Here’s the December roundup of gear that has captured our staff’s attention most recently at Mass St Music!
Tim Nelson – Collings CJ Customs (yes, all of them)
CJ MH SS SB – Sitka top – this one is warm and sweet sounding.
CJ MH A SS SB – Adirondack top – this one is very punchy and a little brighter than the Sitka CJ.
CJ Maple G SB – German Spruce top and Maple back and sides – this one has the brightest trebles of the three. Even though it is bright, I don’t find the trebles distracting and the upper mid range on this guitar is stellar. It’s a very forward sounding guitar and is really responsive to even a light touch. I am so excited to have all three of these guitars in stock at the same time. All are killer sounding guitars and have a new (for Collings) bracing pattern based on the vintage J-35 that our own Jim Baggett sent to Bill Collings – which has non-scalloped X bracing and three transverse braces. (Note: Gibson also made some J-35s with scalloped bracing and two transverse braces as well). I was hoping for an even responding guitar with a nice natural compression and I am very pleased with all three of these CJs.
Matthew Khomsi – Fender 60th Anniversary P Bass
This is my favorite passive P bass Fender has made in a long time. The pickups are very balanced and the neck feels comfortable and fast. It’s also got the Fender tuners I really like which stay in tune, their new high mass bridge and the new washer underneath the “a” string tuner which keeps it from buzzing. I really enjoy playing this bass.
Alek Nelson – Mono Guitar Strap
The new Mono straps are great – they have a wide design that distributes the weight evenly and a thin memory-foam core that makes it really comfortable whether your instrument is heavy or not. Plus they look awesome. This is on my Christmas list for sure!
Matt Harmon – Repair Shop – Xotic EP Booster
Awesome tones in such a small package thanks to the internal dip switches. My favorite setting was with the gain knob set at 12 o’clock with dip switch 1 off and switch 2 on.
Mike Horan – Repair Shop – Collings CJ MhA SS SB
We’ve just received three new very special Collings CJs. They all share several custom features and my favorite is the CJ MhA SS SB. Based on one of Jim Baggett’s favorite Gibson J-35s, Collings has mimicked the bracing pattern, tonewoods, short scale length, and the straight bridge with a cut-through saddle of a vintage Gibson. This may be the ultimate modern slope-shouldered D guitar—uncharacteristically dry-sounding for a Collings, each note has a really strong fundamental tone with volume to spare. I wish it were mine….
Jesse Roberts – Collings MT Custom GT Mandola
As a viola player, I was really excited to see this Mandola on the wall. Of course, it’s visually perfect (it’s a Collings), but more importantly its sound is truly unique. The lower range creates a very interesting timbre, and it is rich, rich, rich. It has a full, resonant, even booming tone, yet still finds a way to be pronounced and clear. It does stretch out the hand a bit, but is easy to play and hard to put down.
Anne Tangeman – Gretsch G5122 Semi Hollowbody
I’ve been thinking about replacing a hollowbody I had stolen a few years back – it sounded great live, but was also a lot of fun to just play around the house. This is a real contender for a replacement, with a nice weight and great pickups.