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Old 09-17-2014, 02:23 PM   #1
ken styles
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Specific Tone...Is it the guitar, pedal or amp??

Hey All,

This question below is just hypothetical....I was just thinking about it.

So lets say you have a certain guitar...let's say a Tele.

You hear some nice blues licks you want to try out.

The current guitar amp combo that you have doesn't have the flavor you would like to match those blues licks you heard. (might sound a little too thin, light, twangy, bango-ee...airy...etc.

So you look around and you see they have blues pedals.

then upon looking around some more you see they have "blues amps"

Do I really need both if I want the sweet velvet, slightly crunchy, raspy, soul voice sounds I am trying to achieve?

Or would I need another "blues guitar, (like a semi hollow archtop) + the blues driver pedal, + the blues amp????
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Old 09-17-2014, 02:31 PM   #2
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Honestly, you can play whatever on anything. The things like your phrasing, how you approach vibrato will remain constant so if you play something in a 'bluesy' fashion, it will sound bluesy regardless.



That being said, chasing a specific tone and not a genre is completely different and requires more consideration to your chain (your pickup choices, pedal and amp choices).



So what are you asking? What is a 'blues tone' to you?
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Old 09-17-2014, 02:37 PM   #3
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A tele can get great blues tones - use the neck pickup. You don't need pedals for blues, you just need a decent tube amp. It's not enough to get the amp, but it also needs to be cranked loud enough to get the right tone.

That being said, I can even get decent blues tones out of my Roland MicroCube when I set it right with lots of reverb and a slightly dirty clean tone.
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Old 09-17-2014, 02:42 PM   #4
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Stevie Ray Vaughan said it best...
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“Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It’s the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use.” - SRV
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:02 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Cajundaddy
Stevie Ray Vaughan said it best...

Yeah, probably went something like this:
"Hey, Rene, can you build me a splitter so I can play all 6 of these Dumbles at the same time?"

There are a lot of ways to skin a cat. You can get what you want by any number of different pieces or combinations of gear. Technique is not a piece of gear, but most of us probably understand that.

The original question doesn't make a ton of sense to me, it seems too vaguely theoretical, but the short answer is that you don't "need" any one specific piece to get a sound. Sometimes it's the most efficient way, which is why we often suggest, say, a jazzbox for jazz, but you can get there however you like and there's no guarantees or requirements.

So to answer the actual question: No. You definitely don't need a specific piece of equipment for anything. If you're just starting out, focus on learning to play and the rest will come. If new gear helps you sound the way you want to, that's fine, but don't look to it as a solution to all your playing problems.
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:13 PM   #6
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If you want to sound your best for a particular genre, I'd recommend getting the ideal gear for that genre. The guitar, amp, and pedals will ALL contribute to your ideal tone. I'd have to say the amp makes the biggest difference, then pedals, then the guitar.

But for some genres, you don't even need pedals. I would say the guitar matters the least, but I just borrowed a Strat from my cousin and while I can play metal with it, I feel it really needs a bridge humbucker to get a satisfactory metal tone. No amount of amp EQing or gain adjustments can help it -- the bridge single coil just does not provide a nice metal response or tone. With the neck/middle pickup position selected, however, it sounds brilliant for blues lead tones. So yeah, the guitar does matter too.
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roc8995
Yeah, probably went something like this:
"Hey, Rene, can you build me a splitter so I can play all 6 of these Dumbles at the same time?"

There are a lot of ways to skin a cat. You can get what you want by any number of different pieces or combinations of gear. Technique is not a piece of gear, but most of us probably understand that.

The original question doesn't make a ton of sense to me, it seems too vaguely theoretical, but the short answer is that you don't "need" any one specific piece to get a sound. Sometimes it's the most efficient way, which is why we often suggest, say, a jazzbox for jazz, but you can get there however you like and there's no guarantees or requirements.



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I'm not artsy at all. At least not in the visual sense.

But, I did just eat some pizza so I am quite fartsy




Quote:
Originally Posted by Axelfox
Dude i like rap and stuff. Im a furry and I also have a wolf plush with a hole that i use at times.


Only at times, though.
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:35 PM   #8
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SRV used a lot of different amps including a dozen different Fenders, Marshalls, and a few Dumbles. He also used a lot of different amp settings that changed over the years but he always sounded like Stevie. Some of the most ferocious blues on a Stratocaster ever played.
http://bluesrockguitar.files.wordpr...ki_srv_amps.pdf
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“Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It’s the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use.” - SRV
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:40 PM   #9
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Yes, thanks, that was the point. Nobody is arguing with you, which is what makes this so annoying. Obviously technique means a lot, but someone very specifically asked about gear and its effect on sound. Showing up and saying "YES BUT YOUR TECHNIQUE MATTERS MOST" isn't wrong, it's just irrelevant to the question. This is the gear section, if you don't want to talk about gear go hang out in Guitar Techniques.

Otherwise every time you post something I'm going to argue with you that it's more important that you eat than practice, because obviously your technique more important than your gear, but you can't have technique if you starve to death. So we should all start posting about what we had for lunch because that's obviously relevant and crucial to every conversation about gear, just like technique is.

See why it's annoying?
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:00 PM   #10
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Ouch Roc!

I thought the SRV quote was entirely relevant to the OP title question in a guitar forum:
"Specific Tone...Is it the guitar, pedal or amp?? "

and:
"So you look around and you see they have blues pedals.
then upon looking around some more you see they have "blues amps"
Do I really need both if I want the sweet velvet, slightly crunchy, raspy, soul voice sounds I am trying to achieve?"

Apparently I have violated some unwritten UG Forum rule. You have my apology if I have been offensive with my opinions on guitar blues tone. Carry on.
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Guthrie on tone:
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“Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It’s the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use.” - SRV
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:13 PM   #11
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Reading is hard!

It's not about the rules, it's about an irrelevant answer to the post (not just the title, I know it's a lot of words but do try). Again, this is the gear section, Techniques is ^ that way if you want to talk about how to unlock the magic tone in your hands.

edit: I was wrong! It's in your soul. Silly me.
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:21 PM   #12
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As others have said, there are many ways of skinning the sonic cat, some more complicated than others. However, there is a major oversight implicit in your question - the guitar consists, among other things, of the fancy lump of wood and the pickups. IMO, the fancy lump of wood is mostly just that, the pickups are the major component of the guitar's contribution to tone.
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:25 PM   #13
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Surely it's everything. Amp and technique are the biggest part for me.
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:00 PM   #14
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Understood Roc. When I start explaining technique in here you can slap me down again.

I've studied Blues guitar all my life and while I do pay a lot of attention to the gear top players are using, I am also keenly interested in their thoughts about guitar tone. Guys like SRV, Guthrie Govan, Satch, BB King, and Robben Ford are all pretty clear that gear matters, but hands and ears matter more. Perspective from some of the greatest blues players of our time is always relevant to a Blues guitar tone discussion don't you think? I am willing to bet the TS is interested enough.

Great Blues guitar tone comes from the soul and is transmitted through our hands with the tools of our trade. It's not about technique at all. It's about perspective. Once a player really understands that, then choose your weapon. Any guitar could be a great Blues guitar if you can find your tone in there. That tone in your soul is what matters most.

Peace.
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Guthrie on tone:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY

“Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It’s the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use.” - SRV

Last edited by Cajundaddy : 09-17-2014 at 05:06 PM.
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:13 PM   #15
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Which church should I attend to make sure that my soul has the best overdriven tones? I have noticed that a lot of churches have a high ceiling, does that correlate to my amp's headroom? Do I have to be a polytheist to get delay or reverb?

Maybe try posting on TGP, they love this mojo/spritual tone mumbo jumbo over there. Once more, though, since we're on UG:

Gear. Forum.
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:21 PM   #16
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I think I'm a lot better than I was 2 years ago. It's because I practiced and learnt how to phrase better not because of a spiritual entity within me.

Mood can inspire you to articulate your feelings through music, I agree with that completely. But if I didn't practice a lot, I wouldn't be able to do it to any degree at all.

Therefore, practice is the biggest factor for me to play what I hear in my head, not a soul. (I don't believe in a soul anyway.)
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:27 PM   #17
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Yes, definitely. Practice and approach make a huge difference in how you sound.

But look at one of the pointed questions -
Quote:
The current guitar amp combo that you have doesn't have the flavor you would like to match those blues licks you heard. (might sound a little too thin, light, twangy, bango-ee...airy...etc.
...
then upon looking around some more you see they have "blues amps"

This specifically asks about the guitar/amp combo. In answering the question, we can certainly mention technique, because it's important. But should we really ignore the actual question and focus entirely on a question that was not asked? The question wasn't about the biggest factor, it was about whether or not you need certain gear to sound a certain way. Talking about technique is useful but doesn't answer the question, directly or indirectly.
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:48 PM   #18
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Yea, I know. I was just answering his point.

But yea, OT: TS: What you need is a new amp.
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:56 PM   #19
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:58 PM   #20
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Tone for the soul!
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