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Mick and Keith: Longtime Producer Don Was Dishes On The Rolling Stones’ High-Voltage Chemistry

Russell Hall
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10.24.2007

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Fine album though it is, Mick Jagger’s just-released solo compilation serves to remind that nothing the singer has recorded on his own matches his work within the Rolling Stones. The secrets to the Stones’ chemistry are elusive and multi-faceted—tomes have been written on the subject—but no one’s gotten a view of the band’s inner workings quite like record producer Don Was. Beginning with 1994’s Voodoo Lounge, Was has occupied a producer’s seat for each of the Stones’ studio albums. In the following interview, he shares some insight into how the world’s most legendary band achieves its distinctive sound.
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Gibson Tone Tips: Pick A Winner

Dave Hunter
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10.24.2007

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There’s a little tidbit of tonal tweakage that is entirely within every player’s power to modify at will, without risk to guitar, amp or effects, without voiding any warrantees, and at very little expense. Simultaneously, this item is one of the most underappreciated tools in the tone arsenal. I’m talking about the humble pick, brothers and sisters, that little triangle of semi-rigid material that sets your strings a-humming. Picks—or plectrums—of different sizes, shapes, and thicknesses, and which are made of different materials, all exhibit different sounds. Gibson Gear offers a wide selection of Gibson picks, all of which are available through your authorized dealer, and of course you can experiment with a myriad of other makes and styles of picks to alter the tone of your Gibson guitar. And flesh—bare fingertips—offers a different sound alternative still. Since the pick or fingertip’s contact with the string or strings is where it all begins, this is really the first ingredient in the sonic stew.
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On the Road with KISS: Guitar Tech Francis Stueber Talks to Gibson (Podcast!)

Sean McDevitt
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10.24.2007

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“If Paul goes out of tune, it’s not his fault, it’s my fault,” says Francis Stueber, referring matter-of-factly to one of his many responsibilities as guitar technician for KISS’s Paul Stanley, with whom he’s worked closely since 2002. “Usually I change his guitar every four to five songs so he doesn’t have to worry about going out of tune. It’s pretty straightforward with KISS; Paul only plays one tuning and he plays no more than six guitars. Really the only reason I change guitars is for aesthetics.”
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Gov’t Mule and Grace Potter Rock Nashville (Free MP3 Download!)

Ted Drozdowski
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10.23.2007

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Warren Haynes looks like his guitar sounds: big and burly with no shortage of fuzz. But like an NFL linebacker who studies ballet to improve his game, the Gov’t Mule frontman tempers his sonic brawn with plenty of flexibility and grace. He pushed those virtues to the fore during the Mule’s concert with openers Grace Potter and the Nocturnals at Nashville’s War Memorial on October 18, 2007—a wild improvisational journey that ricocheted between the past and present of his band’s boundless catalogue by roving from brass-knuckled rock to unfettered psychedelia to reggae to hard-core blues.
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Gram Parsons: Live at the Avalon Ballroom 1969 with The Flying Burrito Brothers and his Gibson Hummingbird

Josh Baron
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10.23.2007

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Just when you thought you’d heard the last of wild, gone-too-soon, drugged-out troubadour Gram Parsons, up pops one more offering from the legendary cosmic country crooner: Gram Parsons Archives Vol. 1: The Flying Burrito Brothers Live at the Avalon Ballroom 1969, a dual-disc release with 27 of the best live Parsons tracks yet. A pioneer and lightning rod of the country-rock movement that would later morph into alt-country, Parsons’ time was short, but his music continues to be a fundamental influence on artists as varied as Emmylou Harris to Ryan Adams. He was only 26 when he died of a drug overdose in 1973, but Parsons had already managed to mold the kind of music career others only dream about.
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Jimmy Page Awarded the "Living Legend Award" at Classic Rock Magazines - Roll of Honour 2007 sponsored by Gibson Guitar

10.23.2007

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Gibson proudly sponsored the highly coveted Living Legend award at this year’s Classic Rock Magazine's Roll of Honour Awards. The Living Legend award went to Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page. The prestigious awards were held at London’s Landmark Hotel.
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The Perfect Guitar for the Perfect Player: The Graceful Marriage of a Gibson and a Legendary Player

Nicole Keiper
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10.22.2007

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Zeroing in on the instrument that’ll capture the exact sound you’ve set your mind on is a lot like finding love. Lots of trial and error, lots of patience. Former Taking Back Sunday guitarist Fred Mascherino found his perfect match some years back—his beloved Gibson SG Special. He did it intentionally, and economically, hitting one of those sprawling, well-stocked instrument retailers and playing every single guitar in the store until he felt a spark. “I knew there was a sound I was looking for, I just wasn’t getting that,” the now-The Color Fred singer/guitarist says. “So it was a search I went on.” You might narrow your search a little, though, by eyeing some famous players who found their stringed soulmate and focusing in on why the match worked so well.
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Gibson Recommends The Cribs (Free MP3 Stream!)

Aidin Vaziri
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10.22.2007

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Now here’s a band who knows how to put on a decent live show. The Cribs heckle their fans, set off riots on a whim, and don’t think twice about engaging in the kind of deranged behavior that leads to serious, often life-threatening injuries, all in the name of entertainment. At one show, the entire front row turned around to protest the greasy British pop-punk trio’s unruly behavior. At another, lead singer and guitarist Ryan Jarman took off his shirt and dove headfirst into the pit where he was promptly mistaken by the venue’s bouncers for a rabid fan, causing quite the impressive tussle.
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The Redwalls and The ES-335 Reinvigorate Classic Pop Rock

Russell Hall
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10.22.2007

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Coming of age in the mid ’90s, the Redwalls’ Logan Baren and Andrew Langer knew one thing for certain: they wanted no part of the post-Nirvana grunge sound that prevailed at the time. “It seemed like there were just 10 bands in existence, all trying to sound like Pearl Jam,” says Langer, who plays lead guitar for the Chicago-based group. “It was like a 10th generation version of what the Seattle bands initially set out to do. There was a lot of crap.” “That music was bad,” agrees Baren, who handles lead vocals and rhythm guitar. “We didn’t want anything to do with it.”
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Endeverafter: Pete Wentz and Bret Michaels Are Fans. What Will Everyone Else Think?

David Sprague
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10.19.2007

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Los Angeles-based combo Endeverafter harks back to the days when bands played hard, drank hard, and often had a hard time steering clear of overnight stints in the slammer. Michael Grant, the prime mover behind the quartet, has a blues-inflected wail that carries traces of Cinderella’s Tom Keifer, not to mention Axl Rose—influences that’ve already endeared the band to contemporaries as varied as Bret Michaels, Fall Out Boy, Trapt, and Fuel, all of whom they’ve shared stages with in recent months. Endeverafter’s excellent debut album, Kiss or Kill, hits stores this month. Though it’s Endeverafter’s first full-length effort, Grant says it’s been a long time coming. “I’ve become much more in tune with the songwriting craft,” he says. “I got a lot of aggression out during the era when I was in all those death metal bands. There’s still aggression here, but it’s more sexual, more sensual—and that’s a lot more fun than fighting any day.”
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