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Welcome to UpFront Guitars and Music

Welcome to UpFront Guitars! It's approaching the end of summer and we hope that everyone has been able to enjoy some time off to relax and enjoy the warm weather. We've had a few days off ourselves, and now it's time to get back to the business of guitars and all the things we love about them. If you play in a band, summer can either be really busy if you're near a resort area, or a little sleepy. For us August was "band vacation" month but we'll be back at it shortly, which also gives us a chance to road test some gear. We've been back-lining a couple events with some of our Traynor guitar and bass amps, as well as trying out some of the David Allen pickups in various guitars.

Now in our fifth year, UpFront guitars has been committed to being your informative and professional source for selct high quality guitars and accessories. We carry North American made products from companies like G&L, Breedlove, Godin, Traynor, Emerson Custom, and Knaggs. We specifically focus on just a few selected brands that offer exceptional value for the gigging performer, serious hobbyist, or player looking to take their gear up a notch. By being focused, it also means that we keep a good stock on hand, and have close relationships with our suppliers. We also play, test, and photograph every piece of gear you see on our site. Every word is written by us, and we don't cut and paste ad copy from our supplier's websites. Many internet-based sites claim to offer personal service, but for us it's more than a slogan, it's our personal guarantee. The internet is here to stay, and many players are comfortable making a significant purchase on line....if they can get knowledgeable information and talk to someone who really cares. So whether you are visiting us locally for a personal appointment or shopping online, you get the same level of attention and service.

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So What's New At UpFront Guitars?

SolodallasKnaggs  ~  David Allen  ~  G&L  ~  Emerson  ~  Breedlove  ~ Godin  ~  Traynor  ~  Rio Grande  ~  UFG Cables

Solodallas Schaffer Replica

Solodallas has moved their production from Austria to the US, and we've just receive their first batch of USA production units. The Solodallas Schaffer Replica is heralded as the "Sound of AC/DC." Based on the 1970's Schaffer wireless transmitter used by Angus Young and other top players, the Solodallas pedal replicates the harmonic complexity and expansive tones so beloved by the mega-bands of the late 70's. This is an "always on" pedal that makes everything sound bigger and more alive, and is ideal for blues, classic rock and roots players. Back to top

Knaggs

The Knaggs Kenai has become our favorite gigging guitar, and also our best selling Knaggs model. Not just another "Les Paul" the Kenai has the clarity, comfort and flexibility that expands the range to just about any style of music. Giving serious challenge to the title of "swiss army knife" guitar is our special order Severn HSS with Kenai-profile 12" radius fretboard and medium frets. Compared to the standard narrower fret 9" radius Severn guitars, these are in our opinion what the Severn should be: A modern "Super Strat" for serious players that need to cover a wide range of sonic territory. Along with our Kenai's and Severn we have a Steve Steven's Signature model, serial number #40 out of a limited run of 100. More traditional in execution than the typical Knaggs, we think of the Steve Steven's Signature as about the best Les Paul you can buy. Back to top

David Allen Pickups

We've now tested and played a range David Allen Strat® Tele® and humbucker pickups. See our listings or blog posts for complete details and reviews.  David Allen makes a range of "vintage inspired"  pickups but does not restrict himself to only replicating vintage construction. He's chasing "the tone" by using high quality materials and techniques without being hemmed in by the "replica" moniker. David Allen is getting quite a following with top Nashville and session players, and is also the option pickup in many Knaggs guitar models. Back to top

G&L - New guitars coming in from G&L every month and we've got some pretty neat items on the way or on the shelves.

UpFront Guitars is now a G&L Premier Dealer - G&L has recognized select dealers across the United States as "G&L Premier Dealers" and UpFront Guitars is proud to be one of them. G&L Premier Dealers are committed to having a good selection of guitars and basses in stock at all times, and priority availability on new models. While we are always working to catch up on photography and listings, you can be assured that we've always got a wide variety of USA models in stock at all times. And of course we love to do special orders, and now have an enhanced quote feedback form that provides detailed order information and reduces the opportunity for mis-communication.

Price increase and new specifications! - As of July 1st, G&L has increased prices, and also revamped their pricing structure. In addition they've made several changes to standard neck profiles and pickup options. Most notably on several guitars, G&L will be using their own USA humbucker in place of the Seymour Duncan pickups. A couple "fringe" models have been discontinued, but all the old favorites are still there. For more details see our blog post: http://tiny.cc/7oc6zx

G&L "Original Leo Spec" ASAT - For optimal sound, weight and comfort, the original ASAT guitar was designed to have a 1.65" thick body. Always looking forward, Leo Fender was trying improve on the Tele, not just copy it. However sometime in the 90's G&L went back to original Fender Tele thickness of 1.78". The "Original Leo Spec" thinner body is now available as a no-cost option on any ASAT. Besides saving about a third of a pound, it's more comfortable, especially when combined with a rear body contour.

G&L 35th Anniversary Model - Now at their "Emerald" anniversary, G&L will be releasing a limited production line of 35th Anniversary guitars in emerald green. This special run of guitars will be available in ASAT Special, Bluesboy, Legacy, LB-100 and M-2000 versions. More details and photos will be available shortly.

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Emerson Custom

Customers keep raving about how much better their guitars and basses sound with an Emerson wiring assembly. It's true! You'll be surprised what good components can do for your sound, even on a high end guitar. Emerson assemblies now come with their own made in USA paper-in-oil capacitor. This is not "New Old Stock" but "New Stock" made just for Emerson.  They worked many months in development with a US manufacturer, and these high quality components allow Emerson to control the quality of their materials, and not be subject to the whims of surplus NOS inventory. We have the new models in stock now, and a few of the older NOS assemblies at reduced prices. Back to top

Breedlove Guitars

We've got a great selection of USA Breedlove models in stock including their Legacy, Premier and Oregon lines in a range of body styles. We also have a couple of their imported Pursuit and Solo models in stock too. These guitars offer great playability and build quality for the player on a tighter budget. If you are in the market for a top quality USA acoustic, Breedlove is a worthwhile addition to your list of "must try" guitars.   Back to top

Godin - Godin is always busy, and has several new models for 2015. Here's a quick sample of what we liked and subsequently put on order:

Session Ltd - Godin has taken the popular Session guitar, contoured the body, made it a little thinner to reduce the weight, and dropped in a Seymour Duncan  SH-11 pickup in the bridge instead of the standard Godin humbucker. They look about twice the money, but are just a small premium over the standard Session. These also come in some very nice metallic finishes. We've now got gold and metallic blue models in stock, and they look real sharp.

Session Custom '59 - Think of this as a "Godin Bluesboy" and you get the picture. But Godin switched to the Seymour Duncan '59 in the neck to provide a little more attack and a better tonal match to their Alnico bridge pickup. Good idea, and a very good guitar.

Core CT - We love the Godin Core line, and for 2015 Godin added a carved top, and chambered Spanish Cedar back to help keep the weight down. Spanish Cedar is really a form of mahogany, but it's typically lighter in weight than other varieties. These guitars still play an feel like the originals, but look better and weigh in the comfortable mid-seven pound range. At the moment they are only available in Black and Sunburst, but we have a feeling that there will be additional colors down the road.

Old Style Core P90 and HB - We still have a few of the 2014 models in stock at great prices. While they last, they are excellent sounding guitars and a real steal.

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Traynor/Yorkville Sound

New in the shop is the 15-watt Traynor YGL 12-inch combo. It's a simple single channel EL-84 powered combo with Celestion Greeback speaker and digital reverb. While priced well below smaller boutique combos, we were mightily impressed with how natural and open it sounded. Great for gigs, home or studio, and not your typical budget combo! We've had some great real-world gigging experience with the Traynor SB200 15" bass combo amp. For smaller clubs or with the XLR-out for larger situations, it's 35 pounds of high quality sound that you can carry with one hand.  Back to top

Rio Grande Pickups

Whether it's the P-90 "Bluesbar" or Dogear style "Dogbar" players have been very hot for Rio Grande's P-90 replacement pickups. This includes the "Dirty Harry" series of P-90 inspired Strat® and Tele® pickups. Built like a P-90, they give guitarists a great way to getter fatter, richer rock tones without losing the single coil edge. It’s hard to imagine a pickup that Rio Grande doesn’t make (or won’t make), and if you are looking for a special color or configuration, drop us a line. Rio is very flexible and they might surprise you. Back to top

UpFront Guitars Cables

Our guitar cables are getting a makeover with a nicer, silkier feeling tweed covering. And don’t forget our UpFront Evidence Audio patch cables. Solid core is sonically better, and these cables do make a difference. You can spend less, but you’ll only have to buy these cables once, and you’ll sound better. Back to top