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Music Man Benji Madden
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  • moosehermanmooseherman

    Music Man Benji MaddenPublished on 05/06/09 at 18:39
    This American guitar has an alder body, a maple neck with a rosewood fretboard, 22 frets, one DiMarzio bridge pickup, volume and tone controls, locking tuners and a chrome bridge (not sure what make, either way it's unimpressive). Not a whole lot of options as far as sound goes.

    UTILIZATION

    The neck has a pretty rough and uneasy feel to it. I like playing leads and I found that pretty difficult with this guitar. The top frets weren't particularly easy to reach, either. It's not too heavy, which is nice, and it's easy to play. But good luck getting a good sound out of it.

    SOUNDS

    This guitar is probably only good for clones of Good Charlotte (Benji Madden is the "lead&q…
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    This American guitar has an alder body, a maple neck with a rosewood fretboard, 22 frets, one DiMarzio bridge pickup, volume and tone controls, locking tuners and a chrome bridge (not sure what make, either way it's unimpressive). Not a whole lot of options as far as sound goes.

    UTILIZATION

    The neck has a pretty rough and uneasy feel to it. I like playing leads and I found that pretty difficult with this guitar. The top frets weren't particularly easy to reach, either. It's not too heavy, which is nice, and it's easy to play. But good luck getting a good sound out of it.

    SOUNDS

    This guitar is probably only good for clones of Good Charlotte (Benji Madden is the "lead" guitarist for that band). It doesn't fit anyone remotely interested in classic rock or blues; even metal players will probably want more variety. The lack of middle or neck pickups is not a blessing, although some people obviously find appeal in it. You basically get two sounds: tone knob up and tone knob down. Neither of them sound that great. The biggest problem I have with this guitar is that it sounds flat; there's absolutely no way of changing things up without looking elsewhere (pedals, amps). Coming from playing a good Strat to playing this is almost painful. I would list my favorite sounds but there's really only one sound you can get out of it, given that a complete lack of tone is not really an option for me.

    OVERALL OPINION

    It's not surprising that Benji Madden's signature guitar wouldn't impress most real guitarists. The surprise is that Music Man actually has the nerve to charge $1000 for this. I hate the lack of tone controls, and the fact that it sounds downright bland. I hate the fact that there's only one pickup and it's not even that great of a pickup. I feel like anybody who can't really play guitar, and just wants a consistently mediocre sound to come out of it would be interested in this. I doubt anybody else would. I strongly advise every man, woman and child to stay away from this guitar. In fact, I'd be surprised if I ever buy a guitar from Music Man. I know signature models are really just a way to capitalize on successful bands, but at least PRS made a decent guitar with their Santana Model. If only Music Man would stick with the good players that use their guitars (John Petrucci comes to mind); then they'd be a little more respectable.
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