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Vintage guitar ads featuring hot chicks with big hair


Vintage ad for B.C. Rich guitars 1989.
 
Today’s post from yours truly is going to take you on a trip down memory lane to a time when magazines were the main communication device for rock and roll. Though some great rock oriented print magazines do still exist, for at least four decades from the 60s through the 90s magazines were what you spent your money on so you could be sure to get the recommended daily amount of rock and roll information, get fan club info, and pull out centerfolds of a young David Lee Roth to hang on your wall—right next to whatever else covered up the ugly wallpaper in the room you spent your teenage years in.

If you’re a guitar loving gearhead and also a fan of girls, then you’re going to get an especially good kick out of the images in this post that feature the famous “Dean Girls” who helped sell guitars for Dean in a series of ads in the late 70s and 80s, as well as some racy images used by B.C. Rich. All of the images in the post have pretty consistent themes that include bikinis, big 80s hair and lots of skin. Oh, and there’s guitars too. Though there’s really nothing particularly risqué about a girl in a bikini holding a guitar, some of the images are probably NSFW. YAY!
 

Aria Pro II ad.
 

One of the girls from guitar maker Dean and their series of ads featuring scantily clad ladies. This one is known as the Dean “Rip Girl.”

More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Super bizarre fully-functional ‘mermaid’ guitar


The ‘Mermaid’ guitar. Built by world-renowned Luthier, Andy Mason.
 
Andy Mason, the artist and musician responsible for this gorgeous yet completely bizarre fully-functional guitar in the shape of a mermaid, built his first guitar in 1967 using whatever materials he was able to find in his father’s garage. And ever since the incredibly talented luthier (the proper title for person/craftsman who makes stringed instruments), has made everything from lutes to mandolins—as well as a series of guitars for John Paul Jones and Jimmy Page of few of which were of the elegantly showboaty double-necked variety that Page was especially well-known for playing.

Mason’s life-sized “Mermaid” guitar took three years to build and is comprised of nineteen different types of wood and according to Mason requires a guitarist with “sensuous posture” to be successfully played. In 2006 Mason put the guitar up for auction and it was reportedly sold for £5000 or about $9,500 U.S. dollars with half of the proceeds going to Harvest Help, a charitable organization that provides support for farmers in rural Africa. While I won’t be the first person to say that it is an indisputable work of art, it also possesses some odd characteristics, such as a realistic looking face sporting an expression which is unmistakably orgasmic in nature. Also strangely contemplative is how the mermaid/guitar mashup looks while it’s inside its custom case—as it takes on a much creepier vibe because it looks a person being laid to rest inside a coffin. Yikes.
 

 

 
More mermaid after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Groovy vintage ads for classic guitars
01.12.2017
09:02 am

Topics:
Advertising
Music

Tags:
vintage ads
guitars


 
Inspired by a recent post on reverb.com, I jumped down an Internet rabbit hole of vintage guitar ads. Naturally, there’s a ton of wonderful stuff to be found, and I was surprised, despite how niche a market these ads were trying to reach, at how little they differ in look and tone from any other ads of their times. ‘50s ads tended to be bland product shots surrounded by expository text, by the mid-‘60s ads started getting more creative, and ‘70s ads were often rainbow-hued blowouts executed by illustrators who owed their livelihoods to Milton Glaser. Which is basically to say that a lot of them could just as easily have been ads for cars or small appliances. Why this surprised me, I don’t know—they were crafted by the same agencies, using the same broad theories as to what worked, as all other ads. (And if those cultural transitions interest you, I cannot recommend Thomas Frank’s The Conquest of Cool

What follows is culled from countless online sources. I’ve tried to keep them roughly in chronological order, but not all of them were possible to date. Of particular interest—the Vox and Domino ads below boast the most out-there instrument designs, but due to their vintage they’re the most conservative ad designs, and Fender ads from the ‘70s were especially lysergic, in a study-hall kinda way.
 

Domino, early ‘60s
 

Vox, 1964
 
More vintage guitar ads after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
Lord of the Strings: Guitar wizard Harvey Thomas and his Infernal Music Machines
07.26.2016
01:20 pm

Topics:
Art
Music

Tags:
guitars
Harvey Thomas


 
Thanks to Timothy L. Olsen for this wonderful remembrance of guitar-making legend Harvey Thomas.

Remember what the term “Japanese guitar” used to mean, back when Beatniks roamed the earth and Elvis was still kinda nasty?

The Beatles hadn’t landed and I was in the third grade when my big brother Jim brought home a brand new Japanese guitar. Loosely modeled after a classic, it was already caving in from the load of its steel strings. You don’t see them like this anymore, man. Painted-on binding, decal rosette, door skin luan plywood, basswood (or worse) neck, nice sharp ends on those rough brass frets. I was totally fascinated.

But the word fascination found new meaning a year later when my even bigger brother Dick came home from college with what might as well have been the Messiah Stradivarius. It was a very plain, small-bodied New York-era Epiphone archtop with a badly repaired crack running the full length of the soundboard, and he had bought it cheap in a pawn shop. The hand of mortal man never created such perfection. This was a gift from the angels! Oh, the lovely dissonances that it spoke as I whanged it with a juice glass slide! When Dick was begged, he would strum “Who Threw the Overalls in Mrs. Murphy’s Chowder?

The tenor of my lutherie career was set then and there, as I rushed headlong into the construction of a series of rash and ignorant experiments. The first one to produce a musical note involved bolting the neck of a smashed Gene Autry guitar to a hunk of plywood. By now I was in the 5th grade and the Baby Boom generation was wild about electric guitars thanks to the Mop Tops and other invading Anglos. I made a major life decision to build an electric bass from scratch.

I designed an instrument based on my limited available technology and even more limited engineering savvy, featuring a body made of a sandwich of miscellaneous plywood slabs and a neck which instead of fitting into a slot, surrounded the body like a clothespin. I got the neck fretted, having marked the fret locations on a piece of paper at a music store, then transferring the marks to the oak fretboard, resplendent with 3/4” dowel fret markers.
 

There I am, a fat fifth grader with my plywood guitar and very big dreams. Harvey to the left, and Harvey’s guitars, including the famous Maltese Cross model, hung along the ceiling. That’s my big sister Ruth on the right in the racing stripe jacket, looking at the Hanged Man dummy.

I got hung up trying to find a pickup. Remember, this was before the Summer of Love. The man at the music store didn’t have access to anything other than those chrome DeArmonds that were used for electrifying archtops. I was persistent and doubtless pitiable. Finally the music store man, against his better judgement it seemed, relented:

“Listen, kid. There’s a guy out in Midway that makes guitars. He’ll have what you need. But I’m warning you, he’s a real character, and I won’t promise that he’ll sell you a pickup. He might like you or he might not.”

Now I had to convince my mom to drive me 25 miles to Midway to see a guy who might or might not like me, and might or might not help me. The thought of not going never occurred to me. A man who makes guitars. This was about the most wonderful thought that had yet crossed my young mind. It is still a pretty thrilling idea, come to think of it. A man who makes guitars!
 

 
It took a while to talk her into it, but eventually mom and I were heading north on Highway 99 in the ‘49 Chevy. Midway isn’t really a place, it’s just mid way between Seattle and Tacoma. And this wasn’t really even in Midway. We found the cross street, and turned onto a small road. About a block later a wooden sign with the stenciled word “Thomas” pointed down a pair of ruts bumping off through deep puddles, apparently to nowhere. We followed obediently.

On the right, a heap of rusted and crumpled metal that may once have been a pickup truck of ‘30s vintage held a large sign saying “Bargain. Needs Paint.” We arrived at a modern, low slung, one story house, what you call a “rambler.” It seemed strangely out of place in the swampy, scrub-tree setting. The iron gate held signs warning of dire consequences to trespassers, and to those who dared to block the driveway. A woman looking something like Loretta Lynn told us that Mr. Thomas was out on an errand, but that we could wait in the living room.
 
Wild tales and even wilder guitars after the jump

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Have you ever wondered what 100 effects pedals all chained together would sound like?
03.02.2016
01:07 pm

Topics:
Pop Culture

Tags:
guitars


 
Nick Reinhart of the experimental rock/jazz/ambient combo Tera Melos and well-regarded session bassist Juan Alderete de la Peña decided to chain together 100 effects pedals to see what it would sound like.

If you want to do this at home, you will immediately realize that, in addition to the shortfall in effects pedals you might have, you also don’t have nearly enough cables. So the video starts with them unboxing a bunch of Mogami cables.

In order to conduct the experiment, it was necessary to perform an incantation of specific runic phrases, such as “Radical Delay,” “Thrashmaster,” “Mantic Flex Pro” (signed by Adrian Belew!), and “Twin Cam Chorus.”

Spoiler: It don’t sound like Rachmaninoff.

It takes them a while to get to the full 100-pedal sound, so if you want to skip to that you can jump to about the 16:30 mark. But the setting up is pretty engaging, so I recommend just letting it play.
 

 
via FACT
 

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
‘Doctor Who’ theme recreated with just a guitar and Electro-Harmonix effect pedals
The Electric Prunes want to tell you all about the fabulous new ‘Wah-Wah’ pedal

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
‘Gigerstein’: The extraordinary guitar that H.R. Giger designed for Blondie’s Chris Stein
05.26.2015
12:31 pm

Topics:
Art
Music

Tags:
Chris Stein
H.R. Giger
guitars


 
A few days ago VICE ran an interesting interview with Chris Stein of Blondie on the subject of his close friendship with the masterful Swiss artist H.R. Giger. Stein was heavily involved with Debbie Harry’s first solo album, KooKoo, for which Giger supplied the incredibly memorable cover art, with Harry’s face seemingly punctured by several large acupuncture needles.
 

 
Stein was very fond of Giger, who died about a year ago, calling him “a really sweet guy.” Stein said that he owns a throne that Giger designed: “It’s one of a very few in the country. The seat cushion rotted completely at one point and he gave me a second seat cushion, which is starting to rot. It was made from foam rubber.”

I was poking around on Stein’s own website dedicated to Blondie information when I spied a reference to “Gigerstein,” identified as follows: “Chris’ custom GIGERSTEIN guitar, designed with the help of H. R. Giger and Chris himself.” Sure enough, click on the link and you arrive at the web page for Lieber Guitars, which indeed has plenty of information and pics about this remarkable guitar.

According to the page,
 

The asymmetrical bio-mechanical body is hand carved in wood. It is adorned with carbon graphite, assorted biological materials and bronze castings.

The neck and six-fingered “peg-hand” comprise unidirectional carbon graphite fiber. A unique construction feature is the integral molding of the neck and fingerboard.

 
The Lieber Guitars page that highlights the instrument is a little vague on who actually designed this guitar. It would be enough for it to be “based on” the incredibly distinctive artworks of Giger, but if Giger had a hand in the design of the guitar itself, well, then that’s even better. Two consecutive sentences flesh out the details here: “After [Thomas] Lieber’s careful study of Giger’s artworks, the concept of using an Alien’s hand for the peg-head was realized and several body depictions were rendered.” Okay, so Lieber was on his own, it seems. But then we read on: “In an artistic meeting, Giger, Chris and Lieber hammered out the final modifications and details and the result is truly a work of art.” So it was mainly Lieber’s design but Giger definitely, according to the guitar maker, was involved in the process of creating this singular guitar.

More information as well as these pictures can be found at the Lieber Instruments website.
 

 

 
More looks at Gigerstein after the jump…

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment