The guitar is a special Steve Blaze Redeemer that will be auctioned to raise money for the families of the airmen.

Fort Worth, TX (May 28, 2012) -- Major Henry Cecil has teamed up with Louisiana Hall of Fame members Lillian Axe and luthier John Guilford to build a special model to honor eight fallen Air Force Airmen and one civilian contractor. The guitar is a special Steve Blaze Redeemer that will be auctioned to raise money for the families of the airmen.

The front of the guitar is decorated in Air Force camo with a piece of a jacket worn by Cecil during a year tour in Afghanistan. The back of the guitar is painted Air Force blue with the names of the fallen engraved.

The guitar will go on tour with Steve Blaze in the summer and fall, being played on the song "Take the Bullet," written to honor the military. A raffle began on May 23 on airforceguitar.com in conjunction with Memorial Day weekend.

The raffle will run until Veteran's Day on November 11, 2012.

For more information:
airforceguitar.com

Can an entry-level modeler hang with the big dogs?

Excellent interface. Very portable. Nice modulation tones.

Some subpar low-gain dirt sounds. Could be a little more rugged.

$399

HeadRush MX5
headrushfx.com

3.5
4
4
4.5

The allure of portability and sonic consistency has become too much to ignore for some guitarists, making smaller digital modelers more appealing than ever.

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"'If I fall and somehow my career ends on that particular day, then so be it," Joe Bonamassa says of his new hobby, bicycling. "If it's over, it's over. You've got to enjoy your life."

Photo by Steve Trager

For his stylistically diverse new album, the fiery guitar hero steps back from his gear obsession and focuses on a deep pool of influences and styles.

Twenty years ago, Joe Bonamassa was a struggling musician living in New York City. He survived on a diet of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and ramen noodles that he procured from the corner bodega at Columbus Avenue and 83rd Street. Like many dreamers waiting for their day in the sun, Joe also played "Win for Life" every week. It was, in his words, "literally my ticket out of this hideous business." While the lottery tickets never brought in the millions, Joe's smokin' guitar playing on a quartet of albums from 2002 to 2006—So, It's Like That, Blues Deluxe, Had to Cry Today, and You & Me—did get the win, transforming Joe into a guitar megastar.

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