Solo artist, composer, and Zepparella guitarist Gretchen Menn has been an Ernie Ball Music Man player for most of her career. As her dad, Don Menn, was editor of Guitar Player magazine back in the '70s, the Menn family has had a long relationship with Ernie Ball CEO Sterling Ball, and it was no big surprise that Gretchen was drawn to the company's instruments at an early age. In fact, most of the guitar tracks on Menn's latest album, Abandon All Hope, were cut with her "number one" — an Ernie Ball Music Man Silhouette Special.
So, Menn seemed to be the perfect choice to test, evaluate, and demo the new Ernie Ball Music Man Cutlass SSS.
The Cutlass SSS ($1,599 retail standard finish; $1,669 vintage sunburst) features three '60s-inspired Music Man single-coils (a humbucker/single-coil/single-coil model is also available), a transparent buffered output, an alder body, a maple neck (as tested; rosewood is also available), 22 stainless-steel frets, Schaller MD6-IND locking tuners, a Music Man Modern tremolo, and a five-bolt neck attachment with a sculpture neck joint