Remember when you were a kid and you waited half an hour in line at the mall to sit in some strange bearded man’s lap and told him all your secret desires? Well, you all are going to be the bearded man to my secret desires. That’s weird. Let’s move on and forget that happened.
What do you want for Christmas? I want a pony but that has little to do with a guitar blog, so here are the top three things off my guitar related wish list.
Eddie is probably the most influential guitar player in rockabilly and he had exacting desires when it came to his guitar. He made the big orange Gretch the rockabilly guitar and famously swapped the Dynasonic single coil pickup in the neck position with a Gibson P90 for a unique sound that set him apart. A couple years ago, Gretch released the Eddie Cochran Tribute model, which was ‘reliced’ to be an exact copy of Eddie’s guitar down to the scratches and pole-piece positioning. It also sported a $10,000 MSRP price tag. I chose to put the Signature model on my list for three reasons: First, it has a $3,800 MSRP ($2,000 street) price, which is still way out of my budget but is not unheard of. Second, it isn’t pre-aged which means every scratch and ding will be mine, a piece of the story I make with the guitar. Third, the Tribute model has a fixed-arm Bigsby vibrato, which is cool in that it is what Eddie used, but it isn’t very practical. The Signature model has an arm that swivels out of the way if needed.
Ok, so I’m a bit of a Gretsch fanboy. I realize this and acknowledge that it is a personality flaw, but I prefer to think of it as a quirk that I know what I like and I stick with it. Anyway, the Gretsch Playboy amp is one of two or three amps that were in Gretsch’s product catalog a couple years ago. It was the little brother of the bunch at 15 watts, but that is more than enough power for anything I do musically these days. It’s a pretty straight forward amp with a single channel and a tremolo, my favorite setup on an amp. The simplicity of the circuit is highlighted even more by the fact that these amps were hand made by Victoria Amps, a boutique amp manufacturer that focuses on vintage circuits and highest quality. Plus, it has a really cool looking cabinet.
3. The Nocturne Brain Atomic Brain preamp pedal
Tavo is a really cool guy who makes really cool pedals with specific goals in mind. When he developed the Brain Seltzer pedal, he based it on the preamp circuit of the Roland RE-301 Space Echo to be used before a delay and add the slight edge to the sound. The Atomic Brain takes that edge and takes it even further, adding a fair amount of grit and overdrive. The Abby switch is a boost which adds volume and even more overdrive. It seems like a cool ‘always on’ kind of effect that can add just a touch of character to the guitar’s tone. Tavo also does limited runs of various hot-rod colors ranging from iridescent neon greens to sparkle blues.
Bonus Stocking Stuffer: Hufschmid Guitars Acrylic Dark Drop Pick
$30 for a pick? Seriously? Yep. I found out about these guys during my last bout of obsession with metal music. I like my picks to be pretty thick for better control and these are definitely thick. Hand carved in Switzerland, the shape is supposed to increase comfort and decrease hand fatigue while playing. I also think they look cool.
Now that you’ve seen what I want, what’s on your list? A tweed Bassman? A hand carved archtop? Maybe even one of the Fromel Electronics pedals we make here in the store? Tell us all about it!