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Hand Jive: Ex. 6

A 1970s-inspired circuit with separate fuzz and octave switches, a toggle switch to change the order of circuits, and sturdy construction for years of use.

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Brothers Chris and Rich Robinson of the Black Crowes have been playing under that name, on and off, for the past 40 years.

Photo by Ross Halfin

The Southern rockers, led by Rich Robinson on guitar, are back after a 15-year hiatus with their 10th studio album, Happiness Bastards.

Straight from the woozy opening rip of “Bedside Manners,” the breakneck lead track from the Black Crowes’ 10th studio album Happiness Bastards, it’s clear that the Southern rockers from Georgia are in as fine a form as they’ve ever been. There are plenty of examples of bands that have lost their sonic teeth or just traded them in for a softer sound. But despite a 15-year gap between the new record and their last long-player, and plenty of time apart, the band sounds just as vital as they did when their 1990 debut, Shake Your Money Maker, first electrified listeners more than three decades ago.

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Luthier Ken Parker blends old world lutherie and aerospace tech materials, proving that wood and carbon fiber can dance together in a romantic tango of sonic bliss.

In the guitar market, classic models still have the biggest influence, but the future is lurking.

In the ever-evolving music industry, the electric guitar stands as an enduring stalwart, having shaped the sonic landscape for generations without much physical change. I’ve joked about the state of the guitar before, but let’s take a more serious view of what’s happening in the guitar business. It’s apparent that the classics continue to wield influence, while also undergoing a transformation reflective of the current tech era.

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