Taylor York was introduced to Hagstrom by his brother, Justin, who has been a Hagstrom Artist for many years. It was our RetroScape Impala that first captured Taylor’s imagination. Shortly after learning about the Impala, Taylor began work in the studio recording Paramore’s new album, After Laughter, and before too long the Impala found its way into the mix of instruments used. As the recording process continued the Impala and several other Hagstrom models were selected for various tracks; however, it was the Impala that received the most use.
When it came time for Paramore to start their extensive touring schedule in support of After Laughter, we started working with Taylor on some modifications to our standard Impala specification to better suit his touring needs. After becoming interested in the brand, Taylor acquired a 1960’s vintage Viking and fell in love with its famously thin neck. So, it’s natural that he asked us to build his Impala with our “Ultra-Thin” 17mm neck profile. Next in line was to choose a finish from a brighter palette, yet keeping with the Impala’s vintage vibe. After several experiments, Taylor suggested a wonderful copper-burst finish, which combines old-school class with a modern vibrancy. After making a few adjustments to the hardware for stage- and road- worthiness we finalized the design and the rest is history. We are so proud every time the Impala gets its regular stage time during Paramore’s busy touring schedule.
Hagstrom’s Impala exactly reproduces the pickups included with the first production models in the early 1960’s. A single, massive AlNi-Co-5 magnet fills each of the pickups, a radical departure from the typical approach of placing one small cylindrical magnet under each string. The resulting sound is bright and percussive with a robust mid-range, a true and authentic voice for anyone looking to the early 1960’s for sonic inspiration. Taylor recognized this immediately as exactly the kind of sound he was looking for on After Laughter.
Each Impala Copperburst we deliver to guitarists worldwide is identical in every way to the guitar Taylor uses on stage, and we are deeply honored that he has selected this Hagstrom model to help achieve his artistic goals.
Hagstrom uses a variety of different neck joints throughout our range. Our set-neck recipe is the classic and time-tested Mortise and Tenon joint, a design that most efficiently transfers string energy from neck to body, and can often only be found on more expensive custom-built guitars. A team of experienced and dedicated craftsmen hand carves every neck joint, insuring perfect execution of this traditional technique preferred by luthiers for generations.
In combination with the trusted long travel Tune-O-Matic roller bridge and the Graphtech Black TUSQ XL nut, the re-engineered Vintage Tremar vibrato unit keeps it original appearance while tremendously improving its functionality. Smooth vibrato action and great tuning stability included.
All Hagstrom electric guitars and basses include our patented H-Expander truss rod. Providing tension at both ends and running the entire length of the neck, the rigid yet light-weight alloy truss rod allows for a very low action and thin neck, two factors that were instrumental in earning Hagstrom its reputation as the world’s fastest playing guitar. The H-Expander truss rod not only provides ultimate neck stability, but it also contributes to Hagstrom’s unique tone. Longer sustain and a round attack are some of the sonic characteristics the H-Expander adds to the tonal essence of Hagstrom.
Resinator wood is a wood composite material that is both more uniform in density and more stable than any standard wood product. These characteristics eliminate dead spots or “wolf tones” sometimes associated with conventional wood fingerboards. Resinator wood has an articulate sound similar to high quality ebony, but without any of the problems associated with ebony. It provides a stable and clear tone, and also adds higher overtones and harmonics which uniquely detail each note. Like our H-Expander truss rod, Resinator wood is a major contributor to the distinctive “Hagstrom tone”.