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Friday, July 31, 2009

Win $3,300 in Boss Pedals

Music123 and Boss are giving away a massive pack of 31 Boss Pedals worth more than $3,300! You will never need another pedal again to get that perfect sound you’re looking for!

We hope you win, but you can still get free Boss stuff if you don’t! We’ll give you a free Boss BCB-30 with select Boss Compact Pedals! Call 888.590.9700 for details.

Enter now to win!

Approx Cash Value: $3,304.90

Dates of Entry Acceptance:
August 1st, 2009 through August 31st, 2009

Date of Drawing: On or around September 15, 2009

Twitter @aljonrocks

Wampler Pedals' Super Plextortion

I like pedals that can help me get some great vintage amp sounds. Another one of my favorites from "The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0" was the Super Plextortion by Wampler Pedals.

The Super Plextortion is an overdrive or distortion pedal that was originally designed to emulate a JCM800 (Back in Black era AC/DC tones through van halen, dokken, ratt, and all those amazing 80's rock "cranked Marshall" tones). The new "Super Plextortion" nails those tones AND gets you even more modern tones... looking for Vai in a box? This pedal comes as close as I've ever heard in any other pedal.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Gibson USA's Zoot Suit SG

"Zoot Suit Riot! Throw back a bottle of beer!" I can't help but sing that Cherry Poppin' Daddies song when I hear Zoot Suit. Check out Gibson USA's latest creation!


The body of the Zoot Suit features a brand new body built with multiple birch wood laminate pieces (each one approximately .075” thick), each dyed with a different color then compressed and bonded together to form one solid block of wood. No paint is used. Each body is given two coats of satin nitrocellulose lacquer.

The average weight of a Zoot Suit body is 5.7 lbs, which is slightly heavier than normal but actually creates more balance, a solid feel, and brighter tones that prove compatible with the pickup configuration.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Tony Pasko's Summer NAMM Adventure at Rock House Method

My good buddy Tony Pasko, writer for Rock House Method (as well as other fine publications) just made a killer post about The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 and Summer NAMM 2009. Please check it out and bookmark!


Twitter @aljonrocks

Thursday, July 30, 2009

MusicRadar's Tribute to 11 Iconic Pointy Guitar Players

As you have probably figured out by now I am a card carrying member of the pointy guitar club. Here's a list of some of my distinguished club members from!


Twitter @aljonrocks

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Vernon Reid Signature Dragonfly DF824VR by Parker Fly

Vernon Reid is a British-born, American guitarist, best known for his role in Living Colour, which he founded circa 1984. As a tremendous song writer, Reid helped Living Colour to win two Grammy Awards, two MTV Music Video Awards, two International Rock Awards and numerous New York Music Awards. Besides playing a key role in Living Colour, Reid has created solo albums and worked with artists like guitarist Carlos Santana and African singer Salif Keita.

The DF824VR is skillfully constructed of a poplar body, top and neck with a Parker Finger Joint set neck, and carbon composite fretboard. The DF824VR has a Floyd Rose original bridge, Grover® tuners, EMG SAX neck and middle pickup and an EMG 81X bridge pickup. It will be available with a violet pearl and black cherry finish with black hardware.

Carved Poplar body and Poplar neck
Floyd Rose original bridge
EMG 81X (bridge) and 81 SAX (Neck & Middle) active pickups
5-way mag pickup selector
Black hardware
Grover tuners
6 lbs.

Available in Violet Pearl & Black Cherry finishes.

Twitter @aljonrocks

Redeemer Circuit by Creation Audio Labs Review


A few years ago a friend turned me on to Creation Audio Labs who had this amazing Redeemer Circuit and I knew I just had to check it out. It was absolutely amazing! Since then I have several Redeemers installed and players have been wowed by the tone and clarity. It was one of my secret weapons in my gutiars for our World’s Largest Pedalboard Party in both 2008 and 2009!

The circuit is installed on the input jack of your guitar and is powered by a 9v battery. The current draw is extremely low so battery life is VERY long. You might want to have a professional install the unit since it does require some soldering. Some of the coolest parts about the Redeemer happen when rolling off your volume knob. Your guitar still maintains those sparkling highs – no frequency loss at all! This will come in real handy for those tube amp aficionados! Due to the output impedance you can even plug your guitar into the line input of a mixer sounding better than using a direct box. In fact if you use a bunch of pedals or rack effects having a “redeemed” makes you sound like you’ve plugged straight into your amp.

I compare playing with the Redeemer like seeing color television – amazing! It really kicks your guitar tone up several notches making your notes ring clear and resonant. I have it installed on my Gibson USA LP Standard and Flying V. I also installed it in my tricked out Epiphone LP Classic. With the Redeemer my Epiphone sounds better than other guitars three times the price!


The Redeemer Circuit by Creation Audio Labs comes with my highest recommendation. You can have the finest instruments and gear money can buy but if you get the Redeemer you’ll get a higher level of performance from that gear. Now you know one of my secret weapons. Go forth and may the TONE be with you!

High points: Great tone, clarity and sustain.
Low points: None.

Twitter @aljonrocks

ZVex Vextron Distortron Demo and Review

One of my favorite pedals on the World's Largest Pedalboard this year happens to come from ZVex simulating one of my favorite amps the Marshall JTM45!

The ZVex Distortron guitar pedal similar to ZVex's "Box of Rock" stompbox and is a bit more affordable. ZVex designed the Distortron distortion effect to simulate the "everything on 10" sound of a classic Marshall JTM45 non-master-volume amplifier. With the Distortron pedal your guitar's volume control adjusts for the exact amount of distortion needed—all the way down to the clean and clear sounds you can get with most drive settings when the gain switch is set to low.

For the street price of $150 this pedal has got great tone, control and flexibility. If you love that JTM45 sound or don't want to drag that vintage amp around pick up this bad boy. You won't regret it!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Check out the video demo from our friends at!

Bugera 1960 Demo Review

A great sounding amp for budget minded players!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Tweet-o-rama: Top 5 Rock Guitar Instrumentalists

Thanks to my Twitter Peeps or "Tweeps" I made a post asking for everyone's opinion on "Top 5 Rock Guitar Instrumentalists People Should Know." Here are some responses:

@lyleses07: Steve Vai, Michael Angelo Batio, Joe Satch, Steve Morse, Mr Malmsteen

@Dan_Gross: There are so many obvious ones but someone I think has never got enough credit is Rik Emmett (Triumph).

@SixStringLounge: My top 5 or 6 rock guitar instrumentalists, for @aljonrocks: Steve Morse, @chickenfootjoe , Eric Johnson, Steve Vai, Jeff Beck, and Yngwie

@simmessa: Mike Keneally, Andy Timmons, Mattias Ia Eklundh, Marty Friedman, Bumblefoot SMS:Excellent top5!

@Jennfeather: For ROCK, top 5, off top of my head: Satriani, Vai, Paul Gilbert, Hendrix, EVH. Subject to revision! :)

@DaedalusT: 2 you should include are Mattias IA Eklundh and Jeff Kollman

@Tinylick: Andy Timmons, Greg Howe, Eric Johnson, Vai, Satch

@Andrew_Kuz: Satch, vai, gilbert, Zappa, Battio (only because he is suck a ridiculous human being)

@iheartguitar: Mike Keneally, Andy Timmons, Mattias Ia Eklundh, Marty Friedman, Bumblefoot

Here are my TOP 5: Joe Satriani, Eric Johnson, Yngwie Malmsteen, Steve Vai, Jeff Beck

Now keep in mind that this list is for ROCK instrumentalists people SHOULD know. I'll be putting up Twitter "Top 5" lists more often and will post the results. It's just another fun way of getting to know everyone who follows me and my blog! I hope every guitarist knows at least a few off this list. If you aren't familar with these amazing guitarists you should check them out on YouTube!

Here is a list I've compiled of the "GREATEST INSTRUMENTAL ROCK ARTISTS" according to album sales:

1. Booker T. & The MG's
2. The Ventures
3. Duane Eddy
4. King Curtis
5. The Meters
6. Link Wray
7. Dick Dale
8. Jeff Beck
9. Bill Doggett
10. Big Jay McNeely
11. The Shadows
12. Joe Satriani
13. Yngwie Malmsteen
14. Willie Mitchell
15. Eric Johnson
16. Davie Allan & The Arrows
17. Bill Black's Combo
18. Ramsey Lewis Trio
19. The Mar-Keys
20. Steve Vai

Thanks for following!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Chickenfoot Invade Guitar Center

There’s a lot of debate going on about where the music business is headed. Are download sites like Limewire helping or hurting bands? Are albums a thing of the past? How should musicians navigate the increasingly complex landscape of art, technology and commerce? For legendary rocker Sammy Hagar, it all goes back to one thing. “Live shows, it’s heading back to live shows,” Sammy says with confidence. “We made a recording so that we could go out and play live, and however the people decide they want to get that recording is fine with me. They can buy it, steal it, trade it… I don’t care. I’m here for the live shows.”


Chad Smith plays an awful amount of guitar for a drummer!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Stage Trix Products

One of the most innovative products I've seen at NAMM were made by Stage Trix Products. Their pedalboard management system is cost effective, practical and cool! Modular Pedal Risers to modify your existing pedalboard and Pedal Gripper super stick backs to attach your pedals that don't slip off! Brilliant! Stage Trix Products get the "why didn't I think of that" award!


Twitter @aljonrocks

Monday, July 27, 2009

JamVOX Review

The fine folks at VOX have quite possibly created the best practice tool ever, the Jam VOX. This speaker and software system works with your PC or Mac and of course, your guitar. Just install the software, plug in your monitor and guitar and BAM! You are on your way to jamming with your favorite band via the included guitar tracks or using your own mp3 files! I call it guitar-aokie!

The interface is easy to use thanks to nice graphic display. Alter your effects chain and access to dozens of legendary amps by dragging and dropping what you want. The revolutionary Guitar XTracktion (GXT) technology lets you remove the guitar part of your favorite song with the push of a button - the "guitar-aokie" aspect. You can extract or isolate the guitar part, slow down the tempo, and practice any style of music without changing the pitch.

Other key features include: Jam-along classic guitar tracks from Hal Lenoard Corporation, tab search feature where you can download tabs (for a nominal fee), pickup config modeling, 19 famous guitar amps and 54 effect units, 100 drum patterns are convenient for practicing or creating riffs, Metronome function is indispensible for serious practice and much more.

For the street price of $250 the JamVOX is quite a deal considering everything you get with it. There are only a couple of things I was not crazy about at the outset. There was a glitch during the initial installation of the software (which has since been corrected), second there is no way to use the software unless the monitor is connected. It would be great to work on crafting your setup as well as import songs, extract guitar parts etc... without having to hook up that monitor. Perhaps VOX will fix this issue with future software updates. It would also be nice to have a headphone version of the interface instead of having to use the monitor, which can be bluky for travelling.

All in all the JamVOX is a great practice tool, if not the best one I have encountered. The whole customizable guitar rig and guitar-aokie is worth the price. Everyone from the student, teacher, pro or novice can get the value out of this package and will use it time and time again. Kudos to VOX and keep the innovation coming!



Twitter @aljonrocks

Pedalflex Review

The last couple NAMM shows the people at V&R Remote have been showing off their PEDALFLEX remote controller for stompboxes. It's simple design works with normal tone/volume pots for pedals in conjunction with a standard mic stand. No more bending, no more stooping-just instant, precise control of your pedals or pedalboard.
Your pedal has controls, use 'em! Your solos will take off like never before. Perfect delay times-every time. Fade effects in and out. Great for recording or live work. Explore a whole new arena of creative possibilities.

Stage and studio. Just clip it to your mic stand and unleash your pedal's potential.

Nashville Amp Expo - August 22 & 23, 2009



AUGUST 22-23, 2009


NASHVILLE, Tenn. – (July 1, 2009) Creation Audio Labs, Inc., makers of the world renowned MK.4.23 boost and Holy Fire distortion pedals, are proud to announce the first annual Nashville Amp Expo, set to take place on August 22-23, 2009, at the Hyatt Place hotel in Brentwood, Tennessee – just eight (8) miles south of downtown Nashville.

The first annual Nashville Amp Expo will offer musicians of all levels, as well as engineers, producers, and, of course, weekend hackers, the chance to try out some of the finest amps and gear on today’s market at “real world” volume levels. The entire Hyatt Place hotel has been reserved for both days, August 22-23, to allow players a rare opportunity to test out high-end, boutique guitar and bass gear without having to worry about being told to “TURN IT DOWN.”

On the contrary, players will be able to bring their own instruments, plug into some of the best gear in the world today, then “TURN IT UP,” try it out, and take it home or place an order if it suits their taste.

Only two other amp shows in the United States offer players this rare opportunity, and neither one is anywhere near Nashville – known around the world as Music City USA, and home to some of the finest musicians and recording studios on the planet.

“Nashville is a natural location to hold this type of show,” says Gary “Sarge” Gistinger, President of Creation Audio Labs. “With so much of today’s music being recorded and produced right here in Nashville, it makes perfect sense to have a show devoted to letting the recording professionals and musicians that work here – and the general public – try out guitar and bass gear at ‘real world’ volumes and settings. This event will undoubtedly prove to be a great exposition for both gear manufacturers and end users.”

Among the exhibitors already signed up to show off their products are: Marshall, Vox, Digitech (look for the DIGITRUCK – a 53’ touring showroom with its own live performance and demo stage), Korg, Pro Stage Gear/Pedaltrain, Industrial Amps, Sommatone Amps, Goodsell Amps, Ark Amps, Reason Amps, Jensen, Peavey, Blues City Music, Delgado Guitars, Big Orange Guitar, Paul Cochrane Audio, Wallace Amplification, Guitar Mill, HipKitty. Lion’s Den Custom Cabinets, Quidley Amps, Kingdom Amps, Bluesman Vintage, Retro King Amplification, Reinhardt Amplification, Tungsten Amplification, Metropoulos Amplification, Little Walter Tube Amps, VVT, Daab Amps, Tone Factor, RG Custom Basses, Rick Derringer, Dynamic Amps, Jimmy Velvet, Warehouse Guitar Speakers, Vango Digital, Inc., Landry Amps, Reeves Amplification, XITS Sound, Wizard, Stage Craft Gear, Vintage Instrument Services, Bluetron, Mather Amp Cabinet, Technical Audio Services, Channing Amplifiers, The Low End, and Gopher Entertainment Group.

More exhibitors are being added everyday, so check the Web site ( regularly to see if your favorite company has signed up. And if you don’t see them, “give ‘em a call and let ‘em know you’re going to the Nashville Amp Expo and you’d like to see them there,” says Gistinger.

In addition to the incredible lineup of exhibitors, attendees to the first annual Nashville Amp Expo will also be able to take advantage of a series of seminars featuring some of the industry’s top minds, including:

A special Q&A Session with world renowned engineer/producer Michael Wagener (Dokken, Motley Crue, Metallica, Janet Jackson, Queen, Ozzy Osbourne);

“Exploring Composite Signal” by Bryan Lionman, noted Nashville musician;

A seminar appropriately titled “100 Watt History Lesson and Comparison” hosted by Tommy Hatcher and Barry Weber; and

A “Master Luthier Class” conducted by Manuel Delgado of Delgado Guitars.

There will also be a Gear Giveaway Drawing on both days (Saturday and Sunday) at 6 p.m. Winners will take home some of the finest gear in the world, but must be present to win the prizes. Check the Web site ( for more details.

Admission to the event is just $10 for a two-day pass, or $7 for a single-day pass. For more information, call (615) 884-7520, or send an email to

About Creation Audio Labs, Inc.

Creation Audio Labs was founded in 2003 as a full service pro-audio repair center, specializing in large frame console refurbishment, and the modification and restoration of high-end professional audio equipment. Creation Audio Labs also specializes in the development of guitar effects and related gear for discerning players who can “hear the difference.”

Creation Audio Labs' team of audio engineering professionals are considered some of the finest in their fields. Each one brings a distinct approach to pro audio and design that allows Creation Audio Labs to achieve superior technical specifications in all of its products. In essence, Creation Audio Labs is directly responsible for bringing the world of pro audio sound quality and signal preservation to the guitar and bass gear marketplace, consistently setting new standards for audio transparency, clarity, and tone preservation.

Danny Zacharias
Creation Audio Labs, Inc.
(615) 884-7520

Gary “Sarge” Gistinger
Creation Audio Labs, Inc.
(615) 884-7520

Friday, July 24, 2009

New Bose L1 Compact System Review

The new Bose L1 Compact portable line array system. Is simply the best sounding system you can buy for $1000! Carry it in one trip. Set it up in one minute. Fill the room with Bose sound.

The new L1 Compact system combines conventional PA and monitors into one sleek unit. Positioned behind or to the side of a performer, DJ or presenter, it delivers wide, even sound coverage throughout the stage area and audience—even off to the extreme sides. It's our smallest, lightest, easiest-to-set-up L1 system, weighing just 29 pounds.

I have used the standard Bose L1 systems several times for presentations and have been impressed with it's clear sound and wide range. Set up was a snap and it was very easy to carry and manage. The new L1 compact continues that tradition. After seeing a demo of it at a local music store and getting some hands-on time with it I have become a true fan. Unlike a conventional p.a. system where there can be a loss of high-end frequencies as well as dead spots this system sounds clear from anywhere in the room. I was able to test drive the unit by playing music from an MP3 player as well as play with a mic and acoustic guitar. The speaker array reproduces guitar and vocal tones perfectly and the sub offers realistic low-end. Playing music from the MP3 player was especially as impressive and offered clear sound throughout the store room.

If you are a band or mobile d.j. in the market for a p.a. system, or just looking for more out of your p.a. then do yourself a favor and check out the new Bose L1 Compact System.

Twitter @aljonrocks


Eddie Van Halen Hand Surgery Success

According to Eddie Van Halen seems to be recovering nicely after having surgery on his left hand. He’s said to be taking his recovery slowly, however, to insure he heals properly. His rehabilitation should be complete in 4-6 months.

“They said the only way to fix it was surgery, which of course scared the shit out of me, but I was told it was the only way to fix it,” Van Halen says. “Surgery was a success, now I just have to let it heal. I am totally jazzed that they found the problem, fixed it and in about four months my hand will feel like I am 18 again. Thank God.”

READ MORE ABOUT IT wishes Ed a speedy recovery!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Gibson Mega Outlet Sale

If you’ve been waiting for the right time to buy the Gibson instruments or gear you’ve always wanted, your time has come. Beginning this Friday, July 24, Gibson is offering consumers an exclusive chance to purchase instruments and gear from the Gibson family of brands at special prices during the company’s first Mega Outlet Sale.

This very special sales event will take place at the Gibson Guitar Opry Mills Retail Center in Nashville, Tenn., and at the Gibson Memphis Beale Street Retail Center in Memphis, Tenn. Consumers will have their pick of instruments from many Gibson brands and models, including Gibson USA, Epiphone, Kramer, Gibson Acoustic, Gibson Memphis, Original Acoustic Instruments and Maestro. Also included are Gibson Pro Audio equipment and accessories, and Gibson Gear and Apparel.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Aljon's Worldwide Radio Show "The Local Buzz"

Thank you for all the support for my gear site and Twitter feed! For all you nubies I host the long-running and top rated radio show "The Local Buzz" airing on "102.9 The Buzz/WBUZ" Sundays at 9 pm central and worldwide at It's a show that specializes on the best rock scene out there - Nashville! You heard me, Nashville Tennessee! Tune in on our live "Listen Now" feed or download the iTunes app for FREE! Check it out and see why Nashville is the center of the musical universe!

Passionate about gear
Twitter @aljonrocks

Serj Tankian Signature Series T5

Serj Tankian Signature Series T5

Our Artist Series returns with an arena-ready T5 designed with singer-songwriter/poet/humanitarian activist Serj Tankian. The System of a Down frontman owns several Taylor acoustics and fell in love with the T5 a few years ago.

The STSM-T5 is black with unbound f-holes and features a red energy wheel inlay design for the fretboard and headstock, with matching red purfling on the body, fretboard and headstock. The guitar also includes chrome tuners and complete T5 electronics.

The guitar will begin shipping in late July.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Sell Your Music on Rock Band and Guitar Hero

Green Day just released a new album and you can purchase tracks from the album in Rock Band. This game is now seen as a way to get your music to your fans. Indies have been shut out of this service, but that will come to an end very soon.

Harmonix and MTV Games are opening access to all artists via a newly created Rock Band Network, a platform that gives musicians and record labels the ability to author their own original recordings into gameplay files and sell their music as playable Rock Band tracks through the newly-created Rock Band Network Music Store.

Artists can set their own price from 50 cents to $3 per track and rwill eceive 30% of any sales. But there enough technical hoops to jump through that most artists may want to let their distributor or other third party do the heavy lifting. The new platform will launch in open beta in late August.

Musicians/Publishers will be able to submit their tracks for playtesting and peer review via a specialized Web site, You will also need (here is the catch) a membership in Microsoft’s XNA Creators Club Online in order to test and publish game content. The service will only be available to those who purchase a premium membership to Microsoft’s XNA Creators Club for four months at $49.99 or for a year at $99.99.

The service will launch to only Xbox and PlayStation users, but other platforms are expected to be supported soon.


Twitter @aljonrocks

DIY Noise Eliminating Headset

I hate traveling on airplanes full of loud kids and I sent a Tweet about it. Later the peeps at HowCast sent me this link. I thought it was so useful I decided to let you in on their kick ass tip!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

T-Rex SpinDoctor Overdrive Preamp Review

One of the coolest sights on "The World's Largest Pedalboard 2009" was the row of T-Rex SpinDoctor pedals. These pedals caused quite the stir with their HUGE saturated sounds, four programmable channels and motorized chicken-head controls! Perhaps it should have been called the "Robot Distortion" pedal!

The pedal is a breeze to use and program. Just dial in the amount of gain, EQ (3-band) and presence and store it into one of four different "channels" using the "store" button. VERY QUICK and EASY! Recall any of your presets and watch the knobs zip back where you saved them - AMAZING! You can even see exactly where you set your EQ controls!

You can also use the T-Rex SpinDoctor as a complete guitar preamp, plugging it directly into a power amp via the output jack. There is event a speaker-simulator so you can directly into a mixer. You can tweak the sound of your simulated cab and use MIDI to store and create additional presets.

As you can see there are plenty you can do with this pedal. Dial up the rich overtones of SRV, the grunge of Seattle, the heavy squeals of Zakk Wylde or everything in between! The pedal can be found with a street price $599.99 ($799.99 retail). If you are a stickler about your tone this pedal would be something you'd want to add to your board!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Stanton Adcock Demonstrates Core One X2 & Bullet Cable at WLPb2

Video taken at The World's Largest Pedalboard Party at The Rutledge LMV in Nashville, TN - July 16, 2009.

Stanton is a Nashville session and live guitarist who uses Core One & Bullet Cables exclusively in his live and studio guitar rig.

Twitter @aljonrocks

Monday, July 20, 2009

Summer NAMM 2009 Thoughts

Even though many large companies opted not to show at this year's Summer NAMM 2009 it didn't deter smaller companies from doing great business. All weekend long I heard nothing but great response from smaller companies that had a chance to shine and show off their wares in front of real people, musicians and dealers a like.

Perhaps the musical instrument industry should take a cue from consumer electronic shows and have a day they can let the public in. Perhaps sell tickets to the event on the last day similar to Musik Messe so they can get more exposure to consumers.

What do you think?

Twitter @aljonrocks

Aljon Demos Gibson Dark Fire at New Music Seminar

I'll be in New York this week with Gibson Guitars doing a demo of the Dark Fire as well as answer questions about guitars and gear for the New Music Seminar. It's a great opportunity to get the tools you need to succeed in the music industry. You can even register to win a Gibson SG! Hope to see you there!


Twitter @aljonrocks

Sunday, July 19, 2009

GearGuruz at Summer NAMM 2009 Video

Thanks to the peeps at GearGuruz for this killer walk through!

Twitter @aljonrocks

New Gear From Summer NAMM '09, Part 1

My friends from Premier Guitar do a great job of covering trade shows. Thier coverage of Summer NAMM 2009 is excellent. Check out some of the highlights HERE!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Wampler Pedals Pics From World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0

Here are some pictures from Guitar Pedal Guru Brian Wampler ( & Thanks for all of your support Brian! It was a pleasure to meet you!


Twitter @aljonrocks

Bolt Amps 100 Watt Amp Demo

I saw this great amp manufacturer at Summer NAMM this year called Bolt Amps. This all tube three channel amp has some great distortion sounds at any volume and has a tremendously responsive EQ section. Check out this demo of the amp from Premier Guitar from this year's MusikMesse!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Carl Martin Introduces New Effects

Carl Martin announces five new additions to effects line this summer. READ MORE HERE!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Saturday, July 18, 2009

ZVEX Nano Head vs Rock Block Amp

"This is a demo comparing the ZVex Nano Head to the Rock Block 1 watt amp by Surprise Sound Lab. I'm playing a Gibson ES335 and the amps are driving an Avatar 1X12 closed-back cab with a Hellatone 30. No effects were used." - YouTube video by johnmd1970

Twitter @aljonrocks

Friday, July 17, 2009

ToneFreq at Summer NAMM 2009

Hey everyone!
Kristen and I will be covering Summer NAMM this year and tweeting about it all weekend! Keep your browsers open to and my Twitter feed: for all the latest from Nashville TN - the center of the music universe!

What's That Dude Play Blog at Pedalboard Party

Aljon and Jaux (aka the GearTrap boys) again set the world’s record for the largest pedalboard at a pre-Summer NAMM shindig in Nashville. READ MORE.

Thanks for stopping by our little party Blake!

Twitter @aljonrocks

World's Largest Pedalboard Party A Success!

Contact: Kristen Hoetzel, Gopher Entertainment Group

Nashville, Tennessee – 7/16/09 Radio personality Aljon Go, Kristen Hoetzel and Jaux King successfully top last year’s World’s Largest Pedalboard record while raising money and awareness for the National Kidney Foundation of Middle Tennessee.

On July 16th at 8:05 pm a successful attempt at breaking last year's World Record Academy record for the “Largest Pedalboard” took place. Gopher Entertainment Group, and presented The World’s Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 held Thursday July 16, 2009 at The Rutledge just in time to kick off the Summer NAMM show. The goal was to break last year’s record of 142 pedals. This year they surpassed the goal by hooking up and playing through 147 total stompboxes. Not only was the pedalboard on display but there were performances from bands: Philos, JonesWorld, Holy Crap and The Rust as well as guitar clinics from: Bart Walsh (David Lee Roth), Tony Pasko (Premier Guitar/Guitar411/Visual Sound), Bryan Lionman (Creation Audio Labs), Stanton Adcock (CoreX2/Bullet Cable) and Rikk Beatty (DigiTech). Attendees mingled with session musicians, fellow gearheads and manufactures like: Bob Weil (Visual Sound), Brian Wampler (Wampler Pedals), Kevin Bebout (Kramer Guitars), Kimberly Lewis (George L’s), Harri Koski (Mad Professor) and many others. Another highlight of the event was the silent auction to benefit the National Kidney Foundation of Middle Tennessee. Many of the pedals used on the board as well as amps, guitars and accessories were put up for auction by their manufactures raising money for the charity and making many guitarists very happy taking home a part of history for a worthwhile cause.

Event organizer, Kristen Hoetzel mentions, “It was quite a night indeed. A lot of hard work went into the planning and execution of this event. Thanks to the Rutledge for letting us host the event there, the clinicians, performers, volunteers, manufactures were amazing partners for this charitable event and last but not least all the great musicians and music fans in Nashville!” There are already talks about doing this event next year, which may be a possibility. Organizers will be following up with The World Record Academy and the Guinness World Book of Records as they review the submission for the official record. In the meantime people can enjoy the various pictures and forthcoming HD video on the following websites: and

The National Kidney Foundation of Middle Tennessee is a voluntary health organization. It seeks to prevent kidney and urinary tract diseases, improve the health and well-being of individuals and families affected by these diseases, and increase the availability of all organs for transplantation. Currently there are more than 107,000 people on the waiting list for an organ. Of those 78,000 are waiting for a kidney. To learn more about the National Kidney Foundation of Middle Tennessee and its programs, please visit:

There are several partners that have made this event possible: , www.GearTrap,com , Pedaltrain, Visual Sound, Creation Audio Labs, George L’s Musical Products, D’ Addario/Planet Waves, CoreX2/Bullet Cable, Eventide, Retro-Sonic/Vintage Vibes, Mad Professor Amps and Effects, Bourns, Farley’s Music Essentials/ Mighty Bright Music Lights, Music Connection Magazine, VOX, Kramer Guitars, Peterson Tuners, Keeley Electronics, T-Rex, TC Electronic, Bose, Fishman Electronics, Hip Kitty Products, Line 6, DigiTech, Electro-Harmonix, ZVEX, Gig-fx and Dungeon Promotions.

Gopher Entertainment Group, a Nashville artist/event consulting agency is run by Kristen Hoetzel. GEG has organized and promoted events such as the Save the Predators concert and benefit; Rock the Vote concerts, My Space Mixers, National Kidney Foundation benefits and the annual Local Buzz Rock Awards.


Twitter @aljonrocks

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2 - The Aftermath!

A sincere heart-felt THANK YOU to everyone who made The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2 a success! Thanks to the generosity of our event partners we broke last year's World Record Academy total of 142 with 147 total pedals. The venue was packed, the bands were hot, the clinicians shredded, the volunteers rocked and the silent auction made dreams come true for many a guitarist.

The silent auction table was alive with pedals and gear used on The World's Largest Pedalboard. Kristen of Gopher Entertainment Group along with volunteers from the National Kidney Foundation happily went over bid sheets and passed out free t-shirts from Bourns and Peterson Tuners.

The evening started with a bang with former David Lee Roth guitarist Bart Walsh. He and his Gibson Les Paul performed a medley of legendary rock riffs from Journey, Pearl Jam, Metallica and the mighty Van Halen to name a few. Not only did he set his strings ablaze with hot licks and rapid-fire two-hand tapping but he later spoke about how is family was effected by kidney disease.

After a few words from me and our event partners I decided it was time for some door prizes and gave away several Planet Waves S.O.S. tuners! I then turned over the main stage to Nashville's own Philos. They took charge of the stage with their blend rock and pop. In the bar Nashville session player and CoreX2/Bullet Cable clinician Stanton Adcock brought his pedalboard in. Gary "Sarge" Gistinger, president of Creation Audio Labs and his crew along with Visual Sound C.E.O. Bob Weil assisted getting the board ready and sure enough it worked! We broke the World Record we set last year! Stanton then began his clinic talking about cable and tone and demoed how to assemble CoreX2 cables. The world's largest funk mob, JonesWorld, invaded the Rutledge stage soon afterward. With a full horn section, keyboard and go-go dancers they made the audience get up and dance to their original funk-rock songs combining Morris Day with Van Halen! Kristen and I even joined them on stage for a few songs.

Rikk Beatty tore it up doing a demo of DigiTech's new RP1000 multi-effects board. He played songs from his solo record and showed off the RP1000 brilliantly. During that time the band Holy Crap showed off the line of Kramer Guitars. The band then put those new Kramers to the test! They sounded amazing rocking out with tunes that are harken to the sound of Claypool, Fugazi and Spinal Tap!

Tony Pasko (Guitar411/Premier Guitar) spoke about the importance of pedals and accessories demoing a Visual Sound pedalboard donated for use at this event. During this time Mani, local network videographer was capturing the whole event on HD for our YouTube page as well as future marketing. The Rust then followed bringing modern rock to the Music City.

Creation Audio Labs clinician Bryan Lionman spoke about possible "tone suckage" when running long lengths of cables. He then did the unthinkable. He took a regular home improvement store 100" extension cable and A/B'd the use of the Redeemer with great cables and one the very opposite. Point take. Well done CAL! Every guitarist in the room wanted one. I own several and I never leave home with out it!

Once again special thanks to everyone who attendent those who volunteered to work this event!

More pictures, video and reviews coming!

Stay tuned,

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Billy Gibbons ‘Pearly Gates’ Les Paul Standard

It’s finally here, and it’s bad to the bone. And now you can own it. Billy Gibbons’ favorite axe has always been his beloved Pearly Gates – a rare 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard with legendary angelic qualities. It has appeared on every track of every ZZ Top album to date, and sings with a “God-like voice” unlike any other guitar. And now, the master craftsmen at Gibson Custom have recreated it in excruciating detail – right down to the last scratch and ding. Gibbons’ legendary Pearly Gates – a rare 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard – is like no other guitar in the world, and now you can own a painstaking replica of this sacred instrument. Admit it; this is the artist model you’ve been waiting for. Now it’s here, so don’t wait any longer. There are three different models for you to choose from – all in very limited quantities. They won’t last long, so act now. The Billy Gibbons ‘Pearly Gates’ Les Paul Standard is now available. Find your nearest authorized Gibson Custom dealer and check it out.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Sunday, July 12, 2009

United Breaks Guitars

Here's the viral video that is striking a chord with every guitarist around the world. Having traveled the world with my guitars I can relate to this awful story. This is why I insist on carrying my guitars on my back!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Friday, July 10, 2009

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes new partner Wampler Pedals!

Our view on the effect pedal world...

There is a disturbing trend that has been going on the past couple of years...I've noticed there are many 'builders' on the web who can build you an overdrive, distortion, or fuzz pedal that isn't much different from the next. I'll admit, many of them look very nice! Having played many of them, I don't understand just what they are offering that is different from the other thousands of builders trying to push their pedals on the web. Seriously -- aren't you tired of buying the 'latest and greatest' and then selling it months later when it just doesn't inspire you to play? Shouldn't EVERY pedal make you want to play more, create more, and do it with passion?

Actually, now that I think about it I think I can explain it fairly simply. It all comes down to you - the customer. Do you want another pretty pedal with a pretty paint job, or do you want to be knocked on your butt with hellacious tone?! I for one have NO intentions on concentrating solely on the outward beauty of a pedal...though doing that would allow me to sell more pedals, I know first hand that that warm fuzzy feeling will fade over a few months after you play through it over and over. Been there, done that, over it.

What I provide for my customers is my 20+ years of guitar playing experience which has brought what some might call a good ear (see our reviews from well known pro players who agree). A good ear for good tone so to speak. When you plug into an Indyguitarist modified pedal or one of our custom pedals, you'll understand the difference instantly. I go to great lengths to insure that each and every pedal is exceedingly inspiring to guitar players -- NOT guitar collectors. For those wanting to own the next generation of $500-900 pedal with a pretty paint job, we aren't it. You'll want to look elsewhere.

If you are a gigging musician or just a musician who's tired of trying pedal after pedal after pedal, and tired of each of them falling short to your expectations, give us a try. Our money-back guarantee proves that you won't be disappointed!


Twitter @aljonrocks

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes partner Randall Amplifiers!

Randall Amplifiers is named after Don Randall, who started out as Leo Fender's partner and was the man responsible for Amplifier design beginning in the 1940s. Eventually, Don decided to start his own company and develop new, more radical designs. This became the basis for the Randall Amplifier Company.

Randall builds a pro touring line of solid state amplifiers designed specifically to meet the demands of the modern guitarist. Their amps are road-worthy in their dependability and provide the tone that guitarists demand from their equipment.

Notable artists endorsing Randall include: 3 Doors Down, Anthrax, Cold, Crazy Town, DamagePlan, Danzig, Disturbed, Down, Drowning Pool, Chris Duarte, Godsmack, Good Charlotte, Michael Thompson, Paul Crook Saliva, Sevendust, Soulfly, Tommy Lee.


Twitter @aljonrocks

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes back partner Hard Rock Cafe Nashville!

Music City, U.S.A. Now where could there possibly be a better place for the Hard Rock Cafe? Patsy Cline, Kitty Wells, Carlene Carter, Willie Nelson, Chet Atkins, Tammy Wynette, Loretta Lynn and Lorrie Morgan all contributed to the "Nashville Sound," which made musical history. Live music is still very much a part of the culture today! If the honky-tonk charms of Opryland, the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry aren't your style, "Nash-Vegas" has many other claims to fame. Being that the city is the financial and insurance center of the South, the "Athens of the South" with several acclaimed schools (and its own replica of the Parthenon), a major sports center with the Tennessee Titans and Nashville Predators both at home, plus the State capital since 1843. Well, we think there's more than enough in Nashville to keep anyone pickin' and grinnin'! And at the Hard Rock Cafe Nashville, the good-times tradition continues. Housed in the site of Nashville's first brothel, our building stretches half a block long, and has an outdoor patio area so there's plenty of room for you and all your rowdy friends. Located in the historic 'District' of downtown Nashville, near the Nashville Convention Center, the Adelphia Coliseum and the Nashville Arena, Hard Rock Cafe Nashville is not just the heart of Countrypolitan, but also the heart of rock 'n' roll!


Twitter @aljonrocks

Maxon ROD880 Tube Overdrive vs Line 6 M13

YouTube user DRUSJKI pit his Maxon ROD880 Tube Overdrive vs Line 6 M13 (line6 Drive set). Although there are some VERY subtle differences they are almost indistinguishable. Even from listening to the video with headphones and my laptop speakers the difference is so negligible. Great job Line 6 on this product!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Thursday, July 9, 2009

George Fullerton 1923-2009

Fullerton, 86, passed away Saturday, July 4, in Fullerton, Calif.

As a lifelong friend and colleague of Leo Fender and one of the first employees of the Fender Electric Instrument Co., Fullerton was an ever-present figure during Fender’s original 1950s-’60s “Leo years,” and was one of the close confidants to whom Leo Fender often turned when designing and producing his guitars and amplifiers.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes back partner Gig-fx!

Innovative products for gigging musicians

gig-fx designs and manufactures unique and innovative effect pedals. All gig-fx pedals are housed in road-worthy, lightweight aircraft quality aluminum castings featuring our patented, ergonomic shape. They are manufactured to the highest standards featuring a true analog signal path with ‘better than true by-pass.’ TM

Twitter @aljonrocks

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes new partner Electro-Harmonix!

Electro-Harmonix was founded by Mike Matthews in October of 1968 in NYC, USA. Himself an R&B keyboard player, he had traded his passion of music for a job as a salesman for IBM in 1967. Shortly afterwards he realized that his job at IBM no longer suited him, and he was interested in trying once again to make career for himself as a keyboard player. Partnering with an acquaintance of his, Bill Berko, an audio repairman who claimed to have his own custom circuit for a fuzz pedal, they jobbed construction of their new pedal to a contracting house, and began distributing the pedals. Fuzzboxes were in demand following a trail of hits involving their sound, including "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" by The Rolling Stones two years prior, and recent popularization of Jimi Hendrix. The latter connection resulted in the pedals being branded the 'Foxey Lady'.

Electro-Harmonix stopped making pedals in the mid-1980s, and in the early 1990s started selling vacuum tubes re-branded with their name for guitar amplifiers, which they had also been making since the 1970s. However due to demand, and the high prices guitarists were paying for old 1970s pedals on the vintage market, they reissued the more popular old pedals in the mid-1990s, the Big Muff Pi and Small Clone included. In 2002 they started designing new pedals to add to their range. Company policy is that all reissued effects remain as close as possible to the original, vintage designs. This means however that casings, knobs and especially the old-fashioned mini-jack power plug are not up to modern-day standards. This all changed in 2006 with their smaller and more standardized "micro" and "nano" effect lines.


The World’s Largest Pedalboard Party will be held at The Rutledge, 410 4th Ave. South, Nashville Thursday July 16th. Doors will open at 6 p.m., is “smoke-free,” an 18 and up event and open to the public. The silent auction and music begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $7/ $5 with NAMM badge. The event is presented by Gopher Entertainment Group. Companies interested in donating products for the charity event and silent auction should contact Kristen Hoetzel. Deadline for inclusion is July 10. For more information please contact Kristen Hoetzel, Gopher Entertainment Group -

Twitter @aljonrocks

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes partner DigiTech!

Our passion for sound drives us to create the world's most innovative multi-effects products and stompboxes for musicians at every level of skill—from garage-rockers to stadium-rocking pros. Our products enable musicians to explore new tones and create their own sonic personality.


The World’s Largest Pedalboard Party will be held at The Rutledge, 410 4th Ave. South, Nashville Thursday July 16th. Doors will open at 6 p.m., is “smoke-free,” an 18 and up event and open to the public. The silent auction and music begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $7/ $5 with NAMM badge. The event is presented by Gopher Entertainment Group. Companies interested in donating products for the charity event and silent auction should contact Kristen Hoetzel. Deadline for inclusion is July 10. For more information please contact Kristen Hoetzel, Gopher Entertainment Group -

Twitter @aljonrocks

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes new partner ZVEX!

Z. Vex Effects is a boutique effects pedal company based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Their name derives from the name of founder Zachary Vex (aka Tommy Roberts). The company's most famous product is the Fuzz Factory. All of their pedals (except the budget-line Vexter series) are hand painted at their factory in Minnesota. Z. Vex effects pedals are known for the extreme amount of control that they give to the user. According to Zack Vex, all handpainted pedals are "warranted to be free from manufacturing defects for as long as I am on the planet."


The World’s Largest Pedalboard Party will be held at The Rutledge, 410 4th Ave. South, Nashville Thursday July 16th. Doors will open at 6 p.m., is “smoke-free,” an 18 and up event and open to the public. The silent auction and music begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $7/ $5 with NAMM badge. The event is presented by Gopher Entertainment Group. Companies interested in donating products for the charity event and silent auction should contact Kristen Hoetzel. Deadline for inclusion is July 10. For more information please contact Kristen Hoetzel, Gopher Entertainment Group -

Twitter @aljonrocks

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes partner Line 6!

In the mid-1990's, Line 6 set out to meet the needs of today's guitarist by harnessing technology to turn a wide range of great tone into a reality for every guitarist. Line 6 amassed a noteworthy collection of sought-after vintage amps and effects, and started meticulously measuring and analyzing every tonal aspect of the amps, effects and their associated circuitry. Since an electric guitar produces an electrical signal, each element of the circuitry that alters the tone of the guitar is in fact processing that signal. By creating software models in DSP (Digital Signal Processing) of how the guitar signal is processed by these circuits, Line 6 had the ability to connect up and control these virtual circuits in any way.

After years of research and playing, Line 6 launched a patented technology in 1996, with the world's first digital modeling guitar amplifier, the AxSys 212. This product provided users with models of dozens of classic guitar amplifiers, as well as a complete arsenal of stomp boxes and effects. The AxSys quickly took off and led to the further development of Line 6's technology into a comprehensive line of guitar amps within all price ranges. Only a year later, Line 6 launched the next guitarist tone revolution: POD. This kidney bean-shaped desktop device went beyond just the modeling of many classic amplifiers, it was created to solve another critical problem that had plagued guitar players: recording great guitar tone.

Line 6's passion for excellence and commitment to the development of new technologies has attracted the industry's best engineers and designers, a formidable roster of artist endorsers, and an active, informed user base - a combination that leaves Line 6 well-equipped to take on the enviable challenges of continued growth.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Stompbox Collector Vids

This collection is sick. Perhaps he should hook all of these up!

Twitter @aljonrocks

Line 6 M13 Stompbox Modeler Pedal Demo

Twitter @aljonrocks

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes new partner Hip Kitty Products!

In an effort to bring the purest, sweetest, but meanest tones to the world, HipKitty Products has been serving the musical community since 1987. With it's committment to top quality, unique products and real customer service, HipKitty Products continues to provide hand-crafted and hand-painted pedals to musicians everywhere. Each pedal is finished to provide it to be a one of a two pedals are exactly the same (even the knob colors can be different).

Component boards in the pedals are hand etched, populated and solderd by us at HipKitty Products. The component boards in our amplifiers are hand populated, soldered and wired in-house as well. Each unit, be it pedal or amplifier, is constructed from start to finish in-house, with the only exception being the amplifier cabinets, which are hand constructed by Lions Den Custom Cabinets. A personal touch is applied to each pedal and amplifier that can rarely be found in today's day and age.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Bob Weil: How Visual Sound Brought "Boutique" To The Masses

Check out a great article about Visual Sound's founder/president Bob Weil. I'm a huge fan of his pedals and place the Jekyll & Hyde as my favorite distortion pedal ever! Check it out!


Jackson SL2H Soloist USA Guitar Demo

Chris Cannella is a great guy and this demo is "shred-tastic." Enjoy!

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes new partner Bose!

Hear less noise and more of your music with acclaimed QuietComfort 2 headphones. Dramatically reduce engine roar on planes with advanced noise reduction technology pioneered by Bose. Fade background distractions at work and at home too.

Additional Bose innovations help your music come alive with well-balanced, detailed sound. All from a lightweight design, ergonomically crafted for a comfortable, around-ear fit.


Twitter @aljonrocks

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The World's Largest Pedalboard Party 2.0 welcomes new partner Fishman!

Since its beginning, in the early 1980’s, Fishman has helped acoustic musicians achieve the truest sound possible whenever they plug in. In that time we have been awarded more than 30 patents, and won more awards for quality, design, performance and innovation than all of our competitors combined.

Sure, our ongoing commitment and wide range of innovative products has helped our passionate little company grow to become the industry standard for acoustic amplification. And Fishman equipment is now used around the world. But that won’t change what got us here: always putting the needs of the acoustic musician first.

But here’s the secret: Every artist who chooses Fishman does so without incentives other than a desire for the best possible sound.

So, the loyalty from our extended family of players, technicians, repair professionals and instrument manufacturers is really a result of our loyalty toward them, as evidenced by our innovative, reliable products, over-the-top customer support, and unwavering goal of amplified acoustic excellence.


Twitter @aljonrocks
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