The Secret is Out…

Last winter I tried an odd experiment: a website where players were encouraged to post their best tone secrets — the kinds of tricks and techniques that are almost too good to share. But in order to get, you had to give: The site was password-protected, and the password was only sent to […]

Those Times When It’s Good to NOT Play Like Yourself…

I am not any of these people — but I pretended to be them.

Can we all agree that it’s a good thing when guitarists and bassists cultivate their own style? Even a jaded old cuss experienced music journalist like me still gets a thrill upon discovering a new player […]

Are Your Sinister — or Dextrous?

“Why is everything upside-down?”

You know the etymology behind the word “sinister,” don’t you? It’s the Latin word for “left,” which, according to etymologists, became associated with evil, thanks to the medieval belief that left-handed people were deceitful and probably possessed. Meanwhile, “dexterous,” which means adept with your hands or […]

How to Install Onboard Effects

UPDATE: I’ve added a page listing all the “How To” posts on this site. Just click the cleverly titled How-To Posts Are Here! box at upper-right of each page.

There’s got to be a better way!

Several readers asked for more specific tech advice on how to […]

DIY Guitar Picks?

Borders went bankrupt. Now what the heck am I supposed to do with this pretty red card?

Behold my latest gizmo acquisition: the mighty Pick Punch!

It may look like a humble office stapler, but it stamps out standard-sized guitar picks from any compatible material.

I made picks from an […]

A Cool Alternative Tone Control for Bass

Looks vintage, but it ain't.

After auditioning so many different tone-control schemes over the course of the Mongrel Strat Project, I wound up with more tone circuits than I have Strats, so I figured I’d victimize a bass — specifically, a 1954 Fender P-Bass reissue with a Seymour […]

PRINT Your Own Guitar Parts?!

Yes, it's bad Photoshop. You can't REALLY print a guitar at home . . . not quite yet, anyway.

UPDATE: Check out the comments, where reader J links to videos of a 3D-printed guitar and violin.It’s cool and INTENSE.

Last weekend I got to enjoy one of […]

A Modern Vari-Tone Alternative…

Looks like a pot — but it's not!

In the comments on my post on the Mongrel Strat with the Obsessive-Compulsive Tone Control, reader Dave mentioned a related product: The Stellartone ToneStyler. I ordered one and popped in into my dual-humbucker Hamer 20th Anniversary guitar (which still […]

Credit Where It’s Due — Please!

Move along — there's nothing to see here.

Ordinarily I wouldn’t publicize “causes” on this site, but this one has special relevance for musicians and music fans.

My pal Count, a producer/mixer who’s done work for Radiohead, DJ Shadow, New Order, the Stones, No Doubt, and many other artists, is […]

The Bass VI Boss

Dang — I wish I had a white turtleneck and a Mosrite electric resophonic!

After some of the long-running contests around here, it was nice having a quickie for a change. San Diego-based steel guitarist Doug Meyer was the first of several readers to correctly identify the four iconic Bass […]