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Ernie Ball Music Man updates its Ball Family Reserve collection with four new eye-catching offerings

Ernie Ball Music Man Ball Family Reserve Collection
(Image credit: Ernie Ball Music Man)

Ernie Ball has unveiled a quartet of new models – a trio of electric guitars and a bass guitar – which will join up with the brand’s ever-expanding collection of Ball Family Reserve instruments.

The September expansion pack of Ernie Ball’s Ball Family Reserve collection sees the arrival of newly finished Luke III and Albert Lee models, as well as a natural ash-bodied StingRay and a spalted maple-topped JP15.

Once again, the brand seems to have pulled out all the stops to update its limited-edition collection, which, for those who are unfamiliar with the range, offers up high-spec guitars previously reserved for family and artists as “a celebration of our heritage in instrument craftsmanship.”

Cast your eyes below to peruse the awesome foursome of Ernie Ball’s freshest Family Reserve lineup.

Luke II in Grapes Of Wrath

Ernie Ball Music Man Ball Family Reserve Collection

(Image credit: Ernie Ball Music Man)

Limited to only 85 pieces worldwide, the freshly finished Luke III flashes a mesmeric Grapes of Wrath colorway, which makes use of translucent green and purple hues. It also features an okoume body, a roasted maple neck, an ebony fretboard and simulated Atlante abalone inlays.

Each piece – which also features two humbuckers, stainless steel frets and pearloid Schaller locking tuners –  comes with a tremolo cover autographed by Steve Lukather.

StingRay Special 5 HH Slugger

Ernie Ball Music Man Ball Family Reserve Collection

(Image credit: Ernie Ball Music Man)

The only bass of the bunch arrives in the form of the StingRay 5 Special Slugger – a natural-finished five-string that features a lightweight ash body, an oil-and-wax-finished figured roasted maple neck and black fretboard position markers.

Dual alnico humbucking pickups also make the cut, and are controlled by a three-band EQ – accommodated by ornate striped ebony wooden control knobs – and a five-way switch. Finishing touches include an absent pickguard and cloverleaf tuners. Only 50 pieces are available.

Spalted maple-topped JP15 Piledriver

Ernie Ball Music Man Ball Family Reserve Collection

(Image credit: Ernie Ball Music Man)

Ernie Ball Music Man’s penultimate offering is a JP15 Piledriver, which is kitted out with a luxurious, highly figured spalted maple top. The top is paired with a roasted maple neck and fretboard, which in turn features alongside 24 stainless steel frets, custom JP15 inlays and black hardware.

Each guitar in the 60-piece run also features a tremolo cover signed by John Petrucci.

Albert Lee HH in Cherry Punch

Ernie Ball Music Man Ball Family Reserve Collection

(Image credit: Ernie Ball Music Man)

Last but not least is a new-look, Cherry Punch-finished Albert Lee model. Highlights include a double-humbucker configuration – unlike the HSS iteration of the previous Ball Family Reserve collection drop – and a lightweight okoume body.

Elsewhere, the guitar is appointed with a roasted maple neck with birdseye maple fingerboard, 22 stainless steel frets, a natural headstock and white block inlays, as well as a Tune-O-Matic stop tail bridge and Schaller locking tuners.

The sparkly, yellow-and-cherry-red Albert Lee will be limited to only 75 pieces worldwide, and each guitar comes adorned with a signed tremolo back plate.

To find out more, visit Ernie Ball Music Man.

Matt Owen

Matt is a News Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.