2015 was the year of our 30th Anniversary, and now that it’s behind us, we have a new exciting year to focus on, 2016! This year is special because it celebrates the 20th Anniversary of our custom shop, affectionally known as Private Stock.
Since its inception in 1996, the Private Stock department has been all about one thing: building the best guitars possible. Personally crafted instruments, the best materials available, custom wood combinations, insane attention to detail - these are the ingredients of a Private Stock guitar.
You may be wondering what events led to the birth of the Private Stock department? Around December of 1994, Paul Reed Smith felt the urge to try something different. He began experimenting with new combinations of woods, electronics, and layouts. These special instruments were built in very limited quantities and referred to as “Guitar Of The Month.” For two years, we crafted these unique instruments until the project grew and became Private Stock. On April 19, 1996 the first “official” Private Stock instrument was cased.
Now in our 20th year, Private Stock is paying homage to its roots with the return of Guitar Of The Month. Following in the footsteps of the program from the 90’s, all 2016 Private Stock Guitars Of The Month will stay experimental, beautiful, and uniquely treasured.
Paul Reed Smith commented on the return of this program, “I began Guitar Of The Month because I had ideas and a stack of exquisite wood 8 feet high. I knew it was okay to experiment. Innovation and specialization is still at the heart of the Private Stock program, and we are very excited to try out new ideas for our 20th Anniversary.”
Let’s take a look the first new Guitar of the Month — January.
*This model will be built in a limited quantity of only 6.
HOLLOWBODY BASS 4
With a 30.25” scale length, the Hollowbody Bass 4 is considered a short-scale bass. The quilted maple top was selected specially from our wood vault, and pairs well with the equally exquisite Swamp Ash back. The neck is made from a large solid piece of curly maple, and adorned with an ebony fingerboard.
Paul Miles, the director of Private Stock was integral to the design and development of this bass. “We really wanted to kick off the return of the Guitar Of The Month with a bang,” said Miles. “Being a bass player, I had always wanted to try some differently styled basses and the return of Guitar Of The Month was a perfect opportunity to do that.”
For the electronics, the dual-coil Bartolini Pickup gives this guitar an authoritative tone that doesn’t loose its punch when the coil’s are split by pulling up on the tone knob. Miles commented, “The pickups run in parallel so there is no distinguishable volume loss or thin tone after they split. You get that classic single-coil bass sound without loosing the desired qualities of a Bartolini pickup.”
The finish, Electric Tiger Smoked Burst was a modern take on one of our classic Private Stock finishes, Tiger Eye. The body looks striking in its high-gloss nitro and the quick and comfortable feel of this bass is immediately noticeable as a result of the thin satin-finished neck.
Below, take a peek at some shots from the shop:
The Private Stock Hollowbody Bass 4 is available at the following PRS Dealers:
San Antonio, TX
Washington Music Center
Willcutt Guitar Shop
To view full specs and additional details on this January Guitar Of The Month, click here!
Check out this video of Paul Reed Smith & Paul Miles discussing the return of the Guitar Of The Month program!
We are happy to have Guitar of the Month back and we will see you soon for the launch of the February model!