by OGSR | Jan 22, 2020 | NAMM 2020
Billy Gibbons (L) and Slash (R) Photo Credit for Photo Above: Gibson. Gibson Live At The Grove, Getty Images (Phil Farone)
By Randy Winters
It’s January and that means it’s time for The NAMM show in Anaheim, California. As usual it is crammed to the walls with excited buyers and musicians all wanting to see, touch, and feel the latest equipment that drives the music industry.
As a Contributing Editor to the Old Guys Still Rockin I do my best to provide interesting stories and reviews for guitar players who have passed the 50-year mark. When I found that I was on the VIP list for Gibson’s private party at The Anaheim Grove, I was excited at the opportunity to hang out with, and listen to, music industry royalty.
The word was that Gibson was throwing the party to announce changes aimed at driving them forward after a few years of financial setbacks.
The Anaheim Grove is a high-end, theater-style restaurant with VIP parking—which I appreciated after negotiating the parking quagmire that always surrounds NAMM.
Don Felder (L) and Slash (R) Photo Credit: Gibson. Gibson Live At The Grove, Getty Images (Phil Farone)
To my delight I discovered that dinner was included. I followed the crowd into the dining area where five different buffets offered everything from salads to lobster to prime rib. I settled on the salmon and started making some new acquaintances. We were all talking about Gibson guitars, of course. After all, I’m an Old Guy Still Rockin, and I play a Les Paul. The rumor was that after dinner we were going to be treated to some music by Gibson guitar celebrities including Slash, one of my favorite guitar players.
The concert began with a couple hours of great music from a variety of Gibson guitar players. It was expected that Slash would probably be the last performer, so we were all surprised when the announcer introduced Eagles’ guitarist Don Felder, winner of four Grammy awards, including one as the co-writer of “Hotel California.” Felder often performs with a Gibson Les Paul and his famous Gibson EDS-1275 (double-neck 6 and 12 string) electric guitars. Gibson named two re-issues after him in 2010: the “Don Felder Hotel California 1959 Les Paul” and the “Don Felder Hotel California EDS-1275”. Felder is an avid guitar collector, and owns several hundred models .
The former Eagles guitarist opened with “Pride and Joy,” a song made famous by Stevie Ray Vaughan. While I was impressed at what a great blues Felder is, like everyone else, I was thinking one thing: Is he going to play “Hotel California”?
As he announced the second song he brought out that famous white 12-string Gibson he used on so many Eagle songs. When he announced “Hotel California” the energy in the room jumped about 20 DB. We were getting a lot more than what we expected.
But wait a minute. What about that legendary dual solo at the end of “Hotel California” played by Felder and Joe Walsh? Who’s going to play Joe’s part? Then Felder stepped to the microphone and said, ”I’m going to need some help with this one. Here is my friend Slash.” The crowd went nuts. Hundreds of iPhones shot up into the air and locked on to the stage.
The first thing I noticed as the song began was how articulate and clean Felder plays guitar. The man is truly is a master of the instrument. It sounded so much like the record. I was to another time. I was at the LA forum years ago when the Eagles were on tour introducing the “Hotel California” album.
When the famous dual solo began, Slash ripped the night open with his aggressive style. We all shot up a dose of history being made right here, right now. To me the song never sounded better or more powerful. Felder and Slash took it to the limit.
One more time.
We were still energized by what we had just heard but Gibson had one more surprise: ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons! When “The Bearded One” took the stage, the crowd erupted again. I don’t think anyone else could have shown up that would excite me more than Billy. He is quite simply my favorite guitar player. I love his style of playing: How he expresses so many melodic phrases and gets so much out of his homegrown style.
Billy and Slash were only few notes into ZZ Top’s “Waiting for the Bus,” when the iPhones came out again. Even the waiters stopped to watch this magical musical moment.
When it ended I was left thinking of Les Paul and how he would have enjoyed this show. To see what he started and how the Gibson Les Paul guitar, in the hands of great players like Fielder, Slash and Billy, have kept the sound and power of the Les Paul guitar driving the music industry.
So, to all you Old Guys and Gals out there, tune up your Les Paul and get playing.
It’s not over yet.
by OGSR | Jan 19, 2020 | NAMM 2020
When “Hotel California” was announced the energy in the room jumped about 20 DB. Don Felder and Joe Walsh’s signature duet on that song is legendary. Felder was already onstage. Who was going to play the other part? I half expected to see Walsh come out on stage. Felder stepped to the microphone and said, ”I’m going to need some help with this one. Here is my friend Slash.”
The crowd went nuts and hundreds of iPhones locked on to the stage.
The first thing I noticed as the song started was how articulate and clean Felder plays guitar.
Suddenly I was having a déjà vu moment. I was at the LA forum years ago when the Eagles were on tour introducing the Hotel California album. I was here…and there. Living it all again.
When the famous duet began, Slash ripped the night open with his aggressive style. We all shot up a dose of history being made right here, right now. To me it never sounded better or more powerful. Felder and Slash took it to the limit.
One more time.
by OGSR | Jan 9, 2020 | NAMM 2020, Uncategorized
NASHVILLE, TN (January 9, 2020) By leveraging its iconic past and leaning into an innovative future, Gibson has set the stage for the next era of shaping sound for present and future generations. The new Gibson celebrates the iconic models of Gibson’s Golden Era while leaning into the future with instruments that nurture new players across generations , genders and genres of music. A partnership that crosses over three decades, Gibson and Slash announced today, January 9, the release of the first-ever Slash Collection . In a history-making move for the brand, the Slash Collection will feature multiple acoustic and electric guitars. The new Slash Collection will officially premiere at the Gibson experience space, 3 rd Floor, Ballroom A , during Winter NAMM2020 in Anaheim, CA (January 15-19).
Slash and Gibson’s Luthiers worked in close collaboration with attention to the fine details at Gibson’s headquarters in Nashville, TN . The Gibson Slash Collection features four Les Paul Standard electric guitars and two J-45 Standard acoustic guitars. Inspiring multiple generations of players around the world, the Slash Collection is comprised of the most influential Gibson guitars Slash has used throughout his career and can be seen live onstage with Slash today.
E ach Slash Collection Les Paul Standard features a AAA maple top , a solid Mahogany body and Slash’s personal touches including a C-shape neck profile, signature Gibson “SlashBucker” pickups , color coordinated hardware appointments, hand-wired electronics with orange drop capacitors and a vintage style brown hardshell case. Exclusive to the Slash Collection are Slash’s “Scully” signature drawing on the back of the headstock, Slash’s signature on the truss rod cover, a blank truss rod cover in the case, Slash’s new Ernie Ball strings , and four Slash Jim Dunlop Tortex® picks.The Slash Collection Les Paul Standard is available in November Burst, Appetite Burst, Vermillion Burst and Anaconda Burst.
Slash Collection Les Paul Standards in Anaconda Burst, November Burst, Appetite Burst and Vermillion Burst.
Each Slash Collection Gibson J-45 Standard features a blend of traditional appointments and modern features including a custom Slash rounded C-neck profile, a fatter and more modern 16” fingerboard radius and a versatile LR Baggs TM VTC pickup for natural acoustic sound. Exclusive to the Slash Collection are Slash’s “Scully” signature drawing on the back of the headstock, Slash’s signature on the truss rod cover with a blank truss rod cover in the case and four Slash Jim Dunlop Tortex® picks . The Slash Collection J-45 Standard is available in November Burst and Vermillion Burst.
“Developing my new Collection with the new team at Gibson has been really exciting,” says Slash . “The quality and attention to detail is next level, and these guitars truly reflect what I play live and in the studio. I think guitarists will be inspired by what we’ve put together.”
“Working with Slash is an honor and to develop his new Gibson Collection was an incredible journey; Slash is a perfectionist and a guitar nerd like me, and the new Slash Collection is a true reflection of him” says Cesar Gueikian , Chief Merchant Officer ofGibson .
Slash will hit the road with the newly released Gibson Slash Collection this summer as he re-joins his Guns N’ Roses
bandmates for the next leg of their Not In This Lifetime
Slash Collection J-45 Standard November Burst and Vermillion Burst.
Slash with the Les Paul Standard in Appetite Burst.
For more information on Slash , visit:
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Slash –the iconic, GRAMMY-winning , American rock guitarist , songwriter and film producer –has amassed album sales of over 100 million copies , garnered a GRAMMY Award and seven GRAMMY nominations and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame . Slash landed on the top of the charts with his first solo album , Slash (2010)which featured Ozzy Osbourne, Fergie , Myles Kennedy and more. Shortly after, he formed his current band Slash
Ft. Myles Kennedy And The Conspirators –whichfeatures Myles Kennedy (lead vocals), Brent Fitz (drums), Todd Kerns (bass/vocals) and Frank Sidoris (rhythm guitar)–who’ve been touring worldwide and making music for over five years. The group released the critically acclaimed Apocalyptic Love (2012) which stormed the Billboard Top 200 Albums Chart debuting at #4 as the top rock album and spawned Slash’s first-ever #1 solo radio hits “You’re A Lie” and “Standing In The Sun.” Slash released Nothing Left To Fear (2013) the soundtrack to the first theatrical film co-produced with SLASHfiction , his film/TV production company specializing in the horror genre. The band’s second album, World On Fire debuted to global praise and the album’s title track, “World On Fire” ascended to #1 at U.S. Rock Radio . In 2016, Guns N’ Roses re-united and Slash joined Axl Rose and Duff McKagan for the ongoing “ Not In This Lifetime Tour” which Billboard now ranks as the third highest grossing tour of all time . Slash and his band’s most recent release is their critically-acclaimed third album Living The Dream (2018) which Rolling Stonedeclared “ a biting blues filigree at the end of a riff, weeping solos full of long notes and boogie-woogie riffs” and the Los Angeles Times added is full of “unexpected funk, boogie, blues and garage rock influences.” Fueled by the Top 5 song “ Driving Rain
, ”and the single “Mind Your Manners
” as well as, the best critical praise of their career,Living The Dream debuted with 10, Top 10 chart placements worldwide and by the end of their world tour in 2019, the group had achieved seven consecutive, Top 10 Hit singles at radio.
Gibson Brands , the world’s most iconic guitar brand, has shaped the sounds of generations of musicians and music lovers across genres for more than 100 years. Founded in 1894 and headquartered in Nashville, TN , Gibson Brands has a legacy of world-class craftsmanship, legendary music partnerships and progressive product evolution that is unrivaled among musical instrument companies. The Gibson Brandsportfolio includes Gibson , the number one guitar brand , as well as many of the most beloved and recognizable music brands, including Epiphone, Kramer, Steinberger and the Gibson Pro Audio division KRK Systems . Gibson is dedicated to quality, innovation and sound excellence so that music lovers for generations to come will continue to experience music shaped by Gibson Brands . Learn more athttp://www.gibson.com
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