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Rig Rundown: The Aristocrats' Guthrie Govan & Bryan Beller [2022]

Guthrie Govan reveals a new signature Charvel and experiences the digital modeling bath. Plus, bass behemoth Bryan Beller reconnects with old friends and displays his “low - rent” Geddy Lee setup.

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Steve Vai strikes a pose with a stunning black and gold Ibanez PIA, his latest signature guitar, introduced in 2020. The JEM’s signature “monkey grip” is gone, but don’t fret, it’s been replaced by a “petal grip.”

Photo by Larry DiMarzio

The maestro invents a new instrument, recovers from two surgeries, and releases the barn-burning Inviolate—but that’s just the tip of the iceberg, as he reveals the source of his seemingly limitless creative power.

About halfway through my call with Steve Vai, I’m brimming with enthusiasm and feeling energized and inspired. Sure, it’s fun to talk to Vai—he’s a hero to so many of us, so it’s naturally exciting—but there’s more to this: He’s giving me a motivational pep talk.

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Rig Rundown: Microwave

Carefully chosen pedals and a vintage laptop become "a poor-man's Kemper," enabling the Atlanta quartet to bridge psychedelia, post-hardcore, and four-on-the-floor rock.

Music—and guitar—are therapeutic. The songs we write and riffs we play help reduce the pain, alleviate the stress, and produce some positivity in our lives. Microwave's singer/guitarist/lyricist Nathan Hardy has been using the studio and stage as his leather couch for nearly 10 years.

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