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January 2006
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March 2006

BusinessWeek: Digital Guitars

Variax_700

BusinessWeek, that corporate rockin' magazine all the headbangers read, has an online report on the new wave of digital guitars.  Includes coverage of the Line6 Variax, Digital Gibson, Optek Fretlight and upcoming iGuitar.  It's a good overview.  I hope these companies recognize there's a huge market of aging boomers who want high-quality gear at reasonable prices!  Rock on, CEO!


YouTube.com Rock Videos

Youtube

 

 

I recently discovered the web site YouTube.com which provides access to thousands or maybe it’s even millions of videos online.  You can search for pretty much any video you can imagine or just randomly surf for who knows what.  I tried to stump YouTube with obscure 1980’s bands and while I didn’t necessarily always find all of the videos I wanted, I was always able to find something interesting.  Not only are there oodles of rock videos, you can find obscure historical footage,live bootlegsTV clips, sports, amateur videos, animation and more

YouTube is just one year old but it’s taken off.  It’s free of charge with no strings attached.  A great way to find and share your favorite rock videos.


Les Paul Wins Grammy at 90

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Les Paul, inventor of the modern solid-body electric guitar and accomplished jazz & blues guitarist, earned two Grammy awards this week at the age of 90 for best pop instrumental and best rock instrumental. 

While Les Paul is perhaps more well known as a guitar than as a player these days, it hasn't stopped him from recording a new CD last year, and playing weekly in New York city at the Iridium Jazz Club where he's jammed with the likes of Keith Richards, Billy Gibbons, Paul McCartney, Slash, Dickie Betts, Steve Miller and Zakk Wylde . 

Paul was hospitalized earlier this week as fluid accumulated in his lungs.


Yamaha RGX-A2

Yamaha_rgx_a2

Yamaha has expanded their line of electric guitars with the recently release RGX-A2, a modern and elegant guitar.  I've always wondered why guitar designers don't make more radical changes; there are just too many Strat clones and Les Paul wannabe's, all shockingly similar. The RGX-A2 is not as extreme a design as, say, a 70's era Steinberger, but it does bring something new to the party: a superbly light weight design.  The RGX-A2 clocks in at around 5 1/2 pounds, on par with a Parker Fly, at a fraction of the price.  The key to Yamaha's design is that it's got a light weight core sandwiched between hardwood surfaces.  Yamaha calls it "AIR" standing for "Alternative Internal Resonance" and they can be forgiven for the cheesy acronym.

The guitar also features dual Alnico humbucker pickups, cylindrical barrel tuners, and cool LED die-cast knobs.  The guitar comes in white and aircraft grey finish.  The guitar lists for $799 with a street price for around $500.  Musician's Friend has been offering it with a free Yamaha MagicStomp stereo effects pedal, which is a heckuva good deal.