See all 12 unique instruments featured as Gear of the Month in 2012.

"The guitarуs controls include a 3-way pickup selector, a tone and volume knob for each pickup, and a master volume. The Starcaster shown here has a natural finishяother choices available were black, blonde, tobacco sunburst, walnut, and white. This particular Fender model was the only non-Telecaster model to feature the Seth Lover-designed Wide Range humbuckers. These pickupsяoriginally used from у71пу79 in Telecaster Deluxes, Thinlines, and Customsяare described as having a fat, distinctive tone with a little more detail and clarity than the famous PAF pickups Lover designed for Gibson. While Fender didnуt lure away too many ES purists with the short-lived Starcasterяthe guitar was only manufactured from 1976п1980яit did eventually find favor with indie guitarists like Radioheadуs Jonny Greenwood, Phishуs Trey Anastasio (who plays a custom Langeudoc designed after the Starcaster), The Killersу Dave Keuning (who uses one in the bandуs videos for рFor Reasons Unknownс and рHumanс), and Arctic Monkeysу Jamie Cook (who rocks one during the video for рCrying Lightningс). "

Linda Manzer and Pat Metheny’s collaboration on the Pikasso guitar proves that a good creative chemistry between luthier and client can lead to extreme innovation!

Photo by Brian Pickell

The construction of your dream guitar can be a fun journey, but learning the language is essential.

You’ve visited countless websites, played as many guitars as you could lay your hands on, and zeroed in on the luthier that resonates most with you. You’re ready to take the plunge and your next step is to have a conversation with the builder. You’ll both have lots of questions. Be sure to listen and let them guide you through the process. This is when the fun begins.

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Megadeth founder teams up with Gibson for his first acoustic guitar in the Dave Mustaine Collection.

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Gibson 1960 Les Paul 0 8145 is from the final year of the model’s original-production era, and likely from one of the later runs.

The story of 1960 Gibson Les Paul 0 8145—a ’burst with a nameplate and, now, a reputation.

These days it’s difficult to imagine any vintage Gibson Les Paul being a tough sell, but there was a time when 1960 ’bursts were considered less desirable than the ’58s and ’59s of legend—even though Clapton played a ’60 cherry sunburst in his Bluesbreakers days. Such was the case in the mid 1990s, when the family of a local musician who was the original owner of one of these guitars walked into Rumble Seat Music’s original Ithaca, New York, store with this column’s featured instrument.

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