Kiesel Unveils New Jason Becker Signature Yin Yang Guitar
"Without copying a Strat, it feels just as cool or cooler," Becker says of his new, "Blackie"-inspired signature model.
Kiesel has teamed up with Jason Becker to create the Yin Yang, a new signature guitar.
Inspired by both the titular ancient Chinese philosophical concept and Eric Clapton's "Blackie" Strat, the Yin Yang features a mahogany body in a new-for-Kiesel shape, a bolt-on quarter-sawn maple neck, and a roasted maple fingerboard featuring stainless steel jumbo frets with special Yin Yang inlays, a 14” radius, and a 24.75” scale length. Like all other Becker signature models, the Yin Yang also features a Floyd Rose tremolo.
Sonically, the guitar packs a M12SD bridge pickup – modeled after that found on Becker's beloved “Bluey” guitar – and a Mark’s Single Coil neck pickup, controlled by master volume and tone knobs and a five-way pickup selector.
Other visual appointments on the guitar include chrome hardware and a black-painted headstock.
"Although I love the meaning of unity/duality in the yin yang symbol, my desire to design a guitar like this came from my love of Eric Clapton's 'Blackie' guitar," Becker said in a statement.
"When I was 9, I saw The Band's movie, The Last Waltz. Clapton and Robbie Robertson made me want to become a lead guitarist. I eventually got a black and white Strat in junior high and used it on Cacophony's first album, Speed Metal Symphony.
"This yin yang design of mine was meant to capture the look of Clapton's Blackie," Becker continued.
"To me, every line and curve is beautiful. I worked really hard on getting the perfect balance of black and white and artistic movement. My caregivers followed my picky requests. Without copying a Strat, it feels just as cool or cooler. The neck is the same size as my original Bluey, so I know it feels good. I am so grateful to Kiesel Guitars for bringing my design to life."
The Kiesel Jason Becker Yin Yang guitar is available now for $1,999, with a portion of the proceeds going to Becker's considerable medical costs (he has been suffering from ALS for over 30 years.)
For more info on the guitar, stop by kieselguitars.com (opens in new tab).
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Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com and GuitarPlayer.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.