The Epiphone Company's lineup of new instruments for the 2004 winter NAMM trade show is as diverse as the music of super-songwriter trio The Thorns and thrash-metal band Speed\Kill/Hate. Appropriately, both groups will perform at Epiphone's exclusive, invitation-only "Thorns and Metal" event during the musical instrument trade show in Anaheim.

The show, set for Saturday, Jan. 17, in the Pulse Room at the Anaheim Hilton (next to the convention center where NAMM takes place), illustrates the diversity of Epiphone's new product offering, which features guitars for everyone from rockers to college sports fans to bass players - even lefties.

"Epiphone is truly the company for all guitarists," said Jim "Epi" Rosenberg, president of Epiphone. "We've got it all- great guitars, affordable guitars and great affordable guitars - for every kind of player. And at NAMM, we're bringing a diverse music experience for all guitarists with The Thorns and Speed/Kill/Hate."

The Thorns debuted in May 2003, bringing together three established artists - Matthew Sweet, Pete Droge and Shawn Mullins - to form a singer/songwriter super group featuring lush harmonies, infectious melodies and fantastic lyrics. Speed/Kill/Hate comes from the opposite end of the musical spectrum, taking thrash music back to its roots with a style that has been described aggressive, intense and brutal.

Sponsors of "Thorns and Metal" include the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Harmony-Central.com, Sennheiser Microphones, TKL Instrument Cases, Shadow Electronics and George L. Cables.

The new models from Epiphone, a division of Gibson Guitar Corp., cover the full range of instrument styles and musical tastes:

Aggressive signatures: Two of the most aggressive rock guitarists debut Epi signature models. Aerosmith's Joe Perry Boneyard features a flame top with an Aged Tiger finish designed by Perry's wife.

Static-X's Wayne Static Flying V sports a Plain Black finish and simplified electronic controls.

Elitist expansion: The prestigious top-of-the-line Elitist Collection expands in two directions with the Tak Matsumoto Les Paul Standard and the Chet Atkins Country Gentleman. Tak is Japan's greatest rock guitarist, and the late Chet Atkins is the world's most influential guitarist.

College fans: Epi's Collegiate Guitars give sports fans a chance to make a lot of noise for their favorite teams. The guitars feature the school colors and logos of the Top 50 sports colleges.

New Epi factory: The new Dot Studio is Epi's full-features/no-frills, semi-hollowbody electric. It showcases the high level of quality, the attention to detail, and the affordability of instruments from the company's new factory in China.

Low, lower and lefty: Leaving no player out, Epi debuts a Les Paul Baritone, with long scale, based on the classic Gibson solidbody; a solidbody Embassy Bass line, inspired by the Kalamazoo-made solidbody Epis of the 1960s; and a left-handed Dot, Epi's affordable version of Gibson's original style ES-335.

And for the unpluggers: The Masterbilt acoustic line revives the prestige of Epi's 1930s acoustics, when Epi and Gibson fought for domination of the guitar world. The vintage-style offset-notch headstock identifies the Masterbilt line, which includes guitars flat-pickers, finger-pickers and even classical pickers.

Epiphone fretted instruments, amplifiers, strings and accessories are known worldwide for offering the best combination of quality and value. A division of Gibson since 1957, Epiphone is headquartered in Nashville. For more information visit www.epiphone.com.