Rogue Electric Sitar
Purchased from Musicians Friend on sale for $249. No case, no gigbag.
Prestrung with 6 regular light gauge electric guitar strings, and also with 13 thin-gauge Drone strings. Tuning of the 6 strings are regular guitar tuning, and to be honest, I have no idea how the drone strings are tuned… I have left them as is from original.
The body appears to be made out of some kind of composite wood and is very lightweight. The body is finished in a cool retro red/black “Crackle finish” front and back. 3 single coil “lipstick pickups” are used to pickup the 6 strings and also, the 13 drone strings. Tone and volume controls allow blending of the front and rear pickups for the 6 strings and also for the 13 drone strings.
The sound of this electric sitar is very clean. Not brittle, but the pickups and strings combine to create a very treble sound.
I’ve used this on recordings that harken back to the style of Burt Bacharach, Jimmy Webb recordings and the sounds were very authentic. EQ and effects can shape them to add more character,
but even through a clean channel on a POD, the instrument’s sound is very good for a “value range” instrument.
The secret of this instrument is the Gotoh-made Sitar electric bridge. It re-creates the unique buzzing sound of an Indian sitar and actually, does a good job at it. Lead Guitar players be fore-warned… The mechanics of the Gotoh Bridge and its method of creating the sitar sound doesn’t allow notes to sustain! For that, you may want to use a regular electric guitar and a Swami Pedal or similar in-line sitar sound pedal.
The neck is made of maple with a rosewood fretboard, and is average thickness and fairly good width at the nut. 6 chrome tuners do an adequate job, but no fears here since string-bending will result in Muted Notes… no sustain!
I have no regrets that I’ve added this Rogue electric sitar to my Studio “Guitarsenal” and will use it for many years to come.