Carvin Guitars Vader Headless Takes Best In Show

Vader Best In Show
Kiesel Guitars innovative new Vader Headless Guitar took top honors at NAMM, receiving Revolver Magazine's Best of Show award! The Vader 6, 7 and 8 string headless guitars were huge hits at the NAMM Show, and everyone at Kiesel Guitars is honored to be recognized with this award.

The Vader is available with the Kiesel Guitars Custom Shop's huge selection of options, including a standard 27" scale length and an optional 25.5" scale length on the V6 and V7. A chambered body option further decreases the Vader's light weight of around 6 pounds. New Kiesel passive pickups produce amazing tone, suitable for any genre or playing style. You can choose from a huge assortment of body, neck and top woods, fingerboard woods and inlays, fretwire and more, to make your Vader the ultimate guitar in your arsenal. Design yours today at

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Limitied Edition Kiesel-Designed Neil Zaza NZ624KD

Neil Zaza Kiesel-Designed NZ624KD Carved Top GuitarThe Custom Shop is excited to team up with renown melodic virtuoso guitarist Neil Zaza to offer something special: the Kiesel Designed Limited Edition Neil Zaza Signature Carved Top Guitar. The NZ624KD takes all the features of our popular NZ624 Neil Zaza California Carved Top guitar, and adds many upgraded options as standard features, including a hand-selected, highly figured burled maple top finished in yellow/orange with a "V" burst (the burst travels from the bottom of the guitar to the top, versus around the edges); exotic zebrawood fingerboard with genuine abalone block inlays and jumbo gold EVO frets; a thinner, faster neck profile with tung-oiled finish; and gold hardware. The back and sides are finished in high-gloss black. New black/white Kiesel K12 passive humbuckers with a single volume knob and 3-way selector provide a huge range of tone, suitable for any playing style or genre. A gold drop-shadow Kiesel headstock logo and white Neil Zaza truss rod cover round out the package.

The NZ624KD is a limited edition offering from Kiesel Guitars and the Carvin Guitars Custom Shop, so don’t miss this opportunity to add this amazing guitar to your arsenal!

You can keep up with Neil on his site, Visit to check out the Neil Zaza Signature Guitars and other instruments, and design your new Custom Shop masterpiece today.  Additionally, be sure to "like" the new Kiesel Guitars Facebook page to keep up with all the new developments coming out of the Custom Shop!

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Craig Chaquico Wows Lake Tahoe

Craig Chaquico Signature Series CC275 Acoustic-Electric GuitarWorld renown and respected guitarist and Carvin Guitars artist Craig Chaquico performed recently at the Lake Tahoe Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, treating fans to music spanning decades of his prolific career. Craig holds the distinction of being Carvin Guitars longest-running endorser, having begun using Custom Shop guitars in the late 1970s while playing with Jefferson Starship.

After leaving Jefferson Starship in the early 90s, Craig branched out as a solo artist, focusing primarily on contemporary jazz and new age music, as featured on his Grammy® nominated 1993 release "Acoustic Highway", while continuing to use an assortment of Carvin guitars. In 2001, the Custom Shop released the Craig Chaquico Signature CC275 Acoustic/Electric guitar, which is offered in 6 and 12-string versions. This neck-through thinline A/E instrument is now the mainstay of Craig's shows and recordings, along with his Deep Red on quilted maple Bolt guitar.

Craig says: “Carvin’s unique semi-hollow body and thin profile help reduce onstage feedback and allow me to play as loud as I want or as soft as I want from bends, hammer-ons, slap, finger tapping, flat picking, fingerpicking, octaves, harmonics, direct recording, direct through a PA live, or through an amp, it’s all there!”

Keep up with Craig Chaquico on his site, and check out the Craig Chaquico Signature Guitars, and design your CC275 or CC275-12 today.  Additionally, be sure to "like" the new Kiesel Guitars Facebook page to keep up with all the new developments coming out of the Custom Shop!

Craig Chaquico
Read More:  Craig Chaquico Signature Guitars

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Behind the Scenes With the Jason Becker Tribute JB24 from Carvin Guitars

Kiesel Guitars and the Carvin Guitars Custom Shop has created a detailed video showing the craftsmanship that goes into building the JB24 Jason Becker Tribute Guitar. You can see for yourself how the Custom Shop shapes the body and neck, installs the unique multi-colored "numbers" inlays, installs the electronics and complete the setup. It's an interesting behind-the-scenes look that shows just what goes into building these exciting instruments.


The JB24 Jason Becker Tribute Guitar recreates one of Jason’s favorite instruments, and stands out in a crowd of other bolt-neck guitars. With a 25.5″, 24 fret fingerboard, the JB24 takes you where most other bolt-neck guitars can’t – plus it has an amazing list of standard features including multi-colored “numbers” inlays on a maple fingerboard, stainless steel frets, multi-colored Seymour Duncan pickups in an H-S-H configuration and premium 1-piece swamp ash body with maple neck, all tung-oiled. A multi-colored Carvin headstock logo, red buttons on Carvin locking tuners and a single orange volume knob completes the package.

Visit to design your new JB24, and "like" the new Kiesel Guitars Facebook page to keep up with all the new developments coming out of the Custom Shop!

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New Exotic Zebrawood Tops from the Carvin Guitars Custom Shop

Zebrawood Guitar and Bass Top Woods from Carvin GuitarsKiesel Guitars and the Carvin Guitars Custom Shop has added Zebrawood tops to our extensive list of exotic wood options. Zebrawood is an open-grained wood with a very distinctive pattern which gives it its name. It’s similar in density to rosewood, and tonally similar to maple. The Custom Shop has been offering Zebrawood fingerboards since last year, and popular demand has prompted us to also offer this attractive wood as a top wood option on guitars and basses. Zebrawood looks great in a natural clear finish, or with any of the Custom Shop's translucent stains.

Zebrawood tops and fingerboards are available now on your new USA-made Kiesel Guitars or Carvin Guitars Custom Shop guitar or bass. Additionally, many other exotic woods are available, including 4A flamed and quilted maple, flamed koa, figured Claro walnut, flamed spalted maple and burled maple. The Carvin Guitars Custom Shop has hundreds of available options in addition to exotic woods, including finishes, fretwire, inlays, electronics, hardware and much more. You can design and order your new guitar or bass exactly the way you want it, perfect suited to your playing style and personal tastes.

Visit to design your new Custom Shop guitar or bass, and "like" the new Kiesel Guitars Facebook page to keep up with all the new developments coming out of the Custom Shop!

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New Models from Kiesel Guitars and the Carvin Guitars Custom Shop

Kiesel Guitars and the Carvin Guitars Custom Shop are excited to announce a host of new guitar models to kick off 2015. These instruments debuted at NAMM and received a great deal of attention from players and the media. All of these new models are now available to order on

The Vader Series Headless Guitars are available in 6, 7 & 8 string models. They feature a 27″ scale length (with 25.5″ scale available on the six and seven string models), a Hipshot bridge, mother-of-pearl diamond inlays and new direct-mount Kiesel passive pickups with 5-way lever style pickup selector. A chambered body option is also available, making these guitars super-compact and light. Their aggressive looks and complete host of Custom Shop options allow you to create an instrument that looks as good as it plays. The Vader Series carries the new Kiesel badge, and are made at the Carvin Guitars Custom Shop.

Read more: Kiesel Vader Series Guitars

The Greg Howe Signature GH24 Bolt-Neck Guitar is a 24-fret, chambered body instrument, designed in conjunction with acclaimed guitarist Greg Howe. A 4A flame maple top with California burst finish is standard, along with a vintage tremolo, birdseye maple fingerboard with black acrylic diamond inlays, jumbo gold EVO frets and gold hardware. Greg’s signature GH12B bridge humbucker and TBH60 twinblade neck humbucker with 5-way blade style pickup selector are standard.

Read more: Greg Howe Signature GH24 Guitar

With its impressive list of standard features, the Jason Becker Tribute JB24 Bolt-Neck Guitar pushes the limits of style, tone and playability. Modeled on the guitar Jason designed in the 90s, the JB24 is a 24-fret instrument with standard 1-piece swamp ash body, maple fingerboard with multi-colored “Numbers” inlays, a Floyd Rose tremolo with locking nut, stainless steel frets, and black hardware with red tuner buttons. Multi-colored Seymour Duncan pickups in an H-S-H configuration with master volume control and 5-way pickup selector produce a huge array of sounds, suitable for any playing style or genre. A multi-colored Carvin headstock logo and Jason Becker truss rod cover complete the package.

Read more: Jason Becker Signature JB24 Guitar

The Custom Shop worked closely with Born of Osiris guitarist Lee McKinney to create the Lee McKinney Signature LPM6 & LPM7 Guitar. These are neck-through instruments, outfitted to Lee’s specifications. An original Floyd Rose tremolo with acoustic saddles is standard, along with direct-mount Kiesel Series passive pickups. The ebony fingerboard has Lee’s personal 12th fret mother-of-pearl inlay, and you can choose from a wide assortment of options to order your LPM6 or LPM7 guitar exactly the way you want it. A drop-shadow Kiesel logo is featured on the headstock.

Read more: Lee McKinney Signature LPM6 Guitar, Lee McKinney Signature LPM7 Seven-String Guitar

Visit to check out these and the many other Carvin Guitars and Kiesel Guitars electric, acoustic/electric and MIDI guitars and basses, and "like" the new Kiesel Guitars Facebook page to keep up with all the new developments coming out of the Custom Shop!

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The All-New Kiesel Guitars!

namm15-leftIt’s been an exciting and busy week for everyone at Carvin Guitars. As was announced earlier in the week, the Guitar Division at Carvin is forming its own company, under the Kiesel Guitars name. Everyone at Carvin Guitars / Kiesel Guitars would like to express our sincere thanks for all the support we’ve received during this exciting time, and we’re thrilled to have the opportunity to continue to build world-class instruments for our many players. With NAMM kicking off today, we’re looking forward to meeting our fans, and showing off our newest instruments under the Carvin Guitars and Kiesel Guitars badges. If you’re at the show, be sure and stop by Booth #4290 and meet Mark & Jeff Kiesel, as well as our artists and endorsers such as Neil Zaza, Frank Gambale, Allan Holdsworth, Craig Chaquico, Greg Howe, Brian Bromberg & Lee McKinney.

Visit the new Kiesel Guitars Facebook page to keep up with us at NAMM, and with all the new developments coming out of the Custom Shop!

Carvin Guitars / Kiesel Guitars Press Release

After almost 70 years designing and manufacturing high quality, USA-made instruments, Carvin Corporation’s guitar and bass Custom Shop division is being separated into its own company, to be known as Kiesel Custom Guitars. This will allow the Custom Shop’s talented designers, builders and other staff to focus exclusively on creating the world-class instruments the company is known for. The original Kiesel brand name was launched in 1946 by family patriarch Lowell Kiesel as the L.C. Kiesel Company, and was renamed “Carvin” in 1949 when the company launched its innovative direct-sales business model, so returning to the “Kiesel” name is an homage to the company founder, who passed away in 2009. Originally, the company began by selling pickups, steel guitars and tube amplifiers, many of which are still in existence today, and later expanded into electric guitars and basses, solid-state amps, audio gear and accessories. Mark Kiesel, son of Lowell, has been in charge of guitar production since leaving the aerospace industry in 1970 to join the family business, and pioneered countless innovations in the stringed instrument industry over the years. Throughout the 70s and 80s, Mark personally designed and built every instrument that passed through the Custom Shop, and as the popularity of the brand exploded in the late 1980s, a whole team of talented luthiers, painters, engineers, technicians and other staff joined the company. Mark’s son, Jeff Kiesel, has been with the company for over 20 years, and under Mark’s tutelage, has acquired a wealth of knowledge in the design and construction of stringed instruments. His innovative and exciting new instrument designs, new features and options as well as streamlined manufacturing processes have reinvigorated the Custom Shop, and created excitement among the Custom Shop’s countless players and fans. Many new artists and endorsers have been attracted, bringing with them new ideas and opportunities, as well as exposing the brand to the next generation of players and performers. The Carvin brand name for instruments is exclusively owned by Kiesel Guitars and will continue to be made along side some Kiesel branded instruments. Kiesel Guitars is retaining the current staff and Production will continue at current location.

Mark Kiesel, President, says: “I have loved this business from the time I started working part time for my dad in the 60s. Later in 1970 after working full time as a design draftsman for a large aero-space company, I was asked by my brother, Carson to quit my job and work full time at Carvin to run the guitar department. It’s been a fun process to grow our guitar sales from miniscule to what they are today. If my Dad was still with us he would be proud to see his original KIESEL logo in use again. The coolest thing for me is to see how passionate my son Jeff is about designing and building guitars. And now my grandson Zak is working part time. How cool is that! When you are as passionate as we are about designing and building instruments, having our own company to focus entirely on guitars and basses is a dream come true!”

Jeff Kiesel, Vice-President, says: “This is an amazing time for us and I am really excited about our future. With this change it will remove distractions for the both of us and allow us to focus on what we love and are best at. The Instruments we are building today are far superior to anything we built in years past, its fun to work on projects together and bounce ideas off each other and constantly push the envelope of development and quality. My kids both play guitar and currently my son Zak works here part time, since Zak was about three years old he has wanted to design and build guitars alongside myself and my dad. We all really enjoy what we do and this will allow us to be even better at it.”

Read More:

Carvin Guitars / Kiesel Guitars Video Press Release on YouTube


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Dunlop Bass Strings Now Standard

Dunlop Bass Strings

The Carvin Guitars Custom Shop is excited to announce that, effective immediately, we will be using Dunlop Super Bright nickel bass strings exclusively on all our 4, 5 and 6 string electric basses. We’ve tried out a variety of strings in search for the perfect sound, and the consensus among our artists and staff is that the Dunlops produce the brightest highs, clearest mids and punchiest lows, and compliment our Custom Shop basses perfectly. Light gauge are standard, with medium gauge and stainless steel optional.

Visit Carvin Guitars Custom Shop online today, and design and order your new bass! With hundreds of availble options, including body, neck, top and fingerboard woods; finishes; inlays; fretwire; electronics and more, you can design your new bass exactly the way you want it. We’re so sure you’ll love it, you can try it out for 10 days, and if you don’t agree it’s the best bass you’ve ever played, send it back – no questions asked!

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NEW! Carvin SCB7 Bevel Top Seven String Guitar

Kiesel Guitars SCB7

Carvin is excited to offer our latest Custom Shop instrument, the SCB7 bevel-top seven string guitar. Since the introduction of the six string SCB6 at NAMM, seven string players have been asking for their own version, and the Custom Shop is happy to oblige. The SCB7 is a radical departure in aesthetics from other Carvin seven string models, with sleek and stylish looks combined with superior materials and craftsmanship in a USA-made instrument that is suitable for all playing styles at any level.

Neck-through design, an alder body with Eastern hard rock maple neck and tune-o-matic “M” bridge provides unsurpassed playability and amazing tone with sustain for days. A Hipshot™ hardtail bridge or Floyd Rose tremolo is also available. Like all Carvin Custom Shop instruments, you can choose from a
massive assortment of finishes; premium neck, body, fingerboard and top woods; inlays; fretwire and much, much more. The SCB7 comes equipped with Carvin’s popular direct-mount D26 humbuckers, with master volume and tone controls and a 3-way lever-style pickup selector.

The Custom Shop can build your new SCB7 exactly the way you want it, creating a masterpiece that will impress you, your bandmates and your audience. Whether you’re an experienced seven string player, or looking to make the leap up from six strings, Carvin’s SCB7 and our other seven string models will help you take your playing to the next level.

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Shane Gibson, 1979 – 2014

Shane Gibson

It is with deepest sadness that we announce that guitarist and Carvin artist Shane Paul Gibson passed away at 5:45 AM on April 15th, 2014 in the UAB Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama as a result of complications from a blood clotting disorder. He was 35 years old. Shane was a long-time member of the Carvin family, having conducted numerous clinics, appeared multiple times at NAMM, and performed with Carvin gear on stages around the world for countless fans.  He was a very talented and gifted musician, and his virtuosity was matched only by his wit and generosity. He will be missed beyond measure, and we take solace in knowing that his spirit will live on through his music and fans. 

Shane's final recording with his band stOrk, titled "Broken Pieces", was just released this past Monday, and showcases his talent and skill, and will be a fitting memorial to Shane's legacy as one of the preeminent guitarists of the hardcore/punk genre.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends, bandmates and all those who loved him as much as we did.

Read More:  stOrk on Facebook

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