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Welcome to UpFront Guitars and Music

Welcome to UpFront Guitars! Winter? What Winter? Depending how you feel about snow, this winter in New England was either a godsend or a disappointment. But March is here and we continue to enjoy unseasonably pleasant weather and hoping it will stick around. Most of our manufacturers have some new goodies for 2016, so check out the various manufacturer updates below to learn about what's new and what's in the pipeline for 2016. It's been quite a mess in the shop these past couple weeks, as we continue to make improvements in our showroom/demo area. It's looking great and we'll be glad when it's done and get back to normal. Keep checking Instagram and Facebook for new models in stock, and of course if it's on Facebook, it's also on our website.

Now in our fifth year, UpFront guitars has been committed to being your informative and professional source for select 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 and deep product knowledge, but for us it's more than a slogan: It's our personal guarantee, and we back it up everyday.  It's clear that consumers are comfortable making musical instrument purchases online, and the goal of UpFront guitars is to make that experience as informative and enjoyable as possible. So whether you are visiting us locally or shopping online, you get the same level of attention and service.

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What's new at UpFront Guitars?

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

Solodallas Schaffer Replica

Towers on the way! Solodallas has settled down and has fully ramped up their production line in California. The new units are very quiet, and we've been using one of their latest models live and totally love it. It adds that little bit of "extra" to our tone that's hard to define but you know it when it's not there. We will be getting a couple of the very first new production Towers sometime in March. They've totally revamped their manufacturing and tooling to not just replicate the tone of the original, but add handy user features to make them work for both live and studio applications. Solodallas also has slightly more compact version of the TSR pedal in the works. It will also run on 9VDC center negative, which has been asked for by many customers. It won't sound quite as expansive as the Tower or TSR, but it will be more gig-friendly.

The Solodallas Schaffer Replica is heralded as the "Sound of AC/DC" and our customers have been stunned by how it pulls with wool off their sound. 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. Far more than just "Angus" 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


New in the shop is an Aged Scotch Keya, which is their 24-fret double cutaway model. These have a slightly slimmer body than the Kenai, and are remarkably light at only around seven pounds. We've also got a Golden Natural Kenai in the build process, along with a HSH Severn Trembuck with flame maple top. Keep an eye on the site, as both these guitars will be knockouts. We gig regularly with our own Kenai guitar with David Allen pickups, and find it to be the most versatile of humbucker guitars. Whether we are covering Zeppelin or knocking out a country tune, the Kenai covers more ground than just about any other guitar around. Back to top

David Allen Pickups

We're adding the David Allen Strat Cat and Tru '59 SV Strat pickups to our stock of Strat®, Tele®, P-90 and Humbucker pickups. If you love low output Strat pickups, you'll like the Strat Cats which are remarkably soulful and have that "John Mayer" tone. David Allen makes a range of "vintage inspired"  pickups but does not get hung up on replicating the exact production techniques of yore. He's going for tone, and not clone. Meticulously constructed of top-notch materials, more and more A-List players are becoming David Allen fans. Back to top

G&L - We've gotten some really neat guitars lately and the folks at G&L have been great about tipping us off when they have something really neat coming down the line.

Nitro Lacquer finishes now at G&L! - G&L has developed their own in-house nitrocellulose lacquer process and has started to produce a limited number of nitro ASAT and Legacy models. These are glossy nitro, not aged, beaten or bruised (that's your job). We'll be getting our first few nitro guitars this week. At the moment these are "no option" guitars and G&L is making small batches in limited colors. Stay tuned!

G&L Black Limba - Black Limba is a form of African mahogany, and it's dramatic black striping makes a stunning guitar top. It also has a slight warming effect to the tone, and works great with single coils or other bright pickups. It's not always available be we have several Limba guitars on order and they make for a unique and great sounding instrument.

G&L Empress Bass Guitars - Empress is an excellent tonewood for bass guitars: Light, bright, but offering a full frequency response from bottom to top. We've got a some interesting Empress models in stock in both bass and guitar models. If punchy clean tone is your bag, Empress is an excellent choice.

UpFront Guitars is 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. Back to top

Emerson Custom

PRS wiring assemblies now in stock: 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. Back to top

Breedlove Guitars

We are moving away from our "North American" rule with the Breedlove line and will be stocking a greater selection of their imported guitars. Why? Because frankly that's where the demand is, especially for our local customers which is where we do most of our acoustic sales. The Breedlove Solo and Pursuit models are also really nice guitars, that are worthy additions to any guitar player's toolbox. We still have several USA models in stock and you can call us for a great price. We'll continue to stock the USA Oregon line, which is priced very attractively for a USA guitar, and has a wonderful broken-in feel from day one.

Pursuit Koa - New for 2016 the Breedlove Pursuit Koa is both beautiful and sounds great. The solid Koa top and laminated Koa back and sides have a bright detailed tone that is like maple, but with a richer bass. These sold out immediately, but we've got a couple more on the way.

Pursuit Ebony - The Ebony back and sides are stunning, the and Pursuit Concert Ebony is price and percussive. Given the modest proportions of the Concert body shape, this guitar will surprise you.

Studio Concert - The sunburst finish and maple back and sides will catch your eye, and the tone will keep you playing. Bright and detail as you would expect from a maple guitar, but not dry and one-dimensional. Great for standing out in the mix and for finder pickers.  Back to top

Godin - Godin is without a doubt the best price-to-value guitar made in North America. Lots of great product and new models for 2015:

Godin Multiac Center - While we've always had a good selection of Multiac and ACS guitars on hand, we will soon be an official Godin Multiac Center. This will assure you that we'll always have a good selection of Multiac Steel and Nylon models on hand for tryout or shipment.

Seagull Acoustics - A Godin, but by another name. We'll be brining on some Seagull acoustic guitars to help round out our acoustic offerings. Made in Canada, Seagull acoustics are serious guitars at prices that hobbyists and casual players and can afford. All Seagull guitars feature pressure-tested solid spruce, mahogany or cedar tops, and thin satin or gloss finishes.

Core CT (Carve Top) - For a top quality set-neck guitar that you'll never outgrow, look no further than the Godin Core CT. We love the Godin Core line, and this line continues unchanged for 2016.

Progression Plus - Godin has taken their sexy Strat® style guitar and upgraded it with a flame maple top, and Godin JB Jr. bridge pickup. Featuring the Godin HDR active revoicing circuit. The Progression looks like a million bucks but can be yours for less than a grand.

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Traynor/Yorkville Sound

Traynor Small Block Bass - After a dry spell, we now have the SB-115 bass combo, and SB-500 head in stock. These are lightweight Class D combo amps and heads that are a bass player's dream when it comes to both tone and portability. We routinely use our own SB115 combo on small-to-medium gigs, and it provides plenty of volume for many rooms, and has a direct out for feeding the main system. At around 30 pounds, what's not to love? The SB-500 is a 5-pound head the size of a phone book that puts out 500 watts into 4-ohms.

Hughes and Kettner - Yes, that is Yorkville Sound too. Big on features and very cool cosmetics, we've recently got our hands on a couple of their smaller heads and combos to try out. We'll have our impressions out their soon, but for reasonably priced combos that you can take seriously, H&K is a very compelling brand, and not just for metal players. 

Yorkville Pro Audio - Truth be told, we are big QSC fans, and have used their KW and K series speakers in our live rig for some time. But when it came time to look at going to a more scalable setup for large and small rooms, we checked out their LS-720P powered sub-woofer. Built like a brick you-know-what and with plenty of connectivity options, the LS-720P has added meaningful low end thump to our sound in a relatively compact package. If you are putting together a portable or installed system, we can help.

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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


CBI Cables - CBI is based in upstate New York, and makes a huge array of guitar, pro audio, patch, and special purpose cables. We been impressed with their quality and great pricing for USA-made lifetime guarantee cables. We have a nice selection of guitar and patch cables in stock, but we can custom equip an entire sound system, or studio right down to the patch panels and snake. So if you've got a project like that, talk to us first for a quote.

Our UpFront Guitars custom guitar cables now have an improved, 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

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