Paul Allen was on the cover of Guitar Aficionado. In the article, he mentions he uses Van Zandt Vintage Plus Pickups.
"Last year I installed your Vintage Plus pick-ups on 2 of my 4 American Standard Strats. The difference in sound and overall response to my pick is astounding! It has actually made me a better player, because I was getting more compliments on my sound than on my licks and needed to "level the playing field" in regard to that issue... no mean feat, as I started playing in 1967 at the age of 6 just after meeting Jimi Hendrix in Greenwich Village. It's been many years since my sound has inspired my technique so dramatically (for the better, anyway!), and just wanted to thank you for making such a great product. I've wanted to install your pickups on my other 2 guitars, but I'm a bit cash-strapped right now as I am fighting cancer... so I've just listed one of the remaining 2 guitars on ebay and once it's sold I will use part of the money to put Van Zandt pick-ups on Strat #3. Although I'd otherwise regret having to sell an instrument at this stage in my life, it was an easy decision, as I haven't played either of those other two guitars since installing your pickups on the first two!! Thanks again and have a very happy holiday season! Stuart Lederer"
From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com Sent: 7/30/2008 2:05:06 A.M. Central Daylight Time Subj: hello from nashville greetings, just wanted to introduce myself and tell you that i am a HUGE fan of your pickups. my name is Tom Bukovac, i am a session guitarist in nashville. not to bore you with my pitiful resume but i have played on records with Keith Urban, Faith Hill, Carrie Underwood, Vince Gill, Brooks & Dunn, Chicago, Sheryl Crow, Kenny Rogers, Rob Thomas, Rascal Flatts, John Waite, Jessica Simpson etc etc. i used to tour with John Fogerty, Faith Hill, Wynonna Judd and others. ok enough of that crap.... the real reason i am bothering you is to tell you a funny story involving your pickups. i have been buying/selling/collecting vintage guitars pretty much my whole life....i'm almost 40 now and my house is like a virtual museum of killer vintage guitars and amps. that being said, i have to tell you this....the absolute BEST sounding telecaster i've ever owned is a cheap made in Japan late 80's/early 90's blonde 50's maple neck blackguard reissue that i've owned for at least 5-6 years. i bought it for 500 bucks off ebay.... someone had put an old set of your pickups in it before i bought it....i immediately fell in love with the sound of it.... since then i have used it on a MILLION records, and it always sounds killer. there is a line of people waiting for me to sell this guitar to them...but i ain't gonna!!! i'm not sure exactly what model Van Zandt pickups these are or exactly how old they are, but i know for sure that i've never owned a Tele that can touch it in terms of sound....no matter how expensive it may be. in fact for the past week i've been out in L.A. working on a new record with Rob Thomas, lead singer of Matchbox 20....i've been playing that Tele on tons of tracks and the tones are just amazing. just wanted to say thank you for these awesome pickups!!! one day i'll pull them out and take pictures of them, perhaps you can help identify exactly what they are ok?
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