Dave Hunter

The untold story of Fender’s relic guitars

It’s one of the most divisive and debated aspects of modern guitar building, but whether you hate it or love it, nobody has done more to popularise the concept of artificially aged guitars than the Fender Custom Shop.

Jamie Stillman and Julie Robbins of EarthQuaker Devices talk working with Sunn O)))

Can you still fly the ‘boutique’ flag once your roster hits 50 employees and you’ve won a Small Business Exporter Of The Year Award? EQD’s Jamie Stillman and Julie Robbins talk maintaining the small-shop attitude in a big-shop world.

“We don’t have our pedals on shelves ready to ship”: Analog Man’s Mike Piera on his customer-driven approach

One of the pioneers of the boutique effects industry talks vintage stompboxes, working as a software engineer, and how the internet changed everything.

“We’ve always been about less-is-more”: Michael Swart’s amps are retro-modern works of art

The amp maker has earned a reputation for creating hand-made guitar amplifiers of style and substance. Find out more about the origins of the brand from the man himself.

Nik Azam of Ceriatone Amplification is not afraid of ruffling feathers

Britain and the US might traditionally be the homes of overdriven thermionics, but one maker in Malaysia has been satisfying countless guitarists’ quests for high-quality, hand-wired tone for a solid decade and a half. We talk to CeriaTone founder and proprietor Nik Azam to find out how it’s done…

“It’s still a hot-rod shop here!”: Ron Thorn of the Fender Custom Shop

Meet Ron Thorn, one of the world’s most skilled guitar-makers and inlay artists, whose exceptional creations for the Fender Custom Shop represent the best and most imaginative designs that Cali’s “hot-rod shop” has to offer.

Paging the good Dr. Z, amp guru to Brad Paisley and Joe Walsh

Mike Zaite, the celebrated boutique-amp designer behind the fabled Dr. Z brand, talks 30 years of hand-wired creations, build quality and endorsements from star players.

Komet Amplification’s founders have got quality control down to a science

Baton Rouge-based Komet Amplification craft a range of exactingly made and stunning- sounding boutique amps. We hear from the company’s founders about how they’re keeping the traditions and standards of their much-missed mentor alive.

Interview: Curtis Novak, master pickup maker

If a background troubleshooting IT issues for the US Government seems an unlikely foundation for a career winding pickups, it certainly helped Curtis Novak learn to sort the essentials from the snake oil…

Interview: Terry McInturff, under-the-radar guitar maker

US builder Terry McInturff has been creating original and exquisitely crafted instruments for over 40 years, and counts the likes of Jimmy Page and Eric Clapton among his fanbase…
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