Kramer Baretta Special Electric Guitar
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Kramer Baretta Special Electric Guitar

Ready, set, shred! The Kramer Baretta Special has sound and attitude in spades thanks to its offset Alnico V humbucker and fast-playing maple neck.

Overall User Ratings (based on 48 ratings)
Overall:
4.5 out of 5 stars
Sound:
4.5 out of 5 stars
Features:
4.5 out of 5 stars
Ease of Use:
4.5 out of 5 stars
Quality:
4.5 out of 5 stars
Value:
5 out of 5 stars
Manufacturer Support:
4 out of 5 stars
The Wow Factor:
4.5 out of 5 stars
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
(48)
Submitted November 8, 2017 by Ron M in denver, CO
"Best Deal I've Seen!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Let me begin by saying this. I cannot BELIEVE this guitar sells for $179. It is by far the best guitar I have purchased in the last 5 years. I am not saying the best in its price range, (which it is...) I mean the best guitar overall. They would sell easily for $299 and no one would question it. Fit and finish is fabulous. Neck is very comfortable. The pickup is kick A$$ at this level. What a deal for this classic 80's axe re-released!
Musical Background:
Playing for 10+ years. Family and friends parties when the rockin out is needed. Record. Play strats, teles and my Jackson
Musical Style:
Rock, Hard Rock and the Metal!
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Submitted September 19, 2012 by Thomas L in Flat Rock, MI
"Great Guitar Nostalgia For The Price"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This guitar is well worth the money. Quality all around and other than the normal issues with a vintage six screw tremolo (no issues if you don't dive bomb), a great no-nonsense player. Paint is great, the nut was done very, very well. I DID however have to file a high fret, but in this price range I expected that. The stock pickup sounds great. Neck is thin and comfortable and the "cool" factor of finally owning a Kramer (as a teen I couldn't afford one back in 1987) can't be beat.
Musical Background:
Playing guitar since 1987
Musical Style:
Rock
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Submitted September 8, 2017 by Joel S in Winston-Salem, NC
"Kramer Baretta Special"
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Well.....this is the most bang for the buck I have ever gotten out of a guitar. The first thing that comes to my mind is it is just fun to play! I received it last Saturday and played it thru Labor Day weekend. Great sound out of the box, even the clean tones are awsome and the sustain is impressive! Great setup out of the box and it just feels good in your hands! I do like the pickup but I'm changing that out to a EVH Frankenstein this weekend. I plan on getting a black one soon and maybe put an EMG in that one! I didn't realize this was an "Editor's Pick" in Guitar Magazine until after I made the purchase....that is always a plus! Bottom line.....every player should have one of these in their arsenal....you can't go wrong! (zZounds was great with fast shipping!)
Musical Background:
1-year; guitar; jam at home
Musical Style:
classic rock; hair band; metal; blues; country
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Submitted June 24, 2017 by Phil C in Grand Junction, CO
"Best deal around!!!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I've been studying and playing jazz guitar for 58 yrs. I wanted a little "hot rod" to rekindle my fusion playing. This guitar is worth so much more than the $179.00!! It arrived in perfect shape! I have no complaints at all. I made a couple of minor adjustments, just to suit my own taste. 100% satisfied!!
Musical Background:
Pro jazz player, 58yrs.
Musical Style:
Jazz, every genre
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Submitted December 23, 2013 by John C in Wallingford, CT
"For the price you cant beat it!!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I purchased this guitar for my son. I had a set-up done on it by my small, local guitar shop and the people there LOVED this guitar. We will be replacing the pickup with a "hotter" DiMarzio Super Distortion pickup only to better match another guitar he uses (there was nothing wrong). Hey, for the money we saved buying this guitar we can afford the $65.00 upgrade. The ratings are based on the price and my experience with the guitar.
Musical Background:
Playing guitar for 8 years. Jam at home for fun
Musical Style:
80's Metal / Hard Rock.
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Submitted January 11, 2019 by Joe B in Utica, NY
"Unbelievable good at this price"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I hadn’t bought a new guitar in 15 years and I was looking to buy a real cheap guitar to try my hand at learning to do some fretwork and other semi advanced setup and luthiering before attempting anything on my Les or Martin. This is not that guitar! The only thing I was able to do was lube the nut with some graphite to keep it in tune while using the tremolo. I can not believe the quality of this Guitar at this price.In 1984 I was 13 and lusted after a blue Kramer Baretta, The store wouldnt even let me play it because it was so obviously out of my price range. I highly doubt it played as good as this one.It’s only shortcoming is the single humbucker. By design a single humbucker doesn’t leave much room for sound manipulation; but I love that simplicity.(Zzounds, Why am I required to submit a manufacturer support rating when I’ve needed no manufacturing support ? )
Musical Background:
I’m a professional sound and video technician.music
Musical Style:
Rock, golf, classical
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Submitted September 21, 2017 by Tim O in NYC, NY
"The Best Of All Worlds..."
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Fantastic guitar. I purchased it with the intentions to rip the pickup out, but I plugged it in, and changed my mind. The stock pickup is killer. Very cutting and angular. Just what I needed. The finish is great, and the neck VERY comfortable. If you are looking for a light guitar, pass on this one. It's a mahogany body, with a strat style trem, and it's NOT light. If you're looking for a cool, killer 80's machine, this is the guitar for you.
Musical Background:
40+ years
Musical Style:
Country, Rock, Goth, Tribute Bands
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Submitted February 6, 2012 by ed hunter in delran, NJ
"Kramer baretta special is a winner!"
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Wow for the $179 i paid this is a real impressive axe! I wanted a back up to my old original 84 baretta but did not want to spend the money they are going for these days.Anyway no i wont compare it to the original but on its own it is a amazing guitar for the EVH thing!
Musical Background:
playing for 25 years
Musical Style:
rock,metal,blues,jazz
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Submitted January 30, 2018 by Jerry S in Pasadena, MD
"Much more guitar than I expected for the price"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I'm really impressed. The neck is thin, fast and silky smooth. There was zero fret sprout, the frets are smoothly finished and the fretboard grain is so tight and smooth it's easily mistaken for ebony. The color is a little more yellow than I expected, but it looks great and the finish is flawless. I don't really use the tremolo so I can't speak for that. I have many guitars, but this one easily jumps straight into my top tier at any price. I can't believe it's this cheap.
Musical Background:
30 years
Musical Style:
Metal, rock
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Submitted January 17, 2018 by Jerry C in Oxford, IN
"Best Bang for the Buck"
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This guitar was the most satisfying right out of the box than any other guitar I have purchased. I'm impressed. The one and only complaint I have is the volume seems to thin out the sound rather than reducing the output. I bought this as a project to be upgraded for fun. honestly, it's great the way it is. I should have purchased two.
Musical Background:
Been playing guitar since mid 80's on and off. Not so much out and about anymore.
Musical Style:
Rock
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Submitted February 21, 2012 by Mike F in Baltimore, MD
"Kramer Baretta Special - NICE Buy!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Simple......I purchased the Kramer Baretta Special to scavenge the body, pickup and tuners from for an EVH project guitar. Let me just say, I really wasn't expecting anything special in this price range, but WOW, this is an awesome bang for the buck. The neck is nice and straight, and the frets on my Kramer were dressed very well......BIG surprise. I'm a full-time luthier, and I give this guitar a solid thumbs up. No, it's NOT a vintage, USA-made Kramer, but neither is the price tag!
Musical Background:
30+ years guitar playing experience. Repairing guitars 25+ years, 5 of which as a full-time profession.
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Submitted April 3, 2017 by Rick Burgy in Weatherford, TX
"Kramer No Better way to GO !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This Guitar has incredible sound, I have this Guitar in Black, Vintage White and Red, I keep them all original except the factory strings which are not bad at all, but I enjoy using Zacc Wylde signature strings instead. This Guitar is 100% Guarantee to impress the beginners and Expert Players, Ive been playing for 17+ Years and I recommend everyone have one of these in there collection.
Musical Background:
20 Years, Musician with Band, I play all instruments
Musical Style:
Rock, Alternative, Heavy ROck, Metal, 80's Metal, 90's Grunge and Punk .
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Submitted February 25, 2014 by Michael Gramlich in lehigh acres, FL
"best for me"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Perfect guitar for what I play.
Sound
Put a dimarzio x2n in and it will rip your face off!
Features
Simple but that's the way I like it.
Ease of Use
Very balanced and nice neck. Easy to play.
Quality
No flaws when I received the guitar. Install of the x2n was super easy thanks to Kramer using enough solder at the factory.
Value
Pound for pound best new guitar I have ever owned.
Manufacturer Support
No reason to call. Kramer makes a great product.
The Wow Factor
It's a sleeper. Single humbucker and volume knob in vintage white looks very traditional and conservative until you play it and it just screams metal! If that's not a wow factor I don't know what is.
Musical Background:
jam at home
Musical Style:
Metal, hardcore. Hatebreed kind of stuff
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Submitted October 30, 2020 by a customer from hotmail.com
"Kramer Baretta Special"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
K so I waited a while and glad I did, they sent me a light one, and a very resonant one..mods... stainless PRS style trem mount screws, elevated the leading edge of trem 1/8th" leveled up trem plate, graphite saddles, graphite nut, NYXL'sit has wild tremolo up and down, once I used some nut sauce on the bridge n nut it stays in tune well, sometimes a sting will grab but I just push o pull on bar with a flick it goes back, I need to work on the nut and V out the back side of the nut as the strings are not straight back, they come off the back of nut at an angle so i cam going to open up the nut next string change and that should be cured 100%, that's a good trick even for Gibsons with 17 degree angle head stocks, angle that nut slot down and the same angle and v it out ever so slightly so the string is very free.. graphite!... WORKS!verdict? plays like a BEAST, sounds like a BEAST, best value yet, IMHO better than the classic vibes and that says a lot..I only have one question, do you have a dark rosewood finger board that's light? I am ready to pull the trigger on that one too...TY ZZS, Dee
Sound
the tone is real good, dynamic and resonates well, of course all that changes guitar to guitar as the wood changes so much but this one is fantastic, I can feel it vibrate my chest real hard, its like a massage..the A5 is very nice, I am leaving it for a while no hurry to change that I am going to milk it for all its worth, the thing about a simple guitar like this pups are so easy to change, nuttin to it..IMHO its got good lows, mids and highs very level across the board, responds well to pedals and tube amps, yet to play it in a 100% solid state, 1 hybrid a Johnson millennium 250 and it seems to like that one a LOT, in fact none of my other guitars sound we well as this but this is my only A5 humbucker save one, and that one likes the hybrid amp as well...my guess is it will respond well to a solid state amp..you can play with capacitor so easy to get to, don't even have to detune the strings on this one..I like the angled pickup, I think it gives it more character..fantastic guitar GREAT modding platform.. HIGHLY RECOMMEND, and that doesn't come easy for me as I do not like very many new mass produced guitars these days, not many at all..LOVE IT!
Features
volume knob is usable, with a lil work the tremolo is very usable, I did install graphite saddles, ss PRS trem mount screws and elevated the trem plate 1/8th" off the deck parallel, that got my intonation spot on..if you V out the back side of the nut to match the string angle you will find they don't jam up, however I still might install a string locker behind the nut, kahler makes areal good one for $60..simply for the reason you wont have the string value from the but back changing while bending.. it will only bend from the net to saddle and that makes fora more precise bend if you are looking to go up or down say a half step, full step accurately, just makes the guitar a better player all around IMO... and jest cuz its not a Floyd doesn't mean you cannot use a locker..I may one day install a floyd?the playability is just stupid actually so, really have zero complaints on this lil guitar not to mention its looks fantastic..
Ease of Use
takes pedals well, tube amps well, and hybrid amps.. works well with all my rack effects, I think A5 humbuckers may be the best humbucker for this reason? seems to be a perfect all around pickup and this IS a good pickup, no need to change really
Quality
fit and finish is great, it seems to be made very well, frets are nice, neck fit is great, nice a straight, truss rod works real well, very happy..
Value
this product is above any other guitar in its range by a fair margin, lest the one I got, not all are equal, wood change too much even within the same tree but I got some very good wood ..the value is better than the classic vibe IMHO and I don't say that lightly as the classic vibes are very very good bang for buck, very good, they need no upgrading at all, however the cost is like $450 TYD and that leaves some upgrade money for the special..
Manufacturer Support
my first Kramer and no reason to contact Kramer
The Wow Factor
yea man this is the classic Kramer Baretta look, the best looking Kramer ever made with the hockey stick head stock.. so classic, so trendy and timeless, it really outclasses most guitars made bar none, all your boutiques and ugly compared to this beauty, it says THIS GUITAR ROCKS on the front and "I EAT DISCO" on the back.. :-) are you kidding? does it look good? not big on the black or red but the purple is out of this world and I can live with the off white.. got a light one for me? please?Dee
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Submitted January 8, 2020 by Chris t in Chelsea, AL
"Unbelievable deal"
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Was very impressed of how easy it is to play.really nice fast playing neck.the alnico pickup is really good.i did not replace it .it sounds good like it is perfect for van Halen songs.i did loosen the springs on the whammy and took the middle spring out.put a graphite nut on it now the whammy stays in tune.is comparable to many high end guitars.great deal.
Musical Background:
For 30 years
Musical Style:
Classic rock, metal, new wave, classical, and alternative.
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Submitted April 28, 2014 by Pungo Lee in Silk Hope, NC
"Kramer Baretta Special"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I purchased this a Month ago from ZZsounds,she arrived in perfect shape. I have had vintage Kramers in the past and had heard good things about this guitar so I took the plunge and bought it sight unseen(hard to find a Gibson-made Kramer in stores).First, the guitar was perfect, fretwork nice(some have complained of sharp fret ends) paint high quality, hardware exceptional( remember, this is a very affordable guitar). I love the thin, fast neck, and Kramer got the hockey-stick head and vintage decal just right.The real value was in the zebra humbucker, wow! This pickup sounds great on this axe, clear, loud, no mud if height is adjusted right. I have 5 other guitars, all of them custom, and the Kramer receives regular rotation, it will even play Chet-style clean with a Fender reverb setting on the pedal. Vintage Kramer aficionados complain it has no Floyd Rose, I don't like FR and the Strat style bridge tremolo worked great. I would consider this guitar to be one of the best deals out there, better get one before the price goes up!
Musical Background:
I've been playing 30 years
Musical Style:
Folk songs, Metal
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Submitted February 12, 2020 by Geoff P in Glendale, AZ
"Best deal on a guitar"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Best 179 guitar on the market. Blow's away3&4,.hundred dollar guitars on the market .wow factor the purple paint &ruby red.it looks pink.i got both of them.nice neck. Fits in the Kramer logo guitar case they sell..zZounds is easy to work with one payment on your card &they ship it.i will modify. them out in a few months nice trem .pickup,&a bone nut. 80s is back
Musical Background:
Playing guitar since the 80s.
Musical Style:
All
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Submitted January 25, 2015 by Dave K in Watervliet, MI
"Kramer Baretta Special"
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This review has been selected by our experts as particularly helpful.
This is a great rock guitar! If you use only the bridge pickup and never touch the tone knob, this guitar is for you!
Sound
The pickup is aggressive sounding. It's a little noisy but acceptable. I'm not sure if it's the wood of the body, the pickup, or the angle of the pickup, but it has great sustain and feedback. I was shocked how much sustain the guitar has. The mahogany body produces a very warm tone.
Features
The thin neck, mahogany body, and angled pickup are three great features of this guitar. The antique white paint job is immaculate as is the finish on the neck. The neck plays very fast.
Ease of Use
The guitar neck is easy and comfortable to play. I wish the frets were a little bit larger. The bridge has three springs which keep it very stable and reasonably in tune after a considerable amount of playing. The strings should be replaced. They appear to have been on the guitar for some time before I purchased it. They were a bit dirty and did not have the clarity of new strings.
Quality
When I received the guitar it buzzed terribly. I had to adjust the neck and now the action is good except for slight buzzing on the high "e" string on some of the frets. Some of the frets are sharp but not bad enough to negatively effect playing. The volume knob is more like an "on/off" switch. When you turn it down to "4" it completely turns off the volume. The knob does not taper off the volume when you rotate it from 10 to 4. The intonation was not done correctly. I will replace the volume knob and redo the intonation.
Value
I'm pretty confident that some of the guitars produced most likely have frets that are less sharp and strings that buzz less. The low price of the guitar, its features, and sound quality are well worth the purchase. You can always adjust the neck and correct the intonation yourself. If you are unsatisified with your purchase just return it.
Manufacturer Support
I have never tried contacting Kramer guitars for any reason.
The Wow Factor
This is a great old school rock axe! It reminds me of the super strats created in the 80s that I could not afford as a teenager. If you are an 80s rock fan and on a limited budget you will love this guitar! It's fun to play and brings back great memories!
Musical Background:
I have been playing guitar for 40 years. I play electrics, acoustics, and classical guitars.
Musical Style:
I play classic rock, progressive rock, fingerstyle, jazz, blues, and classical music.
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Submitted September 20, 2019 by Richard L in Wheeling, IL
"A Piece of New History"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I had heard about everyone talking about getting these guitars and modding them. And I had planned on doing the same. However when I got it I couldn't get over how good it sounded and played! I threw some Jersey Stars on it and its now one of my everyday players. This is a fantastic bargain and a fantastic shredding machine! I love Kramer Guitars and all of their updated line. Get one before they are gone!
Musical Background:
25 years playing guitar and music
Musical Style:
Heavy Metal, Shred, Rock and Country with a little Funk!
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Submitted October 18, 2020 by Dwayne W in Glenolden, PA
"Kramer Barrera Special ‘17"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Surprised is my first impression. From the moment I started to fiddle with this guitar I could not believe the ease of playing and great sound I got out of this thing. I bought this guitar as a throw around thinking it was a cheap turd, but not the case.
Musical Background:
All styles of rock guitar
Musical Style:
Any rock and roll. I play from AC/DC to Zeppellin.
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Submitted October 19, 2021 by a customer from gmail.com
"Simple quality"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I've always thought these looked cool with their single tiled bridge humbucker, so I picked one up. I am surprised this thing was only $180 before tax. It is made in Indonesia and it must have been made by one of the good workshops over there, because as simple as this guitar is, the fit and finish is amazing. The tuning machines are good quality, move very freely but also hold tune very well. The mahogany body is very solid, the black gloss finish on the body is free of blemishes and is very even and consistent. The finish on the back of the neck is very sleek feeling under my thumb. The fretwork is flawless. All the frets on mine are level and crowned properly. The ends are filed to prefection, absolutely zero sharp fret ends. The nut is a black plastic nut, so nothing fancy there, but it is filed to a perfect depth and the slots hug the strings nicely. I can't exactly speak to the quality of the tremolo bridge as I don't really make use of them, but it seems good and stays in tune (though I don't use it so I can't speak to how well it holds tune if you use it a lot). I'm not sure of the output of the alnico 5 humbucker but it sounds great and the tilted angle does indeeed seem to lend it a bit more bass than a normal bridge pickup, but without making it sound muddy. This guitar has me wondering why people buy something like a Rogue as a "beginner" guitar for a kid when you could get something like this for the same price or cheaper that is of much higher build quality and looks much cooler in my opinion. Best sub-$200 new guitar I've ever gotten hands down.
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Submitted August 10, 2015 by Aaron G in Pittsburgh, PA
"Baretta Special Review..."
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I took a chance on this guitar from seeing how cool it looked in the photos. Other than it needing a simple truss rod adjustment due to buzz in the lower frets, this guitar is more than worth the $179 it goes for. The fret work is done excellently. Plays great, looks great, is great. I own 8 electrics ranging in price from $2800 to $165. The Kramer Baretta Special is worthy of being in anyones collection. No, it's not my Custom Shop LP 58 reissue... but still a super cool guitar that I'm glad I took the chance on.
Musical Background:
Playing guitar 30 years
Musical Style:
Rock and worship
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Submitted May 16, 2018 by ED W in RENO, NV
"Just wow!"
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I have gotten several other ACG's from Indonesia, but WOW! This guitar is beautiful, plays and sounds like it should cost at least 50% more! I love the simplicity of the single humbucker with volume! The real deal! DO IT!
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Submitted July 3, 2021 by Dennis Stafford in Flagstaff, AZ
"Great Mod Platform"
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This is a great guitar to modify and up grade, for the money you'd be hard pressed to find a diy kit , the neck is awesome ! Mild set up and you can't and for a more playable guitar , couple of thing's you would expect for a guitar in this price range , once the action is set the adjustment screw's on the tremolo will be stick up a bit digging into your palm " easy fix " , the tremolo spring's are cranked down very tight , backing off the tension makes the tremolo much easier to use , the Tuner's are horrible easily a 1/4 turn slack in the adjustment , the volume is pretty much off or on , removing the capacitor on the volume pot eleviates that problem and makes the pickup sound respectable, overall for the price it will be hard to beat , I'm adding a Floyd Rose , decent Tuner's and upgrading the pickup and electrics and will be ordering a couple more , for the beginner this just needs a proper set-up , killer deal.
Sound
I bought this Guitar instead of a kit Guitar to build an EVH 5150 style guitar , it's the perfect platform to Hot Rod and cost significantly less than a kit.
Features
The Hardware and Electronics are of low quality " the Tuner's are horrible IMO "
Ease of Use
I setup by someone who knows what their doing is nessesary and would definitely be worth the money for those who can't do it themselves, removing the capacitor on the volume pot makes the volume pot usable and the pickup sound's much better without it IMO.
Quality
You'd be hard pressed to find a better playing neck in this price range , Neck & Body are solid with exceptional fit and finish.
Value
No brainer ! I'll be buying a few more.
Manufacturer Support
No need to contact Kramer.for the money can't be beat.
The Wow Factor
Straight in your face 1980's appeal , simple and sexy.
Musical Background:
40yrs playing
Musical Style:
I play everything , but am a Metal Head
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Submitted July 11, 2021 by Farrell H in Lakewood, CO
"Love the guitar itself but...."
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I did my homework on this guitar before I made my purchase so I knew pretty much what to expect. The body and neck/frets are outstanding and I was surprised at the quality of the stock pickup. But just as every review I read, I knew the tuning pegs had issues, actually the guitar with stock tuners is virtually unplayable. Worst tuners I've ever seen. But once those were replaced with some Gotoh locking tuners and a Tusk graphite nut- no problems. Stock trem is quite functional but just doesn't look proper on this guitar, so I went with a Babicz full contact trem and threw in a Seymore Duncan Black winter and Oh yeah! Got the guitar in purple for my little head banger granddaughter and can't wait to see her sawing peoples heads off with this beast.
Musical Background:
40+ years of brutal metal
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Submitted January 6, 2018 by Jason D
"Don't overthink it - GET IT NOW!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
CORRECTION OF OTHER REVIEWS REGARDING VOLUME KNOB - Some reviewers say the volume knob only works as on/off, which is incorrect. I immediately checked this on my Fender Super Champ tube amp and the volume knob rolls off both volume and distortion as expected. Very sweet! Not sure what amps those reviewers were using but most solid state amps won't allow volume roll-off from guitar knob. Wanted to make it clear that it does! Now for the review! No way can I buy shoes or clothes online for fear something won't feel right, and I always felt the same way about guitars. How do you buy a guitar without playing it first? Well, for less than $180, and a proven no-hassle return policy I decided to go with the positive reviews and try this Kramer out. While waiting for it to arrive I was sure it was a mistake and I would be disappointed. Even up to the moment I finally got it out of the well-packaged shipping box. But WOW it was just as all the positive reviews said, and then some!
Sound
Playing through my Fender Super Champ head/12" speaker combo I got some great tones both dirty, and surprisingly clean. The clean tones I was getting were very unexpected and sweet! Dialed in some nice blues tones ala strat, but still got the nice sustain and growl of the humbucker. So far the stock pickup is fine. It sounds a little thinner than my Les Paul, but duh! Just think of what a humbucker sounds like on a strat body, but very clean cleans.
Features
The FINEST aspect is the neck. Plays like butter. This is the reason I never thought I'd buy online - but again since it was returnable I figured what the heck and scored! This neck is addictive. I used an old damp sock to clean the neck after removing the original strings and can't find a bad fret on the entire neck.
Ease of Use
This guitar is stage ready. I don't use whammy bar so can't really talk about tuning with it, but I can say it arrived almost in exact tune, and when I changed strings to the extra-lights, once I spent the required time stretching them out (as most players DON'T do properly then blame the guitar) they have stay almost perfectly in tune. As mentioned, intonation is spot on even after putting lighter gauge on. May look into locking down the bridge, but so far it hasn't caused any tuning issues at all so if not I'll just leave it as is.
Quality
If I saw this hanging in a guitar shop I likly wouldn't have picked it up because of the price tag - I don't even gaze at the low price section, but online reviews sold me on this one and I'm thankful for it. I'm hoping zZounds gets the black and maybe a red in stock at some point, if they had them now I would buy just to have them. This is a solid guitar, and does NOT look cheap at ALL!
Value
It needed no adjustment to the bridge or truss rod, even after I took off the original dirty strings and put on extra-light gauge .9s.
The Wow Factor
Looks freakin awesome! And not embarrassed to play it live. I'm a product of the 80s and can't help being vein - I can't be seen playing a cheap squier kind of thing - but this guitar absolutely passes the 'cool' test. And despite the price, I can already say this will be played non-stop. I'll be purchasing another just because the price makes it possible to not feel it's an unnecessary expense.
Musical Background:
30 year guitar player. Jam a lot, playing up to 20 gigs a year.
Musical Style:
Classic rock/80s
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Submitted September 6, 2014 by T E in Minneapolis, MN
"Damn!!!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
As the owner of many vintage Kramer Barettas, I was looking for a guitar that played reasonably close to my originals, that I could hammer the heck out of without worrying about. In short? This kicks world-class @ss. Monster pickup, and killer actions and intonation as shipped. Luthier handed it back and said "nothing needs to be done" which was a first. Find myself laughing every time I plug in while looking at guitars that cost 10/20X+ as much hanging on the wall...that aren't even close. Love these things and ordering a few more. Knocked it out of the park with these!
Musical Background:
Looooong time.
Musical Style:
Metal country.
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Submitted November 10, 2021 by Dennis Stafford in FLAGSTAFF, AZ
"Ridiculously Good"
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Out of the box , the guitar plays very good , I did do a setup too my preferences and it plays like butter with action as low as my high end guitars , the hardware is as expected " Low End " the tuner's have a lot of backlash , tightening the knobs helped considerably , the Tremolo is standard Strat style, good luck keeping it in tune with anything other than mild vibrato , it sounds very good and this price point , fit and finish are well above it's price. This Guitar begs to be modified , I added a Floyd Rose , Edwards behind the nut lock , Graphite Nut and a slightly hotter pickup , I painted it EVH 5150 style , It's a Hot Rod ! I have less than $500 in it " not counting my time " The Guitar is Awesome for the money even bone stock , I'm buying a few more
Musical Background:
40+yrs playing
Musical Style:
Heavy Metal , Hard Rock , Blue's , Jazz , Classical , I play just about everything , but am a Metal Head
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Submitted August 1, 2017 by Waylon W in hazel green, AL
"Great guitar"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
For the price you can't go wrong. A simple and well built guitar. I was expecting less for the price to be honest but was shocked when I played it.
Sound
Sound is pretty good considering just volume control, with pedals or letting the amp shape the sound it's really nice. The pick up is between an American Strat and a Modern Player Strat. It is a little muddier than the American but has more punch over the Modern.
Features
It's a simple design, especially for newer players, so they don't get hung up on controls and just play.
Ease of Use
Extremely easy
Quality
Top notch, I could see this thing go for $300 easy. The off white color is done really well (I prefer it over a snow white) it's more of a cream or aged yellow white. The color reminds me of a 20 year old guitar that sat in a pawn shop for a while. The neck is the best part, it alone is worth the price. I picked it up out of the box and though wow, it's a 2x4. Then I tuned it up and played it, that changed everything. It is very thin (ESP or Ibanez) and has a pronounced shoulder. I find the neck is just as good as my Strat (AM) but feels more comfortable to me. I have small hands and have no problems here. The neck is amazing.
Value
Well worth the sub $200 price. Wish these had been around when I got my first guitar.
Manufacturer Support
haven't needed
The Wow Factor
The appearance may not be visually striking but it's a player's guitar
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Submitted March 16, 2022 by a customer from msn.com
"Your kidding me!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Just got my Baretta Special guitar in black and all I can say is "Your kidding Me". I have played guitar for 50 years and have gone through so many brands, models of top name and bargain types of guitars. I have overpaid for some and gotten good deals on others. I mod guitars all the time to my taste. This guitar out of the box was intonated, perfect action, fit and finish top notch. Tuners are fine, neck is thin and fast. Best deal I have had in years, can't stop playing it! Hard to believe this is my 1st Kramer after so many years.
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Submitted January 14, 2017 by Chad J in Sioux Falls, SD
"The bar has been raised"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This review has been selected by our experts as particularly helpful.
Out of the box, this guitar was set up better then my US Strat. Small intonation adjustment and the was it, but that might have been due to me putting on my preferred strings. . Fret board is nice and flat, similar to a Charvel (little smaller frets). The neck has a comfortable C shape. The body and paint is nicely done. The pickup is great considering the price range. I wish there were more colors so I could get another. Unbeatable for this price. Weight is nice and it feels solid. Cannot believe how impressed I am with this guitar. It was just going to be a practice/stand by but I don't want to put this down.
Musical Background:
25 years of playing
Musical Style:
Everything
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Submitted April 19, 2018 by Brett B in Waynesboro, VA
"Sweet ax!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Perfect sexy looking finnish. Nice smoth feeling neck. Fast finish on the back not to glossy. Low action no string buzz. Very snapy and punchy. Nice long lasting pinch harmonics that sustain forever. Have 2 30 yr old kramers and jacksons. When i pick a string i feel the vibration forever in the body and neck. So much better sustain than my originals. Was thinking as most do install New S D pup.Na Im gona leave it. Love !!!!
Musical Background:
30 yr player/rock.
Musical Style:
All original working band
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Submitted June 30, 2021 by a customer from gmail.com
"Great guitar for the price"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This guitar is made in Indonesia so you know it’s PT Samick. As far as important Guitars you can’t get much better than that. If I remember correctly Kramer is distributed through Gibson Guitars. As far as the color goes it’s more pink than red.
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Submitted March 20, 2019 by Bob V in Paradise, CA
"One Trick Pony"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I’ve owned a Kramer Beretta Special for about a couple years now. It’s one of the better “budget” guitars out there. The straight and solid neck alone was almost worth the $179.99 they want for this 7.0 pound rock machine. The Rosewood fretboard is finished almost as smooth as Ebony! The wonders of CNC milling... The frets came polished and dressed very nicely with no sharp edges whatsoever. Tuners are so-so, but it stays in tune very well. I’ve read the p/u is an uncovered Epiphone 498T-clone. Whatever p/u they are using, it sounds great. Not overly midrangy for a p/u which ohms out at about 16k at the cord jack.After I got it, I put Ernie Ball 0.10s on it, locked down the bridge, dropped the action quite low (without any buzz whatsoever), set the neck relief, adjusted the p/u height, unsoldered one leg of the bright-cap, intonated it with a Peterson Strobe, and it’s my #2 favorite guitar to play out of a bunch of them.Through a Marshall DSL100HR and a 40 year old Marshall 1982a cabinet, it nails early Van Halen with ease. When I play it through the full Marshall stack, it gives me goosebumps. It sounds that good! I prefer to play my Les Pauls, but when I need to get my 80s/90s hard rock and metal on, this is my go-to rock guitar.
Musical Background:
Played 43 years. No longer perform on stage, now home noodler.
Musical Style:
Gospel, Rock, Jazz, Blues, Progressive Rock and Metal, Classical, Funk, Big Band
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Submitted January 31, 2020 by Joey Cordeiro in Snyder, OK
"Day 2 classic"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I like the vintage white offerings . Altho the colored maple necks are killer also but the warmth and tonal abiance of the early mahogany specials are very diffrent in sound and vibratory impedence. The stock pickup is really good. Just seems every time i score one sombody likes it so much i end up leaving it behind and give it away . Im on my 4TH now and only have one to show for myself. Their that good. Out of the box their great. No sharp frets.all rolled nice. Trem bar can keep tune if you know what to do. A claw ajustment with 5 springs and Lube is the key. Keep the nut wet and the pivot points wet with pencil dust and gun oil and dive away. A classic at birth and it seems they have a greater resale value than the new cost here . This is a pro able axe my freinds . And not a life changing if lost stolen or damaged or gifted at this price .~sIXx
Musical Background:
Since 1976
Musical Style:
Any and all as long as it is real humans . No machines
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Submitted October 4, 2021 by a customer from yahoo.com
"Great guitar not without it's flaws."
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Pros:1. Great price.2. Excellent stock pickup for a low end guitar.3. Solid body.4. Decent neck.5. A modders dream guitar.5. Good fret work and leveling.Cons:1. Tuners are poor.2. Plastic nut, but that's to be expected with a low end guitar.3. Terrible tremolo system and tuning stability.4. The treble bleed capacitor make this guitar volume either on or off, no dynamics at all.5. My volume pot was defective and would only sound proper if I adjusted it to about 1.5 level. Anything over that it sounded weird and anything under that it turn the pickup off.Overall this is a bargain guitar with a bad economy at the moment. At the moment I have the guitar in a repair shop to replace the pickup with a DiMarzio Super Distortion, to install a new pot, treble bleed cap and to set up the action. I contacted zZounds about the issue with the pot and they were not willing to help me at all so their customer support service is horrible these days considering it used to be good. They told me to go to Gibson for support when the purchase was less than 2 weeks old. Do they realize I could have just returned the guitar and made them lose a sale completely? I guess they don't care that they just lost a potential future customer.
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Submitted June 21, 2017 by Dennis D in MiddleGrove, NY
"Kramer Baretta Special"
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Let me start out by saying, review is based mainly on price.And I bought it only to use as 2nd guitar for tuning purposes.I didn't want to spend a lot of $ cause theres only a few songs I need it for. Ill go in reverse order of ratings. The wow factor,4 stars.Only because I wish it was white.Its like a yellow tint white.Love the looks of the hockey stick headstock,&p/u Value,5 stars.cmon its $180.Brand New Ease of use 4 stars.I don't use a tremolo,so I was going to block the tremolo and tighten down the bridge,I didn't have to.If you don't know about tremolos,there 2, like this & floyd type.I don't use either but hate the Floyd type, because its made to go both ways,[floating].& theres a half inch space open in the back which constantly is a hassle in so many ways,pressure on strings,locking nut,tuning,etc,@ least this type you can lay flush against guitar body,[which it already was] tighten claw screws,[which was already done] and tune to different tunings with ease because theres no locking nut to deal wither added pressure on the strings.*NOTE if you use the tremolo hard,this is NOT the guitar for you*it will NOT stay in tune, its made for very slight use.and make sure the tremolo claw screws are adjusted for use. Sound 4 stars.I think it sounds fine,No need to upgrade p/u Manufacturer Support,2 Gibson I guess owns Kramer?didnt no that, cause you go thru Gibson website,I asked 2 questions about the tuners,took them 3 days to respond,and they didn't have the info on this model to answer the question anyway, not good. Quality 4 stars.Only due to A&D Strings set very high,& saddle screws were crooked.which wasn't a huge deal,novice would be fine with it.I set up all my own guitars anyway so no big deal.The problem came with the set up.Very poorly installed cheap saddle screws, and wrench, the strings were set so high,& un even & the saddle threads were already stripped.Adjusting the string height,& leveling the saddle screws was a nightmare. Features 4 mainly because I wish it was available w/o tremolo.but love the headstock, and 1 slanted p/u.I can't go into wanting an ebony fretboard, locking tuners because obviously its a $180 guitar. OVERALL, 4.3 stars..with throwing out the support rating.Thanx to Kramer to offer a guitar under $200 that doesn't feel or sound like tin.when you pick up the guitar, you know its built well,and when you plug it in it sounds good.The only things keeping this from being ranked 5.stars is the off white color and cheaply installed bridge pieces.
Musical Background:
Gig in cover band
Musical Style:
Hard Rock/ Metal
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Submitted November 18, 2020 by Lee K in Sherman, TX
"Kramer iconic"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
I have read reviews on this particular series and will be making a purchase. Kramer is the first brand to endorse Eddie Van Halen, and,it was good enough for him then I'm in..
Musical Background:
Skilled Guitarist
Musical Style:
Rock/Alternative Rock,Grunge.
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Submitted December 11, 2021 by a customer from yahoo.com
"Great guitar"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Unreal that this is $179. Good tone, good neck. It even stays in tune for awhile.. Ive had $500 guitars that werent as good as this. Get it you wont regret it.
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Submitted November 16, 2020 by a customer from gmail.com
"Get a little more than you pay for"
Overall: 2 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
The good: Solid guitar, great sounding pickup. The neck was in good condition and very straight with good frets, which is crucial for practice. The bad: Nut was overly sticky and The pencil trick did not really fix it. I think the slotting might be a little strange too, and it doesn't really stay in tune at all even with gentle playing. The intonation is impossible to set because I think they drilled the bridge in too far forward towards the neck. Now the little intonation screws are cranked all the way back with no room left to finish adjusting to the proper intonation, and when I play chords on different spots, the neck and certain notes are out of tune. With the sticky nut and all, the amount of time I spend trying to get this thing back in tune is kind of maddening. Don't bother using the tremolo. For this to be an actual player I am pretty much needing to put a quality locking nut on it, and maybe figure out how to move the bridge a centimeter or so. either I have to return this guitar or completely hot rod it to make it an actual player, I guess you get what you pay for.
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Submitted January 1, 2021 by a customer from hotmail.com
"Love it, but problems..."
Overall: 3 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I love the color, and the design of this guitar so much. However, it arrived with a small back bow, very sprouted fret ends "cuts my hand", and a fret buzz I still havent got rid of yet. However I still love the look of this thing, and thought it was worth the money in "tools" I had to buy to fix. Even with all these problems I still might buy another. Lol
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Submitted April 2, 2020 by Scott T in Last Vegas, NV
"Meh"
Overall: 3 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Well I finally got my kramer barreta what a disapointment first off the vintage white is not vintage white mine came bright artic white that will blind you .nThe neck is 3 inches wode looks like a classical guitar neck. Speaking of necks the pocket is oversized with an 1/8 inch gap . I've been waiting for this guitar to come into stock this is the 2nd or 3rd run on these I think the first run is where all the positive reviews are from . I know its only 179 dollar guitar but I'm still disappointed . The pickup is smoking hot so all's not lost. For me the color is what really bummed me out I wanted that yellowish smoke stained color .
Musical Background:
40 years
Musical Style:
Classic rock jazz
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Submitted November 14, 2011 by a customer from sbcglobal.net
"Best bang for the buck! you cant go wrong with this guitar!!!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
really think before you look away!
Sound
is sounds great!
Features
the features are good i rather have a floyd rose but other than that its great
Ease of Use
better than an ibanez
Quality
its made great, it snapped off the stap three times... and it wasnt damaged at all!!!!
Value
great pice for this guitar!
Manufacturer Support
kramer is the best out there
The Wow Factor
it looks like an 85 baretta but with a few changes!
Musical Background:
been playing 23 years
Musical Style:
metal
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Submitted November 9, 2019 by John Page in Littleton, NH
"Impressive guitar!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Out of the box mine was set up perfect. Tuned up and this is a player! Nice action and simply play easy. Great tone thru my line 6. Flawless finish. Buy one, you won't regret it!! Some people change the pick up but I see no need. INCREDIBLE vaule for the money!!
Musical Background:
off and on for 29 years
Musical Style:
rock, metal, hair.
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Submitted November 21, 2019 by John Page in LITTLETON, NH
"Blown Away!!"
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
This is a sweet guitar! Set up perfectly, comfortable to play and screams! I was really surprised at the quality of this! Step back into the 80's. BUY this guitar, you won't regret it!!
Musical Background:
I play guitar, well try to...
Musical Style:
rock/metalhair
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Submitted October 15, 2019 by Daryl L in Phoenix, AZ
"Not worth 50 dollars. Shipped with severe damage."
Overall: 1 out of 5 stars
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I only play inexpensive guitars and have plenty. The bridge on this is what I would expect on a $25.00 new guitar. This guitar is unplayable. After lubing the nut, getting the strings as tight as possible, even without using the tremolo, the guitar simply will not stay in tune for more than two seconds. DAMAGE: The body had cracks around the volume knob, as if there was severe blunt force to the area. Due to the cost of the item, I was not going to worry about cracking that didn't seem to have any way of impacting the guitars sound.The cost of this guitar is not worth my time trying to return it, I will avoid Kramer and ZSounds from here on out.If the tremelo/bridge was functional, this would be a good $180 guitar, otherwise its not worth a dime.
Musical Background:
40 years, drums bass guitar keys
Musical Style:
rock, pop, progressive, and other
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