For sale is this vintage 1966 Fender Jazzmaster prototype electric guitar. The prototypical headstock on this unbelievably unique Jazzmaster was hand-carved and finished by Roger Rossmeisl under the supervision of Freddie Tavares, but was never implemented during subsequent production making it the only Fender Jazzmaster of it's kind. Interestingly, Mr. Tavares took a liking to the guitar, and kept it in his office in the Fullerton factory for years to come, even playing it at many holiday parites and other Fender-related events. The guitar wasn't officially finished until 1983 when Steve Grom (Fender and Gibson employee) chose to purchase it as part of Fender's "Employee Sale" program of 1983. At which point the original Lake Placid Blue nitrocellulose finish was replaced with an absolutely exotic Purple polyurethane, and the guitar was finally mated with an appropriate case. The instrument is 100% all original in incredibly pristine like new condition, and includes the singed documentation from Mr. Grom on (ironically) Gibson letterhead.Currently listed with a Buy It Now price of US $18,999.99.
G L Wilson
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By: Robert Cavuoto
German metal band, UnBreakable, is currently being compared to a modern day version of Scorpions, not only due to their Germanic heritage, but their infectious brand of melodic hard rock.
Of course, it also doesn’t hurt to have the Scorpions’ drummer and hit maker, Herman Rarebell, producing and lending a guiding hand.
Comprised of Al Crespo on vocals, Martin Ries and Pascal Alles on guitar, Lukas Mittler on bass, and Alexander Ries on drums, UnBreakable combines colorful melodies with the memorable hard rock riffs, all of which are clearly evident on their latest CD, Knockout.
I had the chance to speak with guitarist, Pascal Alles, about the new CD and what Herman Rarebell brought to the game to help the band achieve their goals.
Robert Cavuoto: How does it feel to be compared to a modern day Scorpions?
Pascal Alles: You said that. [Laughing] I never heard that before. It`s an honor to be compared to them.
We wanted to capture the feeling of those arena rock days. We tried to write songs with strong melodies and shake-able choruses, but that really depends on the decision of the listener [Laughing]
Robert: Herman Rarebell of the Scorpions produced the CD, what his connection to the band and how did you start working with him?
Pascal Alles: He’s the mastermind in the background [Laughing] .We sent him our demo tracks and a week later he wrote us back, “Hey guys this is good stuff !”.
Shortly after that he joined us in our rehearsal studio, and the following week we were already in the studio making the final CD.
In a couple of words, “A musician’s dreams came true.”
Robert: He is a truly a hit maker when it comes to song writing. What was it like to work with him?
Pascal Alles: Yes, he is. Working with him was actually pretty easy, because he understood how the songs should fit together. The songs were already set up, because Martin and I wrote them. Then the band, Alex [drums], Martin [guitar] and Lukas [bass] recorded them at Principal studios in Münster, to capture the vibe of a live recording.
Later on we met up in the main recording studio, Kidroom Studios in Greven, with Michael Voss aka Mad Max, Casanova and Herman where we did the guitar overdubs and the vocal recordings. The lyrics were written by Herman and Alex our drummer. Alex had a couple of ideas which Herman rounded out.
Robert: What did you learn from Herman?
Pascal Alles: We learned a lot about song arrangement. Herman would say; “Sometimes less is more!”
Robert: I believe that is true with anything in life. Is there any connection to the band’s name to the Scorp’s CD with the same title?
Pascal Alles: Why do you call Mickey Mouse, Mickey Mouse?
Robert: How long did it take you to write and record the CD from beginning to end?
Pascal Alles: It took three weeks for the instrumentals and two weeks for the vocals.
Robert: The band has a great commercial metal vibe with a modern hard rock groove – something that has been missing in music lately. What’s your take on the band’s sound?
Pascal Alles: Two guitars, one bass, drums and kick ass vocals.
Robert: Tell me about how you came up with the riff and melody for “Rock the Nightlife”? It’s simple, yet incredibly infectious.
Martin Ries: I played some riffs in our studio and this one came into my head. It comes up from the stars, you know. When Alex heard it, he said: “Great, that’s a new song for our album and I have an idea for the lyrics. We should record it now.”
Alex had the idea for the refrain on the song and later Herman and Alex wrote the complete lyrics.
Pascal has done his incredible lead guitar, Lukas played the bass tied to the drums and Al has made the song complete with his kick ass voice. Every time we play it, it is fantastic to view when the people bring up their arms, singing loud the chorus and playing imaginary guitars.
Robert: I’m beginning to see a resurgence in heavy metal here in the states, what is it like now in Germany and Europe?
Pascal Alles: Not here in Germany, what we play, is simply called melodic hard rock and that`s not what the listeners want here in Europe. They like harder riffs without any vocal lines. Like thrash, or death metal.
It’s not that this music has no quality, sure it has a broad range of fans. But, that`s not the music we wanna play even if we wouldn’t sell any copy of our record we wanna stay true to ourselves and play what we enjoy.
Maybe the U.S. and the rest of the population of this blue pearl called earth will enjoy our music, as well.
Robert: What were some of the obstacles that you had to overcome to get this CD recorded?
Pascal Alles: Nowadays it’s easier to do a record, you can easily do it for a couple of bucks at home with digital recording. But, from what we can say is that: “If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys!”
You have a lot more bands out there, which is great and it widens the market. But, in the end the quality sucks. To the bands out there, rehearse your ass off before you go into a recording studio.
Search for a good producer and so on. Believe in yourself and your vision. You only could realize what you could visualize in your imagination; this is the only limit you have.
Not just with the music industry, that’s how life works. If you send something out, you will get something back.
Robert: Do you think it will be difficult to break into the U.S. metal scene?
Pascal Alles: We will figure that out! Ask us that in five years again [Laughing]
Robert: What did you use to track the CD?
Pascal Alles: Some secrets we just wanna keep to ourselves, but what we can say, we used real microphones
Robert: Without rock radio stations and video channels how important are social media sites to the band?
Pascal Alles: It’s a promotion tool. On the other hand social media sites are a good platform to communicate with the fans, which is great. But, what would the world be without airplay of the radio stations, that’s the way we grow up with.
Robert: Who’s the craziest person out on tour?
Pascal Alles: I think Herman is that guy. [Laughing]. We watch TV and go to bed. The life of a rock star has changed, you know. The new rock stars are the politicians who throw the money and the TV’s out of the windows.
Robert: What are your touring plans for the U.S.?
Pascal Alles: You better ask the promoters of the venues. We don’t have any plans or requests for touring at the moment. So, dear promoters out there, we’re still available if you read that.
Opeth unashamedly alienated some of their fan base with their 2011 album Heritage. While a large portion of their fans were drawn to the Swedesh masters for their progressive death metal leanings, Heritage was primarily inspired by 70s fusion in the style of John McLaughlin’s Mahavishnu Orchestra – and there wasn’t a single death-growl to be heard anywhere. And now, with Pale Communion, Opeth has moved sideways again, a little away from some of the jazzier moments of Heritage and towards more of a 1970s progressive rock feel, while still a million miles removed from death metal. It’s an album which will challenge some fans while thrilling others, but the overall impression from a chat with frontman Mikael Åkerfeldt is that he’s driven solely by his artistry, and this is what he’s feeling right now.
Pale Communion is such a headphones record!
That’s good, I like to hear that! I’ve been talking to the guys in the band and people in general about how people listen to music these days. Are they listening on stereo speakers and amplifiers and stuff like that, or on the headphones? I was worried if people were getting the chance to listen to it on nice headphones instead of shitty computer speakers.
One thing that stood out to me immediately was the guitar solo in the first track, how it if you’re listening in headphones you’ll hear it drift off slightly to the left of the stereo image just for a second before coming back. Those details really help to add some magic.
Yeah, and you’re not going to hear that on your computer. It’s really an audio experience to listen to it in a proper way like you did or through a good stereo system. There’s also a surround mix which I haven’t heard yet. But there’s a lot of things going on in the mix. Both me and Steven Wilson have a lot of ideas for the mix.
Was there a particular song or moment that dictated where this album was going to go?
Yeah, you could say that. The first song I wrote set the standard for the rest of the record – or at least I got some type of idea what I wanted to do with the record. That was the last song on there, called “Faith In Others.” I wrote that song and it ended up being quite a melodic song, which gave me something of an idea for the rest of the record. I wanted to focus on vocal melodies and melodies overall for this album than I’ve done before.
The vocal harmonies are really beautiful.
Perfect. A lot of metal fans might be sad to hear that I went into old man’s rock territory. I was listening to Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and I was introduced to David Crosby by Steven Wilson who played me his first solo record, and obviously he was in The Byrds and he’s a master of vocal harmonies. I picked up on that and there was a time when I was writing this record where I figured I wanted to do harmony vocals all the way through. Like, only harmony vocals.
There’s always going to be the guys who are like ‘Where are the death vocals?’ but you also have a lot of fans who will follow you anywhere you take them.
Well, I hope so. We get a lot of s**t for our choices musically and I’ve had some fans even tell me to my face, ‘What are you doing? Why aren’t you writing the good stuff any more?’ And I’m sorry to hear that but we don’t play it safe. It’s not like we deliberately want to be strange and fuck things up. It’s almost like I’m latching on to how I’ve always been writing music, what I like, and I want to keep that intact. That’s been intact since the first record. I understand the sensitive people who have loved the band but maybe don’t like the new stuff, but I don’t like either for them to feel like we’re turning our backs on them. We’re still doing what we want to do, we’re writing songs with the same process we always have, and besides, when we go out on tour we’re going to play the heavy s**t they want to hear too. There’s going to be a mix of material. So people will get their fix, but when it comes to new music that sounds like the old records, it’s simply not gonna happen. We want to move on, y’know? But that’s not necessarily saying we’re never going to do a death metal scream. That might happen, y’know?
It’s like the backlash against the new Pink Floyd album coming out later this year. They’re just trying to express themselves, and the whole reason people like them in the first place is because they like how they express themselves – and also it’s not like the new album will walk across the shelf and break the old ones.
Exactly. People have so many odd opinions about that. Like, referring back to us, it’s like people saying it’s not Opeth any more, like they have the power to decide when it’s not Opeth any more because it just simply doesn’t fit their idea of what we are, y’know? But I think that’s a bit unfair. I think people should be happy that Pink Floyd are doing a new record, and it’s debatable but they should just shut up and enjoy it! If they like it or not, it is David Gilmour who has been the head of Pink Floyd since the mid 80s, and if the music features Rick Wright who passed away, why wouldn’t you want to be able to listen to it? And Nick Mason’s probably gonna play drums as far as I know, and Roger Waters is not gonna be angry! For me I look forward to it, very much.
So let’s talk guitar! What did you use on this record?
Let’s see… I got a really cool Gibson Flying V from 1979. I bought it from a guy in Hawaii of all places. I used that as a rhythm guitar on quite a few tracks. And then a couple of Fender Stratocasters. I mostly used a Custom Shop ’68 Strat reissue, like a relic, which was great. It was very hard to play, like the action was high and I have thick strings on there too so it’s a bit of a struggle but it’s fun to play. Then we had shitloads of PRS guitars. We had a …I don’t know what that model’s called, actually… oh, Tremonti! The Mark Tremonti model was in the studios. A couple of Custom 24s, we had a P24 which just sounded good. We used a PRS Angelus acoustic guitar. They are amazing guitars. I was a Martin guy when it came to acoustic guitars up until PRS made the Angelus and I got one of them and Frederik has one, so we used those two. For the acoustic we used a lot of high-strung, Nashville tuning, and for that I have a little Taylor acoustic, so we used the Nashville tuning together with the regular tuning a lot to make this glittery type of sound. Frederik also played a Gibson Les Paul Junior with a P90 for many of his rhythms as well. So that’s it, I guess, for the guitars. We have so many guitars it’s difficult to remember all of them.
For amps we used Marshalls. We’re endorsed by Marshall so we had them send us an Yngwie Malmsteen head. It’s a Plexi, basically. We used that one, we used the Satriani whatever-it’s-called. We had a Bluesbreaker which was amazing. Love it! That was for the clean electric. The cabs were two Marshalls. I can’t remember what they’re called. There were two different cabs and we ended up using one of them. And then lots of pedals. We have lots of support from Jim Dunlop so we get the MXR pedals. We used the Way Huge Super Puss pedal a lot. I have an old Electro-Harmonix phaser, the Russian one that looks like a land mine. So that was used a lot.
Are you much of a collector of guitar gear for its own sake or is it more about what it can do for your music?
Well, good question! Never had that question before and I’m ashamed to say I love guitars but I probably have too many and I need to appreciate each and every one of them. I love the guitars. I think they are beautiful pieces of art, but I also obviously use them because I want to play them. We are endorsed by PRS so when we tour I only play PRS, and I have shitloads of them. I just got a P24 that I’m taking on the road, and I have my own signature model for PRS that I play a lot. I do collect guitars. When I collect guitars I usually go for the more vintage stuff and I’m a Stratocaster lover. I love Stratocasters. It’s something from my childhood. I used to draw them. I used to draw guitars in school. I used to build toy Stratocasters so I could mime in the mirror along to “Bark At The Moon.” Now I have picked up a few of them so I have a bunch of more vintage guitars. Not the really expensive ones, but I’m more into the vintage 70s Stratocasters with the big headstocks.
Pale Communion is out now on Roadrunner Records Australia.
Are you a fan of great guitar music? Of course you are. Do you need some inspiration for the wall of your music space? Maybe a shrine to your favourite artists? Or just something cool to hang above the fireplace? Check out Black Lightning Gallery in Los Angeles. Founded by Rohan Ocean, Black Lightning Gallery is about to unveil a fine art photography collection from prolific rock photographer Gene Kirkland (whose work I’ve long admired – his name is burned into my head from all sorts of guitar mags). The photos include a recently discovered collection of some of rock’s most pivotal and historically important moments. Vai and DLR. Metallica taking over the world. Guns N’ Roses at the “Sweet Child ‘O Mine” video shoot. Aerosmith. Black Sabbath. Ozzy getting chummy with a white dove (from the cover of Guitar School magazine – I totally have that issue in the other room). Randy Rhoads. Motley Crue at the “Girls, Girls, Girls” video shoot. They’ll be released as numbered, signed limited edition prints exclusively via Black Lightning Gallery, and will only be available until the limited numbers are sold. there will not be additional runs of the photos.
Here’s an example of some of the great stuff you’ll see on the site:
“Metallica were unstoppable in 1988. A new album And Justice for All… was released. Their first single release ‘One’ came with a haunting and unforgettable video, Making the song itself display the full meaning of the lyrics. The band was shot in black and white while the movie had color moments in the flashbacks.
The following Justice world tour was massive in scope with 5 legs and 222 dates. Staging included the huge Dorothy statue recreated from the cover of the album that broke down during the title track. A full lighting rig that come off and swung very close to Lars’ drum riser. The justice show was epic. The full experience is immortalized and officially released in the Live Shit: Binge and Purge Box set recording at Seattle Coliseum, Seattle, Washington over 2 night on August 29 and 30, 1989.”
Now here is an interesting product from Norwegian company Alberg Audio that it is about to become available for pre-order via an Indiegogo campaign. 4 years in the making, Alberg Audio have designed, refined and produced a delay pedal called the EKKO and a wireless controller called the AERO that attaches to your guitar or strap. Now other companies have created wireless controllers but they tend to work by changing parameters in a bit of a haphazard way like using a Korg Chaos pad, with the AERO controller you can quickly and easily switch between the 3 controls on the pedal and then use the rotary control knob to adjust the level, feedback and delay time. You can even tap the knob as a tap tempo control and presets.
Aalberg Audio says the EKKO EK-1 delay pedal is also just a first step and that it intends to build a full suite of AERO AE-1 compatible effects pedals in the future. I wonder how that will work? Will you be able to switch effects easily from the AERO controller? Pretty interesting.
The AERO is available to order from August 27 direct from the Indiegogo campaign website for (estimated) March 2015 delivery for $249 to the first 100 ‘earliest-birds’ and $299 to the next 150 ‘early birds’. A further 1000 units will then be made available for May 2015 delivery (estimated) for $299 along with 10x 5-pack ‘reseller’ bundles comprising 5x EKKO+AEROs for $1,250 each.
The post Aalberg Audio announces remote controlled effect pedal ‘EKKO’ appeared first on Guitar Noize.
With Adrenaline Mob getting set to hit the road in support of their 2014 album, Men of Honor, the band has released a sweet tour promotional video that showcases their raucous live shows.
Beginning Aug. 22 at Toad’s Place in New Haven, Conn., Adrenaline Mob will then play a series of dates with Erik Leonhardt, formerly of Tantric, on bass, as John Moyer recently revealed that he would not be available for the run.
Check out the video below.
Leading manufacturer of guitar strings and musical instrument accessories, Ernie Ball, has announced the launch of Ernie’s Eagles Club Loyalty and Rewards program. The program gives you access to limited and one-of-a-kind rewards, before I explain how take a look at what you could claim:
- Two Ernie Ball Music Man Sterling Basses, one signed by Ozzy Osbourne and his band, the other signed by all the band members of Avenged Sevenfold;
- An Ultimate Ernie Ball Pack including a Music Man StingRay or a Majesty Guitar, plus a one year supply of Ernie Ball strings, guitar care kit, strap and pics;
- A John Petrucci Signature by Music Man JP100 6-string guitar;
- Autographed copies of Slash’s new “World On Fire” CD, signed by the band
Online discount codes, Ernie Ball gear packs, strings packs, and more.
So how do you get your hands on these cool Ernie Ball rewards? I’d love a Music Man StingRay Bass personally! The first step is to visit http://rewards.ernieball.com and sign-up. The rewards site or should I say Ernie’s Eagles Club is powered by Platform 3, a leading-edge loyalty and rewards platform from Vancouver-based 3 Tier Logic and they make the process super easy. If you have a Facebook or Twitter account you can use those accounts to login and setup your user account.
To earn points that can been redeemed for rewards, you just go to the Earn Points page and share the content that is provided to you on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. To get rewards, you go to the Redeem Points page, see how many points are required for the prize you want, and then submit the appropriate number of points. Prizes will be shipped or emailed to you. Platform3 keeps track of your points, which you can monitor on the site as well.
All in all this sounds like an easy way to get some very cool swag! There is one condition however, you must be a US or CANADIAN residents and 13 years of age and older.
The post Ernie Ball launches Ernie’s Eagles Rewards Program appeared first on Guitar Noize.
The Archon amplifier was introduced by PRS Guitars in 2013 and has had a lot of praise from some very high profile Metal guitarists.
“The 100 watt, high gain amp head offered musicians a new tool that could achieve lush, bone-crushing gain while providing an exceptional clean channel not normally found on amps with so much crunch.”
The new 50 watt version features a half-power switch and is also available in Combo form as well as the head version.
“With 50 watts, switchable to 25 via the amp’s back panel, the Archon 50 breaks up at a lower volume, resulting in a more classically driven tone than its predecessor. The added option of 6L6 or EL34 power tubes allows players to further personalize the tone and feel of the Archon 50/25. 6L6 tubes offer plenty of versatility and warmer, more balanced tone across the full range of frequencies. They will also push with less saturation for a bit of a sweeter, smoother tone. EL34 tubes offer focused, tight, punchy gain. They run a little hotter, distort earlier, and deliver a wider range of overdriven, crunch tones that are great for rock distortion.”
On configurations, Croft offers: “We’ve added a 1X12 combo with a Celestion G12-75T speaker, for players looking for portability and who don’t need to push so much air. With the combo you’ve got a killer amp that you can use at home, in the rehearsal room or the clubs. If you need to move more air, you can run an extension cab off of the combo and it will give you all the bottom end that you need. Overall, the Archon 50 is just a fun amp to play. It’s versatile, sounds great and is inspiring to play.”
For more info including full specifications, visit http://www.prsguitars.com/archon50.
Bryan Ewald explains the differences between all the amps in the Archon series:
Source: Total Assault
Eric Clapton has often stated that JJ Cale is one of the single most important figures in rock history, a sentiment echoed by many of his fellow musicians.
Cale’s influence on Clapton was profound, and his influence on many more of today’s artists cannot be overstated.
To honor JJ’s legacy, a year after his passing, Clapton gathered a group of like-minded friends and musicians for Eric Clapton & Friends: The Breeze, An Appreciation of JJ Cale scheduled to be released July 29, 2014.
With performances by Clapton, Mark Knopfler, John Mayer, Willie Nelson, Tom Petty, Derek Trucks and Don White, the album features 16 beloved JJ Cale songs and is named for the 1972 single “Call Me The Breeze.” The album is available for pre-order HERE.
“I would like people to tap into what JJ Cale did – that’s the point. I’m just the messenger; I’ve always felt that that’s my job. I try to interpret things so that the public at large, or at least the people who listen to what I do, will become intrigued about where I got it from,” said Clapton.
After years admiring JJ Cale’s work and covering several of his songs such as “After Midnight” and “Cocaine”, Clapton finally collaborated with Cale for the first time in his career on the 2006 original album Road to Escondido. At the time, Clapton said “This is the realization of what may have been my last ambition, to work with the man whose music has inspired me for as long as I can remember.”
JJ Cale’s music consistently defied being labeled into any one category, but instead found influences across the spectrum of blues, rock, country and folk — a hybrid sound that has influenced a long list of artists. He was known for being reclusive. He let his music speak for itself and by his own choice never became famous in the conventional terms of the word. Instead, he preferred to shun the spotlight for a more simple existence based on his musical creations. Ironically, doing just that, and focusing on music, turned him into a guitar legend.
Cale grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma and cited Chet Atkins, Les Paul and Chuck Berry as some of his earliest influences. He was often quoted as saying, “In trying to imitate them, I missed it. And I came up with my own kinda thing.” And so, Cale began playing the local Tulsa club scene in the early 1950′s surrounded by other natives such as David Gates (Bread) and Leon Russell. After moving to Los Angeles in the mid-60′s, he recorded the song “After Midnight.”
Already an accomplished guitarist with bands such as the Yardbirds, Cream and Blind Faith, Clapton ventured to a solo career with the release of his 1970 self-titled Eric Clapton album. Mutual friend Delaney Bramlett had given Clapton a copy of Cale’s song “After Midnight.” Clapton decided to cover the song and it was the first single from the album. The song became a chart-topping success. Clapton was quick to offer praise for Cale’s work while promoting the album. Cale had been told of the cover but said that he didn’t pay much attention until the song came on the radio in Tulsa.
Years later, in April 1976, Cale was performing at London’s Hammersmith Odeon in support of his Troubadour album release. Clapton sat in on the performance and later during that trip surprised Cale in the studio with a version of “Cocaine” that would appear on his 1977 Slowhand release, again becoming a chart-topping success.
In 2004 Clapton organized a guitar festival called Crossroads that was a 3-day event featuring the world’s most elite guitarists. Clapton invited Cale to perform at the first Crossroads Guitar Festival and Cale agreed to attend the event, where Clapton proudly sat in as a member of his band.
Cale’s entire 40-plus year career produced only 15 albums. Lauded by his peers and completely unfazed by musical fads, JJ Cale is an American icon, a craftsman like no other.
Clapton’s career, also spanning more than 50 years, has resulted in 18 Grammy Awards and the distinct honor of being the only triple inductee into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION GO HERE.
The Breeze is NOW available!
ALBUM TRACK LISTING
1. Call Me The Breeze (Vocals Eric Clapton)
2. Rock And Roll Records (Vocals Eric Clapton & Tom Petty)
3. Someday (Vocals Mark Knopfler)
4. Lies (Vocals John Mayer & Eric Clapton)
5. Sensitive Kind (Vocals Don White)
6. Cajun Moon (Vocals Eric Clapton)
7. Magnolia (Vocals John Mayer)
8. I Got The Same Old Blues (Vocals Tom Petty & Eric Clapton)
9. Songbird (Vocals Willie Nelson & Eric Clapton)
10. Since You Said Goodbye (Vocals Eric Clapton)
11. I’ll Be There (If You Ever Want Me) (Vocals Don White & Eric Clapton)
12. The Old Man And Me (Vocals Tom Petty)
13. Train To Nowhere (Vocals Mark Knopfler, Don White & Eric Clapton)
14. Starbound (Vocals Willie Nelson)
15. Don’t Wait (Vocals Eric Clapton & John Mayer)
16. Crying Eyes (Vocals Eric Clapton & Christine Lakeland)
Keys – Hammond Organ, Piano & Wurlitzer
Walt Richmond & Simon Climie
Drum Programming & Percussion
Eric Clapton (All tracks)
Mark Knopfler (Tracks 3 & 13)
John Mayer (Tracks 4, 7 & 15)
Willie Nelson (Tracks 9 & 14)
Don White (Tracks 3, 5 & 13)
Reggie Young (Tracks 2, 6 & 8)
Derek Trucks (Tracks 14 & 16)
Albert Lee (Tracks 1 & 11)
David Lindley (Tracks 9 & 16)
Don Preston (Track 3 & 13)
Christine Lakeland (Track 3)
Doyle Bramhall II (Track 10)
Pedal Steel Guitar
Greg Leisz (Track 12 & 14)
Eric Clapton (Track 11)
Jimmy Markham (Track 13)
Mickey Raphael (Tracks 3, 9 & 14)
Michelle John (Tracks 4, 5, 9 & 13)
Sharon White(Tracks 4, 5, 9 & 13)
Christine Lakeland (Tracks 13 & 15)
Simon Climie (Track 9)
Satnam Ramgotra (Tablas)
The Little Martin is the compact and afforable member of Martin's X Series. Like any other Martin, the Little Martin is built with the same quality, craftsmanship, and astounding sound.
So what can you use a Little Martin for? Fan favorites activities are: jam sessions, campfire side, practicie, recording, and traveling. And the list goes on!
Find out where you can get your Little Martin here.
Scuffham Amps were brought to my attention a few months ago and I was immediately interested in checking out their Amp Modelling plugin S-Gear (S-Gear also runs as a standalone app) after reading the backstory on the company, more of that in a moment, I got in touch with the company and was added to their beta tester list for the latest release 2.4 which is available to purchase now from their website.
What makes UK based Scuffham Amps so interesting to me is that it was set up by Mike Scuffham who designed the legendary JMP-1 MIDI Preamp whilst working for Marshall Amplification in the 90′s before moving on to work for Akai and a Finnish video processing company and eventually founding his own software company.
S-Gear is a collection of amps, speaker cabinets, mics and effects available for Windows PC or MAC. What I really like about S-Gear is the simplicity of the interface, features and the ease of use. Some amp Modelling apps have all the bells and whistles whereas S-Gear 2.4 has just 5 amps and 3 rack effects but combined with the excellent ProConvolver MKII cabinet emulator it is possible to create a huge array of fantastic guitar tones.
Let me first explain what ProConvolver MKII is. ProConvolver uses Impulse Modelling to capture detailed frequency responses of speaker cabinets. There is even a second convolver channel so that you can pan the two channels in stereo. Scuffham have teamed up with one of the leading companies in Impulse Responses, Redwirez who have provided a fantastic collection, including 1×12″, 2×12″, 4×10″ and 4×12″ cabs, ribbon and dynamic mic options and a range of mic placements. When I was taking about simplicity of the UI this follows through to the cabinet selection and mic placements, Redwirez have done all the hard work selecting the best mic placements for each speaker/mic combination so you can choose from a few preset locations.
The effects rack has 3 available modules that you can add in, Mod Thing, Room Thing and Delay Thing. Mod Thing is obviously a modulation effect that covers Flange and Chorus effects as well as Vibrato and Leslie style effects and you can add multiple versions of Mod Thing to stack Modulation effects. Room Thing is a Reverb unit and includes all sorts of natural and spring reverb effects. Delay Thing is, well a Delay effect but it has 2 modes, Tube and Analogue, mono or stereo modes and Triangle or Sine wave forms to choose to modulate the delay trails with.
Now onto the main reason most people will buy or at least try this software, the amps. There are, as I said before, 5 to choose from. I have recorded demonstrations of 4 of the amps below, the one I have left out is called the Jackal and is a high gain amp. The Jackal is loosely based on a Soldano but as with all of the amps you can configure them to cover a lot of ground, especially with the cabinet combinations on offer. I just didn’t bond as well with the Jackal amp as I did with the other models, I felt the other models were exceptionally good, especially for Blues and Rock so I wanted to concentrate my efforts on those models. For the following demos I picked a few Jamtrackcentral.com backing tracks that covered different styles and solo’d over the top using S-Gear 2.
The Duke Amp model demo
The Stealer Amp model demo
The Stealer Amp model demo 2
Custom ’57 Amp model demo
Wayfarer Amp model demo
Scuffham Amps S-Gear 2.4 is available to purchase and download via the company website, but you can try before you buy with a fully featured 15 day demo. Give it a go, I guarantee if you like low to medium gain amps you will be impressed. If you are a Metal only kind of guitarist then I would say you would be better purchasing TSE Audio X50 V2, which, while it only has a single amp model it is the ultimate High gain amp plugin for me. If you want a full selection you can buy Scuffham S-Gear 2 and TSE Audio X50 V2 for a total of $165 and have a complete recording toolkit!
Seymour Duncan continue their plans for global domination with another pedal added to their growing 2014 line up with an updated version of their sought after Seymour Duncan Pickup Booster. The new graphic treatment is a massive improvement, not that it should matter what it looks like but admit it, you want pedals that look as good as they sound right?
“With its class A, low-noise circuit design the Pickup Booster is exceptional at emphasizing a guitar’s natural sound while adding some muscle and fatness. The Gain control can now be turned down to unity (0dB).”
The pedal is actually capable of 25dB of boost so great to use either as a clean boost or to add sustain and saturation to an already overdriven tone.
We also added a discrete push-pull output stage that gives you increased drive capability. So even with the Gain knob down at 0dB and a long cable length, your signal chain will sound cleaner”.
A cool feature on this pedal is a Resonance Switch which allows you to make single coils sound like a vintage or high output humbucker. The Pickup Booster is assembled in Santa Barbara, California and is True-Bypass. Check out a demo of the pedal in action below.
By: Robert Cavuoto
The one and only Space Man – Ace Frehley, came from a distant galaxy to the Gibson Show Room in New York City for a media listening party on Wednesday, August 13th.
Ace released his newest CD, Space Invader, via Entertainment One Music [eOne Music] on August 19th. It’s the follow-up CD to his 2009 release, Anomaly, and features eleven new original songs and one cover tune.
Ace made a grand entrance at the VIP event, looking healthy and sharp; wearing a shiny blue blazer, leather pants, and leopard boots. He approached the microphone with his gravity defying stage swagger –star wattage at its best – and went on to graciously thank everyone for attending.
Ace briefly told us a little about the hard work that went into making this CD.
He was in great spirits, laughing and joking with everyone in attendance, as well as taking photos.
All that was missing was his smoking Les Paul!
Space Invader is a fantastic CD that captures the magic and fun spirit from his 1977 solo CD. The first single “Gimme a Feelin” will be sure to hit all KISS fans in the sweet spot, with its classic KISS groove married with Ace’s unique vocal style. It doesn’t hurt that it was co-written with long time KISS aficionado and guitarist, John Ostrosky.
Ace shows the world that he still has his chops and provides his searing trademark guitar leads on such the fast paced tunes as “Space Invader”. He even puts a modern spin on Steve Miller’s, “The Joker” and makes it his own.
When it comes to writing catchy melodic riffs, Ace delivers the goods with “I Wanna Hold You” and “Immortal Pleasures”.
No Ace solo CD would be complete without an instrumental. As expected, he gifts us with one called “Starphip.”A moody ethereal instrumental, layered in rich guitar tones and textures and an overlaying melodic lead.
For the cover artwork, Ace tapped longtime friend and artist, Ken Kelly.
Ken created the iconic cover art for two of KISS’s best selling LPs; Destroyer and Love Gun. He and VH1 That Metal Show / Radio DJ, Eddie Trunk, were both in attendance to celebrate the new release.
Space Invader provides powerhouse guitar riffs and flame throwing solos that validate Ace’s title as one of the all-time great guitarists. The songs are well written, well performed, and well produced. An all around “ace in the hole” for Frehley.
This should be a strong release for Ace and smartly timed to coincide with an expected Fall 2014 tour.
If there were any demons to be exorcized with this CD or any intent to prove a point – Ace has come out on top again!
Pitch-Shifters are not very common on pedal boards these days, possibly because there aren’t that many Pitch-Shifting pedals around. On the other hand, they are found in virtually every multi-effect units since the 90s, so chances are you have already come across one.
Apart from the obvious “Brian May harmonizing effect”, Pitch-Shifters are full of tricks and can be used to simulate a number of other effects, or even instruments, as I have attempted to show in the video below: octavers, octavias, 12 string guitar, chorus, etc.
Before we go into the settings used for the demo, let’s dive a bit into the history of Harmonizers and Pitch-Shifters.
As is often the case with effects, Pitch Shifters were invented to reproduce a very common musical practice: in this case, harmonising, very common in orchestras where one set of instruments plays a phrase while another set plays the same phrase but at a different pitch, say one fifth above for instance.
Guitarists have taken advantage of multi track recording techniques to record the same phrase at different pitches and thus obtaining that “harmonising” effect. Brian May, Queen’s guitarist in case you don’t know him (I suggest you pick up another instrument if that’s the case), is famous for his harmonised guitar parts, used on more Queen tracks that we can count. On live recordings, you can listen to his “Brighton Rock” solo piece where he uses long delays to “super impose” different guitar parts played at different pitches, brilliant stuff.
80s metal guitarists pushed harmonising to new levels. In Iron Maiden for instance, the two (now three) guitarists often play harmonised guitar parts, listen to “the seventh son of the seventh son” for a good example.The Pitch Shifting Effect
The problem with harmonising is that you need at least two guitarists in live situations. Early analog “Pitch Effects” such as the Tycobrahe Octavia used by Hendrix were not really good enough to reproduce the sound of two or more instruments playing together, but they opened up new areas in tones. Analog Octavers like the Boss OC-2 allowed for an octave or two octaves down. Still limited but great for beefing up single note guitar lines.
A bit later, thanks to the advent of digital technologies, Pitch-Shifting effects which could actually “play” what you are playing at any pitch with good accuracy were invented. Eventide is probably one of the first brands to have solved the problem and Steve Vai made good use of their gear back in the 80s, on Passion and Warfare for instance (listen to Ballerina 12/24 for an extreme example).
And of course, let’s not forget the Digitech Whammy, now in its 5th incarnation. The red pedal took the guitar world by storm in the 90s as a pitch-shifting pedal geared towards “real time pitch effects”, thanks to its integrated expression pedal. I went to see Rage against the Machine in 1994 and the whammy was very prominent in Tom Morello’s rig, the sound was completely outlandish at the time.
Harmonizer or Pitch-Shifter
Although Harmonizer and Pitch-Shifter pretty much both means the same thing, there is a bit of an accepted rule that Harmonizers are more “intelligent”. What this means is that Harmonizers will Pitch-Shift by staying “within a scale” whereas Pitch-Shifters will always shift by the same amount of semitones. Let’s take an example. If you set an intelligent Harmonizer and a Pitch-Shifter to a third up, you will end up with the intervals shown on the following table:
|“Intelligent” Harmonizer One 3rd Up||E||E||F||F#||G||A||A||B||B||C||C#||D|
|“Dumb” Pitch-Shifter One 3rd Up||E||F||F#||G||G#||A||A#||B||C||C#||D||D#|
The “dumb” Pitch-Shifter will always play 4 semitones up while an Intelligent harmonizer will modulate to stay within the scale, here C Major. Playing a D for instance, will trigger the “intelligent” Harmonizer to ‘ play’ an F over your D which is a minor 3rd (3 semitones), which stays within the C scale. Obviously, “intelligent” Harmonizers work on single note lines, not on chords but that is quite true of any Pitch-Shifter effect. The Boss PS-5 pedal that I demonstrate in the video below can act as a Pitch-Shifter or an intelligent Harmonizer depending on which mode is selected.
Tips and Tricks
The following video shows how to use a Pitch-Shifter/Harmonizer in a traditional way but also how to use it to “emulate” other effects, or even instruments. For this, I have used my trusty Boss PS-5 (now replaced by the PS-6 in the Boss line), one of the only full blown Harmonizers in compact pedal form.
In summary, the emulated tones I am showing in this video are:
- Chorus: the detune mode of the PS-5 allows for a nice chorus emulation. Actually, a lot of big guitarists have been using a slightly detuned pitch-shifter as a chorus. Mike Stern comes to mind but also Eddie Van Halen in the 90s thanks to his Eventide H3000.
- Octavia Emulation: pitch-shifter mode, one octave up (12 semitones) and mix quite high (past 12 o’clock) to have a lot of Pitch-Shifted signal. Sounds better with a distortion or fuzz before the pitch-shifter.
- 12 String Emulation: almost the same setting as before but the mix is back down to around 10 o’clock to allow less pitch-shifted signal. It sounds better with a clean tone
- Octaver emulation: Pitch-Shifter set one octave (12 semitones) down, mix around 12 o’clock. Sounds good with either a clean or distorted signal. Note that if you set the mix on maximum (only pitch-shifted signal), you can almost emulate a bass. The tracking can make it hard to use on fast licks
- 2 Octave Octaver: same setting as before but with the pitch-shifter set 24 semitones down.
Pitch-Shifters are a lot of fun and can actually be used to generate a variety of tones and effects, not jus the classical “Brian May” effect. As always, experimentation is the key, there are hours of fun to be had.
Small Selection of Pitch-Shifting/Harmonizing Pedals
As I mentioned earlier, there isn’t a huge array of Pitch-Shifting pedals to choose from, the most notables are:
- Boss PS-6 Harmonist: the latest in the PS series, does pitch-shifting, intelligent harmonising, detune and more in the classic compact boss form factor
- Boss OC-3 Super Octave: will only do one and/or two octaves down, perfect to fatten any line.
- Eventide Pitch Factor: not cheap but this is the real deal from the inventors of Harmonisers
- Digitech Whammy: although not a “regular” pitch-shifter, the whammy is a classic
- Electro-Harmonix has a full range of pitch-shifting products from the small Micro-POG to the insane HOG2. Although they rather fall in the octaver or synth categories, they are nonetheless interesting. The super fat tone in the intro to “Super Colossal” by Joe Satriani was made with the original POG.
- Most multi-effect units will carry a Pitch-Shifter and some of them are small enough to fit on a pedal board.
This post originally appeared on www.guitartoneoverload.com.
In this video Phillip Sayce demonstrates how the tiny Yamaha THR10 amp sounds when mic’d and run through a P.A. system. The video description also states that “While most modelling amps struggle to work well with effects in the front end, thanks to Yamaha’s VCM component modelling, THR responds exactly like you’d expect a tube amp to, even with Philip’s ‘best of the best’ effects in the front end.”
Phillip goes on to talk about his vintage pedals that work well with the THR10 as well as a new OX Vibe pedal too. Even without the Tube Screamer the amp is generating a really great SRV type tone but with the Tube Screamer kicked in it sounds absolutely killer!
Phillip Sayce’s new album “Influence” is released on August 25th through Provogue Records.
So, what’s the deal with pickups, then? Check out this piece I wrote for Andertons which breaks it down for ya, from the basics to more advanced stuff like the difference between coil splitting and coil tapping. A snippet: “The simplest way to think of a pickup is “like a microphone for an electric guitar.” And have you ever noticed that if you pluck the string close to the bridge the note will sound bright and twangy, whereas if you pick right down by the neck you’ll hear a softer, rounder tone? Well if you place a pickup near the bridge of the guitar it will sound sharper and brighter compared to one that’s placed near the neck. This is why the majority of guitars have more than one pickup: so you can select different sounds from the full and warm to the thin and snappy.”