Archive for the "NAMM" Category

Anthony Stauffer’s NAMM Recap

Speaking of NAMM, Anthony Stauffer actually went to the show and has posted a recap of the interesting things he saw there. Even though I’m lucky enough to live in a city with a thriving music industry, I’ll echo Anthony’s sentiment here:

At dinner, someone asked me “Why do you come to these shows?” My answer was simple.

Where I live, there is virtually no music industry. Nobody ‘in the industry’ comes to State College, PA. There’s nothing happening here. If I don’t come to shows like NAMM, I never get to talk, in person, with anyone who understands what it’s like to serve an international audience of guitar players.

The people at these shows are my people, and being around them inspires me do better work for all of you.

While I’d love to write about guitars full time, my day job is outside of the music industry, so it’s really fun to go to shows like NAMM to meet and speak with other people who are passionate about the same things I am.

Posted in: NAMM


NAMM 2014: Hiwatt Custom Shop Little Rigs

Hiwatt has introduced three new amps in a new series they’re calling the Custom Shop Little Rigs. There are three amps in the series right now: the Little P Rig, the Little D Rig, and the Little J Rig.

Hiwatt Signature Series Little P Rig

The Hiwatt Little P rig is based on the original CP103 amplifier used by Pete Townshend of The Who. This was the tone that sparked a new generation of guitar players in the early 1970s. The Hiwatt Little P rig comes complete with a scaled down 1×12 fane loaded cabinet and is perfect for home, studio and live use.

• 4 input
• Class A
• 20/0.5W Switchable
• EL84 + ECC83 Valve Configuration
• Hiwatt Fane 1×12 Cabinet

Hiwatt Signature Series Little D Rig

The Hiwatt Little D rig is based on the amplifier modified my Pete Cornish for David Gilmour of Pink Floyd. The Little D featured 3 inputs, normal, brilliant and linked. The linked input allowing users to blend the tone of the normal and brilliant channels. The Hiwatt Little D rig comes complete with a scaled down 1×12 fane loaded Starfinder cabinet and is perfect for home, studio and live use.

• 3 inputs Normal, Brilliant and Linked
• Class A
• 20/0.5W Switchable
• EL84 + ECC83 Valve Configuration
• Starfinder Fane 1×12 Cabinet

Hiwatt Signature Series Little J Rig

The Hiwatt Little J rig is based on the original SAP head made for Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin. The Little J features a unique circuit at which offered a more driven tone than a standard Hiwatt Custom Amp. The amplifier also has a unique, foot switchable cut circuit. The Hiwatt Little D rig comes complete with a scaled down 1×12 fane loaded Starfinder cabinet and is perfect for home, studio and live use.

• 2 inputs Normal and Brilliant
• Class A
• 20/0.5W Switchable
• EL84 + ECC83 Valve Configuration
• Hiwatt Fane 1×12 Cabinet

I’d be hard-pressed to pick between the Little D and Little J Rigs.



Posted in: Amps, NAMM

NAMM 2014: Planet Waves Guitar Dock

D’Addario/Planet Waves have introduced an interesting new product called the Guitar Dock:

Built with safety and convenience in mind, featuring an adjustable clamp, Planet Waves’ Guitar Dock is a portable, leg-free, lock-on guitar stand that turns any flat surface with an edge into a safe place to set your prized guitar. By utilizing a 360 degree rotatable neck cradle, it allows mounting at any angle, while the durable overmold protects the instrument and mounting surface.

“The Guitar Dock eliminates hassle and worry,” beams Rob Cunningham, Planet Waves Product Manager. “It’s perfect for instances where a conventional stand is not available or convenient.”

The Guitar Dock is available now and retails for $43.85.

With the Guitar Dock’s lightweight, compact, and portable capability, D’Addario continues to inspire creativity and innovate performance.

For more information, please visit

When I’m working at home, I like having a guitar within arms reach of my desk, and this looks like it’d be a great solution for that application.




Posted in: Accessories, NAMM


NAMM 2014: New Martin Models

Speaking of Martin, they have announced all of the newest 2014 models on their website. A few that stuck out to me are the CS-00S-14, the SS-000S-14, and the 000-28K Authentic 1921. Like I’ve said before, I’m a sucker for a slot head. None of these are very cheap, but they sure do look nice!





000-28K Authentic 1921


Posted in: Guitars, NAMM


NAMM 2014: Private Stock Alex Lifeson Thinline Signature Acoustic

For fans of Rush, PRS and Alex Lifeson have teamed up to create the Private Stock Alex Lifeson Thinline Signature acoustic guitar:

“During the 2013 Rush Clockwork Angels Tour, I had the opportunity to spend some time with a PRS Angelus Cutaway. It quickly became my pre-show warm up guitar, and I spent many hours in many hotel rooms lost in the gorgeous sound and tone of that beautiful instrument. I’m very happy to announce that I have collaborated with PRS to develop an Alex Lifeson Signature model based on this superlative platform. If you’re like me, you won’t be able to put it down,” Alex Lifeson.

While the craftsmanship and attention to detail are very consistent with other PRS Private Stock acoustics, this instrument embodies some new design elements that take the instrument in a unique direction. The Alex Lifeson signature PRS acoustic is slightly thinner than the company’s Angelus Cutaway and Tonare Grand and is constructed in such a way that it lends itself to louder stage volumes and the rigors of the road. The Alex Lifeson signature acoustic features a bearclaw spruce top and koa back and sides with a mahogany neck and ebony bridge, fretboard, and headstock veneer. It is adorned with Mother of Pearl and Paua “Birds in Flight” inlays and Paua purfling along the top, fretboard, and headstock veneer.


Posted in: Artist News, Guitars, NAMM


NAMM 2014: Suhr 2014 Collection

Suhr Guitars have unveiled their 2014 collection of guitars, and the theme of the guitars is “Design Inspired by Nature”. I’ve never owned or played a Suhr, but I’ve always heard great things about their guitars. The Classic T shown below looks exceptionally nice!




Posted in: Guitars, NAMM


NAMM 2014: Reverend Reeves Gabrels Spacehawk


Reeves Gabrels and Reverend Guitars have teamed up again to create the Reverend Reeves Gabrels Spacehawk signature guitar:

The second signature Reverend from The Cure guitarist Reeves Gabrels (formerly with David Bowie, Tin Machine) takes semi-hollow design to another level. The highly resonant body coupled with the revolutionary Railhammer Chisel pickups make for a versatile and uniquely responsive guitar that handles everything from woody clean to high gain mean. Unique features include: forearm contour, sealed body for controlled feedback, on-off toggle switch, custom soft-touch tremolo spring, and push-pull phase switch (in the tone control) to push the sonic boundaries. Finally, an innovative semi-hollow for cutting edge players!

I really like how Reverend keeps coming up with interesting new models, and the new Spacehawk looks pretty interesting indeed.

Posted in: Artist News, Guitars, NAMM

NAMM 2014: Martin OM-ECHF Navy Blues


Martin is releasing a new Eric Clapton signature guitar called the OM-ECHF Navy Blues:

The OM-ECHF Navy Blues is the third in a series of collaborations with Eric Clapton and Hiroshi Fujiwara. This OM edition incorporates the longer 25.4″ scale for added string tension and tonal projection. The neck and body are lacquered and polished with a striking dark navy coloration combined with East Indian rosewood back and sides and a European spruce soundboard.

That blue looks really nice.

Posted in: Guitars, NAMM

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NAMM 2014: Suhr PT-100 Signature Edition Amplifier

Suhr and Peter Thorn have been working together for a number of years, and one of the main things they’ve been working on is a new limited edition signature amp for Thorn called the Suhr PT-100 Signature Edition:

The Suhr PT-100 Signature Edition set features a 100 watt, three-channel tube amplifier head loaded with a custom “Plexi-style” output transformer, four EL-34 power tubes and six 12AX7 preamp tubes, a solid-state series/parallel effects loop, 4-button MIDI programmable footswitch and matching Birch 2 x 12 closed-back cabinet fitted with a pair of Celestion Creamback 75 H speakers.

Thorn is a well-known session musician who has worked with Chris Cornell and Melissa Etheridge among others. This new amp is a result of spending five years touring with and modifying his original signature amp. I like the look of the black carbon fiber.


Posted in: Amps, NAMM


NAMM 2014: Ibanez TSA5TVR Tube Screamer Guitar Combo Amplifier


I really dig the look of the new Ibanez TSA5TVR amp. It’s part of their Tube Screamer amp line, which includes a built-in Tube Screamer pedal in the amp.

For over 30 years the Ibanez Tube Screamer has been one of the most popular overdrive pedals in the world: a perennial favorite, famous for its warm, creamy tone and unequivocal responsiveness. Now the iconic pedal has found a new home in the TSA5TVR combo amp.

This isn’t the first time the Tube Screamer has been integrated into an amp, but it is the first time it has ever looked this cool! Decked out in cream and sea foam green vinyl, set up on console legs with a TV screen shaped speaker grill, this little amp has got style and attitude to spare. The retro-60′s vibe will look great in the office, family room, studio, or well… just about anywhere, but ultimately, it’s all about the tone and this tiny titan is packing the goods.

The TSA5TVR is an all-tube, Class-A, 5-watt combo with a genuine Tube Screamer built into the front end of the amp. Accessible by a control panel toggle switch or an IFS1G footswitch (not included) the Tube Screamer circuit is a perfect match for the 12AX7 preamp tube and the 6V6GT power tube. It’s loaded with an 8″ Jensen® C8R speaker specially tuned for Ibanez, selected for its excellent response to overdrive distortion and the built in Accutronics® Reverb delivers the smoothest spring reverb in the industry. Also features an External Speaker out, Headphone out and a direct Line out.



Posted in: Amps, NAMM