ibanez pm35 pat metheny signature guitar: affordable 2009 downbeat 99 ibanez has introduced the...
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January 2009 DOWNBEAT 99
Ibanez has introduced the newest addi-tion to its Pat Metheny series, thePM35. With an attractive price tag, thisguitar represents a growing industrytrend to provide professional-qualityinstruments at incredible prices.
Ibanez has been working with Methenyfor nearly 20 years developing signaturehollow-body jazz guitars, including thePM20, PM100 and PM120 models.Metheny is proud of these guitars andhas performed and recorded with all ofthem. However, as these have listprices of more than $3,300, therewas a definite need for a moreaffordable option.
With a list price of $1066.65,the PM35 is targeted at the first-time jazz guitar buyer. This isthe first Metheny model to bebuilt in China by ArtcoreCustom. Reminiscent ofMethenys original PM20, themodel features a single cut-away and single pickup. ThePM35 has a full-sized archtop bodywith a slightly slimmer depth to help reduce
feedback problems and improve tone. Theguitar is attractive, with a naturally finishedmaple top, back and sides, and gold hard-ware. A single Super 58 humbucking pickup
is set into the top at the bridge location withvolume and tone controls mounted on thelower bout. The bridge is the standard float-ing style, but uses a tune-o-matic top allow-ing for precise control over the intonation ofeach string.
The Metheny PM35 is well built and a plea-sure to play. The five-piece maple and bubin-ga neck is comfortable and sleek, with a nice
radius and medium frets. The Super58 pickup is warm, fat and impres-sively quiet, producing a respectablejazz tone. I did find that the guitarhas a tendency to feedback at higher
volumes, but this is typical of anyacoustic archtop. The PM 35places a professional jazz guitarwithin the reach of players whopreviously could have only
dreamt of owning a such qualityinstrument. Keith Baumann
Ordering info: ibanez.com
George Garzone has devel-oped an improvising conceptcalled the triadic chromaticapproach. The saxophonistuses the four groups of tri-adsmajor, minor, augment-ed and diminishedand hasfigured out how to improviseon them with random inver-sion, with a half-step couplingbetween each triad. This is away of playing that helps youbreak away from your normalrepetitions, Garzone said.
Before the release of the DVD The Music OfGeorge Garzone And The Triadic ChromaticApproach, one would have to travel to NewYork or Boston to study with Garzone. Now,with this two-DVD set, released by saxophonemouthpiece maker JodyJazz, Garzone has puthis lessons on video. The DVD has a conver-sational feel, offering an engaging glimpseinto Garzones style. It was off the cuff,Garzone said. One of my students today saidthat it was like being in class.
Garzone works through the examples of hisconcept slowly, as hes presenting materialthat is foreign to most musicians, and has thepotential to completely break down an artistsconception of improvising. The goal is to get
this into your subconscious,he said.
Any jazz artist could benefitfrom studying the in-depthlessons in the triadic chro-matic approach. For saxo-phonists, the DVD contains alesson by Garzone on how heachieves his large, free-flow-ing sound. He explains anddemonstrates how he takeshis lower lip off the the reed,and supports the mouthpiecewith his top teeth. The DVD
also includes performances of such tunes asThe Mingus That I Knew, Hey Open Upand a couple of free improvisations byGarzone and his group The Fringe (drummerBob Gullotti and bassist John Lockwood),accompanied by vibist Mike Mainieri, saxo-phonist Frank Tiberi and guitarist ChrisCrocco.
It also includes .PDFs of written examplesof the random triadic and chromaticapproaches, and exercises to work on the con-cepts, lead sheets transposed into concert,bass, B and E, and several interviews. MSRP:$89.95. Jason Koransky
Ordering info: jodyjazz.com
Ibanez PM35 Pat Metheny Signature Guitar:Affordable Quality for Aspiring Musicians
The Music Of George Garzone And The TriadicChromatic Approach: DVD Master Class
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