-about-strats

Stratocasters have been on my mind a lot lately. Part of it is that I just had my Strat set up by the wonderful Joseph ‘Soxy’ Price, who does incredible work. Part of it is that I’ve barely been able to let my Strat out of my sight ever since, because it’s just such a joy to play. And part of it is probably the new Seymour Duncan Jimi Hendrix Signature Strat Set, which I’ve got to get into my guitar ASAP. Whatever it is, I’m daydreaming about Strats a lot at the moment.  Read More …

Hurley And Fender® Present “Strat: 60 Years Of The Stratocaster”

ryanadamsmainPRESS RELEASE: Through a unique blend of artists and musicians – including Donald Edward Hardy, Brandon Boyd, Thomas Campbell, Johnny Marr and Shawn Stussy – Hurley and Fender will recognize the unparalleled heritage of the world’s most popular guitar on its 60th anniversary. Twenty American-made, hand-painted Stratocaster guitars will be auctioned off to raise money for Waves For Water, which in turn will save lives through water-based initiatives. Read More …

John Mayer Leaves Fender, Continues To Play Fender

Fender John Mayer Stratocaster

Ouch. John Mayer has parted ways with Fender in the form of a big ‘ol burn on Twitter.

 

JohnMayer
Heads up to anyone thinking about owning my signature @Fender Stratocaster, they’re no longer being made and I’m no longer a Fender artist.
14/10/2014 7:35 am
JohnMayer
I love Fender guitars and will continue to play them, but the fact is that the company as it is today isn’t the same one I started with.
14/10/2014 7:44 am

The John Mayer Signature Stratocaster is a pretty damn spectacular guitar, so if you’re interested in them you should pick one up while you still can.

Fender Expands American Standard Series

Fender American Standard Series

Hello baby.

PRESS RELEASE: Fender is proud to expand its popular American Standard series. The series, which debuted in 1986, has become the proverbial heart of the Fender brand, fusing the best of classic and contemporary features. “The Fender American Standard series is the core of the Fender lineup, the place where we combine our 60-plus years of history with modern innovations in a perfect blend of the best of yesterday and today,” said Justin Norvell, vice president of marketing at Fender. “They are handcrafted American originals, and the choice of professionals worldwide. These seven new models provide musicians with an even greater tonal palette, making the American Standard a great choice no matter what features or sounds a player is seeking. With the American Standard series, we make art in our instruments, so musicians can make their art with them in their music.” Read More …

A Bunch O’ New Fenders

fender-tele-triple-classic-player-black-2

Aah, is there anything sweeter than seeing an email in my inbox about a bunch of new Fender models? Well, maybe that day I brought home my Fender American Vintage ’62 Strat Reissue or perhaps my Squier Bass VI. But in terms of guitar-geek excitement level, there’s something primal about the Fender logo that still makes me giddy after all these years. Today they’ve announced some new Limited Edition American Standard Series guitars, new Classic Player Series models and a Special Edition Blacktop Series guitar, as well as some pretty dang sweet Custom Shop stuff. Here’s the press release: Read More …

INTERVIEW: Jimmie Vaughan

Jimmie VaughanMost biographies of Jimmie Vaughan rightfully mention his powerful yet restrained Stratocaster playing. Most also mention, of course, his brother Stevie Ray, with whom Jimmie recorded one album before SRV was taken from us. What’s perhaps slightly less prominently mentioned is that Jimmie is also a bit of a style icon: his classic band The Fabulous Thunderbirds helped to usher in a blues revival while also popularising ‘retro cool.’ The slicked back hair, the hot rods, the vintage threads – Jimmie is his own man who cuts an imposingly cool figure across the guitar landscape. So what would it be like to talk with a man who has opened for Jimi Hendrix, stood on stage with the likes of Eric Clapton and Buddy Guy, opened for Bob Dylan and pretty much summarised a whole lifestyle which is soundtracked by hot 50s Stratocasters, scented by sun-warmed leather interiors and wrapped in mid-century sunglasses? Well it turns out that although he gives off an air of the ultimate baddass, Jimmie Vaughan is a dude who’s so cool and friendly that you instantly become cool by association. And you’ll want to go and pick up your guitar.   Read More …

REVIEW: Dean Markley Helix Pure Nickel Strings

Guitar strings are a tricky thing. They can be very personal. What’s deliciously bendable for one player is too slick for another. And that’s kinda what makes string shopping so much fun. If all strings were the same, what would be the point? Dean Markley offer many kinds of string at all sorts of price points and for all sorts of applications. And their Helix Pure Nickel electric guitar strings feature an added twist every bit as cool as their revolutionary Blue Steels cryogenically treated strings. The trick to the Helix strings is that they feature a patent-pending Elliptical Winding process: the nickel core is bound up by wire that’s elliptical in shape rather than round, which means the strings feel smoother, there’s less space for gunk to intrude, and they’re easier on your frets and fingertips. Read More …

Fender American Design Experience Goes Online

I Heart GuitarOne of the absolute coolest things about my visit to Fender a few years ago was checking out the Fender American Design Experience, a section of the Fender Visitor Center in Corona, California where you could go in and select the parts to build your own personalised guitar or bass. It’s not quite Custom Shop but certainly more personal than a regular production guitar. And now Fender has taken this experience online, allowing you to configure your own Strat, Telecaster, Precision Bass or Jazz Bass from a wide range of options, then have the guitar built and sent out to you all for a pretty dang affordable price. You can make your own design from scratch or use various artist-designed models as your jumping-off point. I used the Configurator to whip up a 65-influenced Strat with Texas Special pickups and a left-handed neck. Oh and I also made a little tribute to the Frank Zappa/Jimi Hendrix Strat in its ‘pre-restored’ configuration. And a tribute to David Gilmour’s #0001 Stratocaster. And a Richie Kotzen-esque Strat. And a couple of SRV-ish ones (one with a rosewood fretboard, one with maple). And a red, humbucker-loaded vintage/modern hybrid something-or-other. And a sunburst-and-gold Telecaster. And on and on. Here they are, followed by the press release.

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