August 2015 MSM Staff Gear Picks

Josh BaldridgeCollings Acoustic Guitars - D1 Custom
We're lucky to have the sort of personal relationship with Collings that allows for the store to order custom built guitars. This one is our own blend of a Select Sikta Spruce top with a few vintage inspired features including Adirondack bracing, a 1 3/4" nut and, just like our custom D1A, we've had Collings remove the tongue brace. We were lucky enough to get two of these in at once, so come by the store and have a little demo session for yourself!


Josh with our very own custom Collings D1!

Jim Baggett – Dreadnought Guitars at Mass Street
Jim couldn't pick just one this month, so we let him pick the store's entire collection of dreadnought guitars! This is the best selection we've had in stock for years, so come by and let us help find the right one for you!

Jim's picked an entire collection of classic guitars!  

Eric Mardis – Gibson Custom Shop - 2014 Limited Run Historic 1960 Heavy Aged Les Paul
I've been on the lookout for months for just this sort of 60s inspired Custom Shop Les Paul! These limited run historic guitars are straight out of the Gibson custom shop and nail that vintage vibe with every appointment.

Get that vintage look on a relatively brand new guitar!

Eric PutnamMoog Minifooger Pedal - MF Analog Delay
I love this delay. It has all the warmth you would expect from an analog delay, but with a great feature set and expression pedal options. Also its great for crazy psychedelic runaway delay sounds.


It's hard to beat some throwback analog pedal action!

Ted KritikosRode Microphones - Podcaster
I've been using this mic for my incredibly-popular Dungeons and Dragons podcast, and I've been impressed by its terrific sound quality.  Plus, the built in USB interface makes it a breeze to set up.  I also love that the headphone jack allows me to monitor my own deep, rich, baritone voice with no latency!

Rode Podcaster Mic

It's Ted's last week with us and we're certainly going to miss him!

Matt Pelsma – Rode Microphones - NTR
Ribbon microphones have always been a mystery to anyone in recording that doesn't own or work at a premier commercial studio. The Rode NTR doesn't comprise fidelity with its accessible price point. I got a chance to use this microphone a few different times in various recording environments and its versatility is its core strength. Its a fine piece of gear that needs to be positioned deliberately for ever instrument. Isolated vocals sound smooth and velvety with a richness and dimension usually only achieved with several microphones. Drums sound thick and present as an overhead, but hoping to also track that upright bass live? Forget about it. It will be boomy and washed out.  Now, track the bass separately a foot or so away from the bridge and slightly off center (maybe angled down to capture some of the "slaps" in a glancing fashion) and you will have next generation of fidelity and warmth on a bass track. It is one of the most exciting microphones for experimentation, which as studio rats, we welcome with all intrinsic curiosity that comes with attempting innovative work.


Here's a example track of Matt's work with this microphone!

Mike Horan –  Collings Acoustic Guitars - OM1AV serial# 21802
My wife and I have owned an OM1AV since 1997, and it is an amazing guitar. It has a quick response that is great for finger-picking, yet its projection is such that it has never been lost in a jam session. People are always amazed that so much volume comes from a smaller-bodied instrument. The specimen we currently have in stock is definitely cut from the same cloth----it may be the perfect all-around do-everything guitar. This guitar, along with the used Posch OM-M are easily my two favorite OMs in the store right now. Try them out!

 Collings Acoustic Guitars - OM1AV

Can't beat a personal recommendation when it's something Mike owns! 

Matt Harmon – Wren and Cuff Tall Font Russian
I've had this pedal for a year or so and just recently put it back on the board because I can't seem to get out of my 90's Grunge/Rock phase. This pedal is so much better than the original big green Muff in every way including cost. Do your self a favor and check out this pedal company.

 Wren and Cuff Tall Font Russian

Matt H. is hooked on that classic grunge Wren and Cuff sound!


Trey DurkinChuck Lee Banjos - Fretless 12" Open-Back
This banjo has a chunky but comfortable neck that feels great in hand, and the frailing scoop allows you to dig in without busting up your knuckles. Great volume with more bass, warmth, and presence than on 11". Fretless adds a unique old-timey tone, and opens a world of possibilities for your left-hand technique.

Chuck Lee Banjos - Fretless 12" Open-Back 

Trey's gone old-timey with this fretless banjo!  

Susan Willits - Gibson Banjos - 1932 TB-1 5-String Conversion (Leo Posch)
This banjo is amazing! It has that highly sought after vintage tone with a round, sweet high end and deep growling bass. You get a lot of punch with this banjo! The neck has the beautiful wreath inlay pattern with stainless steel frets and plays like a dream. It's hard to find an old Gibson banjo of this quality!

Susan's picking one of the best 5-string conversions we've seen in years!  

Thomas Hamm - Don Grosh Electric Guitars - ElectraJet Standard
Big fan of the Jazzmaster-style ElectraJets from Don Grosh. Perfect for that middle-of-the-road rock tone in all the right ways. Really stellar guitar.

Thomas, like the rest of the staff, is a big fans of Grosh's ElectraJet model!

Matt KappenmanFender - '65 Princeton Reverb Reissue - Limited Tweed Edition
This amp is everything you've grown to love about Fender's Princeton tube amps, all wrapped up in a tweed exterior. I'm a sucker for vintage reproductions of classic gear, and this one certainly fits the bill. This isn't just a marketing speak version of 'limited edition,' I talked with our Fender rep this past week and they are totally sold out. This is the last one we'll be able to get in stock!

That classic vintage look to go with your Fender tube amp! 



Staff Gear Picks

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