Man, I’d forgotten how badass it looks slinging an acoustic on a peghead-tie strap until I saw Joaquin Phoenix evoking the iconic cool of Johnny Cash in the actor’s Walk the Line portrayal. And, although the Man in Black wouldn’t don the brown strap shown here, the DiMarzio Custom Italian Leather Acoustic Guitar Strap ($69 retail/$49 street)—which, incidentally, is also available in Cash-approved black—is a damn fine way to hoist your fave box. The beautiful, ever-so-slightly distressed leather is immediately comfortable—it’s as if you’ve already worn the strap through 21 bands, a million gigs, and 17 different guitars.
I used the strap to hold a Larrivée jumbo, a Martin D-15, an Epiphone Hummingbird, a Gretsch Rancher, and a Yamaha parlor model, and it handled the different weights and body styles just fine. In fact, the two holes on the strap-button end of the leather made it real easy to account for slight variations in each guitar’s playing position without having to remove the whole kit-and-caboodle, pull off the adjustable piece of the strap, and insert it into the appropriate height-adjustment slot. The 2" width and 5/32" thickness of the strap strikes a good balance between a cozy feel (it doesn’t cut into your shoulder), security (it doesn’t slide off your shoulder), and ergonomics (it doesn’t get in your way or feel bulky). The string tie held securely to each guitar’s peghead, and its soft feel didn’t rough up the finish. This is one marvelously cool and comfy tool.