free hit
counters
Lets see your axes - Page 4 - Guitar Chat - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
Mark Blanchard

Lets see your axes

Recommended Posts

IN PRAISE OF MARK ERLEWINE:

(1) My son with his Erlewine Chiquita (we're up to five chords so far), exactly like Billy Gibbons' (

):

Chet%20and%20Chiquita.jpg

(2) Billy with an early Erlewine Automatic, circa '79:

BFG%20%26%20Automatic%20prototype.jpg

(3) Billy taking no prisoners in Germany with his red/amber flame Automatic, circa '80:

(4) A photo Mark sent me a few hours ago of my Automatic, which has f'd me up ever since because I can't stop thinking about getting my hands on it (sure would be nice if I could play as well as the axe is made!):

DeLange%20Erlewine%20Automatic%202.jpg

Same basic spec as Billy's, i.e., AAAAA-grade flame maple top with red/amber dye on mahogany, one volume, no tone control, but the one and only

personally wound me a Pearly Gates bridge pup and I mailed Mark my Silver Phoenix Billy-Bo so he could match the magical neck profile/contour/radius geometry and go with Gretsch "thumbnail" fret markers. A one of a kind axe that I'll be buried with or give to Chet, assuming he doesn't switch to accordion.

Just waiting on the custom case to be finished. The suspense is killing me.

Mark is the friggin' MAN! So great to deal with. A quiet, laser-focused professional who I think only puts out about six Automatics a year, if that...actually, I'll have to ask him how many he's made...

John--you're in Austin--take a spin over there and tell me how awesome it looks in person! Bear witness for me so that I may fantasize vicariously until arrival! Argh!!! I need to go take a cold shower...


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

I became disgusted with a certain boutique bass maker (my first instrument) who wouldn't properly fix a neck bow and buzzing on my otherwise amazing bass, so I went back to my roots, aka the Jazz Bass, and picked up a Fender Aerodyne Jazz (made in Japan). Since I prefer the P/J pickup combo anyway and the body is basswood and sculpted for lower weight, I was sold. For the money you can't beat this thing.

However, a certain 5-year old who shall remain nameless decided to "modify" the body when I wasn't paying attention. Problem is, I really dig it and can't muster the paternal wrath to scold him, so it's the first esprit Jazz Bass...

Aerodyne%20Esprit.jpg

If you need to ask what the symbol is on the lower bout then you're on your own since only the truly obsessed were given those decals and it's an exclusive club. Or should I say CLUb?


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks great! Very funky design.

I got another Strat this week, another American Standard, this one's from 1995. It's in great condition and I got it for a bargain, couldn't say no. This one has a Seymour Duncan Hotrail at the bridge and it has a selectable coil tap using the middle tone control in a push-push configuration. It's quite versatile and I'm sure I'll be gigging with it alot.

Fender_Stratocaster_USA_1995_Thum.jpg

Here's is my guitar collection so far: http://www.bluesguit...com/Guitars.htm

.

Edited by Mark B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, I've finally gone off the deep end. I wanted an unusual, but plain (in construction) Les Paul that I could put a Bigsby on with a  Vibramate, had a slim-taper 60's neck, was chambered, and would be suitable for a set of Duncan "Greenie" pups from the Custom Shop (I spoke with Maricela this morning and she's going to make me the bridge pup with green coil caps and a reversed neck pup (like Peter's) sporting green and cream coil caps. And of course the flipped neck magnet as Peter did. But also having my man Tom Nerkowski of TFN Technologies (mad scientist/genius) rig it with the option of stereo or mono/out-of-phase output, which means Maricela needs to wire the pups with 4-conductor. But ya need green caps when going for a Custom Shop "Iguana Burst" Les Paul Standard (a Standard was good enough for Peter, so it's good enough for me). Anyway, I've been so fortunate to have a select few axes enter my life this year that are absolutely off the scale, and this is the last one, which plays like hot buttered sex..

 

1-LPCSTDIB-xlarge.jpg

 

 

2-1600-LPSCSTDIB_body.jpg

3-1600-LPSCSTDIB_detail1.jpg

 

4-1600-LPSCSTDIB_detail2.jpg

5-1600-LPSCSTDIB_detail3.jpg

6-1600-LPSCSTDIB_detail4.jpg

7-1600-LPSCSTDIB_detail5.jpg

8-1600-LPSCSTDIB_detail6.jpg

9-1600-LPSCSTDIB_detail7.jpg

 

It's EASY being green!


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks wild!  So is this Les Paul a Custom shop or a Standard? 

 

I spoke to Rick Gembar about vintage guitars a while back, he wasn't to impressed when I mentioned I had an 08 Les Paul Traditional though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a Standard, but made by the Custom Shop. Which seems daft. I think the only reason is for the color, but I have to admit the fit and finish and setup are flawless, unlike a Standard off the regular production line. It actually plays better than my Supreme--so much so that I'm going to sell my Supreme.


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just bought a new guitar, a vintage 1979 Fender Stratocaster in near mint condition, it wasn't cheap.  It's payback, after completing my tax return, my bill was enough to buy a mint Esprit S350s or a Ferrari 550.  Makes me feel sick.  Anyway, this is taking my mind off it.

 

fender1979074_zpsf86a7f16.jpg

%7Boption%7Dfender1979075_zps80e5afa3.jpg

aebaydec004_zpsc4d8796d.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Need some help/advice,Have been looking after a friends guitar,something called a Godin,and when i had alook at it today i noticed it had no strings on it and the neck has bent.Do not know if it was like it when he gave it to me but if not has it gone like that because it had no strings and/or being stored in my garage.Is it valuable and can it be repaired


hindsight: the science that is never wrong

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Godins are quite nice guitars.  It's best to take a picture and show us.  If it's slightly bowed / concave, a set of strings, a few turns of the truss rod and set up should fix it.  If it's convex, the truss rod is over tightened and with no stringing it's not a good thing, it might have sustained some damage.  If the neck is completely bent the truss rod could be broken.  Show us a picture to narrow it down.

 

relief.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Godins are quite nice guitars.

 

Ditto that. They've always justifiably been regarded as boutique-level guitars. And as far as repair, believe me, any guitar can be repaired in the right hands. I always think of my late friend Michael Hedges talking about his DuBourg being repaired in this video at 8:10... 

 

 

He was understating the situation. That guitar was a complete disaster when he got it back from whoever stole it, but the guy in the Bay Area who fixed it up worked on repairing stringed classical instruments--not your typical luthier--and what he did was phenomenal. Really brought that guitar back from the dead. So if you find yourself a good local luthier I'm sure they can do the same for the Godin. Great luthiers are like magicians. I had a guy once save a rather exotic acoustic guitar of mine that had accidentally gotten dehydrated by wrapping it in three garbage bags with a cup of Earl Grey tea for a month, and voila, perfect.

 

Anyway, back to the thread topic. I'm now swimming (drowning?) in the deep end of the Guitar Acquisition Syndrome pool with my budding obsession with the Gretsch Billy-Bo Jupiter Thunderbird.

 

Billy-Bo%20Bevy.jpg

 

I just can't get enough of these things and have sold off a bunch of other axes to make way for them. You'd never know from the looks, but I swear they're the most comfortable axes I've ever played. And light as a feather from the massive chambering. The stock TV Jones PowerTron/PowerTron Plus pickups are amazing, but I'm going to vary the tone of this herd by putting a set of TV Jones HT (HiloTron) pups in the Silver Phoenix and SuperTrons in the Black & Gold. The Firebird Red stays stock and gets heavy strings for slide. The Western is my favorite and will also stay stock.

 

But today I secured a true holy grail in terms of pickups, i.e., a set of TV Jones "Dual-Coil" Humbuckers, normally only available for the G6120-CGP Chet Atkins Stereo Guitar, and will put them in the White Penguin. If you're not familiar with these pups, they're really freakish. You can choose to run them in normal mono together, or flip a switch and have signal from only the EAD strings come from the neck pickup to one 1/4" output and signal from the GBE strings via the bridge pickup out to another 1/4" jack, so you can send each set to a different amp or channel.

 

My intention is to see what I can do with the brilliant rig Daniel Lanois created for Neil Young on the

album using Neil's ultra-rare stereo White Falcon 6137 (which smartly uses a single 1/4" stereo output jack). On the opening track for example, "Walk With Me", Neil played in drop-D tuning and they ran the DAD string output to a completely dimed vintage Fender Twin and then ran that through a dbx 120A Subharmonic Synthesizer for the fattest damn tone I've ever heard. The GBE strings went to another Twin without so much gain. But all you need to do is hear the opening chord and, assuming you have decent speakers or a subwoofer, to realize how huge and varied a tone you could conjure up. At least that's what I'm going to mess with. If you've never checked out the album, they filmed the actual takes that were used, so it's more like a post-produced live concert from Lanois's house...

 


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those Gretsch's look crazy, never seen anything like those before.

 

Yesterday I bought another Les Paul, this one's a 2005 Standard Faded.  I gigged with it last night and it plays and sounds great.

 

145_zps9467e0e9.jpg

 

147_zps63fae064.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those Gretsch's look crazy, never seen anything like those before.

 

Bo Diddley designed all his own guitars and had Gretsch make him two Jupiter Thunderbirds...

 

BoDiddley2.jpg

 

...one of which he gave to Billy Gibbons who used it on the Mescalero album. Billy then went to Gretsch with his own ideas for modifications (chambering, flatter radius neck, etc.) and the result was the Billy-Bo:

 

 

But this is the standard model:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqBsFK6N4LI

 

All the others are limited editions of 16. Billy Also has John Bolin make him crazy one-off variants, of which this is my favorite:

 

billy-gibbons.jpg

 

I also have two other guitars Billy had a hand in designing with Mark Erlewine--an Automatic and a Chiquita:

 

Billy-Bo-O-Rama.jpg

 

More Bo with the two original Jupiter thunderbirds:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iu3LjImHT6g


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We now understand your choice of Evora exterior and interior colors ;-)


Kyle Kaulback

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Did you pay Custom Shop prices for it?

 I guess I'd say somewhere between regular and Custom Shop prices. I certainly didn't pay what a typical LP Custom or Supreme from the Custom Shop wold cost.

 

We now understand your choice of Evora exterior and interior colors ;-)

Funny you should mention--John Bolin's trying to figure out how to make me a Billy-Bo Pro in Burnt Orange.

 

"Chambered neck"?!...

 


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Erlewine Automatic with Gretsch Billy-Bo neck and Duncan Custom Shop Pearly Gates, wound by Maricela Juarez, one of one...

 

post-6978-0-37129000-1361585189.jpg


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nope. Brand spankin' new. Turns out Mark's only ever made about 300 of them and I'll be creating a registry site for him later this year. 

 

This one is based on Billy's "Rev. Willie G." Automatic as in this:

 

 

Same color, different pickup, and second generation headstock. And obviously different neck. I sent Mark one of my Billy-Bos to base the neck off-of and he nailed it. I think I posted a photo of Billy with the very first Automatic previously, which is even more different and pictured in his book. Here it is: 

 

BFG%20%26%20Automatic%20prototype.jpg


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Meet LOPEZ, THE HEAVY...

 

Lopez%20the%20Heavy.jpg

 

...who, in robot-like fashion, will be getting a conversion to a Coodercaster with a Lollar Supro bridge pickup, Guyatone Gold Foil neck pickup, and Super-Vee floating bridge.

 

post-6978-0-04188800-1361737071.png


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HA.... you and me too!

 

I'd been looking for a nice Les Paul for ages then I came across a website dedicated to 'V's and  went all Michael Schenker! Quite by chance a link to another Les Paul drew a blank BUT there was a rather nice Flying V sitting there...

 

I thought about the mid life crisis too but then it's a 55 year old design, a classic Gibson, played by some of the greats.

 

Pics to follow...

Edited by Stirling_Villeneuve

Currently having an illicit affair with another marque, be back in the fold one day... B-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mmmm...V.

 

Is that a reissue or a contemporary model?

 


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Moxie,

It's a worn cherry (Faded).  I picked it up at a great price.  The feel of the neck is up there with my Gibson LP 60s neck and the sound is loud (15K at the bridge on the 500T).  I'm putting nickel covers on the pickups.

 

Do you have a V?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

15k?! I didn't know Gibson ever released Vs with pickups that hot. 

 

Being a Hamer nut, I used to have an '84 Hamer V in cherryburst, but sold it ages ago, although I did just pick up a kickass '96 Hamer USA Standard on eBay:

 

Hamer%20Standard.JPG

 

Speaking of Hamer, if you want a good guitar story check this out: http://www.hamerfanclub.com/forums/topic/22800-sunburst-appreciation-thread/?p=625358  


1983 "Investor's Special Edition" Turbo Esprit (#43/50) | 2012 Evora S

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, that Hamer looks awesome! I under stand it was Hamer that got the Explorer back into fashion in the 70s.

 

I was after a Gibson Explorer Korina but couldn't find one at the right price so got the V instead.

Edited by Mark B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...