World Guitars has just announced the opening of a new “Made 2 Measure” facility in their shop in Stonehouse, Gloucestershire, with samples of Gibson Custom Shop guitars. You can design and order your own guitar for delivery within two months. This is the only place where you can do that in Europe.
After the unexpected passing of the owner, Jeff Pumfrett, last year, some people thought that WG would pass with him, but instead they seem to be going from strength to strength. I wish them continued success!
Alter Bridge is one of my favourite bands and I found out recently that they will be playing in my home town of Brussels in November, so I jumped at the chance to buy tickets. I also have tickets to see Steel Panther in the autumn – two great concerts within a month!
I’ve just published another article exploring the issues of tuning. This time, I look at tuning by simple mathematic ratios, or “Just Intonation”. I also investigate the True Temperament fretboard system to see whether that solves the problems we have identified with tuning.
Today, Crimson Guitars is publishing a series of videos showing a competition between four of their luthiers. Each of them will build a cigar box from one of their kits, and they will be judged by an independent expert at the end of the day. Here is the first video in the series – I hope you will enjoy them; I’m sure I will!
They also published an introductory video a week ago which explains the competition.
This morning I got a parcel with the first components for my forthcoming Crimson guitars build at the end of October. I made an unboxing video to show the bridge and tuners, and have put it on a new article where I will link to all of the unboxing / preparation videos.
I started writing a post on this subject today but it turned out to be too long for a post, so I’ve published it as an article. It concerns tuning with the circle of fifths, and why that doesn’t quite work. There’s a bit of maths involved (which I’ve done for you), and some interesting conclusions.
This website is an evolution of my YouTube channel, and today I return to the beginning of that. My first YouTube video was a review of my Chapman MLB-1 bass guitar, which was one of the first of the Chapman basses, and I made that video because there were no reviews or other videos about this bass apart from the ones from the Chapman guys themselves. It is the most watched of my guitar-related videos, with almost 9,000 views (one of my videos about my Audi A4 has supplanted that as my most watched video of all, but that’s not the subject of this site).
Now I see that there are a couple of other short reviews and demos from other players, but there still isn’t much out there about this bass which is a real shame, because I still think it’s an excellent bass for the money. I’ve had no desire to replace it by a better bass and I heartily recommend it, after 18 months. It’s a shame that Chapman Guitars has not built on this by releasing more basses, perhaps with different pickups, different finishes or 5 / 6 string versions.
As a side note before the video, I’ve been adding articles to the My Gear section of this website (the Chapman Bass article will go up soon!), so please take a look there for pictures of and the stories behind my guitars and other gear.
If you are interested in buying one of these basses or reading the specifications, you can find them at Anderton’s or Thomann, or at your favourite Chapman retailer if you’re outside Europe (although those retailers will ship worldwide).
Crimson Guitars is where I will be going at the end of October to follow a week’s course in guitar building, and I will build my own guitar (see the articles beginning “Planning my Guitar Build part 1“). They do a lot of instructional videos on luthiery skills, and recently Ben Crowe, the Master Luthier, attempted to build a guitar in 12 hours.
The whole build was filmed and made available in all of it’s 12-hour glory on YouTube, and I’m afraid to say that, apart from skipping through some of the sanding, I watched the whole lot. Thanks to Ben’s commentary and the interest of watching the whole process of making a guitar, it was actually rather interesting!
Below you will find the first episode, “Preparing for the 12 Hour Guitar Build”, which preceded the 24 half-hour episodes. They are also going to produce an hour-long highlights version, but for those with the stamina, the full 12 hours are worth the watch.
Ben is obviously certifiably mad and I’m looking forward to meeting him!
I have added a new article today which is a list of luthiers working in the UK. This list is based on recommendations I have received, and focuses on small individual luthiers or companies, rather than bigger brands. It includes all areas of the UK plus Eire.
Please do comment and tell me about your favourite luthiers (even if that’s you!), and I’ll add them to the list.