Regular column at Reverb

Posted on February 11, 2019

I’m writing columns at Take a look …

The idea is to cover all manner of subjects that whirl in and around vintage and modern guitars. So, for example, I look at how some well-known and not-so-well-known models came to be the way they are, I ask why particular instruments are collectable, I rummage around to see who played what, where, when, and why, and along the way I get into a good deal of other stuff as well. I’ll detail each column here as it’s posted.

How The Jaguar Became Fender’s New Model For 1962. The birth of the high-end Fender. Click here to read the column at Reverb.

How John Lennon Ended Up In An Ad For A Guitar He Only Played Briefly. The Beatle and his Rose-Morris Rickenbacker model 1996. Click here to read all about it.

B.B. King’s Many Lucilles: A Guide to the Blues’ Most Famous Gibson. I try to work out how many Lucilles B.B. King actually played. Spoiler alert: I don’t know, exactly. Click here to see at Reverb where I ended up.

How Many Les Paul Bursts Did Gibson Really Make? A romp through what’s left of Gibson’s records (with the aid of a calculator) to attempt an answer. Click right here to join in the exercise.

Gibson’s Failed Modernist Experiment: The Origins of the Flying V. How come it was the safe, predictable Gibson company that designed and produced the most radical guitar of the 50s? Click here to read my thoughts on the matter.

Selmer: The London Music Shop Where Clapton, Page, Beck, and More Bought Their Guitars. It was the place to go in the 60s for a good guitar … or just to hang out. Click here to read more about this hipper-than-hip store.

The British Guitar Embargo: When Brits Were Banned from Buying American. A story on the import restrictions that effectively stopped UK guitarists buying new American guitars in the 50s. Click here to read it at Reverb.

A Brief History of Burns: The Classic British Guitar Brand. From Roding Valley to Rice Krispies to Black Bison: click here to read about the real thing.

Why Did Gibson Do That? 6 Questionable Guitar Choices From the Brand’s Storied Past. Six weird ‘uns from Gibson history: click here to read about them at Reverb.

Remember When Gibson Tried to Market a Hendrix Signature Strat? A shortlived plan that soon disappeared: click here to find out more at Reverb.

The Birth of the Explorer: Gibson’s Futuristic Vision at 60. How this angular guitar came to be: click here for its early-days story at Reverb.

The Early Days and Second Act of Orange Amps: A Conversation with Founder Cliff Cooper. Colourful amplifiers, from a shop in New Compton Street to international success. Click here for the story.

Roger McGuinn’s Rickenbackers: Chasing the Byrds Frontman’s Flock of Ricks. Click here to find out how Roger put the jingle-jangle in folk-rock.

Fender Goes High-End: The Origins of the Jazzmaster. How to live comfortably in the shadow of the Strat and Tele. Click here to illuminate.

The Origins of Fender Signature Guitars. Click here for my Reverb take on early scribbles from God Clapton, James Burton, and Yngwie Malmsteen. 

6 Guitars That Tried to Predict the Future—and (Mostly) Failed. Gibson’s Ultratone of the 40s, the Micro-Frets Orbiter, Veleno guitars, and more. Click here and all will be revealed. 

The Enduring Mystery of Eric Clapton’s Albert Hall 335. Did he really get it in The Yardbirds, or years later? Click here and test the ES-shape arguments. 

5 Things You Probably Don’t Know About the Gretsch Country Gentleman. Or maybe had forgotten. Click here to remind yourself at Reverb.

Finding 9 New Year’s Resolutions in Bacon’s Archives. Click here to have nine artists help you plan the best for the coming year.