Review: Alvarez 50th Anniversary Grateful Dead Series Guitars — Video

In the history of modern music, few bands have captured as many hearts and inspired entire generations like the Grateful Dead.

Alvarez, which has had a long-standing friendship with band members Bob Weir and the late Jerry Garcia, has commemorated the group's 50th anniversary by releasing its new Grateful Dead series of guitars—a stunning, limited-edition line.

As Guitar World Tech Editor Paul Riario says in the demo video below, these new guitars are fun to play and look great—but they'll also most likely wind up as collector's items.

"They're perfect guitars to hang in your man cave," Riario adds. "They're also great for strumming along to 'Ripple' as you're sipping Ripple."

Grateful Dead enthusiasts will appreciate the artwork on the tops of the guitars, which is screen-printed using a blend of traditional and modern printing techniques; all guitarists will appreciate the fine construction, playability and tone of these guitars.

Each model features a solid A-grade Western red cedar top, screen printed under a flawless satin finish. Other appointments include custom mother-of-pearl inlays, a rosewood fingerboard and bi-level bridge and 12th fret lightning bolt inlay. Both models are constructed using Alvarez's FST2M hand-finished, forward-shifted, scalloped bracing system for optimal performance and response.

No two Grateful Dead series guitars are exactly the same, due to the design and printing process that allows the individual grain pattern and color of each top to contribute to the artwork. This process also helps create a vintage look to each instrument, as if they were made in the Sixties.

Since every piece of wood is unique, the artwork of every top is as well, making each one of these Grateful Dead commemorative guitars a true, one of a kind collector's piece.

For more information on this series, visit and watch the videos below.

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Guitar World Staff

Since 1980, Guitar World has been the ultimate resource for guitarists. Whether you want to learn the techniques employed by your guitar heroes, read about their latest projects or simply need to know which guitar is the right one to buy, Guitar World is the place to look.