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Apr 23

Fender article

from Fender.com-

The first weekend of Coachella was jam-packed with a wide-range of artists covering several different genres of music, from rock to punk to country and nearly everything in between.

And more often than not, bands were playing their Fender gear, bringing a lot of interesting instruments to the stage.

Although there were some arguments over which to pick, we’ve compiled a list of five Fender guitars that stood out from the pack, rare and eye-catching pieces that require a closer look.

Allah

Spencer Dunham of the surf-influenced Los Angeles psych-rock band Allah-Lahs held down the low-end with a vintage-looking Mustang Bass.

The creaky old instrument had a dark green finish with a matching headstock and blue racing stripes. And you can almost see what’s underneath that, as various chips and wear spots have exposed parts of the wood underneath.


 

gearSaber

It was an early set for Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger on Friday – the first of the day at Coachella’s Outdoor Theatre – and guitarist Robbie Mangano rocked out on his red flame top Stratocaster with a rosewood fingerboard. It was such a beautiful instrument that it shined brightly amid the afternoon sun.


 

wardrugs

The War on Drugs frontman Adam Granduciel pulled out an amazing Japanese 12-string Stratocaster midway through his band’s soaring Friday set.

Granduciel actually came across the instrument in Asheville, N.C. and knew he had to take it home.

“It’s so sick, and it plays so sweet,” he told Guitar World about the 12-stringer. “I went into this guitar store in town to pick up some strings for a friend and I saw this white 12-string. I was like, ‘You gotta be shitting me!” I had to get it.’”


 

gearSturgill

Outlaw country crooner Sturgill Simpson typically plays an acoustic guitar in a live setting, but his sideman Laur Joamet is an avowed Telecaster man.

And when the band performed on Sunday at the Gobi Tent, Joamet wielded his 1974 Tele that he bought about 10 years ago in Estonia. As the story goes, it was in rough shape when he got it, but after a little TLC, it’s been his main axe for a long time. Note how the control panel is flipped, a modification that allows him to play pedal steel swells more easily.


 

Touche Amore Fender

Touché Amoré guitarist Nick Steinhardt drew oohs and aahs for his American Vintage Jazzmaster. The shimmering gem is stock except for its unique Royal Blue Sparkle finish, a great look for the post-hardcore band.

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Apr 21

from Fendercustomshop.com-

For the discerning player with an eye for beauty, Artisan series instruments are works of art crafted with purity of design in mind. Each instrument blends high-end appointments with original-era features for a one-of-a-kind Custom Shop experience. From exotic tone woods to handwound pickups, no design touch is too ornate, yet each instrument is distinctly Fender.

The Artisan Okoume Stratocaster is a perfect combination of striking form and legendary Fender functionality. Mesmerizing in looks and sound, its ’56 Strat® body is crafted from premium okoume and finished in classic chocolate sunburst. Featuring a comfortable 10/56 “V” profile, the bird’s-eye maple neck is “roasted” to a dark caramel color to match the body’s edges and finished with nitrocellulose lacquer for ultimate breathability and feel. Complete with gold hardware, a trio of handwound single-coil ’69 Strat pickups and a wealth of cosmetic upgrades, each unique model is a feast for eyes and ears alike.

Other features include a 9.5″-radius maple fingerboard with 21 vintage tall frets and bone nut, headstock with gold foil Fender logo, gold American Vintage Strat bridge, ’50s-style truss rod adjustment, vintage-correct knobs and parchment pickguard, five-way switching and more.

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The Artisan Series Okoume Telecaster is a perfect combination of striking form and legendary Fender functionality. Mesmerizing in looks and sound, its ’52 Tele® body is crafted from premium okoume and finished in classic chocolate sunburst. Featuring a comfortable 10/56 “V” profile, the bird’s-eye maple neck is “roasted” to a dark caramel color to match the body’s edges and finished with nitrocellulose lacquer for ultimate breathability and feel. Complete with gold hardware, a pair of handwound single-coil ’58 Tele pickups and a wealth of cosmetic upgrades, each unique model is a feast for eyes and ears alike.

Other features include a 9.5″-radius maple fingerboard with 21 vintage tall frets and bone nut, headstock with gold foil Fender logo, specially designed RSD Tele® bridge, ’50s-style truss rod adjustment, vintage-correct knobs and parchment pickguard, three-way switching and more.

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Feel free to contact us at sales@themusiczoo.com or call 516-626-9292 to order any one of these guitars! Head on over to our Fender Custom Shop section to have a look at the Fenders we have in stock!

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Apr 11

Michael Lee Firkins Main

Michael Lee Firkins is one of those guitarists that happens to slip under the radar when talking about game-changing players. With his versatility, and out-of-the-way licks, Michael Lee Firkins is one of the most intriguing players we’ve seen…

Like most of the progressive-thinking guitar players we’ve showcased, Firkins was born into music. With a mother who was a pianist and a lap-steel guitar playing father, Firkins was destined to stumble upon something musical. Lucky for us, that something was the guitar.

Firkins began playing the acoustic at the age of eight, latching on to the works of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, and AC/DC after taking lessons at a local music store. It wasn’t until 1979 that Firkins began his quest with the electric guitar; a Gibson SG paired with a Princeton Reverb to be exact. Inevitably, as his stylistic interest started to expand, so did his influences; jamming along to the musical works of Chet Atkins, Albert Lee, and Danny Gatton. It wasn’t long before Firkins began borrowing a few techniques from Jeff Beck and others to create a slide-effect using the tremolo bar. This identifiable sound and perpetual desire to play the guitar led him to put together a 5-song demo of completely instrumental tracks. The demo would make it into the hands of Guitar Player Magazine talent scout, Mike Varney. Needless to say, Varney would go on to signing Firkins immediately.

Michael_Lee_Firkins_-_1990_-_Michael_Lee_FirkinsCome 1990, Firkins would release a debut self-titled album on Shrapnel Records. The album showcased Firkins’s signature slide-esque sound with some shred flavoring. The album was truly the best of both worlds, and was widely received. It would go on to sell more than 100,000 copies, landing him with a number of accolades for the work. Firkins’s most prestigious award would be won in Europe where he would accept an Edison award (Holland’s version of a Grammy).

Firkins’s combination of hybrid picking and tremolo bar techniques creates a truly captivating sound that we have yet to hear from anyone else. The genesis of Michael Lee Firkins as a Shrapnel artist can be vividly represented by the Hot Licks videos MichaelLeeFirkins_photo05still lurking around YouTube. With the groove and punchiness of a Greg Howe, charisma of a Scott Henderson, and a sound and style all his own, Michael Lee Firkins was and still is the total package. Ironically, in addition to his fantastic slide-emulation technique, Firkins uses a slide in exceptional fashion as well, and can be heard in his later works. The albums that would follow his self-titled debut would also lend themselves to his astounding versatility, showcasing his effortless ability to delve into other musical genres; most notably Rock fusion and Jazz. The greatest part about his playing is his seamless ability to allude to other styles. Every once in a while he’ll surprise you with a jazzy phrase here and there to remind you.

In early years, Firkins could be found toting a Yamaha MichaelLeeFirkins_600Pacifica with a maple fretboard, but can now be seen using a variety of Fenders including a custom-built resonator Telecaster, a 1957 reissue Stratocaster, and a 2003 reissue Fender Nocaster.

With 7 solo-albums to date, and a number of collaborations and features on the works of countless artists, Michael Lee Firkins shows no signs of putting down the instrument any time soon. Furthermore, we urge you all to give a listen to his self-titled album, “Chapter-Eleven”, and “Yep”. But if you have the free time, you’d might as well listen to them all (you’ll thank us). Below is a clip from his Hot Licks instructional video from 1990. Also have a look at a more recent video from his performance at Fender’s Kickoff Event in Anaheim, California. Watch them and tell us what you think of this monster player! Remember to keep an eye on our page for more “Guitarists To Know”!

-Written by Walter Bryant

Sources: http://www.michaelleefirkins.com/

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Apr 01

PAY-jimi-hendrix-guitar-auction-main

There’s been a trend of expensive guitars making headlines lately. From the Gibson “Black Beauty” purchased by Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay, to the $2 million diamond encrusted Gibson SG put together by Coronet and Gibson Guitars. Now, a 1964 Fender Stratocaster once owned by the legendary Jimi Hendrix, is projected to sell for a hefty $750,000. The guitar was in the possession of Jimi’s brother, Leon. However, due to health concerns, Leon has decided to let the guitar go. Now the probable $750k selling price will get you the original case that Hendrix toured with at the time of his hits Hey Joe, Purple Haze, and The Wind Cries Mary. That price tag seems even heavier when you consider the fact that Mr. Hendrix only paid $370 for it back in the day. Factor in inflation and the legacy of one of the most influential guitarists of all time, and that figure begins to make a little sense. Either way, we’re going to sit back and see if Jim Irsay snags this one too, we won’t be surprised if he does.

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Mar 05

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As the first release from Fenders “10 for ’15” campaign, the American Vintage ’70s Hardtail Strat is definitely a great way to kick off the collection! Fender instruments have a storied history and are renowned for 
their collectability and their ability to be configured in unique combinations. 10 very special instruments simultaneously illustrating both points, will be released this year from Fender. These guitars, developed under Fender’s most creative minds and talented builders, are sure to become sought-after collector’s items. Read below for more info on the first of this slew of amazing guitars to be released this year!

from Fender-

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The mid ’70s saw the widespread popularity of the non-tremolo—or “hardtail”—Stratocaster, so we dedicated the true look and vibe of the Limited Edition American Vintage ’70s Hardtail Stratocaster to that era. Hardtail guitars are a great option for tuning stability, but they also have their own distinct sound—with more body mass, a string-through-body bridge, and no harmonic overtones from the tremolo block and springs, they’re Stratocaster models that truly have a sonic and stylistic identity all their own.

FEATURES
  • Maple neck with modern “C” profile and “large” headstock
  • 9.5″-radius maple fingerboard with 22 jumbo frets
  • Three American Vintage ’70s Stratocaster single-coil pickups
  • Five-way pickup switch
  • Black pickguard, control knobs and pickup switch tip
  • Vintage-style string-through-body hard-tail bridge
  • Comes in Black or 3-Color Sunburst

While you’re here, don’t forget to have a look at our entire stock of Fender guitars while you’re here!

Watch the Video Below of this awesome guitar in action!

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Feb 19

Fender vw gti

Considerably the ideal automobile for the modern gigging musician, the new Volkswagen GTI has most of everything a guitar player needs and wants in a car; space, comfort, sportiness, and a kickin’ sound system! Motor Trend Magazine recently released an article showcasing the new model as well as glorifying the “Convergence of Cars & Guitars” over the years. But what makes this VW GTI so special is it’s Fender Premium Audio package, which provides the incredibly clear and powerful sound experience you need to get in the zone while on your way to your next show. You can get this system on a number of vehicles in Volkswagen’s lineup.

Rory Jornecka, writer at Motor Trend, also goes on to explain his dual hobbies of car and guitar obsession in the article, which is humorous considering many of us at The Zoo share the same habits. Between Music Zoo owner Tommy Colletti’s SRT-8 Jeep Grand Cherokee, and Walt’s (photographer/blogger) stanced VW Golf MKV, it’s not hard to see that The Music Zoo is full of gear-heads. Furthermore, this article features some great photos and information on the new GTI as well as past Fender advertisements showcasing Car/Guitar collaborations. You can read the full Motor Trend article by clicking here! Also, be sure to check out  our inventory of Fender guitars on our site to quench your guitar thirst!

gti trunk open fender amp

vw mk7 trunk fender

fender vw speaker

 

 

Photos from Motor Trend Magazine

 

 

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Feb 10

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If you weren’t watching The Walking Dead this past Sunday, there’s a good chance you were probably tuned in to the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. But aside from the actual awards, we couldn’t help but notice the variety of guitars that graced the stage this year; from Ed Sheeran’s signature Taylor, to John Mayer’s Jackson Soloist. If the performances didn’t entertain us, we sure got a kick out of seeing the guitars that popped up. Have a look at the images below to see the guitars that made an appearance!

 

Eric Church’s Gibson Hummingbird

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Brandy Clark’s Martin

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Dwight Yoakam’s Gibson L-200

The 57th Annual GRAMMY Awards - Show

 

Ed Sheeran’s Fender Strat

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Ed Sheeran’s Taylor Signature & Jeff Lynne’s Gibson Les Paul

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Angus Young’s Gibson SG

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Beck’s Martin Acoustic

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Hozier’s Gretsch

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Juanes and his Sadowsky Guitar

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John Mayer’s Pink Jackson Soloist

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Paul McCartney’s Taylor

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Images courtesy of Getty Images

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Jan 27


NAMM2015: Fender Custom Shop Master Builder John Cruz, who is normally known for his vintage and relic works has changed it up quite a bit on this one. In an effort to showcase his artistic style and range of musical genres (Metal!) he, along with Fender Custom Shop debuted the Zombie Stratocaster at NAMM 2015. Think of it as a tribute to the highly popular AMC series The Walking Dead. The horror themed artwork on this guitar, which even allows for the flame to come thru, was done by Joaquin Lopez and is both vivid and disturbing – in a good way of course! Check out the video below to see John Cruz describe this amazing and one-of-a-kind Strat! Check out our amazing selection of Fender Custom Shop guitars here.

 

Specs:

2 piece ash body Quilted Maple Chambered

4A Flame Maple Neck

Pickups: EVH Humbuckers

Floyd Rose Original Tremolo with titanium upgraded parts and blocks

Burst finish with custom artwork by Joaquin Lopez

Custom inlays with spears and skulls

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Jan 22

 

Fender custom shop patchwork guitar stratocaster

NAMM2015 This beautifully unique Clown Patch Active Strat Master Built by Dale Wilson really caught our eye at the Fender Custom Shop Special Event at NAMM 2015! We were lucky enough to get our hands on this active Strat that boasts a beautiful multi-colored laquer finish along with a Clapton “V” neck shape and electronics. Have a look at the specs and additional info on this guitar below! This one-of-a-kind guitar is available for pre-order through us by contacting our sales staff via email at sales@themusiczoo.com. Stay tuned to our blog…we are excited to show you what’s next!

 

Specs:

 

Masterbuilt by Dale Wilson

Alder Body

Multi-Colored Laquer Finish

1-Piece Maple Neck

7.25 Radius

Vintage Frets

Clapton “V” Neck Shape

Handwound Strat Fat 50’s Pickups

Clapton Electronics

½ Power Active Circuit

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Jan 21

sand blasted stratocaster fender

NAMM2015 Fender is introducing a load of new styles for this year, among the lot are these new limited edition models featuring a head-turning sand-blasted finish. These guitars and basses have a rough-hewn look and feel and solid ash body. They’re all equipped with American standard pickups as well. If interested in pre-ordering any of these instruments, feel free to contact our sales staff via email at sales@themusiczoo.com or calling 516-626-9292. Check out the photos straight from the Fender booth at NAMM below!

 

Fender Limited Edition Sand-Blasted Stratocaster 

-Maple Fingerboard

-Sapphire Blue Transparent

Sand blasted fender 2015 namm

 

Fender Limited Edition Sand-Blasted Jazz Bass

-Maple Fingerboard

-Crimson Stain or Sapphire Blue Transparent

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Fender Limited Edition Sand-Blasted Telecaster 

-Maple Fingerboard

-Sapphire Blue Transparent

Sand blasted fender 2015 namm

 

Fender Limited Edition Sand-Blasted Stratocaster 

-Maple Fingerboard

-Crimson Stain

Sand blasted fender 2015 namm

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