Sunday, May 16, 2010

Blue Chip Picks - A review of a very Different pick!!

Search for Guitar Picks I found out about Blue Chip Picks listening to a CD that I was reviewing this year by a Bluegrass group named "GoldHeart" , that consists of 3 young ladies. The self-titled Cd was excellent. I saw the endorsement for Blue Chip picks on the Cd liner. I checked out the website and what impressed me other than the $35 price per pick was the list of artists who swore by them, mostly Blue grass players, and mostly mandolin players.
Here is a list of some you might recognize, Chris Thile, Adam Steffey, Rhonda Vincent, Danny Roberts(Grascals), Charlie Cushman, and Doyle Lawson. Of course I considered they used instruments that ran in the thousands, but I was still curious, so I e-mailed the place in Knoxville, Tenn. where I grew up. Matt Goins got right back to me and offered to send me one to review if I sent him my address, so I did. Pretty soon, I got a Blue Chip TD 35, same shape as a Martin or Fender medium pick I would use, but a bit thicker, .89. That is not far off though seeing I use picks that are .75 . I was at my local guitar store today playing a D/ced Alvarez MD80 for 499, which is a bargain, but still out of my range, I have a 3 year old black RD20S which has also been D/ced, I am a big lover of Alvarez instruments, My plans are to keep my RD20S for awhile, it sounds good and is a very playable guitar with a Taylor like neck.
Hate to disappoint you, but this is going to be a short review, I did find some good build up though. What all can you say about a pick. Well, I will say that The Blue Chip Company is manned by 5 guys, who make all of the picks with CNC machines for tight tolerances, they are made for longevity and tone, they are a bargain for the crowd that still uses tortoise shell, and less maintenance too.
I decided to compare it to a Fender medium, because it was almost exactly the same size, I ran thru a song, playing some chords and a lead run and it sounded like always, good(well, to me). (BTW), have no idea what these picks are made of, they are a brown color, nothing Fancy.
I played the same song with the Blue Chip and stopped, There was a very noticeable difference, One thing, The Blue Chips are very tacky, so they stick to your finger, it took me a while to get used to this, I discovered , that I must adjust the pick alot unconsciously, to get different lengths and so on, no big deal. The other thing is the tone was noticeably a good bit better, btw, I had a set of polyweb elixirs on my guitar, that I always use, probably a no no for hardcore bluegrass pickers.
Once I decided they were better, I kept playing with the BC, finding it very useful, especially in playing rhythm guitar, it gave me a much better rhythm tone. I honestly struggled a bit with the lead playing because of the tacky part, I probably could do without that, because I have been playing for over 30 years and to go from non sticky to sticky for the first time is different, but apparently, its part of the composition of the material they use. This is a winner, If guys like Chris Thile love this and the others , plus it is noticeably better for me, I like it. I generally do not have trouble losing stuff, that is where problems for people come in, I do know this, for me, the right pick has always been a big deal, and amongst the different plastics, celluloid's , THe right pick has meant alot. These are only available from Matt's website, btw, if you do not like your pick, within thirty days, you can return it for a full refund.

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