Stratoblogster Labs: Red Rocket Guitars, USA Boutique

It's great to see a USA hand-built line at this level, as Euro builders are kickin' our butts at the high end.

Matt Nowicki of North Carolina-based Red Rocket Guitars is the one-man show behind his line of Atomic Retro Customs, and he's a featured luthier at Destroy All Guitars. You've gotta visit both sites (See the links below) and check out the very cool guitars Matt builds. He goes waaay beyond the typical F-type bolt-ons of so many small shops these days, as you'll discover. Fans of retro Sci-fi art are also in for a treat!

The StyleSonic is Matt's latest creation. Beyond the familiar platform, the body is two-piece black limba (Korina) with aged Robin's egg blue finish and cocobolo binding and knobs. The checkered purfling style binding is a Red Rocket Guitars trademark reflecting an intense attention to detail. The 10-inch radius, soft "V" neck comes with 22 medium jumbo stainless steel frets in an ebony fretboard. The hand-rubbed oil finish neck is also attached with threaded inserts. Pickups are Fralin Blues Specials with a steel base bridge pickup.

You may also notice the lack of string trees and a tilted headstock. Matt says this is optional, but also wants you to know his tilt headstock scarf joints won't snap off. And speaking of Gibby's, if you lean that way, Red Rocket has some models that'll make ya drool! Be sure to check out the "Afterburner" and new "Commander" models!

Here's a video demo of Red Rocket's Commander and StyleSonic models by Lance Keltner: StyleSonic page with lots of photos and specs! Check out the Red Rocket Guitars page.

JP Holesworth authors the Stratoblogster Guitar Blog and resides in rural Oregon, surrounded by Pinot Noir vineyards, hop plantations, medical MJ farms and extreme environMENTAL consciousness. But he loves red meat and vacuum tubes!

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