Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 22

VINNY ROTH
Guitar Stew

V

inny Roth's latest album, Red Wine,
Sunshine, and Loud Guitars, was inspired
by his musical heroes, but fully sprinkled with
his mix of styles.
"I had the material 80 percent written beforehand, and really took my time recording,"
he said. "The other 20 percent came naturally
with the cats on the project."
Those cats included Zappa alum Ike Willis
(VG, May '17). "It was great picking his brain
and hearing Zappa stories," said Roth. "He
laid down a killer vocal on 'Shaking What
She Got.'"
Roth was born in Queens and his family
moved to Virginia when he was 13. An Elvis
movie and the lick to Aerosmith's "Walk This
Way" spurred his interest in guitar; he took
lessons and starting learning on his own. The
Allman Brothers' Live at The Fillmore East
taught him much about improvisation.
"I like live albums most because the bands

VINTAGE GUITAR

22

September 2018

Ask Zac
WITH ZAC CHILDS

The headstock decal on a '90s
American Standard Tele.

I recently bought a Telecaster
with a truss-rod adjustment at the
headstock, six-saddle bridge, and
an adjustor in the neck plate. The
serial number starts with N9 (on
the headstock decal), but when
I removed the neck, it had a "Jan
08 1991" date stamp. Also, the
headstock decal says "Made in the
USA," but there's the word "Solis"
on a white sticker and "Hector
Montes" stamped in ink on the
neck heel. So, is it a real Americanmade Fender? - M. Deniel
The bridge, truss adjustment at the
headstock, and Micro-Tilt adjuster in
the neck plate are all features of the
American Standard Tele first offered
in late 1988. Yours was made in '91,
despite what the decal indicates.
Fender mistakenly ordered N9 (1999)
decals instead of N0 (1990), and
used them throughout '90 and '91.
The names on the heel are those
of Fender employees; HispanicAmericans have a history with Fender
going back to Tadeo Gomez, whose
famous "TG" stamp appeared on the
heels of many necks he shaped for
early black-guard Teles, along with
Abigail Ybarra, who wound pickups
from 1956 until she retired in 2013.
Serial numbers on decals can be
an inaccurate way of dating because
they were at times ordered in large
quantities, so they'd take years to
use. For example, E4 decals can be
found on instruments with heel-date
stamps from 1984 through '88.
Zac Childs is a guitar tech in Nashville. If
you have a question about guitars, from nuts
and bolts to historical or celebrity-related
inquiries, drop a line to him at zac@askzac.
com or visit facebook.com/askzac.

Vinny Roth: Craig Hunter Ross.

let loose," he said. "I'd slow
down the turntable to steal
licks from the Allmans, Eric
Clapton, the Dead, B.B. King,
James Brown, and Hendrix."
Today, he continues to be
inspired by guitarists.
"There are so many current
players I like, especially Oz
Noy, Jimmy Herring, Guthrie
Govan, and Joe Bonamassa,"
he said. "They raise the bar. I
also love Mike Campbell from
the late, great Tom Petty's
band. He always played what
the tune needed, and his tones
are pure perfection."
For studio and stage, Roth
prefers a simple setup.
"I use a Yorkville Traynor
85-watt tube combo, an
Ibanez TS-9, Exotic EP, and a
Morley Bad Horsie wah. I also
played through an Avid Eleven
Rack in the studio because
we were running Pro Tools.
I'm a tube-amp guy, but the
Eleven Rack gave me perfect
David Gilmour tones when I
need them.
"I recorded using an '80s
American Standard Strat, a
'90s Strat Plus with JBE pickups, and a Lengardo Milano,
which is chambered and has
JBE pickups. It's a true tone
machine."
Along with gigging, Roth
teaches guitar to 40 students.
"I love teaching anybody who wants to learn,
and I always learn from teaching. There's a ton
of new music out there, and it's my job to guide
players away from processed pop music and
to the legends. Players from my era had more
ear training, so we learned mostly by slowing
down vinyl. Today, all you need is a video or
tabs online. There's nothing wrong with that,
but you need a good ear to play great melodies
and create hooks on the fly."
He recently took lessons from Commander
Cody vet Bill Kirchen and came away with a
batch of "new" country licks in his repertoire.
Effort like that exemplifies Roth's desire to
continue growing musically and as a person.
Speaking of growth, he has already started on
his next project.
"I would love to record with Dickey Betts,
Clapton, Billy Gibbons, or Stevie Wonder. So,
if any of them read this, please hit me up!" he
said... half-jokingly. - John Heidt


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open

Contents
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - Cover
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - IFC
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 3
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 4
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 5
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 6
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 7
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 8
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 9
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - Contents
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 11
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 12
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 13
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 14
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 15
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Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 17
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 18
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 19
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 20
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Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - 22
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Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - IBC
Vintage Guitar - September 2018 - Open - BC
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