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Upgrade Your Made in Mexico Standard Telecaster [MIM Tele] to be Truly Top-Notch! (Pickups, set-up, and other secret tweaks)

Hi gang!  Sooo, this is a bit of a last minute addition.  I just finished a set of fully custom pickups for a Gibson SG-Z bass; it was a TON of R&D to get that design to actually sound good, but man-oh-man did I get there!  I was going to blog about THAT … but then in comes this fantastic video of our buddy Daniel at WGS upgrading WGS boss-man David’s MIM Tele, and … well … I just HAD to blog about it.  So cool!  First, watch this short video, then … let’s talk about Tele upgrades!   Cool, huh?  THIS is exactly why I make pickups....

What You Need To Know About Buying a Guitar On-Line : Vaughn’s Guide to Guitar Reviews

Howdy friends!  Sooo, today I was researching a couple guitars, to see if the ones I just picked up used were indeed the good buys I thought they were (An Epiphone Les Paul Plus Top PRO/FX and a Gibson Les Paul Future Tribute) .  Now, I generally go straight to reviews from places like Musicians Friend and Sweetwater to see what other buyers of a particular guitar have to say about it.  And, as is always the case, I felt that some of the buyers/reviewers just don’t understand the whole “mail-order” guitar concept.  Let’s discuss that.First, if you only...

Best Place to Buy a Guitar? Best Place to Sell a Guitar? I say: Guitar Show!

Howdy friendly guitar folks!  This past weekend I set up shop at the 4-Amigos Guitar Show in Nashville, one of Nashville’s finest annual shows.  Man, I gotta tell ya, I LOVE guitar shows! Let me tell ya why! First, it is, of course a fantastic place to see holy-grail dream guitars, like this ’59 Burst: Or, this real-deal ’57 Gold-Top! As a matter of fact, there are ALWAYS more Les Paul’s that you can shake a stick at! And acoustic players, there are always plenty of holy-grail acoustics too. Man, I LOVE seeing the cool, the weird, the wonderful, and the...

The ET10! Plus a Rundown on 10" Replacement Guitar Speaker Options

Howdy guitar slingers.  Today is one of those excellent days to be alive and playing the electric guitar.  Today is the day the awesome WGS ET10 is available to the masses!  Let’s talk about this fine lil’ filly. First, what does it sound like?  That’s fairly easy, it sounds a good bit like it’s big sibling the ET65.  Like the ET65, the ET10 has a sweet “organic” tone that’s perfect for overly sterile, clinical, or downright harsh sounding amps.  It’s not QUITE as warm as an ET65, but it’s close.  The ET10 will join the ranks of the G10C as a great all-...

Cold Weather Guitar Care and Precautions

As I pen this blog, the entire eastern half of the nation is in an icy, snowy deepfreeze.  Everywhere I look I see downed trees, and the news is full of the snow and ice-induced carnage of collapsed roofs and interstate pile-ups.  Okay, so I think we all agree that this type of weather sort of sucks … but the question every GUITAR PLAYER should be asking themselves is this: How does this affect my guitar?  Let’s talk about that!  Hint, if you want to go straight to the “what to do” check-list, feel free to skip ahead to the end. My first lesson in how sub-...

One Thing You Can Do in LESS THAN A SECOND to Improve Your Guitar Tone

Stand farther from your amp. Okay, there ya go.  If you want the VERY short version, read no “farther”.  If you want to know WHY … well then, read on! Reason #1: because your ears are not on the back of your knees.  So, a band I play with regularly rehearses in a hall that has a pair of half-stack Marshalls on one side of the stage.  Since electric guitar players are a dime-a-dozen in the Nashville area, I usually am on the far side of the room playing acoustic guitar or keys.  Guess what?  Those dang Marshall’s are WAY louder where I’m standing than where the...

1967 Gibson Melody Maker SG - Love & Historic ’57 PAF Pickups

“Big, little, short or tall, wish I could have kept them all … Lord I loved them every one”.  This is a line from a Conway Twitty hit country song in the 80s; when Conway sang this line he was speaking of ladies, but for me it would be GUITARS.  To me it’s like this … one person can look at a dog and say “that’s the ugliest dog I ever saw”, and someone else (usually the dog’s owner) will say “no, it’s the cutest dog in the world”.  When it comes to guitars, I'm always the latter, what someone else may call ugly, I call awesome.  To me, EVERY guitar is beautiful...

The Terrible Telecaster Ice-Pick

Hi gang!  This blog marks a bit of a first, as it is the first time I am officially blogging about the pickups that bear my name!  When I began making guitar pickups, I firmly believed that the best pickups ever made were in fact made from about 1952 to 1965, and my intention was to painstakingly reproduce these mid-century works of art.  Where Stratocasters and Humbuckers are concerned, I was dead-on the bull’s eye.  However, the Telecaster players were giving me something further to consider.  The Strat players were on a magic carpet ride to Nirvana with my...

Fake RickenBacker 4001 Bass

Rickenfaker? Fakenbacker? Humm, call it what you want, the bass I recently discovered in a little mom-n-pop music show was most certainly not the Rickenbacker it claimed to be! On a recent trip to a small Kentucky town not many hours out of Nashville, TN my eyes caught something not often seen in this types of music store, a cool vintage-looking Rick 4001 bass.  I took a quick look at the price and got a little excited … five hundred bucks!  Here is the bass, I handed it to my buddy Brad to snap a quick pic of my “find”. Then I decided I’d try to determine its...

Thanksgiving 2014: Is it possible to be thankful?

Thanksgiving.  Is it possible to be thankful in 2014?  I think so, let’s talk about that. I’m 5-foot, 3-inches tall and that makes me downright short by national standards.  It’s been proven time and time again that folks as short as me don’t generally get a fair shake.  Let’s take a peek at the list of “disadvantages” folks like me have: Ladies tend to see short men as less attractive.Men tend to not want to be friends with short men.Short men are less likely to be hired for a job.Short men on average earn less than a tall man for the same job.And of course,...

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