Thursday, December 23, 2010

Jackson Randy Rhoads ( former Ozzy's Guitarist )

The Jackson Randy Rhoads was the electric guitar that was originally commissioned by guitarist Randy Rhoads, and is now produced by Jackson Guitars.
Originally, this guitar was to be called The Original SIN. His second Flying V, which was black with a silver pickguard and string-thru body bridge, was going to be called the Concorde. Randy re-designed these newer 'Concordes' or production models with a longer "horn" because he felt too many people were relating his white Pinstripe V to a Flying V; he wanted to produce a guitar that bore more resemblance to a shark's fin. His V's both had maple bodies with maple thru body necks. Also, the smaller amount of wood on the treble side of the strings could be shaped to give more treble to those strings. This guitar features Grover locking tuners and a pair of Seymour Duncan humbucking pickups, a TB-4 (bridge) and a SH-2 (neck). The SIN had a standard blocked vintage-style tremolo. The vibrato is of very high quality; and the pickups are designed to capture the treble more efficiently than a normal guitar.
It features a pair of humbucking pickups (not always the case, as seen on the Kevin Bond Signature model and new RR24 model), and often a Floyd Rose tremolo. The fingerboard has flattened frets, to ease the user's playing if playing fast. The guitar usually has 22 frets, but in certain series, it is featured as a 24 fret model for an extra pitch range. The headstock is typical Jackson and some series have a reversed headstock for a slight upcharge.
This model was Jackson Guitars' first model. It was, and still is, a very popular model that put the Jackson name on the map. When Rhoads commissioned his guitar from Charvel, company president Grover Jackson had his name put on the headstock of the custom model instead of Charvel. Grover originally produced two prototype Concordes that Randy received (the first white Concorde and the Black and Brass Concorde). Randy had ordered 4 in total but died before receiving the other two (another string-thru (accidentally sold at NAMM) and another black-and-brass Concorde (pictured at right) with a tremolo and reverse inlays (the first to have reverse inlays)). These other two Concorde's were held in an incomplete state waiting for Randy to give feedback about the tone and play of the prototypes before completing them. Tragically, Randy was killed in a plane crash before he could give Grover any feedback about the guitars.


Vinnie Vincent of Kiss was the first guitarist to be offered an early Rhoads guitar by Jackson after Rhoads' death (Rhoads had received two of his own models, one in black and one in white (with gold hardware), and never really became famous for it at the time), Vinnie Vincent used it on the Kiss Creatures of the Night and Lick It Up tours from 1982 until 1984. Once Vinnie left Kiss he modified the Rhoads V design, adding a second shadow V at an offset angle behind the front V. Jackson made at least 3 of these Vinnie Vincent modified Rhoads Vs from 1985 to 1988 for Vinnie (and about 25 others were custom ordered and sold) and later the design was copied by Carvin, Ibanez and Washburn Guitars for Vinnie Vincent.
In 2001, Alexi Laiho and Roope Latvala (currently guitarists of Children of Bodom, but at the time Latvala was in Sinergy alongside Laiho) had a deal with Jackson to produce their line of signature RR's, which had specs of alder bodies, bolt-on necks, 24 frets with a rosewood fretboard, black with yellow bevels, and a Jackson JT580LP Floyd Rose bridge. This guitar was called the Jackson Randy Rhoads L/L (L/L stands for Latvala/Laiho). However, neither guitarist was allowed a guitar for his own use, and both only got to play the guitar for promotional purposes.
Other noted users of this model include:
  • Randy Rhoads (of Ozzy Osbourne)
  • Kirk Hammett (of Metallica)
  • Claude Robberts (of Killatoria)
  • Phil Demmel (of Machine Head)
  • Matthew Tuck (of Bullet for My Valentine)
  • Mille Petrozza (of Kreator)
  • Corey Beaulieu (of Trivium)
  • Matt Drake (of Evile)
  • Galder (of Old Man's Child and Dimmu Borgir)
  • Silenoz (of Dimmu Borgir)
  • Alexi Laiho (of Children Of Bodom)
  • Roope Latvala (of Children Of Bodom and Stone)
  • Phillip Ponomar (of The Crusade)
  • Al Corpse (of The Crusade)
  • Phil Campbell (of Motörhead)
  • Adrian Smith (of Iron Mairden)
  • Dan Spitz (of Anthrax)
  • Enrik Garcia (of Dark Moor)
  • Marty Friedman (former Megadeth) though he is better known for the kelly model
  • Kevin Bond (of Superjoint Ritual)
  • Silvio Stefanucci (of Clown)
  • Sam Totman (of Dragonforce)
  • Daron Malakian (of System Of A Down - only in the studio)
  • Mikael Akerfeldt and Peter Lindgren (of Opeth) - on Orchid, Morningrise and My Arms, Your Hearse
  • Samoth (of Emperor and Zyklon)
  • Mauro Zuccaccia (of Meuroz)
  • Kristian Ranta (of Norther)
  • Hamish Glencross (of My Dying Bride)
  • Mike Mahoney (of Free The Fallen)
  • Pat O'Brien (of Cannibal Corpse)
  • Jason Gobel (of Cynic)
  • Oscar Dronjak (of HammerFall)
  • Matt Bellamy (of Muse) - he only used it for one gig to play Stockholm Syndrome, throwing it into the crowd afterwards.
  • Andy Bolzenthal (of From a Tyrant)
  • Swad Akram (of Abhijukto)
  • Michael Bohlin (of PAIN)
  • Lord K Philipsson (of The Project Hate MCMXCIX)
  • Ryan Crowder
  • Michael Ray (of Drawbridge)
  • Tim Dailey
  • Michael Sweet (of Stryper)
  • Ashmedi (of Melechesh)
  • Christian Muenzner (of Obscura)
  • Oni Hasan (of Warfaze)


Jackson currently has 12 different models in production. Below is a list under the Series which Jackson Guitars has classed them.

USA Select Series

The basic model in the USA Select Series is the RR1. The RR1 is made of alder with a maple neck-thru design neck. The fretboard has 22 jumbo frets and is made from ebony. The RR1 is equipped with two Seymour Duncan humbuckers and a Floyd Rose original 2 point double locking tremolo at the bridge. The RR1 has four variations:

  • RR1 : The standard Randy Rhoads guitar.
  • RR1T: An RR1 with an adjustable string-through-body bridge.
  • RR1 Left-Handed: Left Handed version of the RR1.
  • RR1T Left-Handed: Left Handed version of the RR1T.

Pro Series

The Pro series is the medium to high-end series of made in Japan Jacksons. There are currently five different models of the Jackson Rhoads in the Pro Series:

  • RR3: The RR3 has a body made from alder and a neck made from maple. The neck is bolt-on and has a rosewood fingerboard with 22 frets. This model has neck and bridge Seymour Duncan humbuckers and a Floyd Rose licensed, low profile, double locking tremolo.
During 2007, a limited run of 200 were made in white with black pinstripes, similar to the finish found on the RR5. These featured the Seymour Duncan pick-ups and Floyd Rose tremolo of the standard RR3.
  • RR5: The RR5 has a body made from alder and a neck made from maple. The main difference between this and the RR3 is the neck-thru design featured on this model. The RR5 also has gold hardware and an adjustable fixed bridge.

  • RR5FR: The RR5FR is the same as the RR5 except it has a Floyd Rose FRT-O2000 tremolo bridge, black hardware as opposed to gold and comes in black, ivory or pink pearl finishes.

  • RR24: The RR24 has a body made from alder and neck made from maple. It has an Ebony fretboard with Sharkfin inlays. This model is mainly different from both the RR3 and RR5 because it is a 24 fret guitar. It has a neck-thru body construction and comes with an Original Floyd Rose. The model has only one pickup (EMG 81) in the bridge position and a single volume control.This model is also a custom guitar that includes a custom color. Eric Dietzel from Massacre has a black with red bovels jackson with the red jackson headstock. This guitar is very similar to the custom made RR-LL models ordered by Alexi Laiho and Roope Latvala, of which only 60 were made and all sold in Finland (excluding to Laiho and Latvala, who both had their own unique custom RR's made). Unlike the RR24, they had bolt-on necks, Mother of Pearlinlays, gold colored hardware and a Jackson JT580LP Floyd Rose bridge. Laiho and Latvala later switched to ESP Guitars in 2003.

  • RR24M: The RR24M is the same as the RR24, but has a maple fretboard as opposed to the traditional ebony fretboard.

Pro Series Artist Signature

  • Kevin Bond signature. This model has 22 jumbo frets, is made from mahogany and has a neck-thru body. The Humbucker is a Seymour Duncan "Iommi" humbucker. The bridge is an adjustable string-through-body with a Schaller fine-tuning tailpiece. The Jackson logo is blood red.
  • Matt Tuck signature. This model has 22 jumbo frets, has a neck-thru body made from alder, and a neck-thru body rock maple with scarf joint head stock . The Humbuckers are an EMG 81 humbucker in the bridge, and an EMG 85 humbucker in the neck position. The bridge is a JT390 adjustable string-through-body with Sperzel locking die-cast tuners. This is the only current model with a reversed headstock.

    X Series

    The X series RX10D has an Alder body with a maple bolt-on neck. The Rosewood fingerboard has 22 frets. The pickups are both Seymour Duncan Designed humbuckers. The bridge is a Jackson double locking tremolo.

    JS Series

    The JS30RR is from the entry level group of made in India Jacksons. The body is made from Indian cedro and has a bolt-on maple neck. It has two Jackson pickups and an adjustable string-through-body bridge. The rosewood fretboard has an unusual, for RRs, 24 frets.Also jackson had the JS35RR which was the same as the JS30RR but the only difference was that it had a floyd rose tremolo, but this was discontinued in 2000. There is now a new model similar to the JS30RR but with Sharkfin inlays. It's called JS32T Rhoads


    1. Nice article, but a few inaccuracies.
      1. The black Jackson was actually his 3rd "V," but second made by Jackson.
      2. Randy's white V was the Concorde, and made by Grover Jackson himself. Grover was still working for Wayne Charvel at the time and decided to put Jackson on the headstock as this guitar was a one-off custom.
      3. Randy's black Jackson had gold hardware and gold pickguard, not silver.

      1. I think that Grover had already become owner of Charvek prior to Randy's drawing of a Concorde taking off happened ... he didn't want to risk the Charvel name with the outlandish idea so he put his own name on it and made the world's greatest custom shop

    2. Nice article, but a few inaccuracies.
      1. The black Jackson was actually his 3rd "V," but second made by Jackson.
      2. Randy's white V was the Concorde, and made by Grover Jackson himself. Grover was still working for Wayne Charvel at the time and decided to put Jackson on the headstock as this guitar was a one-off custom.
      3. Randy's black Jackson had gold hardware and gold pickguard, not silver.