Tuesday, December 8, 2009

El Gato Negro

A genius idea shared with me (and invented by) by the peerless Mark Ramos-Nishita (AKA Money Mark). On the left is his 60s Teisco which he converted to an electric version of a Tres Cubano. Wouldn't have been the same if he'd chosen a Swedish Hagstrom guitar to Latinize. A Japanese manufactured Teisco seems to make more sense for this particular mash-up. Mark, I believe, first recorded with the Guittres on his record, Push the Button. Traditional tuning is G, C, E, but Mark likes his G, B, E.

My version began by placing Mark's guittres on a piece of kraft paper and tracing the body. No laser-holographic imaging of any kind was employed for this first, crucial step. I have been living in Los Angeles for four months now and am beginning to acclimate to my architectural surroundings so rift-sawn oak was chosen for a Craftsman-style Gustav Stickley vibe. The wood was dyed black with Sumi ink for a touch of the mystic east. The pickup is a Bill Lawrence 560 mini-humbucker from the 1970s.

$Mark is often referred to as the "fourth Pep Boy" and is currently dazzling audiences on tour with Harper Simon.

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