July 2015 MSM Staff Gear Picks
Josh Baldridge – Collings OM1 Mahogany Sunburst
This is the Mahogany topped guitar to end all Mahogany top guitars. The way that Collings voices this model allows the lows to be full and rich while taking a little brashness off the top end. Often times, new guitars of this configuration can have a thuddy low end that falls off quickly, so it is nice to play one that sustains well. It sounds like an old guitar.
Josh with what's sure to be a modern classic out of Collings!
Josh Baldridge (Part II) – Fender Robert Cray Strat
During my time in the repair shop I worked on a couple of these guitars and always appreciated how well they played and sounded for $899. The early 60's neck is my favorite Fender neck profile right now and I like having a hardtail Strat in the lineup.
Can't beat a recommendation based on Repair Shop experience!
Jim's fallen for this C10-35 which was inspired by the CJ35...which was based on Jim's J-35!
Eric Mardis – Eastman Electric Guitars - ER2 El Rey Archtop
I purchased one of these fully hollow jazz boxes in 2008 and it's been my main Jazz guitar ever since. Super versatile with round wounds, but I prefer to string this with Thomastik Flat Wounds 10-44 and keep the action fairly low. A great jazz box that plays effortlessly and has a lovely big sound through the amp. Grab a pick and switch to the bridge pickup - now you've got some twangy/surfy colors to throw into the mix. If you want to rock harder (add big distortion) at times, I would suggest the semi-hollow ER3 which has a center block.
Mardis is going back to the well for this month's pick!
Eric Mardis (Part II) – Wren and Cuff Caprid Fuzz Pedal
The ultimate Ram's Head BIG MUFF tribute. Thick distortion that is nasty, creamy, massive, beautiful, has endless sustain, and is downright awesome. Big Muff users include J Mascis, David Gilmour, Jack White, Thurston Moore, Billy Corgan, and SATAN.
- Original “3003″ style circuit board
- All carbon composition 1/2 watt “brown-tone” resistors
- Mullard “tropical fish” capacitor clipping sections
- Standard 2.1mm center negative DC jack (Boss-type)
- True hard-wire 3PDT bypass switch
- Extra heavy duty enclosure built to take a beating
- On/Off slide switch like the original units
Eric Putnam – Wren and Cuff Gold Comp
This is a really interesting comp. I could see a lot of players using this as an always on pedal. It adds just enough sustain, and character to an amp. This is not an over the top compressor, but it still has enough compression to get to a nice country chickin pickin twang. Also the gold comp can be used to push an amp into breakup. Really nice versatile pedal. Even if you are not sure if you need a compressor check this one out. You might need one!
A subtle but versatile pick, stop by the store and check out this compressor for yourself!
Ted Kritikos – Moog Sub 37 Tribute Edition Synthesizer
There's a million things to like about this synth - the presets, the filters, the quality of the build, etc. But I'll just say that, in my opinion, no matter how many knobs you twist, it's impossible to make this keyboard sound anything but awesome.
Ted with a very timely pick as our Moog Demo is coming up this weekend. Check out our Events Page for details.
Matt Pelsma – Strymon DIG Dual Digital Delay Pedal
Digital is cool. No kidding. Rack mount delays in the '80s took the clarity of the effect a huge leap forward. Think about it; up until then delays were made with big clunky machines that used tapes for the main sound source. Funky tapes that wore out or distorted hooked up to units that were heavy as all get out. Stymon not only made a delay that repeats your sound in hi-fi (24/96 mode), they modeled two vintage digital delays into the '80s adaptive delta modulation mode, and the mid-'80s 12 bit pulse code modulation mode. Wow. Ever pull out that old Nintendo or get nostalgic for the way computers used to work? Vintage digital = super cool.
That digital 80s sound available right on your pedalboard!
Mike Horan – AR603CE-15 CS
I'm really pleased to get this new model in from Eastman and have a chance to play it here in the store. It's a sporty, slightly undersized archtop with a single humbucker, capable of mellow jazz or raucous rockabilly (or both, if you're Brian Setzer). The solid top, back and sides contribute to it's excellent volume, even acoustically, and the smaller size accentuates the back's curvature in an eye-pleasing manner. Be the first kid on your block to try out this beauty.
Mike's love of Jazz guitar transcends the purely acoustic into the world of arch tops!
Trey Durkin – Eastman MD615e CS F-Style
Great tone for bluegrass, while still bringing plenty of volume. Ebony fingerboard/bridge, solid spruce top, figured maple back/sides all wrapped in a lacquer finish that adds to the professional quality of a mandolin that actually costs less than my car! Also, love the included case.
Trey's made it a habit of picking things he's interested in buying, this one he actually did! Don't worry, we one more in stock.
Thomas Hamm - Fender Deluxe Active Precision Bass Special Used
This Fender Deluxe Active P-Bass is one helluva player that's perfect for riff-driven tunes. Tack on some overdrive and even Ken Andrews (Failure/Year of the Rabbit) would be jealous.
Matt Kappenman – Collings CJ35 #22448
I've never really been into slope shouldered guitars before. After working on the demo videos Mike and I shot for our Youtube Channel the tone of this guitar really started to grow on me. Especially after listening to it for hours on end while editing...It seems more responsive than a typical dreadnaught and even excels at finger style playing. It's sort of the big brother to Jim's pick so I feel like I'm in good company choosing this one!
Spending all that time editing videos has changed Matt's tune on slope shouldered guitars!