1. Guitar Style Basics: Fingerpicking Versus Plectrum

    One of the best things about the guitar is the amazing amount of variety one can coax out of the instrument. From jazz to metal, country to rock, the guitar is one of the single most versatile instruments in music. Yes, there are plenty of genres guitarists have to choose from but when it comes to playing all of this...
  2. Acoustic Pickup Types

    Acoustic Pickup Types
    If you’re serious about performing on stage with an acoustic guitar, sooner or later, simply using microphones in front of your instrument and a good PA just won’t be enough. This is where acoustic amplifications comes in – using today’s technology to send your acoustic’s sound above the surrounding noise. By taking advantage of modern gear, you can make sure that everyone of your gigs will be as trouble-free as possible. There are plenty of acoustic electric guitars out there that are built ready for the stage. Known as “stage-ready” acoustics or acoustic electric guitars, these instruments are able to convert sound waves into an electrical signal. You don’t have to buy them pre-built either as you can install pickup systems onto a normal acoustic as well. They come in a few varieties and work differently so depending on your needs, you might find that one fits the bill more than the others.     Continue reading →
  3. Full-body VS Cutaway Acoustic Guitars

    Full-body VS Cutaway Acoustic Guitars
    [caption id="attachment_2525" align="alignright" width="300"]Cutawat FENDER CD-100CE Acoustic Electric Guitar @ $299.99[/caption] You might have noticed that more and more live performers are using cutaway acoustic guitars than in the past – and to amazing results. Are they onto something? Are they “better”? The answer is actually a lot simpler than what your ears might be telling you. There are a few key differences between full-body and cutaway acoustic guitars. As for which one is “better,” it all comes down what you’re looking for in an acoustic guitar and what best fits your playing style. By taking a look at these differences, you’ll be able to decide which acoustic type is the right choice for you. Continue reading →
  4. Pedals, Floor Multi-Effects or Rack Mount?

    Pedals, Floor Multi-Effects or Rack Mount?
    [caption id="attachment_2532" align="alignright" width="300"]dirtydeed Although they can come in various shapes and sizes, most compact pedals come in a familiar rectangular form factor like the Seymour Duncan Dirty Deed Distortion shown above.[/caption] Effects are a great way to tailor your instrument’s signature tone into something quite different, pushing a guitar’s sound farther than what would normally be possible with just an amplifier. They are a great addition to a player’s arsenal of tonal tools. Do you know the differences between the three main type of effects? Today, we'll be looking at compact pedals (also commonly known as stompboxes), floor multi-effect boards and rack mount units in order to help you decide which best fits your needs. To find out more about each type of effect in regards to sound, such as distortion, delay, etc., you can check out our Effects 101 article. Continue reading →
  5. Bass Guitar Scale Lengths

    Bass Guitar Scale Lengths
    [caption id="attachment_2495" align="alignright" width="210"]AABoth Fender set the standard for the 34" long scale bass length with the release of their influential Precision (left) and Jazz (right) bass guitars.[/caption] One of the most important aspects of a bass guitar is its scale length. In the framework of guitars, bass guitars and any other string instruments, the scale length refers to the distance between the bridge and the nut, essentially the entire vibrating length of the strings as opposed to the length of the neck or fingerboard. Short scale basses are usually designated as those with a 30” length. Long scale basses on the other hand ordinarily have 34” lengths. It was actually Fender that is credited with creating the prototypical long scale length distance with the release of their immensely influential Precision Bass in 1951, followed by the Jazz Bass in 1960 along with a few other long-scale models (such as the Telecaster Bass and Jaguar Bass in 1968 and 2006, respectively). Although there are no hard and fast rules, the 34” is now pretty much universally accepted as the standard scale length of a bass. There are certainly other sizes available, such as the 32” medium scale and 35” long scale, although both are not as common as 34". Continue reading →