I live and love The Blues from the great State of New Jersey, and I confess that in the past, I have not been so kind to DR Strings — made right here in the Garden State in Emerson!  I previously recanted my sad ways, and today, I am delighted to tell you I have finally found The Perfect Blues Guitar string for my ’57 Les Paul:  The “Pure Nickle, Round Wound, DR Pure Blues 11-50.”  I like these strings so much that I plan to use them on all my guitars.

Here’s the official blurp for Pure Blues from DR Strings:

Pure Nickel Electric Guitar Strings wound on Round Cores. The totally real Vintage string.

In the DR tradition of using old style construction to improve modern performance, Pure Blues electric guitar strings are designed with pure nickel wrap wire, round wound upon round cores. While this is a slow, expensive method of string making, it does produce a string acclaimed for increased sustain, vintage tone, and great low tones for playing rhythm to lead. The extra step of winding pure nickel around a round core gives the Pure Blues a punch that players say they are surprised to get in a vintage style string.

DR Strings can take a few days to find their stretch and strength with a guitar, but these Pure Blues strings are velvety smooth from the first stringing.  They play faster and quieter than my D’Addario EXL115s and they are much less tense.

The DR Pure Blues remind me of the Ernie Ball Rock N Roll Super Slinkys — but with a bit more of a mellower bite, and sassier sting when I need it — and yet the 11-50 are just as easy to bend as the Classic Ernie Ball 9-42s.

I am crazy in love with the warm, ancient, sound of the DR Pure Blues strings — the music they create is just what I hear when I remember the Blues, and they provide the means of how I can sound just like that memory when I play live to store that sound in the soul of my bones.

Some Bluesman think pure nickel wrapped strings sound muddy — I don’t feel that way at all.  Muddy is a conscription of the mind, while mellow is construed in the blood.

Sliding your fingers up and down the fretboard is silent with DR Pure Blues — and that string quietness is appreciated by my inexperienced fingertips that still search, at times, for just the right touch and pressure.

When I pluck and pick these DR Pure Blues strings, I get back the rich, deep, resonant, rumble of the human voice lifted in song.  These Pure Blues beat in your chest like a lover’s heart.  Amazing.  Go get some.


  1. I have no idea what any of this means. I like the package. I like Pure Blues how it sounds. Does nickel really make such a difference?

    1. You basically have nickel plated strings — the the D’Addario EXL115s — and 100% nickel wrapped strings like the DR Pure Blues. Having more nickel gives you a warmer sound and easier playability. Nickel is easier to bend and fret.

  2. David, I just bought the DR tite fits. I am reading everywhere about crimping and what not. I am not good at stringing, do you know if there is a step by step instructions of how to install these DR strings or maybe some pictures?

    Really appreciate any help!


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