The home of Sweaty Spice, the 'other' Spice Girl

Since I am on a music kick lately, I thought I would recount my history of electric guitars. The first one I had was a really cheap beginner guitar, with a shitty amplifier. Alas, it was terrible, and I quickly borrowed a guitar to learn on.

The Ibanez V

The first guitar that I owned was an early 1980’s Ibanez Flying V style guitar. It was red, with gold hardware, and I seem to recall that my Mother bought it for me for my birthday.

The style of my first guitar
The style of my first guitar

It had a “floating” tremolo bar, and was virtually impossible to keep both tune, and to keep in tune. Literally it was extremely frustrating to play, even my guitar teacher struggled to get it in tune.

I played with this for a couple of years, then I got really frustrated, and bought my second guitar.

The Charvel Model 4

Circa 1986 I spied a great guitar hanging on the wall at a local music store. Charvel had a great reputation, and in this era there were three grades. The US made versions were quite pricey, the mid range was made in Japan, and the cheapest versions were made in Korea.

The Charvel Model 4. Mine was black
The Charvel Model 4. Mine was black

I bought a Model 4, made in Japan, and it came with Jackson electronics, active pickups, and it was smoking. Amazingly versatile, and since I was into heavy metal, it was just perfect for what I was playing at the time.

It had fat, tall frets, a thin neck, and was blazingly fast to play. A bolt on neck, it was choice, and I played the hell out of it.

The guitar came with a Kahler tremolo, and locking nut. It was a breeze to tune and keep in tune, and for over 20 years it was my main guitar. Eventually, I sold it to a friend of my wife’s when we moved from Tucson, and he did some fret work, and continued to play it. Still a pretty sweet guitar.

The Fender MIM Telecaster

In the early aughts, I began playing out with some friends, and we were jamming a lot of hard core blues. I wanted to get a better classic clues sound, and thus I splurged on a made in Mexico Telecaster.

It was a bit thin in tone, so I dropped a set of EMG active pickups into it, and it really opened up the guitar. It was a pretty simple setup, and quite playable. But it wasn’t really something that I really enjoyed playing. I ended up selling it to an old colleague who was looking for a good starter guitar for his son for Christmas one year, and it went to a good home.

The Tom Anderson Guitar Works Droptop

In 2006 or so, I got a pretty good bonus at work, and I got the permission to drop a couple of grand on a new guitar. I found a lightly used 1999 vintage Tom Anderson Guitarworks “Droptop” in red flamed maple with the mahogany neck.

One sweet axe
One sweet axe

It is a “Strat” style guitar, bolt on neck, with a super comfortable neck, that is both thin, and has a large radius fretboard, that is a dream to play. The electronics are passive, but they are super quiet, and extremely versatile. I am able to dial in just about any tone, and the push-pull tone pot in the middle switch position rolls off the frequency response, and give a nice “honk” sound.

I got a good setup done for it in Tucson, and to this day, it still plays like a dream. It hangs on my wall, and I pull it off frequently to play. In fact, I play it more than either of my other two acoustic guitars.

Today

I have only a single electric guitar, the Tom Anderson. It is a joy to play, it is versatile, it can belt out the blues, deliver jangly jazz sounds, crunchy bridge pickup metal, and it delivers great classic rock sounds.

It is comfortable to play, it is my main axe.

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