The ES-335 was the world’s first commercial thinline archtop semi-acoustic electric guitar (also known as “semi-hollowbody” or “thinline”). Originally released by Gibson in 1958, it is neither fully hollow nor fully solid. Instead, a solid maple wood block runs through the centre of its body. The side “wings” formed by the two “cutaways” into its upper bouts are hollow, and the top has two violin-style f-holes over the hollow chambers.
- Rock ‘n’ Roll – just about any recording or live performance by Chuck Berry
- Blues – Eric Clapton with Cream at the Royal Albert Hall on 26th November 1968
- Rock – Ritchie Blackmore with Deep Purple at the Royal Albert Hall with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra on 24th September 1969
- Indie – just about any recording or live performance by Noel Gallagher with Oasis
You don’t have to spend a fortune to get hold of one or to enjoy playing one of these fantastic guitars. Whilst a Gibson 335 will cost you around £2,500 you can pick up a Washburn HB30 for around £280, which I actually use.
If you are thinking about which guitar is best for you, the two major brands are Fender and Gibson. Most other cheaper alternatives are usually based on one of these brands.
There are lots of differences between the models but the main difference from a playability standpoint is that Fender necks are a bit longer and therefore tend to suit slightly bigger hands. If like me, you have quite small hands, the slightly smaller Gibson necks are usually more comfortable to play. If possible, try to play a guitar before you buy it as every person is different and a guitar is a very personal choice.
For younger children 3/4 size guitars are available but a good age to start thinking about a full size guitar is around 10 or 11.
Sad news on 7th March 2017 as Black Sabbath officially announced that they had disbanded. It was of no real surpise given that the gig in Birmingham on the 4th February was meant to be their final show.
Tony Iommi, one of the holy trinity of great rock guitarists of the 1970’s has always been an influence on me (I also play a Gibson SG like the great man). The other two of course being Jimmy Page and Ritchie Blackmore.
If you are unfamiliar with their material, check out their first two albums, Black Sabbath and Paranoid and turn it up to eleven man!
For both my original band “Thrasonic” and my function band “Superfuzz” I favour one of the most iconic set ups in rock history, which is a Gibson (in my case, an SG) into a non-master Marshall amp and turn up to eleven!
In both bands I use a variety of effect pedals, but two I simply couldn’t do without. These are my JMI Tonebenders – I have a Mark 1 and a Mark 1.5. The Mark 1.5 is my current favourite and I use extensively in my original band.
The other classic vintage effect is a Treble Booster, which I use when playing in my function band.
To hear this classic sound of a Gibson through a Fuzz, into a Marshall listen to artists such as Jimi Hendrix, Mick Ronson (early Bowie) and, most famously, Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin.
Have you ever stood in the crowd and watched a band play and wished that you were up there on the stage playing with them?
Well, it needn’t take years to make that dream come true! One of the best ways to get yourself and your music noticed are the local open mic and jam nights around Nottingham where people just turn up and are given a chance to play in front of a ready made audience. Usually you get the chance to play around three songs – it is a great way to boost your confidence and meet with like minded musicians.
Whether you are a complete beginner or a little bit rusty one on one guitar tuition could help you achieve your goal.
Some of the best city centre venues for acoustic sets are The Rescue Rooms, Jam Café, Filthy’s and Pepper Rocks. Or if you want pull out your favourite Fender or Gibson, then go to The Navigation Inn and jam with local blues legend, Colin Staples. Alternatively try the cool, chilled out crowd at The Doghouse, Carlton.