Guitars Of The Week:
The Week of May, 1 2000 through May, 8 2000

Hollow Drop Top
Maple Top on Basswood
Fireburst with Binding

 MODEL: – Hollow Drop Top

 FINISH: – Fireburst with binding

 BODY WOOD: – Basswood with Maple Top

 BODY WOOD BACK COLOR: – Darker color of front

 NECK WOOD: – Mahogany with Madagascar Rosewood

 HEADSTOCK COLOR: – Darker color of front


 NECK BACKSHAPE: – T/A Standard

 NUT WIDTH: – 1 11/16th--inch

 FRETS: – Heavy

 BRIDGE: – Vintage Tremolo with X-Bridge


 PICKGUARD: – n/a

 PICKUPS: – H1+, H3+

 SWITCHING: – Standard Cobra




Maple Top on Mahogany - Cobra
Cajun Red with Binding

Maple Top on Mahogany - Cobra
Cajun Red with Binding

Tom is not here this week. He is in Mexico building houses with a church group. He’ll be back next week. In my humble opinion, he is a great human being and his being on this planet makes it a better place in more ways than one. If he knew I was talking about him like this he’d frown at me and tell me not to say that stuff but he’s not here. He should know better than to leave me without supervision.

The guitars have been getting a little rambunctious as well while Tom has been away. Why just today three guitars all insisted on being Guitar of the Week. I politely explained to them that only one of them would get to be Guitar of the Week. You’d think that would have satisfied them but oh no! They all wanted to have a friendly play-off to see which one of them was worthy of being the Guitar of the Week.

The first one was a Fireburst Hollow Cobra S. Its hollow sealed-chambered body is mahogany with a strikingly beautiful straight-flame patterned maple top. Man, it’s beautiful in Fireburst. If you like the picture you should see it in person. It is “show stopping.” The neck is mahogany with a standard Cobra backshape and an optional Madagascar rosewood fingerboard.

I played it unplugged and listened to it acoustically. It was astounding! The tone was full, rich, concentrated and articulate without even a hint of harshness. I literally did not want to put it down so I plugged it in. All that same rich tone was present and escorted to the amplifier by our HO1- and HO2 humbuckings with a percussive, vintage output and clarity. Vintage output humbuckings traditionally have a difficult time creating great split tones because of their lower split-output but not these and not this guitar. In fact all the tones were so perfect that I knew this one was the winner. I should take it to my house but alas, it is headed to a very nice store, “Sounds Great,” in England where they will hand it over to a very nice “bloke” who has been patiently waiting for his Tom Anderson guitar. I know that he’ll think it was worth the wait.

Just out of courtesy, I thought I should play the other two guitars that had been waiting so patiently. Next was the Fireburst Hollow Drop Top. It’s going to Matt’s house. He is getting it from Jim, Dennis, Chad and Kevin at Electric City Music. I picked it up. The unique thing about this Hollow Drop Top is that it is electronically configured just like the previous Cobra but it is not the same animal. The body is basswood with a maple top and the neck is maple with a Madagascar rosewood board. The Madagascar wood has a reddish hue that blends wonderfully with the Fireburst color of both instruments.

All of our guitars feature a 25 ½-inch scale length except Cobras (and Baritoms of course) which enjoys a shorter 24 ¾-inch scale length. The unplugged tone of the longer-scale Hollow Drop Top features a wider bandwidth with more high-end clarity, low, low end and a less strongly focused middle. To further increase the sonic difference, Matt opted for the liquid feel of .009 gauge strings while our English mate chose .010s. This Hollow Drop Top played and sounded really great with a sleek, fast feel and a wide, musical bandwidth.

I thought I’d better plug it in for just a minute to hear how the super-power H1+ and H3+ pickups sound. I plugged it in and hit the stand-by switch to the on position. Oh my gosh! It roared to life like it was an F-16 being catapulted into flight from the deck of the USS Enterprise. Its beautiful unplugged tonal qualities allow this high output monster to remain musical—something usually unheard of from high output guitars. And the single coil tones were down right luscious. It also is equipped with an X-Bridge so it also produces plugged-in acoustic guitar tones alone or blended with its electric tones. Okay, this one is Guitar of the Week. But I wasn’t positive so I played these two Fireburst beauties back to back several times. Okay! All right! They are both Guitar of the Week.

Lastly I played the Cajun Red Cobra. I must admit I have a soft spot for Cajun Red Cobras. I love them. I want one. I feel that Tom, and his partner Laurie, should happily reward me with one for meritorious service above and beyond the call of duty but they would rather I wash their cars, take out the trash, clean the bathrooms, pull weeds and pick rocks from the tread of their car tires. Oh well, I’d better keep writing. I have dishes to wash. Anyway, I skeptically picked up the Cajun Red Cobra. How could anything be as good as the two I just heard?

I strummed the Cobra into the air. Oh my gosh again! I ran over to Dave Wakefield. I said, “Listen to this!” Acoustically its mahogany/maple topped body and mahogany with our new African rosewood fingerboard neck, produced a large, round, thudding tone while demonstrating a beautiful upper-mid clarity. On top of all this, Dave and I could hear a lush percussive quality to each note. I was beside myself! Where was I anyway? I ran outside and looked back at the front door. A sign read, “Tom Anderson Guitarworks.” Well that explains it. I ran back in, right to the amp and plugged it in. We were not disappointed. All that wonderful unplugged tone came rushing out of the amp courtesy of our H1- and H2+ pickups.

Okay, okay, I can see it all clearly now. I am just a pawn here. I have no choice. I have no say as to which guitar is Guitar of the Week. They are all Guitar of the Week!

TOP SECRET: But there is one thing I do know so listen very carefully. These two Fireburst guitars are already spoken for but the Cajun Red Cobra is going to Tommy at Music Arts Enterprises in Fort Lauderdale, FL and is available. If you have ever though that you might want a Cobra, get this one!

 MODEL: – Cobra

 FINISH: – Cajun Red with binding

 BODY WOOD: – Mahogany with Maple Top

 BODY WOOD BACK COLOR: – Translucent Red

 NECK WOOD: – Mahogany with African Rosewood



 NECK BACKSHAPE: – Cobra Standard

 NUT WIDTH: – 1 11/16th-inch

 FRETS: – Heavy

 BRIDGE: – Hard Tail


 PICKGUARD: – n/a

 PICKUPS: – H1-, H2+

 SWITCHING: – Standard Cobra




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