Category Archives: guitar child prodigy

Washburn X50 Review

This is my review of the Washburn X50 and X50 Pro FE guitars with the Buzz Feiten tuning system.

Another manufacturer that I think is highly underrated is Washburn Guitars. For 100 years they have been making quality instruments, but since the 80’s Washburn has been known for making killer shredding machines at affordable prices. Gibsons and Fenders are great, but the cost is too high and they just aren’t very versatile. Their cheaper counterparts (Squier and Epiphone) are a laughable joke quality and price wise. In addition there have never been improvements made to essentials such as tuning and intonation or electronics.

It’s funny, even thought you can’t (currently) find a Washburn guitar in any Guitar Center store, you can still find them in small music shops all over. In addition, modern touring bands are using them every day – like Puddle of Mudd, Theory of a Dead Man, Sevendust, Anthrax, Goo Goo Dolls, Sammy Hagar, As I Lay Dying, Def Leppard, Toby Keith, Meatloaf, Kiss, Black Label Society, All-American Rejects, Neil McCoy, Shinedown, Fall Out Boy, Brooks and Dunn, Derek Trucks, Hawthorne Heights, and Breaking Benjamin.

The 2 guitars I’m going to talk about today are the X50 and X50 Pro FE.

Washburn X50 Pro
Washburn X50 Pro FE

You used to be able to get the X-50 Pro for between $400-$500 and and the X-50 Pro sold for $600-700. The X50 Pro comes with a Duncan ’59 reissue humbucker pickup in the next and a Duncan Custom Custom in the bridge. The X50 Pro FE comes with EMG 81 and EMG 85 active pickups. The X50 pros have quilted maple tops, and the X50 Pro FE’s have flamed maple tops. Each Washburn guitar features the Buzz Feiten tuning system, which you can read about here. The X50 series also uses Washburn’s patented VCC or “Volume Contour Control” system. Basically the volume control is a coil tap, and when pull it out it splits the humbuckers in half…but the way that the VCC works is that when you back off the volume control, once it reaches 50% the coil tap automatically kicks in chopping the humbucker down to a single coil.

There have been stellar reviews of both models, Washburn posted a 2004 review of the X50 Pro from Guitar World.
Both Harmony Central and Ultimate Guitar reviews were very high. The thing that has amazed me is when watching these models in eBay auctions for a few weeks, most of the auctions received 40+ bids – which is very high for most guitar auctions. Then, once I read of the features (like the electronics and the Buzz Feiten) – I now know why.

Pickups are a very personal choice, and I think that the Duncan Custom Custom and ’59 both are great choices for many guitarists and amp combinations. Lately though, I am very partial to EMG pickups (especially the 81 and 85) because I find that they work like “peas and carrots” with a POD (I have a PodXT Live). The active electronics just seem to give a certain extra “clarity” to everything that comes through my POD. Many players favor 81/85 pickups – like Zakk Wylde.

You don’t see a lot of X50’s on eBay, usually only a few at a time. They don’t sell them new anymore, so this guitar is a little more rare than it used to be. This page will always have the latest live auctions for Washburn X-50 and X50 Pro FE’s, bookmark it now!

There are usually a half dozen for sale on eBay most days, check what auctions are available now by clicking this link.  Prices can be $300 – $600 depending on condition.

If the X50 series isn’t for you – there are hundreds of Washburn guitars on eBay right now in different styles, models, and colors, check them out as well!

Here’s a good YouTube review as well:

12 Year Old plays Eruption

This 12 year old guitar player plays “Eruption” and his original song “Break Out”. I don’t know if this is some kind of talent show or what, but it looks like he has a little cheering section to be sure. It’s not perfect, but the the dude was only 12 when this was recorded AND his second song is his original composition – that’s pretty tight! When I was 12 I barely knew how to play the “Yesterday” by the Beatles.

That was pretty good, but this 14 year old has one of the best quality “Eruption” video’s I’ve seen. I’m always impressed when a young guitar player can not only play the notes, but actually emulate some of the sounds with his finger and nuances of the original. In addition to that – I’ve heard a lot of eruption covers in my time, but for his age he’s probably got some of cleanest “Eddie-like” picking I’ve heard. The sound of the guitar is perfect for this as well, I wonder if he’s using a POD or what he’s playing through?

9 Year Old Guitar God Caught on Video

Here’s a video you won’t expect, it’s an 8 year old guitar god! You think I’m joking, and I have a lot of child guitar prodigy video to feature this week and next, but this is probably the “best of the best” I’ve seen at that age. Anton Oparin is from Russia, in a guitar competition in 2004 ” Guitar Masters – Greatest Shredders Compilation”. That means he’s 13 years old now. Listen to the solo he does, the runs are sooooo smooth, and sweep picking from hell – in and out of modes. What his fingers, I never – ever had that kind of speed, dexterity, and accurate picking (at any age). I’ve seen lots of Paul Gilbert video, and I actually think (technically) this kid is better…I sure as hell hope he won that competition.

Baby Plays Metallica

A Baby playing Metallica on guitar? It can’t be true…but it is! You find some really crazy stuff on YouTube, and this baby playing Metallica’s “Sad But True” is truly hilarious! What instrument could you play when you were that old?

That may have been real funny, but check this out – this eight year old plays the intro to Metallica’s “One” on electric guitar. Could you play anything on guitar when you were 8 years old? I’m always impressed by young musicians and what they can do, because imagine how he’ll be tearing it up by the time that he’s 16 years old? With YouTube, and computers, and free online lessons and video the next generation of shredders should be incredible!

Quinn Sullivan – the blues guitar child prodigy you won’t forget

Here’s one you won’t soon forget – I want you to watch this video of Quinn Sullivan. He’s 8, he has his own band, and he probably plays better than you do! Apparently he loves The Beatles, his dad plays the drums in his band, and he’s been playing and performing since the AGE OF FOUR (yes I said 4)! He sings, he plays lead and fronts the band, he even writes his own songs including music and lyrics! In this video he plays the B.B. King classic “Thrill is gone”. Watching the whole video I hope that you’re amazed as much as I was as he begins the song playing lead, and then when he starts to sing with his very high but dead on voice, and then the lead in the middle when he not only works the hell out of that Wah pedal – but the stage presence and conviction he has is amazing! Remember his name – this child will be a guitar god by his teens, mark my words!

Quinn Sullivan – Thrill is Gone

Here’s a couple more vids of Quinn I found on YouTube:

Quinn Sullivan – My Guitar Gently Weeps

Ellen DeGeneres and Quinn Sullivan

Quinn Sullivan plays with Buddy Guy