Vyasa Dodson, who's many sound clips are on this site, now has a CD available with his band, The Insomniacs, available for sale now, click on the album cover to hear and get details. The Insomniacs were voted best New Act and won the presitigious Muddy Award for 2006 from the Cascade Blues Society in Portland, Oregon. Vyasa plays an authentiic '51 Nocaster with an SD bridge pickup, the album contains many examples of SD Pickups in action with his tele and my Epi Dot Deluxe, check it out...
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To read customer reviews please scroll past the sound clips.
NICK CURRAN-FABULOUS THUNDERBIRDS!
Nick is one of my all time favorite guitar heroes. A master of jump style blues, a great vocalist, with about five great albums of his own and is a recent addition to the T-Birds line-up of star musicians. I caught up with him recently at our blues jam where the Thunderbirds band did a guest sit-in with Jimmy Bott on drums, Kirk Fletcher on guitar, Ronnie James Weber on bass, after coming from a show at the Aladdin. Here are 3 songs featuring Nick on vocals and guitar with one solo by Kirk in left channel (he wasn't playing very loud unfortunately). Nick is playing my Squire with the Mojo V set, a more vintage lower output set that he loved playing, I made and sent him a set recently, his comment, "the pickups are killer man!" is all I needed to hear :-)
"Its My LIfe" NIck Curran
"Been Shot Down" Nick Curran / Kirk Fletcher (1st solo)
"I Love You Baby" NIck Curran (Nick broke a string at the end of the song, you can hardly tell....)
Phil is one of the best guitars player in Portland as far as I am concerned. Here he is playing a '72 thinline tele with two Texas Twister strat pickups and a Super Broadcaster tele bridge, turn your speaker up LOUD!
Julie getting killer tone with Slim's guitar and my amp, total different sound that Slim's. Check out Julie's awesome band at the StrangeTones Website. Julie is one of my favorite lady singers in Portland.
Marco Savo is a master of the jump blues style, here is he on a George Benson tune playing the Little Charley pickup in my Ibanez Artcore. He's playing pretty dirty with the tone rolled back some. Marco is speaker right, microphone is closest to the amp, Suburban Slim is on the left speaker (my single coils in his tele), these guys rip this one up!
This is the Little Charley Blade pickup. This pickup just amazes me with its authoritative voice. Evertime I play it I get that "oh YEAH! feeling." What else can I say about it? Oh, almost forgot, this one is in an Ibanez Artcore archtop with 11 gauge flatwound strings through my Deluxe.
Here's the new Little Charley Blade pickup again, providing that nice horn-like "honk" and wonderful tone. This one is in neck position in a tele. Tone, Tone, Tone!
This is parts of 3 songs with Robbie playing the Tall Texan Strat Set on my '57 Fender reissue, a light and bright sounding guitar, through his '64 Super Reverb with ten gauge strings. Robbie is the top-of-the-heap of the strat blues guys in Portland and one of the best players around. Check out his albums on Blue Heron Records.
Here's Vyasa (pronounced Vee-oss) Dodson playing a Hollywood Fats tune on my Epiphone Dot with the recent Silver Series Alnico II Humbucker Set.
He is playing through an old Magnatone twin speaker amp with an outboard Premier reverb unit. Nice tone, good solo.
I'm not a great guitar player like the rest of these guys, but this will give you a taste of the new Silver Series Humbucker Set, in an Epiphone Dot Deluxe, 10 gauge strings, through my deluxe. This is a slightly underwound humbucker set that is capable of amazing tone qualities through any amp.
Phil doing playing the Silver Series 'buckers, starting on the neck with some tone backed off, and ending in a blazing bridge solo, full on. You can hear some of Phil's great vocal style here also.
Marco is an awesome player, this isn't his best work but you can hear his work on the neck pickup on my 335. I will get some of Marco's awesome jump blues solos up soon, he's killer.
The Reviews section is impossible to keep updated, so I gave up! Please visit Harmony Central under SD Pickups to read what my customers think about me and my work. If a pickup isn't there email me and I can forward customer emails who bought the item you are considering.
"RED HOUSE FAT"
Hey man, these are very nice! You hit on something,
Dave. Real srong tone and full. tHEY AINT LIKE THE 59'S AT
ALL... THE 59'S ARE ON THE CLANKY SIDE THESE RED HOUSE seem on THE
TIGHTER SIDE to me. The in-between tones are pronounced (I really
like those tones). I wired it with the extra two tones (neck & bridge
together and all 3 together) and they are cool too. the two middle magnets
are longer it seems. So I like that feature alot. the chords
are beautuiful sounding.... I aint full of bullshit... I did the play
then stop then play about 6 times Thursday so I could
get the height adjustment happening and to see if I hear the differences
happening... Just bitchin'! just fuckin' bitchin'???!!!!!!!!
nOW I CAN'T PUT IT DOWN... You made them with some airyness to them
just like those gorgeous 59's, man...To sum up I dig the shit out these
too, man! gottdamm this is bitchin'!!!! I dig the 59's so much and now
these ones... can't wait to play through them at rehearsal tomorrow.
TEXAS TWISTER STRAT SET
"I have been playing guitar for almost 30 years and I have tried many pickups along the way. “All Things Strat” Magazine has forced me to open my ears to be able to convey what makes a good pickup to its readers. Dave Stephens may be new to some guitar players, but I firmly believe that this artisan, craftsman, and musician has a real gift and that we will definitely be hearing many more good things about this man and his pickups in the future!”
"Dave I really like them (full Texas Twister set). Compared to the Fender Lace Sensor they are brighter / louder/ just as quiet and most of all the sustain is there. I had to really dig in to the guitar to get some bite with the Lace sensors but these guys really have it. Very well made as well. To buy a set of 'Seymours' I would have to pay about $325 so your 'pickups' are far too cheap......enough praise !!! If you send me a 'logo'jpg I'll put up a link for you."
"I just received and installed the Texas Twister bridge pickup that I ordered from Stephens Design in Portland, OR. This is an overwound, alnico magnet, flush top pole pickup. The output is very hot, measuring ~11k ohms. This pickup is installed in an ASE alder Strat with rosewood fb and 12db midboost. I compared it to a Fralin Steel Pole-43 in my '73 swamp ash/maple fb. Strat with a Callaham vintage bridge. The SP-43 is Fralin's version of a Strat sized P-90.
The Twister is more Strat-like than the Fralin, in that it doesn't have as much midrange crunch, and it mantains the Strat brightness without being shrill, but definitely has more drive and fatness than a standard Strat bridge pu. This is exactly what I was looking for in this guitar, since the mid-boost and tone control can bring it into more of a P-90 or humbucker tonal range.
So far, I really like this pickup, and would recommend it to anyone trying to get a stronger, fatter bridge sound from a Strat. One of these days, I might try a full set.
Dave Stephens is great to deal with, ships very fast.”
“Andy” on the Fender FDP Forum
"Dave, I really love
the pickups you made for me."
Suburban Slim; Portland, OR
TEXAS MOJO "V"
'64 TEXAS MOJO STAGGER SET
TALL TEXAN STRAT SET
here to read the current review of this set on All Things Strat
Silver Series stock set in a Les Paul
Vyasa Dodsun, Portland, OR
"Just received the pickup in this
morning's post (about 6 hours ago), took the the kids to school,
came back, couldn't wait, slapped it in my Tele, tined up with
tuner (no amp, the first time I wanted to hear it was in tune
ready to play). plugged into my home built Torres 6w warmed-up
valve amp andFantastic!! ended up neglecting work for 2
hours. This thing sings' lovely tone (there's that word again).
I wouldn't know what a vintage broadcaster pickup sounded like
if it came up and smashed me in the face, but if it sounds as
good as this, then I can understand why they are sought after.
Chords sound clear and bright bbbbbrrraaaaaannnnggg y'know? That's
the best way to describe it. Played Sweet Home Alabama introsounded
lovely, not a hint of shrillness (is that a word??). Cranked
up, single notes are thicker and warmer than before; loads of
punch but still retain their clarity. Playing along to Buddy
Guy "Damn right I got the Blues" backing tracksustain
seems a lot better. I still need to tweak the setup (maybe not,
if this is as good as it gets then that-s fine by me).
Steve Hodgkiss, UK
Hawkan Forsberg, Australia
"I finally got your pickups to work in my guitar with the 500K's. I must of had a bad pot, because at first I couldn't get anything to work, after messing with it, I finally gutted the controls and started over with new parts. It works now, and I do like the 500K's better. These are some nice pickups, and they are very well matched in volume balance (I know that this depends on how close the pickups are mounted to the strings, but indeed these pickups are matched). Thanks for the nice set of pickups, and I will get some soundclips done with your pickups for you to hear. I also will be giving you a great review on Harmony Central. Thanks for the great pickups!"
“Hey Dave, I finally got a chance to install those P-90's and they are tone monsters. I love the sound coming from my Gibson LP Special. It’s so much better than with the stock P-100’s. They are quiet, too — even beneath my fluorescent light. Nice pickups, man!”
Don Ruoff; Portland, OR
"Hello Dave, let's talk about these pickups. It's perfect for my musicthe singer of my band immediately heard the difference. I can decrease the gain on my amps because it's easier to play. And I finally have enough trebles. (Sorry with my baby I'm so tired and it's very hard to me to try to explain you all the qualities of these pickups.) Now I have a big problem... I want to change the pickups of my Strat ! Could you help me ???"
Sebastian Delestienne, France
KAY BAR PICKUPS
Hawkan Forsberg, Australia
Kay Bar in bridge Les Paul Junior