We caught up with Washburn at this years NAMM show to find out more about their flagship Paul Stanley and Nuno Bettencourt models. Watch the video below.
Nuno Bettencourt, born in Portugal and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, grew up in a very musical family. In his teenage years he began playing drums, bass and keyboards, but ultimately settled on guitar as his primary instrument. Since then he has become one of the world's greatest guitarists, who draws from an eclectic variety of styles and influences and is a tremendously technical and adept player, with an acute sense of rhythm. Most famous for his role in Boston-area group Extreme, in which Bettencourt recorded five CDs and delivered the hits "More Than Words" and "Hole Hearted", he has also released a solo CD, formed the groups Mourning Widows and Population 1 (which eventually became DramaGods), and was featured in Satellite Party (formed by Perry Farrell). Although they had disbanded in 1995, in 2007, Extreme reunited and headlined Washburn's 125th Anniversary Party at Winter NAMM 2008. For 2009-2012 Nuno joined Grammy Award winning R&B artist Rihanna as music director and lead guitarist on her world tour, playing to hundreds of thousands of fans across Europe and the U.S.
In order to develop the N Series with Washburn, Bettencourt utilized his extensive knowledge of the guitar and designed each model with an extremely fast neck that allows for easy access to higher frets via the Stephen's® Extended Cutaway on some models. Depending on the model, a Washburn or a Duncan® '59 neck pickup & a Lawrence® L-500 in the bridge make this reverse headstock marvel wail. These super road axes are the gateway to total creativity, just ask Nuno and the thousands of musicians that play them.
Photos above: New Washburn PS10 Starfire guitars available in black or white
The PS10 is a sleek, classically inspired design that features a carved "raised centre" solid mahogany body and mahogany neck for warm tone and lots of sustain. A bound ebony fingerboard is fitted with 22 easy playing jumbo frets and features dot inlays. The high quality hardware includes a Tune-O-Matic bridge with stop tailpiece, graphite nut and diecast tuners for precise tuning. The white pickguard ties in nicely with the headstock shaped truss rod cover. Both contain a silk screened variation of the Paul Stanley Starfire logo. Electronics include two chrome mini humbuckers, each controlled by separate top hat volume and tone knobs and a 3-way pickup selector.
The high output mini humbuckers produce a tone all their own that is both versatile and will sit front and centre in a stage mix. Judicious use of the volume and tone controls will reward the player with a wide selection of biting and/or creamy sustaining tones to choose from.
The PS10 Starfire is available in black or white and includes a gig bag. It will ship in the UK in Q2 2013 at an expected RRP of £379 inc VAT.