Q – What kind of guitar gear do you recommend and what guitar gear do you use in your videos?
A – Obviously I like my guitar gear, so here are my recommendations even though there is a plethora of great gear out there. Here are the ones that I suggest to you.
Line 6 Variax 700: If I had ONE electric to own, it would be this one. This guitar can produce so many classic guitar sounds. It plays like a race car too! LOVE IT!! Check out the James Tyler version too, which is more recent and has some bells and whistles that my 700 does not have. Check it out here. THEN watch some demo vids on YouTube. 25 guitars in one!
Click Here to check out my video review on this guitar: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yqd0fRnaK8c
Gibson SJ-200: My favorite acoustic guitar to date is the Gibson SJ-200. When I first moved to Nashville, a buddy of mine had one of these and I fell in LOVE! 20 years later I had the money to get one… Pricey, but SOO nice!!
Here’s where I review my Gibson SJ-200: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjOlT95ZxeI
Kramer Baretta (preferably circa 80s version) – I first discovered this gem in a George Lynch interview where he said it was his favorite guitar. This is a REAL race car, shredder-type electric guitar. I had a candy-blue one in the 80s. You can find good ones on Ebay still. Now I play a white one that can be found here:
Fender Nashville Telecaster with B-Bender – This is a GREAT and versatile electric that produces both Telecaster AND Stratocaster tones. It also has a b-bender. Just Google it.
It’s wack! It produces “steel guitar” sounds by bending the b-string in a very peculiar way. LOVE this very heavy guitar
Gibson Dark Fire Les Paul: This is the ULTIMATE Les Paul with some crazy technology, like robot tuners that tune the guitar however you specify. WHAT? Yup! Check it here:
Gretsch Synchromatic Cutaway Archtop – I LOVE THIS GUITAR, especially for swing and old school country/western type playing. Great tone plugged in or not. I use flatwound strings on this one. I play one in this video:
and here’s where I review this guitar:
If you play swing, do yourself a favor and get this one:
Takamine Acoustic EAN10 – this is a great mid-level acoustic that sounds great plugged in or not. This is the smaller sized acoustic guitar that you see me play in most of my videos. This is the guitar that I travel with just in case the airline monkeys destroy my guitar, it won’t be my expensive Gibson. You need a good beater guitar for bonfires and traveling. This one actually plays good and sounds good. Taks are great value guitars. If you would like to hear one check this video out:
Wechter Nashville-tuned Special Elite Cutaway – “Nashville-tuned” guitar’s low E, A and D strings are tuned up one octave creating some REALLY cool tonal possibilities. This guitar plays like a dream and sounds even cooler. Price is good for this puppy. Not your first guitar to own, but good for the studio player’s arsenal:
Cordoba 25CK Concert Ukulele – This little uke stays in GREAT tune and sounds full. I had a pick-up put in mine. If you have some extra money, get this so you can play on the road or in a car. Then learn some uke from me over at my ukulele pages:
Fender Jazz Bass Deluxe – Smooth sounds. Love it. The Mexican version is half the price of the American version below. Mine is Mexican and I love it!
Tone, amps, etc.
Blackstar Soloist 60 Guitar Amp – BEST, most versatile guitar amp I have owned to date and I have owned many of the classics like Fender, Marshall, Mesa-Boogie, etc. This amplifier is obscenely loud, yet super clear on the cleans. The dirties can get any where from a Stevie Ray to Rolling Stones to Van Halen type tones. Has three channels. Try every amp, then go get this one and make your mom yell at you to “turn it down!”.
Line 6 HD500 Multi-effects processor foot pedal– the tonal possibilities on this thing are just STUPID, shut your head awesome! Seriously, with this and my Variax 700, I can get so many tones and effects I would need $30,000 of pedals and guitars to do the same. This one also has a simple looper function which I use ALL the time. I run this through my stereo receiver and the sound is insane! My whole EP, The Return was recorded exclusively with this pedal. Check out the tone samples here on itunes:
Other Guitar Stuff
Ebow Electric Bow – Instead of picking the guitar, this handheld device vibrates the strings like a bow would. Hear me use it here where I mimic bag-pipes:
I use several kinds. For acoustic and electric I use:
They both allow for variable pressure. The Shubb is nice and small and fits in my pocket. The Planet Waves has a built in tuner. Nice!
Snark Guitar Tuner
There are a lot of clip-on, vibration-type guitar tuners. This is my fav and is pretty affordable. PLAY IN TUNE!
I use medium and heavy guitar picks for more intricate electric stuff and thinner “nylon” picks for acoustic strumming.