Here's an ode to a piece of gadgetry rarely covered on GuitarWorld.com, something that has brought a whole new world of sounds to guitarists' fingertips: the guitar synthesizer, aka the guitar synth. First of all, exactly what is a guitar synth? To quote Norm Leet, who wrote an authoratative feature on the topic for Roland's UK website, "a guitar synth is a synth module whose input device is a guitar instead of a keyboard."
Matt Smith, Adrian Belew and Snarky Puppy's Chris McQueen and Bob Lanzetti dropped by the Supro Amps booth at the 2015 Winter NAMM Show to demo the company's new Royal Reverb amp. You can check out the video, which also features Supro's guitars, below.
In 1990, guitarist Ned Evett smashed his Strat onstage. When he noticed the neck was unbroken, he simply removed the frets and developed a style he'd eventually become known for -- even developing his own fretless, mirrored-glass-necked guitars along the way. His own website refers to him as "The Glass Guitarist," and Joe Satriani has called him "a monster player."
A few days ago, I caught another very cool show at The Iridium on Broadway and 51st Street here in Manhattan. It was the opening night of a two-night visit by Tony Levin's band, Stick Men, and the Adrian Belew Trio.