In 2007 I spent a lot of time in the US on business. This gave me ample opportunities to visit some of my favourite gear shops. Just one such shop is in St. Paul, Minnesota. If you ever have a chance and you love vintage and boutique gear, check out Willie’s American Guitars (www.williesguitars.com). In July of 2007 I had a couple of gigs with Walle Larsson and Liberty Silver lined up. Walle’s music is smooth jazz and Liberty is a consumate R&B singer. I thought it might be fun to get an Auto Filter (or Auto Wah) pedal to “bring da funk”. Willie’s, of course, had just the ticket. After trying a few different brands I settled on the Maxon AF-9 Auto Filter.
So it does a great job on with a clean sound but I started fooling around with putting it in front of a distortion pedal. In the case of this clip it was a Fulltone OCD pedal (a truly great overdrive). Tele into the Swart Atomic Space Tone with it’s luscious tremolo is the icing on the cake.
The way these pedals work is that the harder you play the more the Wah opens up. I’m thinking it might be fun to try this on a bass track….hmmmm…a future posting perhaps?
A little while ago I was looking to upgrade my acoustic guitar. Steve Bell has been playing Stonebridge guitars lately and he was kind enough to lend me a Grand Auditorium, which he tours with, and an OM 32.
The Grand Auditorium is a great live guitar with lots of punch in the bottom end. However, I was quite smitten by the OM 32. The OM is a phenominal fingerpicking guitar. As soon as I got the guitars home I thought the best way to judge them would be do record them. I tuned the OM to DADGAD tuning and threw down a track. This track is recorded with a Shure KSM32 medium diaphram condenser and a small diaphram Audio Technica 4041. I set the microphones up at right angles to each other to get a nice stereo spreed without the concern for phase problems. I liked the track so much I decided to put some slide on it using my trusty Danelectro tuned in Open D. The overall track meandors around a bit but I kind of like the loose open feel this creates.
Check out www.stonebridgeguitars.com. These are hand made in the Czech Republic and sell for very reasonable prices. Similar North American made guitars of a similar quality will cost twice the price.
Check out the Story of Stuff. This is a brilliant website that challenges your way of thinking about our consumer society. When I reviewed this I was struck by how we have all bought into chasing after things.
Go to http://www.storyofstuff.com/ to view full presentation and them come back and leave a comment.
I have a small home studio that provides me with an opportunity to record ideas. It is amazing how helpful recording yourself is in terms of identifying aspects of your playing that need improvement. Here is a recording I did to explore the layering of the classic triplet echo effect. I played a high part and a low part both with the echo effect, in this case my T-Rex Replica set to Subdivision mode. This allows you to tap in the 1/4 note rhythm and the effect is set to a subdivision of that allowing you to get that Edge sound. I added a slide track and then just for fun flipped one of the slide licks backwards. The bass part is dedicated to Abe L.