This week’s featured archtop is built for the guitarist who seeks an instrument that generates extraordinary warmth and couples that with inviting playability. Gibson Custom Shop luthiers have substituted mahogany back and sides for the usual maple on the L-4 CES, producing a bottom end that’s exceptionally round and resonant. The 175 body shape makes it a pleasure to play.
A guitar value package that includes all the the right accessories can be a great choice for beginning guitarists. They’re not only budget-friendly but also let you get started playing right out of the box. Read on to learn how to choose the right electric or acoustic guitar value pack for your music and budget.
By Barry M Rivman
The key to a long career in music is versatility, and nothing enables versatility like a music education—especially these days when a producer has to wear so many hats (unless you’re Slash, in which case just a top hat will do). With a roster of artists as diverse as his musical taste, Rick Beato is living proof that a jazz- and classically trained musician can rock with the best of them. A graduate of the prestigious New England Conservatory of Music, Rick found himself in Atlanta in the ’90s, where he formed the innovative hard-rock band, Billionaire. While recording their major-label debut, Rick became enamored with the process of recording and turned his attention to the other side of the glass.
If you play an instrument, you probably got into music for the fun of it. Whether you learned bass to start a garage band or took piano lessons as a kid, you just kept playing. Eventually, some will get serious and take their music to the next level. Sooner or later you will have to accept that part of the business of being in a band is treating it as a business. We talked to some bands who have found success in music and they shared some of their ideas on how to become (and remain) successful, where to invest your band’s budget, and where you can save money on your way to success.
Imagine veteran session guitarist Michael Landau has just handed you his well-worn and thoroughly broken-in Strat to take for a spin. That’s what you’ll experience once you take hold and start playing the Fender Custom Shop Michael Landau Signature 1968 Relic Stratocaster.
By Ara Ajizian
Harmony Central Editorial Director
I was cleaning out the dark corners at the back of my closet recently and came across an ancient relic among the cobwebs and old papers—my old four-track “portable studio.” It was massive in size and weight, with a strange rectangular insert people once called a “cassette tape.” As I studied this long-forgotten piece of recording equipment, and recalled the days of yore when I would actually use this artifact to lay down musical ideas, I took stock of just how far we’ve come in the past 20 years technologically. Thanks to the ever-decreasing size of laptop computers and the advent of mobile technology like smartphones and tablets, the “portable studio” is now truly a reality. All that’s needed is your favorite recording software and a compact interface, and you have more recording power at your fingertips than ever before. With its palm-sized profile and powerful capabilities, the Fender® SLIDE™ interface makes mobile recording as seamless as ever. As a bonus, it’s also designed to be a learning tool when used in conjunction with the included Rock Prodigy Lite app. It all adds up to an affordable, versatile and very functional tool.