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May 2014

November 2010 Staff Picks

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November 2010 Staff Picks
Hey Premier Guitar fans! This month in Staff Picks we highlight several new and old albums that are rocking our world at the moment, plus we lament the loss of special treasures now forever gone. Feel free to share yours with us in the comments below. Here’s to better long-term vision and fewer impulse buys!

Joe Coffey
— Editorial Director
What am I listening to?
James Cotton, Giant. Guitarists can learn a lot about tone and phrasing by studying the blues harp icon’s licks on this appropriately titled new album.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
An old Spanish nylon that was always lying around the house when I grew up. Maker unknown. It logged some serious noodling hours before it cracked and got chucked. I think about that guitar all the time.


Andy Ellis — Senior Editor
What am I listening to?
Justin Kalk Orchestra, Blue Sky Traffic. A ferocious Stratocaster player, badass singer, and brilliant songwriter, Kalk blows my mind with his originality.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
In 1969, I bought a new goldtop Les Paul with P-90s in Boston. My hero was Michael Bloomfield—who played a goldtop at one point—so I was stoked. In the ’70s, I traded the well-worn Paul for a ’71 Martin D-28.


Shawn Hammond — Editor in Chief
What am I listening to?
The Misfits, Misfits. It’s nearly Halloween, so ’tis the season. “London Dungeon”—the best zombie song ever—has a huge groove and remarkable fidelity (for the Misfits), and Glenn Danzig’s voice sounds phenomenal.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
Matchless Skyliner Reverb, old Bedrock amp, Hamer Vanguard Korina, Danelectro Convertible, Deluxe Reverb reissue, Maxon AD99 bucket-brigade analog delay, silverface Vibro Champ, Gibson ’67 Flying V reissue with splittable Seth Lovers . . . this is depressing!


Chris Kies — Associate Editor
What am I listening to?
Down, Diary of a Mad Band. This greatest-hits collection features two CDs and a DVD of the New Orleans group keeping things fresh and heavy with the new arrangements, extended solos, and faster tempos.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
I recently passed on a Fender Road Worn ’50s Tele. It played perfect, the neck was like butter, and it had a manageable price tag—I just didn’t pull the trigger fast enough.


Adam Moore — Senior Editor
What am I listening to?
Dylan LeBlanc, Paupers Field. This debut from the 20-year-old son of Muscle Shoals session player James LeBlanc is a remarkably mature, haunting album full of understated acoustic strumming and soulful pedal steel work.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
My first tube amp was a Fender Blues Junior, and it was a revelation to me. I sold it in college, but I’ll always have a soft spot for the amp that taught me the beauty of tube overdrive.


Steve Ouimette — Web Columnist/Gear Reviewer
What am I listening to?
Lady Gaga, The Fame Monster. Great record and great songs. Yes, a guitar guy can like killer pop—plus, the meat suit was off the charts!
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
I always wished I’d kept my first real guitar, a 1980 Gibson The SG. I replaced it with a custom guitar that sucked and that had a neck so big it set me back five years in my technique.


Robben Ford — Guest Picker
What am I listening to?
I listen to a lot of jazz, particularly Miles Davis recordings (always with a great band) and a lot of tenor players like Sonny Rollins and Wayne Shorter. Beyond that, classical music like Maurice Ravel or Aaron Copland. Lately, I have been into Robert Johnson as well.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
I sold an early-’60s Gibson Super 400 with a Florentine cutaway some years ago. That was a mistake.


Charles Saufley — Gear Editor
What am I listening to?
Bruce Langhorne, Soundtrack to the Hired Hand. Longtime Dylan associate and Greenwich Village fixture Langhorne composed this soundtrack for Peter Fonda’s 1970 western. Langhorne did it solo and on the fly, using a pre-war Martin, dulcimer, Farfisa organ, upright piano, fiddle, and tube Echoplex. A study in the power of improvisation, space, and simplicity—and a beautiful naptime companion.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
I never get rid of stuff. I just break it.


Jason Shadrick — Associate Editor
What am I listening to?
Stanton Moore, Groove Alchemy. New Orleans super-drummer Moore and his funky organ trio, with guitarist Will Bernard, serve up one of the most danceable jazz records of the year.
What piece of gear do I regret not holding onto?
When I first got an electric guitar, my uncle gave me an old Ross distortion pedal. It didn’t look like much, but it sounded dirty and that was enough for me. I ended up leaving it at a gig when I was in college.

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