|Products||Electric guitars and pickups|
Tom Anderson Guitarworks is an American manufacturer of electric guitars and guitar pickups, based in Newbury Park, California. The company was started in 1984 by Tom Anderson, who is regarded as "one of the most respected names in the […] custom guitar market."They manufacture about 750 instruments per year and have a reputation for "consistently high build quality, superb playability and innovative tones." Their Atom model was featured in Guitarist magazine's "50 guitars to play before you die".
Tom Anderson started out working for Dave Schecter (founder of Schecter Guitar Co.) in 1977 and stayed until the company was sold in 1984. Dave Schecter told Anderson "If you really want to do what you want, you need to start your own company",which led Anderson to start his own company. Their first contract was building pickups for Schecter Japan, and during the first year they were manufactured in Anderson's garage.
After moving to a dedicated building they also started making guitar bodies and necks, which were sold to John Suhr (Pensa-Suhr), Roger Sadowsky, and Jim Tyler. Until 1987, the company's focus was producing parts for others, but that year they brought some completed guitars to the NAMM Show and signed with several dealers.In the following years sales grew, and in 1990 they stopped selling parts to focus solely on building completed instruments. To further internalise the production, they started doing their own paintwork in 1992, and by 1993 the only parts they don't manufacture themselves are metal pieces like tuners and bridges.
The company has pioneered custom guitar manufacturing in several ways. In 1988 they were the first company to use a multi-purpose CNC machine, which now is commonly used in the business to maintain consistency in manufacturing.Tom Anderson and Bob Taylor worked together to adapt ultra-violet lighting to use for curing painted instruments, and the process is now used by several high-end acoustic guitar manufacturers. In 2006 their models started featuring a new neck joint called A-Wedgie, a compound wedge that requires little pressure to keep the neck in place and thus only uses two screws while most common joints use four. The company has also used the Buzz Feiten tuning system on their guitars for many years, because it "offers a marked improvement in playing in tune", according to Tom Anderson.
Tom Anderson announced in late 2006 that he would downsize the company to a one-man operation because it was wearing him out.A few weeks later another announcement came, reversing the previous one after Anderson and the company received an "outpouring of support for our guitars and the company as a whole."
Seven body shapes are available, and each of them has their own set of distinct models and options:
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Christopher Cross for his electric choices
The Fender Stratocaster, colloquially known as the Strat, is a model of electric guitar designed between 1952 and 1954 by Leo Fender, Bill Carson, George Fullerton, and Freddie Tavares. The Fender Musical Instruments Corporation has continuously manufactured the Stratocaster since 1954. It is a double-cutaway guitar, with an extended top "horn" shape for balance. Along with the Gibson Les Paul, Gibson SG, and Fender Telecaster, it is one of the most-often emulated electric guitar shapes. "Stratocaster" and "Strat" are trademark terms belonging to Fender. Guitars that duplicate the Stratocaster by other manufacturers are sometimes called S-Type or ST-type guitars.
The Fender Starcaster is a series of semi-hollowbody electric guitars made by the Fender company. The Starcaster was part of Fender's attempt to enter the semi-hollowbody market, which was dominated by Gibson's ES-335 and similar designs.
The Fender Jazzmaster is an electric guitar designed as a more expensive sibling of the Fender Stratocaster. First introduced at the 1958 NAMM Show, it was initially marketed to jazz guitarists, but found favor among surf rock guitarists in the early 1960s. Its appearance is similar to the Jaguar, though it is tonally and physically different in many technical ways, including pickup design, scale length and controls.
The Fender Showmaster is a discontinued model of electric guitar made by Fender, and is characteristic of a superstrat. Also see the badge change of Stagemaster due to legal reasons.
The Fender Jaguar is an electric guitar by Fender Musical Instruments characterized by an offset-waist body, a relatively unusual switching system with two separate circuits for lead and rhythm, and a short-scale 24" neck. Owing some roots to the Jazzmaster, it was introduced in 1962 as Fender's feature-laden top-of-the-line model, designed to lure players from Gibson. During its initial 13-year production run, the Jaguar did not sell as well as the less expensive Stratocaster and Telecaster, and achieved its most noticeable popularity in the surf music scene. After the Jaguar was taken out of production in 1975, vintage Jaguars became popular first with American punk rock players, and then more so during the alternative rock, shoegazing and indie rock movements of the 1980s and 1990s. Fender began making a version in Japan in the mid-1980s, and then introduced a USA-made reissue in 1999. Since then, Fender has made a variety of Jaguars in America, Mexico, Indonesia and China under both the Fender and Squier labels. Original vintage Jaguars sell for many times their original price.
Music Man is an American guitar and bass guitar manufacturer. Originally formed in 1971 by Forrest White and Tom Walker, along with Leo Fender as a silent partner, the company started manufacturing electric and bass guitars under the Music Man name in 1974. In 1984 it was acquired by Ernie Ball.
The baritone guitar is a guitar with a longer scale length, typically a larger body, and heavier internal bracing, so it can be tuned to a lower pitch. Gretsch, Fender, Gibson, Ibanez, ESP Guitars, PRS Guitars, Music Man, Danelectro, Schecter, Jerry Jones Guitars, Burns London and many other companies have produced electric baritone guitars since the 1960s, although always in small numbers due to low popularity. Tacoma, Santa Cruz, Taylor, Martin, Alvarez Guitars and others have made acoustic baritone guitars.
Superstrat is a name for an electric guitar design that resembles a Fender Stratocaster but with differences that clearly distinguish it from a standard Stratocaster, usually to cater to a different playing style. Differences typically include more pointed, aggressive-looking body and neck shapes with increased cutaways to facilitate access to the higher frets, an increased number of frets on the fingerboard, a contoured heel at the neck joint facilitating easier higher fret access, the usage of humbucking pickups, and locking vibrato systems, most commonly the Floyd Rose.
A vibrato system on a guitar is a mechanical device used to temporarily change the pitch of the strings. They add vibrato to the sound by changing the tension of the strings, typically at the bridge or tailpiece of an electric guitar using a controlling lever, which is alternately referred to as a whammy bar, vibrato bar, or incorrectly as a tremolo arm. The lever enables the player to quickly and temporarily vary the tension and sometimes length of the strings, changing the pitch to create a vibrato, portamento, or pitch bend effect. Instruments without a vibrato have other bridge and tailpiece systems.
EMG, Inc. is the current legal name of a company based in Santa Rosa, California that manufactures guitar pickups and EQ accessories. Among guitar and bass accessories, the company sells active humbucker pickups, such as the EMG 81, the EMG 85, the EMG 60, and the EMG 89. They also produce passive pickups such as the EMG-HZ Series, which include SRO-OC1's and SC Sets. There is also a series geared towards a more traditional and passive sound known as the X series.
Charvel is a brand of electric guitars founded in the 1970s by Wayne Charvel in Azusa, California and originally headquartered in Glendora, California. Since 2002, Charvel has been under the ownership of Fender Musical Instruments Corporation.
Schecter Guitar Research, commonly known simply as Schecter, is an American manufacturing company founded in 1976 by David Schecter, which originally produced only replacement parts for existing guitars from manufacturers such as Fender and Gibson.
The Frankenstrat, also known as "Frankie", is a guitar created by Eddie Van Halen. Its name is a portmanteau of Frankenstein, the fictional doctor who created a monster by combining body parts of the recently deceased, and the Stratocaster, a model of electric guitar made by Fender.
The Fender Custom Shop is a division of Fender Musical Instruments Corporation, housed within their headquarters complex in Corona, Riverside County, California. The Fender Custom Shop produces special-order guitars for customers through a Custom Shop dealer network, creates limited edition high end quality guitars, builds limited edition amplifiers, and does some research & design for the parent company.
Burns Guitars London is an English manufacturer of electric guitars and bass guitars, founded by Alice Louise Farrell (1908–1993) and James Ormston (Jim) Burns (1925–1998) in 1959. The company was first named "Burns-Weill", then renamed "Ormston Burns Ltd". At its peak, in the 1960s, it was the most successful guitar company in England.
Pensa Custom Guitars is an American company that manufactures electric guitars and basses in handmade fashion. The company is based in New York City. Pensa Custom Guitars was founded by Argentine businessman Rudy Pensa.
James Tyler Guitars is a manufacturer of electric guitars. The company was located near Van Nuys, California and established in 1972. consequently reaching the public eye through studio musicians like Dann Huff, Michael Landau, and Neil Stubenhaus. The company is known for creating custom high end guitars, with an unusual headstock, and guitar body finishes with names like "psychedelic vomit", "burning water", and "caramel cappuccino shmear".
Suhr Guitars is an American company that manufactures electric guitars and basses, guitar amplifiers, and effect units. The company is based in Lake Elsinore, California and was founded in 1997 by John Suhr, who "has a reputation for building exquisitely crafted guitars" and Steve Smith.
The Fender Telecaster, colloquially known as the Tele, is an electric guitar produced by Fender. Together with its sister model the Esquire, it was the world's first mass-produced, commercially successful solid-body electric guitar. Its simple yet effective design and revolutionary sound broke ground and set trends in electric guitar manufacturing and popular music.