True or False: To distract from the fact that they couldn’t play their way out of a paper bag.
Every time I play out, some guitarist comes up to say how cool my Fender Jaguar looked and sounded. It's great to meet people on the scene, and nice to hear things sounded decent, so of course I thank them. We end up talking about the music and gear they're into, their band, etc. But I never have the heart to point out that the whole exchange started with a lie: The 6-string they'd seen me trying to wrangle onstage is a Jazzmaster, not a Jaguar.
To many, Jags and JMs are basically interchangeable. For some, the mistake is innocent enough. Both have that classic "offset" shape, those mysterious upper-bout controls, and the bridge-and-vibrato setup that seems weird/clunky to those reared on Strats, Teles, and Les Pauls. For others, the lumping together is an intentional slight: These guitars are flavor-of-the-moment rejects preferred by hipsters hell-bent on using something different to distract from the fact that they couldn't play their way out of a paper bag—which is why we don't mind the "inferior" hardware, "useless" bells and whistles, and "wimpy" sonics.
The haters aren't entirely wrong on the popularity front. Fender's most distinctive offsets have been enjoying a resurgence for years now, particularly the Jazzmaster—so much so that it's a bit head-up-the-bum to dismiss it as a trend. These instruments are undoubtedly influencing builders and parts-guitar assemblers everywhere, but if you're more interested in expanding your tonal palette than bashing "posers," you'd do well to reserve judgment. There's a hell of a lot more going on with Leo's original vision for these guitars than their looks and supposed "outsider" status.
I was late to appreciate the Jaguar's uniqueness myself, having never played one till Johnny Marr's signature model debuted a few years back. I thought it looked and played great, but I never really cared for the sound of its custom pickup and switching scheme. It wasn't till I plugged in a vintage-spec Jag that I was transfixed.
There's a hell of a lot more going on with Leo's original vision for these guitars than their looks and supposed "outsider" status.
Despite the similarities between original Jaguars and Jazzmasters, there are huge differences—equating them is almost like saying a two-humbucker Tele is basically a Les Paul. Just as a Paul's dual-volume/dual-tone switching and shorter scale (24 3/4" vs. a Telecaster's 25 1/2") imbue it with both a tonal flexibility and a physical playing experience you could never wring from a traditionally wired Tele, so also does a Jaguar afford responsiveness and electrical alchemy you couldn't possibly conjure on a Jazzmaster. (The same goes in reverse, too, of course.)
Surprisingly, a lot of hardcore guitarists aren't aware that Jags have an even shorter scale—24"—and yield even more of that slinky response we consider a defining trait of Gibsons. Further, Jag and JM single-coils are vastly different from each other in design and tonal characteristics. What's more, while both guitars feature an upper-bout "rhythm" circuit that engages dedicated volume and tone controls for the neck pickup alone (I usually use it as a sort of kill-switch-type circuit with rolled-off highs), a traditional Jaguar's main (or "lead") switching array offers twice as many options as the JM's: The latter's lead circuit has master volume and tone controls and a 3-way selector, while a Jag has master volume and tone knobs, an on-off slider for each pickup, and a third slider that engages a high-pass filter that simply has to be experienced to be appreciated.
Now, I can see how those words alone—"high-pass filter"—could be a turn-off for a lot of players. The type of thing that intrigues people more interested in twiddling knobs behind a board more than rocking the eff out. Even thinking about what the term literally means—i.e., that it highlights higher/treble frequencies—it's hard to not be, like, "Why would I be intrigued by a switch that's going to make my single-coils sound thinner?"
And, sure, the high-pass filter does remove some low end and low mids, but it's much more complex than that. It can make the bridge pickup more incisive, but also make the neck pickup or both pickups together sound spongier, mellower, and sweeter—almost like you've morphed to a different set of pickups. And when you engage your favorite fuzz(es), the high-pass filter can yield results so startlingly pleasing it's like you've just found a secret door to new tones.
The takeaway? Who cares what sort of player you've seen wearing a famous guitar type—don't knock it till you find out what it can do for your music.
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Kick off the holiday season by shopping for the guitar player in your life at Guitar Center! Now through December 24th 2022, save on exclusive instruments, accessories, apparel, and more with hundreds of items at their lowest prices of the year.
We’ve compiled this year’s best deals in the 2022 Holiday Gift Guide presented by Guitar Center.
Mystery Stocking is coming soon! Sign up for PG Perks below so you don't miss it.
Sign up for PG Perks on the form below to make sure you don't miss the launch announcement!
About Mystery Stocking
Each year, Premier Guitar likes to put out these mystery boxes as a part of bringing some fun to the holiday season. Remember, this is supposed to be a fun holiday treat! If the contents of this box will ruin your holiday, deplete the last of your bank account, or end your ability to see the good in humanity, it may not be for you.
- This year's Mystery Stocking will cost $44.95. ($39.95 + $5 Flat shipping)
- Each box will be guaranteed to contain $40 or more in value.
- US only. (Sorry World.)
- Make sure your shipping address is correct.
- Have your credit card ready to go before you refresh the page. Paypal is not available. Autofill may not fill in your information.
- There will be NO REFUNDS given.
- There has been a huge demand for these in the past. We really did sell out in less than 4 minutes last year. When they are gone, they are gone.
- One per household, one per person.
Q: What's in the Mystery Stocking?
A: It wouldn't be much of a surprise if we told you, now would it?
Q: Will I definitely get my money worth?
Q: Can I return it if I don't like it?
A: Nope. All sales final.
Q: What if I live outside the US?
A: Sorry, US only.
Q. How much is it?
A. $39.95 Plus $5 shipping
Q. When will it ship?
A. On or before December 10, 2022.
Q. What form of payment do you accept?
A. Credit cards only. Sorry, no Paypal for this.
Q. Can I ship to a different location than my billing address?
Q. I tried last year and didn't get one. Will I get one this year?
A. There is an overwhelming demand for Mystery Stocking. Be sure you have a fast internet connection and be ready when they go on sale. Last year we sold out in 3 min 33 seconds.
Q. I want to buy 5. How can I buy 5?
A. You can't. This year, we're limiting to one per household, so more people can get in on the fun!
Featuring the Adaptive Circuitry recently introduced on their Halcyon Green Overdrive, Origin Effects have brought us a pedal with a character all of its own and a new flavor of drive.
Origin Effects introduce the new M-EQ DRIVER mid booster & drive pedal. Based on a vintage Pultec studio EQ, this unique pedal offers a range of mid-focused tones, from a subtle mid boost to thick, resonant overdrive. Featuring the Adaptive Circuitry recently introduced on their Halcyon Green Overdrive, Origin Effects have brought us a pedal with a character all of its own and a new flavor of drive.
A choice of three mid-range frequencies ensures that you can boost just the right part of your guitar signal and, when pushed harder, can elicit a range of saturation from a classic “mid-hump” overdrive to fierce “cocked wah” distortion. Thanks to the Adaptive Circuitry, the high-end roll-off of the Cut control is reduced as the pedal cleans up. This allows for a smooth transition from warm overdrive to bright clean tones in response to playing dynamics or guitar volume knob changes.
Introducing... M-EQ DRIVER || Mid Booster & Drive
Built-in the UK to the highest standards, the M-EQ DRIVER continues the Origin Effects tradition of vintage, studio-inspired tones in modern guitar pedals. The Origin Effects M-EQ DRIVER is available now from Origin Effects dealers worldwide.
RRP: 259 GBP (Inc VAT) / 319 USD (Ex TAX)
For more information, please visit origineffects.com.
The new finish, according to Lava Music, is “inspired by the beauty of the golden hour,” a shining time just before sunset and after sunrise when photographers covet to capture stunning pictures.
With bright and warm golden hues, the new finish adds a brilliant metallic glow to the surface of Lava ME 3, complementing its AirSonic 2 carbon fiber unibody which features L3 Preamp with FreeBoost 2.0, delivers industry-leading sounds by breakthrough acoustic technologies, and houses a multi-touch display powered by Lava-developed HILAVA system.
Speaking of the HILAVA system, Lava Music also added four new effects: Nebula, Desert Rose, Cassette, and Edge of Breakup. As unique as their names sound, they are very much different from what we normally know about effects. Programmed into the HILAVA system, each of the four is powered by the company’s latest ArctanDrive algorithm and incorporates effects like Pitch Shift, Delay, and Reverb. And every one of those incorporated sub-effects comes with various parameters that players can adjust to design unique, overdriven sounds by just tapping on the multi-touch display. That said, those effects enable users to play with overdriven tone on an acoustic-electric guitar without even plugging in any external gear.
LAVA ME 3 | Now in Golden Hour | LAVA MUSIC
Lava Me 3 in Golden Hour is now available starting from $999 on LAVA MUSIC, Amazon, and local guitar dealerships near you.
For more information, please visit store.lavamusic.com.