The first good band I ever played in was led by Nigerian singer/saxophonist Orlando Julius Ekemode. I was an obsessive African pop fan, astonished to find myself playing afrobeat, highlife, and juju with a bunch of West African expats in Oakland, California. The crew included the great African music scholar C.K. Ladzekpo and Kwasi “Rocky” Dzidornu, [...]
Hey kids! You’re never too young to mod your guitars! Now get off my lawn.
As promised, here are a demo video and tech notes for the first phase of the Pagey Project, which recreates Jimmy Page’s original Les Paul wiring scheme. (The upcoming Phase Two will expand on the idea with even more [...]
Double the sounds available from your axe!
Man, preparing the Pagey project has been a real eye-opener! Expect some surprising results! (Hint: There’s much of interest, even for players who have zero desire to sound like Page.)
I’ll be posting the first video and tech walk-through after the weekend, but in the meantime, I [...]
Weird — back when I wrote this GP cover story, I never even noticed the Hello Kitty guitar!
Maybe it’s because of the crescendo of chatter about a Smiths reunion, but I’ve had Johnny Marr on the brain lately. (Full disclosure: I am a total, drooling fan.) I keep coming back to how deceptively [...]
Not for everybody: The sickest mongrel strat yet.
Okay, I lied.
In the previous installment of our ongoing mongrel strat series, I experimented with a version of Gibson’s oddball Vari-Tone circuit. I said it was too fussy and complex, and that I wanted to experiment with a simplified version.
So naturally, I built a [...]
Better tools than I deserve: The Stew-Mac Essential Nut Making Tool Kit
Not something I’d recommend to everyone, but…
…as part of an ongoing series on mongrel/hybrid Strats, I’ve built a new Strat from parts to house all the cool little tricks and quirks I stumbled upon during the series. (Wait till you hear [...]
True fact: While Jimmy Page is usually pictured with a Les Paul, he recorded many of Led Zeppelin's greatest tracks with Fender guitars. (Artist's conception.)
All aboard, mateys! Join our ship of fools as we sail the fiercest seas of guitar electronics: Yes, the legendary Jimmy Page wiring scheme. There will be NO QUARTER [...]
iPad: Your pathway to a more productive and better organized workspace!
It’s not as if Apple needs more free publicity, but IMHO, the iPad is the greatest workbench and rehearsal room innovation since the Mesopotamians perfected beer.*
Seriously — I find myself reaching for the thing as often as I reach for the soldering iron. [...]
Sad news: Jim Marshall of Marshall Amplification has passed away at age 88. More info here.
He was a nice guy. I once ran into him, of all places, in a elevator in Tokyo.
Move along — there's nothing to see here.
Ordinarily I wouldn’t publicize “causes” on this site, but this one has special relevance for musicians and music fans.
My pal Count, a producer/mixer who’s done work for Radiohead, DJ Shadow, New Order, the Stones, No Doubt, and many other artists, is launching an online campaign [...]