Electro-Harmonix has announced a reissue of its classic, 1978-era Op-Amp Big Muff Pi pedal.
Sometimes also referred to as the IC or V4 Big Muff, the original circuitry has been faithfully re-created for the reissue, while several practical enhancements have been added including a compact, die-cast chassis and true bypass switching.
The pedal relies on op-amps rather than transistors and three gain stages rather than four, to create its sound. It features standard controls—Sustain, Tone and Volume—plus a Tone toggle switch for bypassing the tone circuit. It comes equipped with a 9V battery or can be powered by an optional 9-volt AC adapter.
The pedal is available now and carries a U.S. street price of $80.90.
For more on EHX, stop by ehx.com.
The Women’s International Music Network (the WiMN) announces KROQ on-air radio personality Kat Corbett as co-host of the upcoming 2018 She Rocks Awards, joining WiMN founder Laura B. Whitmore on stage for this special evening.
Recognizing women who stand out as role models in the music industry, the live awards event takes place on January 26, 2018, at 6:30 p.m. at the House of Blues Anaheim during the NAMM Show.
Corbett is host of the KROQ midday show and local show, Locals Only, which has helped launch many bands. She also currently has a show on SiriusXM. Her extensive radio career has also included stints on Boston’s WFNX, Import Export on XFM in the UK, and on L.A’s Y107. In addition to also holding various music-related positions for many indie films, Corbett is a copy writer and published author, having publisher her first short story on Amazon titled, It’s Personal, in 2013. As a voice-over artist, Corbett’s work includes events such as the MTV VMAs and the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup.
“I'm so looking forward to celebrating women who have not only made a huge impact in the world of music, but on me personally—by realizing their dreams and thriving in such a difficult business, they have been an inspiration,” shares Corbett.
The WiMN Founder, Laura B. Whitmore, comments, “I’m excited to welcome Kat on board as my co-host. Kat’s enthusiastic energy, creative style and know-how will perfectly complement the dynamic evening we have planned for this year’s awards.”
Gearing up for its sixth consecutive year, the She Rocks Awards pays tribute to women who display leadership and stand out within the music industry, and has become a standard at the NAMM Show. Previous award recipients include female industry leaders such as Colbie Caillat, Ronnie Spector, Sheila E, The Bangles, Shirley Manson, Esperanza Spalding, Chaka Khan, Jennifer Batten, Karmin, Orianthi, Dinah Gretsch, Craigie Zildjian, and more. The event brings together industry professionals, music icons, artists, fans and media to celebrate women in music.
The She Rocks Awards will take place on Friday, January 26, 2018 at the House of Blues Anaheim at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are on sale now. A NAMM badge is not required to attend the She Rocks Awards.
To find out more, visit sherocksawards.com.
Once again, Xotic Effects has combined forces with Andy Timmons to release a limited run of 3,000 BBP-AT signature series pedals.
The pedal includes an Andy Timmons guitar pick and trial link to his new website, guitarxperience.net, where users can get lessons, tips and behind the scenes access to all things Andy Timmons.
Capable of 30dB+ clean boost and smokin' overdrive tones, the BB-Preamp Andy Timmons signature model is a reincarnation of the original Xotic Effects BB-Preamp that first hit the market in 2005.
• Powerful overdrive tones with flexible tone shaping options
• Adjustable ±15dB two band active EQ
• Permanent part of Andy Timmons live and studio rig
• Purchase includes an Andy Timmons guitar pick and trial link to Andy’s new website, guitarxperience.net
To find out more, visit xotic.us.
Jam circuit staple Umphrey's McGee recently announced their 11th studio album, it's not us. Today, GuitarWorld.com presents the exclusive premiere of the lyric video of the album's newest single, the contemplative "Half Delayed." You can watch it above.
“Initially, ‘Half Delayed’ was the working title, just a marker to quickly remind me that this idea was only half finished and started with a delay loop," remarked Brendan Bayliss, the band's guitarist. "We never intended to call it "Half Delayed", but it actually fits when you listen to the lyrics."
"The whole song started with a simple delayed guitar line that could be faded out and back in at any point, and that gave it a hypnotic vibe that set the table for everything else. It starts small and ends big.”
"'Half Delayed' is relaxed then energized," added Jake Cinniger, the band's other lead guitarist. "We just let the tape roll and I approached it by thinking about the vocal melody."
"Atmosphere is key, too much Pro Tools in most rock music today loses a sense dynamics. Going off the cuff results in a more human sound.”
it's not us is set for a January 12 release. You can preorder it here.
For more on Umphrey's McGee, follow along on Facebook.
There aren't too many people who can claim to have cofounded several seminal bands, let alone one. Chris Hillman, however, has at least four to his credit. He started the legendary Byrds (with Jim/Roger McGuinn, David Crosby, Gene Clark and Michael Clarke) in 1964, the Flying Burrito Brothers (with Gram Parsons) in 1969, Manassas (with Stephen Stills) in 1971 and the Desert Rose Band (with Herb Pedersen) in 1985. And let's not forget the Souther-Hillman-Furay Band and McGuinn, Clark & Hillman.
However, despite all those years spent in bands, Hillman also has a led a formidable solo career, a career that was highlighted earlier this year with the release of the incredibly well-received Bidin' My Time, which was produced by Tom Petty.
Hillman's solo career actually kicked off in the mid-Seventies with a pair of albums released on the Asylum label—1976's Slippin’ Away and 1977's Clear Sailin’. On February 9, Omnivore Recordings will issue The Asylum Years, a 20-song collection that combines both albums.
Slippin’ Away, which was produced by Ron and Howard Albert (Derek and the Dominos, Allman Brothers, Jimi Hendrix), was a star-studded affair featuring members of Booker T. & the M.G.’s, Poco, Buffalo Springfield and the Turtles, plus George Terry (Eric Clapton and His Band) and other ace studio musicians. The disc also featured guest appearances by Hillman's former Flying Burrito Brothers bandmates Al Perkins, Rick Roberts, Byron Berline and Bernie Leadon. Hillman took his place as frontman, and the results were the epitome of the classic Seventies L.A. sound.
He returned the following year with Clear Sailin’, which saw him dial back the flashy supporting cast for a more traditional release, sounding much like the iconic music he had created in his early years with the Byrds and Burritos. For Clear Sailin’, Hillman assembled a core band (including Richard Marx) with production helmed by Jim Mascon (Poco, Firefall).
The Asylum Years features an essay from Scott Schinder, which includes a new interview with Hillman.
“Doing these records was part of my growing process," Hillman says in the liner notes. "Do we ever master our professions? Not really, you’re always learning something. It was with the Desert Rose Band that I really felt that I’d come to a point where I’d put in enough time for it to pay off musically. These records are all steps on that journey, and the journey’s been pretty wonderful.”
The Asylum Years Track List:
1. Step On Out
2. Slippin’ Away
3. Falling Again
4. Take It on the Run
5. Blue Morning
6. Witching Hour
7. Down in the Churchyard
8. Love Is the Sweetest Amnesty
9. Midnight Again
10. (Take Me in Your) Lifeboat
11. Nothing Gets Through
12. Fallen Favorite
14. Hot Dusty Roads
16. Playing the Fool
17. Lucky in Love
18. Rollin’ and Tumblin’
19. Ain’t That Peculiar
20. Clear Sailin’
Steve Vai, John Petrucci, Steve Morse, Albert Lee and Steve Lukather Join Forces on Sterling Ball's New Album
Ernie Ball Music Man owner and CEO Sterling Ball—along with two longtime friends and band mates, drummer John Ferraro and keyboardist Jim Cox—will release a new album, The Mutual Admiration Society, January 19 via Mascot Label Group in a deal with Steve Vai’s Favored Nations label. The disc features guest appearances by a crew of jaw-dropping guitarists, including John Petrucci, Albert Lee, session legend Jay Graydon and three stellar Steves—Lukather, Morse and Vai.
“The sound and earthiness of this ‘country-fusiony-jazz-esque’ record is phenomenal,” Vai says. “But perhaps the thing for me that’s most surprising about this record is how unique a [bass and guitar] player Sterling is. We express who we are through our instruments, and the way Sterling plays has a warmth in the tone and conscientiousness in the note choice that’s accessible and deeply pleasing.”
The album is essentially an ode to the music Ball grew up listening to and playing—and Vai, Petrucci, Morse and the rest of the pack where giddy to be involved. Lee’s fretwork can be heard on covers of Buck Owens’ “Crying Time” and Hank Williams’ “Hey Good Looking”; Morse plays on “The In Crowd,” the catchy Dobie Gray classic.
"I approached it as if we were playing a show together," Morse says. "When John brings down the band with a certain type of snare hit, I tried to imagine us at a little club somewhere having a blast. This is a fun record, and we all got to hear the whole thing together, laughing and smiling the whole time.”
Lukather graces traditional blues number “Baby, Please Don’t Go” while Vai tackles “Sugar Shack,” a 1963 hit by Jimmy Gilmer and the Fireballs.
"That song was huge for me when I was 4, and it stuck,” Vai says. “My goal with the melody was to try and retain the innocence and charm of the original.”
Petrucci’s track—although seemingly out of the blue—perfectly sums up the album’s fun vibes. “Truth is, I wasn't sure what tune to do,” the Dream Theater guitarist confesses. “The fact that Sterling was paying homage to music he grew up with and had special meaning to him, it was intimidating trying to pick a song. So, I was happy when Sterling—who knows I was a huge ‘Disnerd’—suggested playing a Disney song. We decided that a medley of tunes from a couple of 1940s animated Disney movies and some old-school Disneyland/Disney World theme-park songs would make for the ultimate guitar-powered walk down Main Street USA.”
The album was recorded at Gordon Rustvold’s Broken Prop Studio in Fountain Valley, California, produced by Ball, Ferraro and Cox and engineered by Bill Evans.
You can check out Vai's contribution to the album, "Sugar Shack," above. To preorder (and stream) the album, head here.
The world occasionally produces one of those rare thinkers whose name becomes iconic. Thomas Edison lit up the world; Albert Einstein altered the study of physics; Walt Disney reimagined entertainment; and Leo Fender designed the Telecaster and the Strat. Need we say more?
In a new book, Leo's wife, Phyllis Fender, provides a memory-packed look into the world of this quiet genius. Leo Fender: The Quiet Giant Heard Around the World was co-written by Randall Bell, who grew up in Fender's neighborhood and whose father was the head of the R&D department at Fender's company.
"This short yet captivating book is required reading for any true Fender aficionado," says Vintage Guitar Magazine's Vaughn Skow. "While much has been written about the work of Clarence Leonidas 'Leo' Fender, precious little has been written about Leo Fender the man. This book is a game changer.”
Fender grew up in Fullerton, California, where his interest in electronics lead him to open a radio repair shop in 1938. It wasn't long before musicians and band leaders turned to him for help in repairing their equipment. And the rest, as they say, is history. Fender's revolutionary guitar, the Stratocaster, has been the preference of Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, David Gilmour, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Eric Johnson, Jimmie Vaughan, Rory Gallagher and Jeff Beck, to name just a handful.
Fender was a shy, unassuming inventor who was nearly deaf and had one glass eye. In 1946 he founded Fender Electric Instrument Manufacturing Company—the launch pad for his most iconic designs—and later on, G&L Musical Instruments.
Fender's game-changing contributions to the music world have been widely recognized. He was presented with the Country Music Association Pioneer Award in 1981; was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Rock Walk of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His accomplishments were also acknowledged with a Technical Grammy Award in 2009. Fender died in 1991.
Leo and Phyllis Fender
"When other companies made electric guitars, that is all they did," says the Rolling Stones' Keith Richards. "Leo had the whole concept in mind. He made an amplifier to match. It is, after all electric. This left the other guys with half an egg. So simple, so complete whether you prefer a Stratocaster or a Telecaster. If you used a Fender amp, you had the whole deal. Sturdy, reliable and beautifully made, they remain the standard that others strived to reach, let alone the bass!"
Phyllis Fender volunteers at the Fullerton Museum, where she shares with visitors stories about her life with Leo. She also serves as Honorary Chairman of G&L. Twenty-two years ago, two different doctors told Phyllis she had six months to live. Today, both of those doctors are dead, and she's here to tell this remarkable story.
Unearthed live music from the late Ten Years After frontman Alvin Lee has finally been mastered and released. Alvin Lee & Co. Live at the Academy of Music, New York 1975 is out now on Rainman Records.
Lee, who is probably best known for his masterful, blues-rocking six-string performance of "I'm Going Home" at Woodstock in 1969, left Ten Years After four years later to kick off a solo career. Now, for the first time, a January 18, 1975, show by his band—recorded at New York's Academy of Music (which would eventually become the Palladium)—has been mastered and officially released.
The show was recorded on a (then) state-of-the-art 16-track machine, but only a few songs have ever been heard. In 2012, Lee discovered the masters in his archives and set out to transfer and mix the concert; sadly, he died in 2013 before the music could be released, but his wife Evi oversaw the project, and the album was released October 27.
The result is a collection of jazzy, funky and mellow performances—13 tracks played by a world-class band, including Lee on guitar and vocals, Ian Wallace (drums) and Mel Collins (sax and flute)—both ex-King Crimson—plus two former members of Stone the Crows—keyboardist Ronnie Leahy and bassist Steve Thomson—as well as Brother James (percussion) and Donnie Perkins and Juanita Franklin (backing vocals). You can hear three tracks via this story and check out the full track list below.
On the album, Lee steps away from his normal fleet-fingered blues fireworks and opts for a more laid-back vibe and a take-it-easy approach to rhythm and groove. Following up on his 1974 release, Take Flight, the band—dubbed Alvin Lee & Co.—took this show on the road in the U.S.
For more information, visit alvinlee.com.
ALVIN LEE & CO. LIVE AT THE ACADEMY OF MUSIC, NEW YORK 1975 TRACK LIST:
1. Got to Keep Moving
2. Let's Get Back
3. Somebody's Callin' Me
4. All Life's Trials
5. Baby Please Don't Go
6. Time and Space
7. There's a Feeling
8. Every Blues You've Ever Heard
9. Percy's Roots
10. Money Honey
11. Going Through the Door
12. I'm Writing You a Letter
13. Ride My Train
Xotic Effects has announced that its best-selling pedals—the EP Booster, SL Drive and SP Compressor and XW-1 Wah—will be released in a limited edition red paint scheme.
Famous for its woody, organic and beautiful sounds of saturation, these British amplifiers, the Super Lead & Super Bass, have been delivering one of the all-time classic sounds for almost 50 years.
- Equipped with super transparent overdrive.
- Amp-like response that cleans up nicely with volume knob roll off.
- Internal dip switches allow you to choose two classic tones.
Using the highest quality parts available along with a discrete FET design and low impedance output, the EP Booster provides up to +20dB of boost with shimmering highs and lows, and no ear fatigue.
The internal DIP switches let you choose the boost frequencies, and EQ settings.
The Xotic SP Compressor offers the same OTA (operational transconductance amplifier) technology used in what many guitar players consider the best compressor ever, the Ross Compressor.
The SP Compressor has superb tone quality featuring a wide variety of compressor tones from vintage, to subtle, to modern and more. It's super flexible and features a dry blend knob, up to +15dB of boost and an internal dip switch for attack control.
The Xotic Wah—based on the famed 1967-1968 Italian-built Clyde McCoy Wahs—gives you unlimited sounds with unique controls that shape and contour your sound the way you hear it. Its adjustability and flexibility makes it one of the more versatile wah pedals available today.
All of Xotic's limited edition red pedals ship the first week of January 2018.
You can find out more over at xotic.us.
For the first time ever, Bob Weir and Phil Lesh, two founding members of the Grateful Dead, will tour together as a duo performing back-to-back sets of acoustic and electric versions of Grateful Dead classics. The pair will play select U.S. markets including New York, Boston and Chicago as part of the Bobby and Phil Tour, which kicks off March 2 and 3 at Radio City Music Hall.
Fans can sign up for the Ticketmaster Verified Fan Presale starting 7 a.m. EST today (December 11) at bobbyandphilduotour.tmverifiedfan.com/. Tickets will be available to the public 10 a.m. local time Friday (December 15) via Ticketmaster.
Although Weir and Lesh have played together since the inception of the Grateful Dead in 1965, they've appeared jointly infrequently since 2015’s Fare Thee Well shows, where they played for the last time with all four surviving members of the Dead. They've never performed as a duo without a backing band.
This project came about as Weir and Lesh celebrated the 40-year anniversary of the Grateful Dead’s 1977 album, Terrapin Station. The two performed at Lesh’s own Terrapin Crossroads, as well as Lockn’ Festival and Sound Summit on Mount Tamalpais earlier this year. Fans can expect to hear Grateful Dead favorites as well as additional musical surprises. You can check out the dates below.
BOB WEIR AND PHIL LESH DUO DATES
March 2 /// New York, NY /// Radio City Music Hall
March 3/// New York, NY /// Radio City Music Hall
March 7 /// Boston, MA /// Wang Theatre
March 8 /// Boston, MA /// Wang Theatre
March 10 /// Chicago, IL /// Chicago Theatre
March 11 /// Chicago, IL /// Chicago Theatre