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The Revolution Of Electric Guitars
By Kathy Unruh, Fri Dec 9th

Sometime during the 1930's electric guitars were introducedonto the music scene, which began a revolution in sound andtechnology that continues to this day. After Rock and Roll wasborn in the 1950's, it didn't take very long for electricguitars to grow in popularity and become one of the most covetedinstruments of all time. Things really began to take off whenthe Beatles turned the world on its ear in 1964 by "invadingAmerica". Soon to follow were groups like the Rolling Stones,Cream, and the The Jimi Hendrix Experience. Music was foreverchanged and today electric guitars dominate the scene.

Originally these guitars were made with only a single pick-up.Now they usually come with two or three, thus creating a moreversatile instrument. One is placed near the bridge, the othertoward the base of the neck, and a middle, or third, is oftenadded between the other two. Having these additional pickupsprovides the guitarist with more options for producing variousdimensions of tonal quality. They can be used independently orin combination with each other and adjusted to achieve just theright volume or effect for either lead or rhythm guitar playing.Pickups are strategically set on electric guitars in order to"pickup" and produce the best sound.

There are generally two basic types of electric guitar:hollow-bodied and solid-bodied. Hollow-bodied guitars are oftenused by Jazz enthusiasts. Rock guitarists tend to prefer thesolid-bodied Guitars overall.

If you are in the market for an electric guitar there are a fewthings you should keep in mind. First of all, take intoconsideration the kind of music you want to play. Are youlooking for a smooth, mellow sound, or do you prefer


more of araunchy sound with an edge? If the former is true, then you'llgravitate toward the hollow-bodied guitars; if the later, thenthe solid-bodied is your best bet. Now, you could compromise andgo for a "semi-solid" electric guitar, which combines thecharacteristics of both. These have a solid center block whichcreates the sustain of a solid body along with the "f" holedesign which allows for the acoustic quality too.

One other thing to keep in mind. When you purchase an electricguitar you will also need to have other equipment, mostimportantly, an amplifier and a chord! If you're on a tightbudget you might consider buying a package deal. These usuallyinclude the guitar, a small amp and a chord. Some also includepicks, strap and a case. If you have money to blow, then do someresearch on amps and effects ahead of time so that you can besure to have the equipment that will produce the sound you'reafter. You can also ask the store management for permission totest their different amps and effects while your in the storelooking around. If you don't know how to play the guitar yet,ask if they have someone who could play a demonstration for you.

My final advise, before you buy your electric guitar, is to takeyour time and shop around. Ask a lot of questions. When youlisten to music, take mental notes of the sounds you like andshare your thoughts, ideas and questions with other guitarplayers. Then, go for it!


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This page was updated on Nov 2009 and is Copyright © 2003 by Global Com Consulting Inc.

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