A groovy triple-pickup solidbody from Holland, by a company responsible for equipping countless aspiring rockers in 1960s Europe.
From the country known more for tulips and windmills than 6 strings, Egmond deserves some recognition for the company’s significant contribution to the guitar universe. Their electrics from the 1960s provided myriad European guitar players with a solid and affordable gateway to rock ’n’ roll.
The story of Egmond follows an arc similar to many instrument manufacturers, in that the company first started out as a music store. Uilke Egmond seemed to have a good thing going selling imported instruments at Musica, in Valkenswaard, Netherlands. After WWII came to a close, however, his three sons joined the family business and began in-house instrument production. Soon manufacturing numbers grew, and after several factory upgrades and moves, Egmond became one of the largest guitar companies in all of Europe. George Harrison and Brian May both started on Egmond acoustics. And the company’s electrics found their way into the hands of plenty of well-known guitar and bass players. Even Sir Paul McCartney.
By the mid ’60s, Egmond’s electric guitars were flooding the European market, but just sort of trickling into the American scene. It’s a shame for those of us in the U.S., because the guitars featured some interesting flair and details, such as pearloid overlays, textured vinyl coverings, and heavily nickel-plated metal parts. They were built rather well and seem to survive the years better than most counterparts.
The Sorkin Music Company in New York City was importing the full line of Egmond guitars by 1965. Looking at the catalog from that year is a true blast from the past. Like other manufacturers of the era, Egmond guitars sported some cool model names, such as Typhoon, Tempest, and Thunder (Photo 1).
The triple-pickup EG 3 Thunder—our star this month—housed “Powertone” pickups (Photo 2), which were pretty much standard fare for the Egmond lineup. Powertone was an apt title because they are hot little numbers that measure in the 8k range. I have to tell you they are the most microphonic pickups I have ever experienced. And when I say microphonic, I mean you can literally talk into the pickups and hear your voice loud and clear through an amp. I’m always attracted to guitars and pickups that fight with me, but these were definitely tough ones to wrangle!
The guitar has a 7-way selector switch that has some interesting preset tone combinations, but for the most part, they pretty much suck the tone out of the guitar. Right below it is a trio of on/off slider switches for the pickups. The EG 3’s “Vibratone” tremolo is a great unit and works as well as a Jazzmaster’s, but the bridge on the model floats on the pickguard and is only held down with string tension. Kind of an odd combination, but, hey, you can make it fly.
Our featured Thunder—aka the “Airline 3” model, in some markets—has what was called a “shaded” finish, specifically “glossy golden shaded darkbrown.” I really like the finish on this model because it wears beautifully with steady play. And the bodies also breathe much better than their vinyl-covered counterparts. I often find myself wishing that today’s builders regularly used a simpler finish technique like this, rather than the candy-coat poly finishes we see so often.
As the ’60s wore on, the Egmond lineup remained relatively unchanged outside of some different finish options, although I did notice that their retail prices went down. For instance, a vinyl-covered Egmond 3V had been retailing for $135 in the ’60s, but by 1970, the very same model sold for $85.
Overall, these fun, mid-’60s electrics can still be had at a relatively affordable price and give players some interesting options when it comes to tone. Heck, you could buy one just to use the pickups as some sort of cool, lo-fi microphone!
Looking for more great gear for the guitar player in your life (yourself included!)? Check out this year's Holiday Gear Finds!
D'Addario XPND Pedalboard
DR-05X Stereo Handheld Recorder
Wampler Pedals Ratsbane
Flare is a dual-function pedal with a tube-like booster and a 1970s-style ring modulator effect that can be played separately or together.
Flare’s ring modulator is based on the iconic tone of the original Dan Armstrong Green Ringer. This vintage classic was made famous by Frank Zappa who loved the unusual modulations created by generating a harmonic octave over notes. Messiah’s version offers two control knobs: a “Sparkle” tone attenuator and output Level control. Its taupe-gold body, purple and green knobs and stick-figure rock ’n’ roller holding up a flame convey an appropriately rockin’70s vibe.
In a unique twist, Messiah’s Flare pairs the ringer with a warm tube-style boost instead of a fuzz. Flare feeds the booster into the ringer for an extra punch, while preserving the Green Ringerspirit. The ringer side also turns any fuzz into an octafuzz, and it has the ability to quiet signal background noise fed through it.
The booster side features a single Boost knob to control the MOSFET circuit, making it very tube-amp-friendly with a warm, organic boost and gain of up to 32dB.
The pedal is a distinct improvement over the 1970s pedal that inspired it. “Most ringer pedals don’t track well,” Tom Hejda, owner of Messiah Guitars. “The player can’t rely on repeating the same effect even with the most consistently played notes. We carefully matched the components, so our ringer follows your every move, producing that slightly dirty octave you expect on demand.”
Messiah developed this vintage octave pedal with flexible features so that people who love that messy, dirty Zappa-esque sound can get there with ease but there’s also something for those who have not fallen in love with fuzz or the Green Ringer alone. Flare offers an array of sonic options while retaining simplicity in the controls.
Each Flair Pedal Includes:
- 3 control knobs: Boost, Sparkle, and Level
- Two effects – Ring Modulator and Boost – can be used together or separately
- Space-saving top side jacks
- Durable, cast aluminum alloy 125B enclosure with fun artwork
- Easy to see, illuminated True-bypass foot switch
- Standard 9V pedal power input
Flare Pedal Demo
Messiah Guitars pedals are designed with an explorative player in mind. Like their custom guitars and amplifiers, Messiah’s pedals are hand-crafted in Los Angeles for a long life with guaranteed quality.
Flare retails for $199.00 and can be purchased directly at Messiah Guitars or you can hear it in person at Impulse Music Co. in Canyon Country, CA.
For more information, please visit messiahguitars.com.
This feathery little guy is a joy to play because of its incredibly quick response to your right hand - much faster and more expressive than your typical auto-wah pedal.
If it looks like a duck, acts like a duck, and QUACKS like a duck, then it must be a duck. That's how we came up with the name for our new envelope filter. This feathery little guy is a joy to play because of its incredibly quick response to your right hand - much faster and more expressive than your typical auto-wah pedal. Trevor explains how this is possible in the launch video, as well as gives a demo on Le Canard’s operation.
The attack control determines how quickly the filter responds to the envelope, and the decay sets how quickly the filter releases afterward. The range controls which frequency spectrum the filter does its magic on. Add to this relay-based full-bypass switching with failsafe, and you've got one crazy little quacky beast. It is so expressive that you'll want to give up on your rocker-wah forever.
The MayFly Le Canard envelope filter features:
- Super fast responding envelope follower. Touch it and it jumps!
- Range control to dial in the character of the filter
- Attack control to control how fast the filter moves on that first touch
- Release control to control how slowly the filter slides back to baseline
- Full bypass using relays with Fail SafeTM (automatically switches to bypass if the pedal loses power)
- Cast aluminum enclosure with groovy artwork
- MSRP $149 USD ($199 CAD)
Introducing the MayFly Le Canard Envelope Filter
All MayFly pedals are hand-made in Canada.
For more information, please visit mayflyaudio.com.
Outlaw Effects introduces their next generation of NOMAD rechargeable battery-powered pedal boards.
Available in two sizes, NOMAD ISO is a compact, versatile tool that offers the convenience of a fully powered board plus the additional freedom of not having to plug into an outlet. NOMAD ISO is ideal for stages with limited outlet availability, quick changeovers, busking outdoors, temporary rehearsal locations, and more.
NOMAD ISO builds upon the legacy of the ultra-convenient and reliable NOMAD rechargeable pedalboard line originally launched in 2018. The brand new NOMAD ISO editions feature eight isolated outputs (1 x 9V DC, and 1 switchable 9V/12V DC) for even more versatility and clean, quiet power. With an integrated lithium-ion battery pack boasting 12800mAh capacity, NOMAD ISO can fuel a wide array of pedals, and will last over 10 hours* on a single charge.
Each NOMAD ISO pedal board includes adhesive hook & loop pedal-mounting tape, eight (8) standard DC connector cables, and one (1) reverse polarity DC cable, giving you everything you need to build your ultimate "off-the-grid" rig. A rugged, road-ready padded gig bag with shoulder strap is also included, to safely protect your gear while you're on the move.
NOMAD ISO S
NOMAD ISO S: MSRP $309 / MAP: $249
Dimensions: 19 ¼" x 5 ¼"
NOMAD ISO M
NOMAD ISO M: MSRP $349 / MAP $279
Dimensions: 19 ¼" x 11"
More info: https://www.outlawguitareffects.com.