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The Perpetual Burn – a review from a non-shredder's perspective

Jason Becker is one of those players that has inspired countless guitar players. His command of the guitar blew people’s minds, and when ALS so tragically took his ability to do almost everything, he, with the help of his father still found a way to keep on communicating with people, and create new music, continuing to inspire people even more. While recording with David Lee Roth, […] Continue Reading

The Jason Becker Perpetual Burn in the Bomber!

Jason Becker Perpetual Burn humbucker, has actually been around in prototype form since the 90s. Designed with Jason during his tenure in David Lee Roth's band, shortly before ALS robbed him of the ability to play, this pickup was one of the best-kept secrets of the Duncan Custom Shop. Continue Reading

Direct-Mounting Pickups Part II: The JB meets the PMS (Pickup Mounting System)

The SH/TB-4 JB is - no joke - THE most popular replacement pickup ever. No, no just the most popular in the populous Seymour Duncan humbucker lineup, but the most popular aftermarket pickup available. Has been for 30 years. Seriously, that top shouldn't be open for debate, really. A certain British guitarist with the same initials was known to have used one of the originals in the 70s, and since then it's been a staple of rock music. Other pickups can only get in the neighborhood of the iconic nature of the JB. It's everywhere, whether you know it or not, and for good reason. It's all over more classic and current recordings than you can begin to imagine, so cool is this pickup. It is, in fact, the SOUND of ROCK. Continue Reading

My Custom Shop Hybrid Pickup

Recently when I visted the Seymour Duncan factory, I was lucky enough to get to hang out in the Custom Shop. Such history in those walls! Pictures of Seymour and MJ with Jeff Beck, Billy Gibbons, Edward Van Halen and many others throughout the years adorn the walls. I saw prototypes for the AH-1, the Frankenstein pickup, early handwound (by Seymour himself) '59s, you name it. It was a treasure trove of pickup prototypes. No, they literally have a vault of prototypes, in addition to the ones displayed on the wall. Continue Reading

My Extra-Customized Custom Shop IM1

The Seymour Duncan Custom Shop makes a range of great pickups outside of the regular production Seymour Duncan line. They can also make custom designs for everyone. That's right, they don't just offer special one-offs to rock stars: you and I can have our own custom one-off designs made to order. Continue Reading

The Seymour Duncan SH-11 Custom Custom

The Custom Custom (or CC) is my favorite bridge pickup. There, I said it. It’s beefier than a standard PAF style, yet not so huge in output that it tends to compress everything. This article will discuss the use and sound of the CC, as well as providing some soundclips solo and within a mix so you can hear it for yourself. Continue Reading

The Seymour Duncan SH-55 Seth Lover Model

The SH-55 Seth Lover model is Seymour Duncan’s tribute to the father of the humbucking pickup. Any guitar today that uses two coils in the same housing wired to get rid of the hum associated with single coil pickups owes a bit of thanks to the original pioneer of pickup design, Seth Lover. Continue Reading

Let There Be Bass!

A while back I started getting tired of asking to borrow friend’s basses to record demos with. I’m sure they got tired of me asking, too. It made sense, given the fact that I was recording more, that a bass would be a good investment to have around the house. I originally set out to find an adequate used bass to fill the job, but that […] Continue Reading

The Kramer Chronicles Volume IV: The Custom

In the continuing saga of testing pickups in my 80s vintage Kramer rebuild, we’ve been through how the ’59, Pearly Gates, and Alternative 8 sound in the bridge position, and matched with the ‘59N in the neck. Since the Voyager’s Alder body has proven to be an interesting test bed for all the pickups so far, it seemed like a good idea to continue exploring the […] Continue Reading

The Kramer Chronicles, Volume III: The Alternative 8

The Alt 8 is one of Seymour's more-recent offerings and the first of their production humbucker line to be designed around the A8 magnet. The A8 has a unique flavor, one that seems to span the gap between Alnico and ceramic magnets in that it has Alnico sweetness in the highs and ample mids, but also has a tight low end similar to a ceramic. Continue Reading