Ahead of an European tour to celebrate the life and work of David Bowie, we had a little chat with Lodger and Sound + Vision guitarist Adrian Belew – a guitar legend in his own right.
“In the fifties Hawaiian guitar music was all the rage in Japan. The earliest Japanese guitars were based on the Hawaiian guitar. But soon this transferred easily into the surf music craze and Japanese guitar makers followed with a huge assortment of twangy guitars perfect suited for surf music. Many Japanese guitarists were keen to emulate my friends The Ventures, who to this day are a huge draw in japan.“Eventually I narrowed my search to three models: the Guyatone LG350T, the Teisco Spectrum 5, and Guyatone Sharp 5 (named after a popular japanese surf band). Unfortunately all 3 models are pretty rare and expensive.
Then I found out my friend Mike Robinson, founder of Eastwood Guitars, was in fact making a reissue of the Spectrum 5. I asked Eastwood to send one for me to try.
The one pictured here was made in Korea and I must say the workmanship is stunning… beautiful metallic blue sparkle finish, a springy trem which holds tune well, and an array of plastic buttons allowing for all types of twang. The guitar also features a split pickup arrangement which can be used in stereo. There is a dedicated stereo output. Stereo or not, there are multiple pickup configurations in and out of phase which are drenched in surf. The neck is a bit wide but easy to adjust to. Oh, and one more plus: it has a rhino horn!!”
You can read the full post & see more pics here.