Artisan Lap Steel EA 1, EA 2 - Both Reviews 5

I play Guitar, slide Guitar, Lap Steel, some keyboard. Been playing for 30 yrs .I play in, and front a band. I've played in England, Italy, and Switzerland, as well as here in the states.I listen to most anything. I play roots music, Blues, and some Gypsy King kind of stuff.

About four years ago from Musicians Friend, on sale for 59.95, with gig bag.

I already owned and played (at my gigs) vintage 'Supra,' and 'Nationals,' including multi neck consols. I saw the Artisan, and thought I'd try one out at a gig. After performing with one, I bought three more.I have them in sparkle red, and blue.I can easily hit a THREE octave range, and the SHORT SCALE makes it easy to reach and 'bend' with minimal movement. Good for me, because I sing while I play it - AND it stays in tune!Go here, and you can listen to it's sound on 'Love in Vain,' and 'SLEEPWALK.' - I use it to play both slammin 'DELTA' Blues, and soft lyrical tunes like 'SLEEPWALK.'I've been playing 30 yrs or so. I have vintage Fenders, Gibsons, Supras, Nationals, Harmonys, and Epiphones.

The pick-ups I found are not consistent from one to another. Having said that, I did replace a pick up with one I had sitting around. However, none of them sounded bad, and with a good amp, and the right strings, any would do.

Pretty basic... Not a lot of technology in this type of instrument. Basically it is a nicely shaped plank with strings, eletronics, and tuners.Compared to the Morell, which is at TWICE the price, it blows it away. The Morell has only one volume 'pot,' and a painted on fret marking board. The Artisan has a volume and tone, and a RAISED board, with reflective markings.

I use vintage (early 80's) moded MusicMans, on both the clean and overdrive channels. Sometimes run it through a 'Cry Baby,' digital echo, and/or Univibe.Clean clear sound on normal settings, or great overdrive tone. Thick, or thin, depending how you set tones and amp.Not particulary noisy any more than any other single coil 'pu.'ALSO, besides the amp - the STRINGS ARE CRITICAL TO GOOD SOUND. I recomend using a straight 14 set, with a wound third string.As I said, I own some great vintage lap steels, yet I LOVE this one. I don't have to be so senstive as to knocking it around. (though I don't, I am far less sensitive on who else plays it, or throwing it in and out of my car).Especially at the price, it is well worth it.I have been playing the same one on stage and in the house for almost four years, and it has not been any problem, and it stays in tune. I always take a 'regular' guitar backup, but have never taken a backup for this. My 'National' has broken strings on Gigs due to it's metal bridge, but my 'Artisan' has never broken any strings.I've been playing 30 yrs or so. I have vintage Fenders, Gibsons, Supras, Nationals, Harmonys, and Epiphones.I totally love this lap steel. Inexpensive, so I don't stress if I ding it, and it puts out the sound and plays well.If you have not a money problem, and want a status symbol, then pay $1500. or more for something else. If you want to play, and play well, not worrying about much, then spend the few bucks for this one. Even a change in pickup will not break you, but the reliability is a great peace of mind. I totally support this model.Check out it's sound on my MySpace page. (hurry while they are still up: SLEEPWALK, and LOVE IN VAIN.)Search on MySpace for JoeyJoel and the Blues Crusaders.

JoeyJoel rated this unit 5 on 2007-11-27.

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