Good Vibes & Gear
The Heartbeat of Your Guitar
What Are Pickups? At their core, guitar pickups are magnetic devices that capture the vibrations of the guitar strings and convert them into electrical signals. These signals are then sent to your amplifier, shaping the sound that emerges from your speakers.
Types of Pickups:
Single-Coil Pickups: Known for their bright and clear tones, single-coil pickups are composed of a single coil of wire wrapped around magnets. Fender Stratocasters are famous for their iconic single-coil sound.
Humbucking Pickups: Humbuckers, with their dual-coil design, are prized for their warm and noise-resistant characteristics. Gibson Les Pauls often feature humbucking pickups, providing a thick and powerful tone.
P-90 Pickups: P-90s sit between single-coils and humbuckers, offering a balance of brightness and warmth. They are often found in guitars like the Gibson SG.
The Murphy Lab Touch
Aging Process: At the heart of the Murphy Lab guitars is the masterful aging process overseen by skilled artisans. Using a combination of vintage techniques and modern innovations, each instrument is carefully distressed to emulate the wear and tear of a well-played vintage guitar.
Nitrocellulose Finishes: The Murphy Lab guitars feature nitrocellulose finishes, allowing the wood to breathe and resonate more freely. The careful application of these finishes not only enhances the tonal characteristics but also contributes to the authentic vintage look.
Authentic Vintage Specs
Pickups and Electronics: Gibson Murphy Lab guitars are equipped with custom-wound pickups that capture the essence of vintage PAF tones. The electronics are wired to vintage specifications, providing players with the authentic sound and responsiveness that defined iconic Gibson guitars of the past.
Historically Accurate Hardware: Every detail matters, and the hardware on Murphy Lab guitars reflects a commitment to historical accuracy. From the meticulously aged bridge and tailpiece to the hand-aged tuners, each component is crafted to transport players to a bygone era.
Exclusive Aging Levels
Ultra Light Aging: For those who prefer a subtle touch, the Ultra Light Aging option offers a delicate relicing that preserves the original charm of the guitar without compromising its pristine appearance.
Heavy Aging: Embrace the allure of a well-loved vintage instrument with the Heavy Aging option. This level of distressing adds character and history to the guitar, creating a visually stunning and sonically resonant instrument.
The Murphy Lab Experience
Limited Editions: Gibson Murphy Lab guitars are released in limited editions, making each instrument a collector's item. The exclusivity adds to the allure of owning a guitar that not only sounds exceptional but also stands as a work of art.
Playability and Tone: Beyond their aesthetics, Murphy Lab guitars are renowned for their exceptional playability and tonal richness. The careful aging process enhances the feel of the neck and contributes to the instrument's overall responsiveness.
The Jaguar: Short Scale Precision
Neck and Scale: The Fender Jaguar is known for its shorter 24-inch scale length, offering a unique playing experience. This shorter scale can make string bending easier, making it a favorite among players who crave a distinctive feel.
Pickups and Controls: Jaguars typically feature single-coil pickups, providing a bright and clear tone. The dual-circuit design allows for a variety of tonal options, with separate controls for each circuit, making it a versatile instrument for different playing styles.
Design Aesthetics: With its offset body shape and distinctive control plate, the Jaguar boasts a sleek and futuristic design that has captivated players since its introduction in the '60s.
The Jazzmaster: Smooth Tones and Artistic Flair
Neck and Scale: In contrast, the Fender Jazzmaster sports a longer 25.5-inch scale length, offering a slightly different feel than the Jaguar. This scale length contributes to a tighter response and extended sustain.
Pickups and Controls: Jazzmasters are equipped with single-coil pickups, known for their warm and mellow tones. The rhythm and lead circuits provide a wide range of tonal possibilities, making the Jazzmaster suitable for various genres.
Design Aesthetics: The Jazzmaster's contoured offset body and distinct chrome-plated metal parts contribute to its vintage aesthetic appeal. It's a guitar that not only sounds great but also looks effortlessly cool on stage.
Jaguar: Ideal for players who crave a shorter scale, easy string bending, and a versatile tonal palette. The Jaguar's unique design and controls make it a standout choice for those looking to push sonic boundaries.
Jazzmaster: Suited for those who appreciate a longer scale, warm tones, and a guitar that effortlessly transitions between genres. The Jazzmaster's classic design and tonal flexibility make it a timeless choice for players seeking sonic richness.
Choosing Your Fender Journey
Ultimately, the choice between the Fender Jaguar and Jazzmaster comes down to personal preference and playing style. Whether you're drawn to the short-scale innovation of the Jaguar or the timeless design and warm tones of the Jazzmaster, both guitars offer a unique journey into the world of Fender craftsmanship.
Explore these iconic models at our store and discover firsthand the sonic landscapes they can unlock. Our knowledgeable staff is here to guide you on your Fender journey, ensuring you find the perfect companion for your musical endeavors. Happy playing!
Just as the seasons change, so can the setup of your guitar. Temperature and humidity fluctuations can impact neck relief and string tension. Consider getting a setup at the beginning of each season to keep your guitar in top condition year-round.
Uneven Fret Wear
One of the key indicators that your guitar needs a setup is uneven fret wear. Over time, strings can dig into the frets, causing uneven surfaces. This not only affects playability but can also lead to intonation issues. A professional setup includes fret leveling and dressing to ensure a smooth and consistent playing surface.
String Buzz and Fretting Out
Experiencing string buzz or fretting out? These issues can be a result of incorrect neck relief or saddle height. A setup will address these issues, adjusting the truss rod and saddle to eliminate buzzing and ensure clean, fretted notes across the entire fretboard.
If you find that playing your guitar has become more challenging than usual, it's a clear sign that a setup is in order. Whether it's high action, stiff strings, or an uncomfortable neck profile, a professional setup can tailor your guitar to your playing style, making it a joy to play once again.
Intonation problems can manifest as chords sounding out of tune, especially higher up the neck. A proper setup involves adjusting the saddle positions to ensure accurate intonation, allowing your guitar to stay in tune across all frets.
Changing String Gauges
Switching to a different string gauge? This change can affect the tension on the neck and the overall setup of your guitar. A professional setup will recalibrate your instrument to accommodate the new strings, ensuring optimal playability and tone.
- Your guitar is an investment in your musical journey, and regular setups are the key to maintaining its peak performance. If you notice any of these signs, don't hesitate – it's time to bring your guitar in for professional guitar setup. Trust us; your fingers will thank you for the smoother playability and improved tone. Keep rocking! -
Understanding the Impact of Cold Weather on Guitars
Winter in Minnesota brings not only freezing temperatures but also dry air, which can have a detrimental impact on your guitar. Wood is highly responsive to changes in humidity, and the lack of moisture can lead to issues such as cracks, warping, and changes in tone. To prevent these problems, it's crucial to take proactive steps to humidify your guitar.
The Ideal Humidity Level
Before we delve into the solutions, let's establish the ideal humidity level for guitars. Generally, a humidity range of 45-55% is considered optimal for most acoustic guitars. However, in extremely dry conditions, such as Minnesota winters, you might want to aim for the higher end of this range to provide an extra buffer against the cold-induced dryness.
Practical Tips for Humidifying Your Guitar
Use a Room Humidifier: Investing in a room humidifier for the space where you store your guitar is a great way to maintain a consistent level of humidity. Place the humidifier near your guitar but not too close to avoid direct contact.
Case Humidifiers: Consider using case humidifiers for acoustic guitars. These small devices are designed to fit inside the guitar case, providing localized humidity to the instrument. Make sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions for optimal use.
Hygrometers: Use hygrometers to monitor the humidity levels around your guitar. This tool helps you gauge whether additional humidification is needed. They are affordable and easy to find at music stores or online.
Avoid Direct Heat Sources: Keep your guitar away from direct heat sources like radiators or heaters. While it might be tempting to warm up your space quickly, exposing your guitar to sudden temperature changes can lead to issues.
Remember that humidity needs may vary throughout the winter. Check your guitar regularly and adjust your humidification efforts based on the conditions. It's better to be proactive and make small adjustments than to deal with costly repairs later.
By Lila Karash, Local Musician and Teacher at Twin Town Guitars
Here's what I've been up to lately: experimenting with a DAW (Digital Audio Workshop). If you own a Mac and you've played around with Garage Band, then you already know what a DAW is. But for those of you who aren't familiar with a DAW, it's a program that lets you record music on multiple tracks.
By Hayley Nelson, Local Musician and Violin, Viola, Cello Teacher at Twin Town Guitars
Even though practicing can feel lonely and difficult sometimes, it's important to remember that the music we create makes the world a nicer place to live, not just for us, but for everyone else too!
By Ryan Smith, of Soul Asylum, Melismatics, Ryan and Pony & Teacher at Twin Town Guitars
Have you ever felt like you can play a song really well, but as soon as other people start paying attention and listening to you it becomes infinitely more difficult? You are not alone!