Monday, January 21, 2008

Robot guitar

Over Xmas, I bought a Gibson Les Paul Robot guitar, Number 227 of only 4000 made. This limited edition instrument tunes itself, through a combination of string sensors and servomotors that drive the pegs. It can be operated in different modes that give you different tunings. The automatic tuning really works well. There's a huge difference between being sort of in tune and being really in tune. It's also a very pretty guitar, with a sparkling blue finish that most of the pictures on the Gibson site don't do justice to.

I got to play out with it last week, sitting in briefly with Kimberly Michaels and Tony Axtell in Maple Grove, MN. It was great to able to tune automatically while sitting at the bar and then just step up and play, knowing I was in tune with the keyboard. I could then concentrate on getting the amp settings right for the room. The Robogit gave a good account of itself on 'Stormy Monday', delivering a nice blues sound through a 16-watt Carvin tube amp. This guitar is definitely a keeper.

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