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New Bling ... musical bling

kenny

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I've played acoustic steel string guitar since I was a embryo.
I'm now venturing into new musical genre, which calls for new gear.

The color of the light calls for an explanation.
Our house has a door with amber stained glass windows.
For about an hour the sun graces our house with a beautiful shaft of warm light.

I put the gear in this amber light.
Then in post processing I adjusted that light to be white.
This pushed the rest of the background towards blue ... giving a moonlight mood.

Gotta love new stuff and new art to pursue!



FWIW, Pic before and after post-processing.
It was intentionally underexposed because Nikon's newest sensors capture way more recoverable detail in shadows than in highlights.

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jordyonbass

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Now THAT is some bling that I can really get into, fantastic work with the pics!

Gibson is like the Rolls Royce of guitars, I got a Les Paul tattooed on me when I was 19 as it's a guitar I have always loved the look and sound of. Gibson make a fantastic axe, you've done well with your purchase Kenny :clap:
 

kenny

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Thanks Jordy. :wavey:
This is a pretty unusual and specialized interest ... for a diamond forum. :lol:

Post about your musical journey.
Pics of gear too.
 

jordyonbass

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If you haven't noticed I am the MASTER of unusual and specialized interests around here. I enjoy a combination of big game fishing, heavy metal music, mixed martial arts and gems :lol:

Here's my current gear list:

- Warwick Corvette Standard 4 string bass w/ active pups
- Warwick Rockbass Streamer 4 string bass w/ passive pups (de-fretted the bass myself)
- Warwick Rockbass Streamer 5 string bass w/ passive pup
- Epiphone Embassy 5 string bass w/ passive pup
- Stirling 5 string bass w/ active pup

- GK700RBII solid state head unit (for the growl I love)
- Ampeg V4B 215 bass speaker cab (vintage equipment that Duff Mckagan used on the first ever GnR Aussie tour, this thing is the size of a fridge lol)
- Warwick 410 300w bass speaker cab
- Fender F100H head unit
- Fender 412 guitar speaker cab
- Various pedals and stomp boxes

Once upon a time I used to gig with an American Fender P-Bass, my Warwick Corvette standard and a massive Ampeg stack but quickly learnt that having such expensive gear doesn't make you sound good and was usually a damage/theft magnet. So nowadays I record with expensive gear and take mid-range gear when I play shows at venues where there is lots of alcohol/moshing etc so that any loss or damage isn't going to hurt too badly.

As far as new gear goes, I'm currently looking at purchasing an Ibanez bass and Hartke head unit to add to the collection; I just have no idea how I will be able to fund that between doing stuff on my boat for the upcoming summer and accumulating rough gems to cab and facet at the local lapidary club :lol:

I'll try get some pics to upload here over the next few days :bigsmile:
 

Rockinruby

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That's a beautiful guitar Kenny! Very nice musical bling! :appl: The photo is amazing! I like the blend of both of your hobbies into one gorgeous picture! :clap:

Do you have photos of your other guitars?
 

Rockinruby

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Jordy, I hope you get a chance to post pics too. You do have some fantastic hobbies which I enjoy learning about! :wavey:
 

kenny

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Rockinruby|1448426590|3953889 said:
Do you have photos of your other guitars?

Do I have photos of my other guitars, you ask? :bigsmile:
Does Donald Trump's combover look silly? :lol:



I cut them in half so the pics wouldn't be so PS-tiny. :angryfire:
On the right is my Guild D55 6-string that I bought new in 1977.
On the left is a Guild F212XL 12-string that I bought used a few years ago in a thrift store.

With a mirror you can read date stamps inside the guitars, see below pic.
Imagine my surprise when I found the thrift store 12-string was born only two months after the 6-string that I carried around the world for 38 years.
It's a SIGN! :devil:
Since they were made about the same time they may share wood from the same trees.
Reunited long-lost sisters. :love: :appl:



Being Guild's top of the line dreadnought the D55 gets their most-select pieces of wood.
I bought it for the best-sounding wood, not for all the flashy bling they put on it like gold-plated tuning pegs. :roll: :knockout:

It is very odd though that the rosewood on the back does not match the rosewood on the sides.


The back is Indian Rosewood but the sides may be one of the last pieces of Brazilian Rosewood that Guild had back in 1976.

Reportedly the last guitars Guild built with back and sides of their fast-dwindling supply of Brazilian was a couple years before this.
If they had enough scrap left for sides only the D55 is the model that would get it.
They stopped importing Brazilian Rosewood long ago.
Today Brazilian (nearly impossible to acquire) adds a few thousands of dollars, or more, to the cost of a new guitar compared to Indian Rosewood.

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kenny

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If anyone here has expertise on identifying Brazilian Rosewood here's a better pic of one side.



While not a fan of flashy bling on a guitar I do love the fingerboard's inlaid abalone blocks.



Below on the right is the Guild 6-string pictured/discussed above.
On the left is one of my two Taylor Big Baby guitars.
Believe it or not the tops of both guitars in this pic are the same wood, spruce.
Notice how light new spruce is, while nearly 40 years has turned the Guild's spruce a warm golden honey color. :love:



The Guilds are too expensive to take certain places so I wanted a nice lower-cost guitar.
The Taylor Big Baby has the same string length (scale) as a full-sized guitar but the body is a bit smaller.
The sound and playability is EXTRAORDINARY!!!! for a guitar priced around $400 new.
I prefer it to any guitar I've played priced up to around $1,300.

Soon after buying my new one I spotted one on Craigslist, made in 2002, for only $150.
I called and raced over to buy it.
When I got there the woman said 3 others had called while I was on my way and they wanted it, badly.
She said I called a couple minutes after she posted the ad.
... another sign. :devil:

Most people use internally-installed pick ups to amplify acoustic guitars.
None of them sound natural to me so I got one of these cool tiny external mics that clamp on the body ... see pic below.
It's a DPA d:vote 4099G, pricey but I highly recommend it.
In two seconds you can move it to another guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, and with other clips you can use it on violins to string bass, and all woodwind instruments.

It sounds exactly like the guitar unamplified, only louder.
Since it is a super-cardioid you can control the bass, mid and treble by moving it around to find the best sound for the song and the style you're playing.
You don't even have to reach down to turn knobs on a PA.

I have other guitars I need to take pics of.

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kenny

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jordyonbass|1448423259|3953856 said:
If you haven't noticed I am the MASTER of unusual and specialized interests around here. I enjoy a combination of big game fishing, heavy metal music, mixed martial arts and gems :lol:

Here's my current gear list:

- Warwick Corvette Standard 4 string bass w/ active pups
- Warwick Rockbass Streamer 4 string bass w/ passive pups (de-fretted the bass myself)
- Warwick Rockbass Streamer 5 string bass w/ passive pup
- Epiphone Embassy 5 string bass w/ passive pup
- Stirling 5 string bass w/ active pup

- GK700RBII solid state head unit (for the growl I love)
- Ampeg V4B 215 bass speaker cab (vintage equipment that Duff Mckagan used on the first ever GnR Aussie tour, this thing is the size of a fridge lol)
- Warwick 410 300w bass speaker cab
- Fender F100H head unit
- Fender 412 guitar speaker cab
- Various pedals and stomp boxes

Once upon a time I used to gig with an American Fender P-Bass, my Warwick Corvette standard and a massive Ampeg stack but quickly learnt that having such expensive gear doesn't make you sound good and was usually a damage/theft magnet. So nowadays I record with expensive gear and take mid-range gear when I play shows at venues where there is lots of alcohol/moshing etc so that any loss or damage isn't going to hurt too badly.

As far as new gear goes, I'm currently looking at purchasing an Ibanez bass and Hartke head unit to add to the collection; I just have no idea how I will be able to fund that between doing stuff on my boat for the upcoming summer and accumulating rough gems to cab and facet at the local lapidary club :lol:

I'll try get some pics to upload here over the next few days :bigsmile:

Jordy, I've looked up some of your gear.
Very cool!
I don't know much about bass.
While I've played acoustic over 50 years I've only been playing electric guitar less than 1.
Totally different instrument!!!!!

I'm looking forward to pics and your stories about your gear and playing.

I know the notes on a 4-string bass are E A D G, but what is the other note on a 5-string?
 

jordyonbass

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Hey Kenny :wavey:

On a 5 string it's a low B, gives that gut-rumbling sound. Sometimes I would tune it down to Drop A which is an even lower note again but that usually resulted in bar staff screaming as the vibration sent glasses vibrating off tables and racks :lol:

Bass is quite similar to guitar as far as tuning but the cool thing I like about it is that there are so many approaches that can be taken. For example my favourite bassist took classical and funk style bass and brought it into a nu-metal band. My approach with metal is to pitch down guitar parts and lock in with the drums, maybe add some flavour to the song. But when in cover bands or acoustic ensembles I will ride the root note of a guitar chord and then play a run of some form to accent changes, kind of like a chord on piano being played by guitar and then the harmony is the bass. Oh and the variety of sounds that a bass can make via varying playing styles and digital effects is crazy. It's a very versatile instrument.

Here's my weapons of mass destruction :devil:

20151125_193133.jpg
 

kenny

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My guitar asked, "Does this amp make my @ss look fat?



The Tone King Imperial Mark II is what they call a boutique amp, hand made in America.
Had to pay for it and wait months for them to make it.
It has that clear, vintage, shimmering, chimney sound of those holy-grail early 1960s "Black Face" Fender amps, only better. :naughty: :love:
Black face is not a racist term here; it refers to a time period when Fender amps had black control panels. In later years they were changed to silver.



The Gibson is one of a limited-edition run of 500 meticulous reissues of a particularly-fine 1961 ES-335 model.
It sounds heavenly.
The actual original 1961s cost well into the 6-figures so this (2014-made 1961-reissue) was a bargain.

Les Pauls (I still have to take pics of mine) are solid wood so the notes can sustain forever, but these 335s are semi-hollow with a solid block of hard maple running down the middle of the body.
This gives them a warm round tone with some tonal qualities of an acoustic, but also with some of the tonal characteristics of Les Pauls.

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kenny

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jordyonbass|1448441186|3953947 said:
On a 5 string it's a low B, gives that gut-rumbling sound. Sometimes I would tune it down to Drop A which is an even lower note again but that usually resulted in bar staff screaming as the vibration sent glasses vibrating off tables and racks :lol:

Awesome!
Knocking glasses over from across the room sounds like fun. :Up_to_something:

I was going to ask what they hail you need so many basses for, but then I counted my guitars. :oops:
You'd probably respond, "I need them to cover all the bases."
How many basses do you bring to a gig?

That's quite a collection ... do you also have/play a 6-string guitar?
 

jordyonbass

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Thanks mate! I've had so many basses over the years that have come and gone, some I miss and others I don't. Those are my current 5 but the one on the far right with the light coloured wood has been with me the longest and is my go-to bass for everything because it's versatile. To be honest each instrument is so individual that they present their pros and cons, the active basses are more rock/metal while the passive are best for acoustic work (although I have used them in opposite). So you're right, I have got all 'bases" covered!

I have had electrics and acoustics in the past to write guitar parts but I don't have one at the moment. I'm not in any bands currently as I'm concentrating on learning how to cut gems and going fishing as much as I can. There's only so many hours in a week and I'm already working more than 40 of them! :lol:
 

jordyonbass

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And WOW!!! The specs on that Gibson are amazing, that would be such a beautiful sounding guitar. I'd love to jam some blues riffs out on it through a tube amp. It would be like heaven!!
 

jordyonbass

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Oh and I generally take 2 basses to a gig, one as my primary and one as a backup in case the primary decides to break a string or stop working. I've had to go to my back up bass once but that was only because a rabid mosh pit in front of the stage spilled over and one of the kids fell into me, knocking me over and causing my bass to stop working. Luckily it was just the jack input that was damaged but as I said the lesson was learned; no expensive gear at metal shows!
 

kenny

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Jordy, can you explain the pros and cons of active vs. passive basses?
I believe active has a battery, and passive does not ... but when/for what are each better-suited?
... or, if one is better why does the other exist?
There must be reasons.
Maybe active is always better but tradition supports demand for passive basses.

I know that tradition is the reason piano action parts are still made of wood.
Piano action parts are the moving parts that transfer the energy/movement from the key to the string.

Kawai and Mason and Hamlin's Wessell Nickel & Gross piano part-making subsidiary have proven synthetic material is superior to wood for action parts, but nearly all piano buyers are very ignorant, fearful, and blindly cling to tradition. :roll:

http://consumer.wessellnickelandgross.com/our-action-parts/materials/



Jordy, I could Google it up but want to hear your explanation of the pros and cons of active vs. passive basses ...
... Plus I'd love it if this thread grew some legs.

Let's hear about everyone's musical instruments and their stories about playing, lessons, performing, details about your instrument ... the good and the bad ... preferably with pics.

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kenny

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I know we have a few piano owners here.
Here's a 3-minute video about wood vs. composite piano action parts.
Clearly it's an ad, but that does not mean the info presented is without merit.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_BRvtUGDHJ8
 

jordyonbass

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Passive basses came on the market first, all the stuff through the 60's and early 70's was recorded on passive basses. I cannot recall when active basses came out but the main difference between the two is the control that can be had over the active basses register. Passive basses only have pickup volume and overall-tone pots which do not control the bass or treble so ability to have the bass' sound sculpted before amplification is limited. This is not necessarily a bad thing as a certain sound can usually be achieved easily without too much fiddling around with the knobs, so if you love the tone of a particular bass you know it won't deviate much.
So obviously in the reverse the active bass is sonically more versatile but may require very specific adjustments to get a certain sound. This is probably bassist-OCD that many other people don't hear though :lol:

In an active vs. passive audio comparison, I'd say the active bass has a brighter, punchy and clear sound while a passive bass is more a warm, full sounding instrument. But it's not a rule, I have a very aggressive style and can make a passive bass sound more like an active bass than some bassists who actually play an active bass.

A lot of it really does come down to personal preference, with some instrument makers doing basses with active/passive switching so the one instrument can be even more versatile. There's really no set rule as to which is better
 

jordyonbass

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Thought I might share these pics, these are custom built guitars that belong to a former bandmate of mine. They're quite confronting visually but they suit the hard rock/metal scene well. On a pure artistic level they're beautiful. The attention to detail and the hand carved bodies are just amazing, ignore the brand in one of the pics as it was the best one he had of the guitar. Great sound for heavy metal but not so great for...well, anything else :lol:

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Rockdiamond

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kenny|1448406447|3953742 said:
I've played acoustic steel string guitar since I was a embryo.
I'm now venturing into new musical genre, which calls for new gear.

The color of the light calls for an explanation.
Our house has a door with amber stained glass windows.
For about an hour the sun graces our house with a beautiful shaft of warm light.

I put the gear in this amber light.
Then in post processing I adjusted that light to be white.
This pushed the rest of the background towards blue ... giving a moonlight mood.

Gotta love new stuff and new art to pursue!



FWIW, Pic before and after post-processing.
It was intentionally underexposed because Nikon's newest sensors capture way more recoverable detail in shadows than in highlights.
DOT MARKER 335!!!!

TONE MEISTER!!!!!!
Anytime you see someone like Warren Haynes or John Herrington pick up the 335 you know it's going to be very special.
To those in the know, the dots on the fretboard are so special.
Later Gibson used trapezoidal fret markers- but they also changed the pickups and other aspects that lessened the tonal superiority of the dot marker guitars.

Very very nice Kenny.
 

kenny

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Gosh, thanks RD.
Yeah, this gear is pretty geeky and specialized.
It's surprising to find someone on a diamond forum who knows about it.
Gibson has really risen from the ashes recently.
Their reissue ES-335s (Warren Haynes, Eric Clapton, Larry Carlton etc.) are very very very nice and a killer bargain compared to the $25,000+ you'd pay for an original 1961 in fine condition.
Even after paying 25Gs you have to worry about 50 year old electronics and crushed wood cells at the neck joint necessitating a $1,200 neck reset and fret job. :knockout:

I just posted much of this in the other thread. :oops:
After posting in that thread I searched for this one to link to ask if you would ... post your guitars and musical experience. :appl: Then, I noticed your post here. :sun:
 

kenny

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jordyonbass|1448541607|3954376 said:
Thought I might share these pics, these are custom built guitars that belong to a former bandmate of mine. They're quite confronting visually but they suit the hard rock/metal scene well. On a pure artistic level they're beautiful. The attention to detail and the hand carved bodies are just amazing, ignore the brand in one of the pics as it was the best one he had of the guitar. Great sound for heavy metal but not so great for...well, anything else :lol:

Wow Jordy!
Was this guitar body carved out of stone? :o :o :o
If so that must have killer sustain!

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jordyonbass

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Sure looks like stone, maybe it will turn into petrified wood one day and I can polish it at the lapidary club :lol:

Out of the 2 guitars he owns that I posted, the natural wood finish guitar is far more comfortable to play as it's balance was more refined. But that other one is a work of art; nothing turns heads like a flying Vee with pentagrams, inverted crosses and she-demons being slaughtered, all hand-carved into the guitar and then painted :lol:
 

Rockdiamond

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kenny|1449190993|3957153 said:
Gosh, thanks RD.
Yeah, this gear is pretty geeky and specialized.
It's surprising to find someone on a diamond forum who knows about it.
Gibson has really risen from the ashes recently.
Their reissue ES-335s (Warren Haynes, Eric Clapton, Larry Carlton etc.) are very very very nice and a killer bargain compared to the $25,000+ you'd pay for an original 1961 in fine condition.
Even after paying 25Gs you have to worry about 50 year old electronics and crushed wood cells at the neck joint necessitating a $1,200 neck reset and fret job. :knockout:

I just posted much of this in the other thread. :oops:
After posting in that thread I searched for this one to link to ask if you would ... post your guitars and musical experience. :appl: Then, I noticed your post here. :sun:
Wow, this is a super perfect time to have fun!!!
Thank you for asking Kenny.
I have been collecting/trading guitars since I was a kid.
Truth is, I only got into the diamond business so I could buy more guitars:)
That was 1000% true of the 18yo me- and that urge has never subsided.
dave73.jpg
That's me at 18- playing a 1961 Les Paul Standard, played through a 1973 Marshall 100. What a sound.
It irks me when uniformed folks call it an SG.
Yes, it looks very much like the guitar Gibson introduced in 1964, but it the LP was a different animal.
I had two different LP Standards back then as well as two 61 LP customs. All at different times- I would constantly buy and sell. IN the '70's axes from the '50's were just old- they were not that hard to find, and cheaper than new guitars at the time- boy things have changed.
Here's one of the customs
61lp.jpg
Lately it's much harder for me to justify buying new guitars as I have less opportunity to play them.
But I've still got a few tasty pieces.

BTW- I have been playing guitar professionally since I was 15- a lot of rock/blues, and utility work.
In the picture I was playing with my high school band Beowulf. We did covers- Zep, Queen, Humble Pie, Stones, etc....
 

iLander

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Those are some beautiful axes, boys!! :love: :love: :appl: :appl:

For DD we bought a Les Paul Studio, which is still her go-to guitar. We also bought her a blue hollow body Gibson, similar (but not nearly as exquisite) to yours, Kenny. I'm kind of an audiophile, so listening to her learn to play on a $75 guitar simply wasn't an option around here. :lol: I love the tone of a Gibson.

She's actually pretty good, and has played (while singing) at local clubs. But she decided that it's a not a secure future, so now she's studying premed.

Gibson rules, Fender drools. :bigsmile:
 

Rockdiamond

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Just hold up there buckaroo....Fender drools???
Them's fightin' words:)

Seriously...
When you look at Eric Clapton, yes, Fender kind of killed his massive Cream tone.
But when you look at someone like James Burton, or Rory Gallagher.....now these are people that know what a Telecaster can do. The tone of a Tele is so different from an LP.....both amazing in their own ways

And there was that other fellow.....Jimi something or other who was reputedly pretty good with a Fender Strat


73-tele.jpg
This is a 1973 Fender Telecaster, Rosewood Neck, in a custom color- Sunburst.
Interesting story about this guitar.
In 1998 when I opened Rock Diamond, I also got a home PC, and discovered eBay while searching for guitars.
I fund this one, and bought it from someone right here in NYC for $1500.
I would never sell it, but if I tried to find one like it today, it would easily be $5k, and you can never really tell these days. With vintage guitars going for the prices they are, and the fact that the technology exists to produce a brand new "aged" guitar which is virtually indistinguishable from the real thing.....who knows what's out there today.

Anyway, I discovered eBay, and also had recently bought my first digital camera- which led me to thinking.....maybe I could sell a diamond on eBay.
Which has led us to be here- together!
 

jordyonbass

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I used to have an Epiphone Blackbird, the Nikki Sixx (from Motley Crue) model bass but from the low-end Epiphone range. Passive bass with no tone or volume controls, simple on/off toggle switch.

This was my best/worst bass of all time. The tone on it was absolutely beautiful and it recorded a lot of my tracks in my last band, it looked spectacular but it was the WORST balanced bass I have ever played. The neck-dive was so violent that I would have to constantly hold the neck and was very limited with what I could play due to that issue. Even a big, 6 inch wide leather strap didn't have enough friction to stop the dive. That was an easy swap for my 5 string Epiphone embassy.

I'd post a link to a video that someone uploaded from a gig I played with that bass but I don't think it's allowed here? In the meantime here's a generic pic of the model lol

blackbird.jpg
 

Rockdiamond

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jordyonbass|1448541607|3954376 said:
Thought I might share these pics, these are custom built guitars that belong to a former bandmate of mine. They're quite confronting visually but they suit the hard rock/metal scene well. On a pure artistic level they're beautiful. The attention to detail and the hand carved bodies are just amazing, ignore the brand in one of the pics as it was the best one he had of the guitar. Great sound for heavy metal but not so great for...well, anything else :lol:

WOW!!
I love the natural wood carved one for the way it looks.

Kewl bass Jordy- it's savage with no pots!!!
I was always a Fender guy.....Pbass for me......of course viv le difference!
 

Rockdiamond

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kenny|1448442250|3953952 said:
My guitar asked, "Does this amp make my @ss look fat?



The Tone King Imperial Mark II is what they call a boutique amp, hand made in America.
Had to pay for it and wait months for them to make it.
It has that clear, vintage, shimmering, chimney sound of those holy-grail early 1960s "Black Face" Fender amps, only better. :naughty: :love:
Black face is not a racist term here; it refers to a time period when Fender amps had black control panels. In later years they were changed to silver.



The Gibson is one of a limited-edition run of 500 meticulous reissues of a particularly-fine 1961 ES-335 model.
It sounds heavenly.
The actual original 1961s cost well into the 6-figures so this (2014-made 1961-reissue) was a bargain.

Les Pauls (I still have to take pics of mine) are solid wood so the notes can sustain forever, but these 335s are semi-hollow with a solid block of hard maple running down the middle of the body.
This gives them a warm round tone with some tonal qualities of an acoustic, but also with some of the tonal characteristics of Les Pauls.
I. WANT. THIS. GUITAR.

It's just so nice looking Kenny- and I'm sure it plays as good as it looks.
335's are far more likely to get more attention than LP's simply due to the more complicated construction and limited numbers.
 

kenny

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31,605
jordyonbass|1449195269|3957188 said:
... but it was the WORST balanced bass I have ever played. The neck-dive was so violent that I would have to constantly hold the neck and was very limited with what I could play due to that issue. Even a big, 6 inch wide leather strap didn't have enough friction to stop the dive.

Do what all the masculine refrigerator-sized heavy metal bass players do ... tie a huge bouquet of pink helium balloons to the E tuning gear.
 
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