As a fingerstylist, I was a little confounded at
first by the “extra” strings, but once I got the
hang of it, I found I could avoid those strings
part of the time, and then when I wanted
an accent, sha-wing, I could dig in and let it
shimmer. It’s well worth the time spent experimenting with attack and touch, and it really
didn’t take long before I was completely
comfortable with it.
With a flatpick, that 12-stringy vibrance really
shines. It’s a lovely, warm-but-shiny sound, like
polished gold at sunset, or leaves after a summer storm. It’s brilliant, but never cold sounding. It took a little time to get familiar with the
way those two doubled middle strings affected songs I was used to playing and hearing
with just six, but once I hit my stride, I found
if I changed my approach slightly. I could do
the “interior melody” thing DADGAD is so
revered for, and never notice the difference
between the doubled strings and the normal
strings, especially with the flatpick turned
“Tony-Rice-wise,” sideways using the shoulder
of the pick instead of the point.
Plug it in already
The Taylor Expression System is really intuitive and easy to use, and it sounds terrifically
“guitary” and warm. With only three controls
to master, Volume, Treble and Bass, it’s almost
too easy. The second string on this guitar is
not wound, and my ears interpreted that as
very mid-rangey when plugged in. I had to
dial out the mids on my Baggs Core 1 quite
a bit to satisfy my ears, but once I had that
under control, it sounded awesome, very full
and incredibly rich. I cranked the bass and was
treated to some of the leanest warm bass I
have ever heard, which is totally shocking considering I was playing a baritone guitar. It was
incredibly full, but not even remotely muddy,
and I had not a hint of feedback, even turned
up pretty loud. I’m thoroughly impressed with
the performance of the Expression System.
The Final mojo
Baritone guitars are beyond hip. They’re
ultra-cool and endlessly inspiring. Capo’d
or otherwise, they offer us something of
a time machine, bringing back songs that
gravity and depleted collagen stole from
our repertoire decades ago. Taylor’s 8-string
version of the baritone is divine, and more
addictive than Facebook. Like your typical
Taylor, it’s beautifully made, comfortable to
hold and outstandingly playable. Add to that
a remarkably reasonable price, and you have
yourself the first “must-have” acoustic guitar
of 2010. Congratulations to Taylor on 35
you want a baritone with sizzle
to inspire and delight you.
you play mainly lead guitar or
don’t like the 12-string vibe.
Click here to see a video
of the guitar in action at
New from LR Baggs venue D.I.
· All discrete 5-Band Para D.I.
style EQ with breakthrough
· Isolation transformer D.I.
guarantees elimination of
· Chromatic tuner.
3 BoxEs IN 1!
Relentless InnovatIon In acoustIc amplIfIcatIon