In the Personal Dilemmas section today: guitar woes. Recently got a new 6 string. Great looking guitar, to be sure, but I already had a red semi-hollow body from the same company, and wanted something different. So, bring it to a guy in town known for slinging acrylic and enamel.
Fast forward a month. Things, y’know, like real life, keep getting in the way of me getting her back. So, I’m supposed to practice this past Wednesday, and my Liquid Nitro—my 3rd string backup—goes down with a bridge issue. It being Tuesday already, my painter buddy tells me he can hook up late, and we agree to meet up at midnight in a Publix parking lot so I can get my axe and pay the balance. The wife asks, “How are you going to test it?”
Good question, right? Not like I’m going to be able to plug in my Fender amp outside of a supermarket, so I shrug my shoulders and tell her, “Gonna have to take the risk and hope it works at practice.” Which was how I would have handled it…until I remembered—why not bring a little EVH with me? As in, the 5150 Micro Stack. Got this thing as a gift a while back, and while backyard BBQ season hasn’t quite gotten underway, the plan has always been to use this lightweight, 9 volt powered mini-amp so I didn’t have to play acoustic. That’s my buddy’s job at parties, the acoustic end o’ things.
We get there, I plug in, and boom. I could put my Les Paul (hey, not all of us play a replica Frankenstein), through its paces. It sounded freaking great. Well, not so much my playing, but the amp? Hell yeah.
The takeaway? If you play, you can’t beat having one of these things. They weigh nothing, they’re smaller than a copy of the average Harry Potter novel, and you can turn ’em up pretty loud. Going to a beach party? It doesn’t have to sound like Kumbaya around the bonfire. Kegger out in the woods? Bingo. You and a couple of friends going out on the water? This thing’ll travel on a boat just fine. Drop an extra battery in your case and be on your way.
And, if you’re the adventurous type who’s just found some crazy axe on Craigslist you want, but couldn’t test otherwise? Bring Eddie’s 5150 Micro Stack or 5150 Micro Stack EL34 along and you are gold. It’s got decent Tone and Volume control, you can get a surprising amount of distortion out of it, and all for fifty bucks, with free shipping. I would give it an emphatic two thumbs up, if one of my thumbs wasn’t stretched around the neck holding F#.