PHOTO: Probably the person I trust most to help guide me toward design excellence. Tosin Abasi is pushing so far outside normal athletic and musical boundaries. We keep challenging each other to see what is possible. I'm excited to see where he takes this machine...where this machine takes his creativity. (photo: Tara Beattie)
I've set a frenetic pace for myself, designing and building five quite different prototype guitars in as many weeks. Two eights, and three sixes. Body contours, electronics systems access, chambering, carbon fiber structural elements...
"Frenetic" may not be the most precise word, because this experimentation process is controlled, focused, and aimed specifically at refining elements on the pending production guitars. My language skills are shot out today from lack of sleep. The AAL show was worth it, though.
I am getting really good at understanding precisely what adjustments achieve certain tonal responses — predict in advance, then accomplish — a creative mastery of my craft. Fueling the manic burst is an awareness I ripped my entire life apart to come to Texas for this opportunity.
Now is the moment this dream happens.
Fantastic-Rick! It's so exciting that with every iteration, your guitars become more and more integrated, streamlined and cohesive. All the superfluous falls away and what's left is only the essential. The perfect cybernetic guitar!
— Chuck Haitmanek
And I feel the team coalescing as we strive: Brad, Tara, Josh...all three of them put in the hours and skills to contribute to this guitar. It was inspiring to travel as a tight human unit to appreciate the concert, savoring what we are building together. Thank you three. Bart & Deb Townsend too, for making it possible.
PHOTOS: Master grade quartersawn curly maple, precision machined components, and carbon fiber. Intertwined organic machine: TigerShark 8. Generation 2 DiMarzio custom prototype pickups.
PHOTO: Javier Reyes greeted me backstage with a hug and showed off his signature ESP. Alex Markides walked us over to Tosin. Matt Garstka popped out from behind the kit to see the new machines: 6-string & 8-string. I love all these guys. So good to see them as people, as well as appreciate their incredible show last night at the Gas Monkey, Dallas, Texas. (photo: Tara Beattie)