Pedal To The Meadow
February 28, 2008
Well, it’s that time of year when I revamp my pedal board and go through my stuff and figure out what I want, and make time to try out the different varieties of pedals. Now, this is no easy task. For any given sound there are a minimum of 40 companies making a pedal for it. Lucky for me I work with a bunch of guitar pedal geeks who are quick to weed out poor-quality pedals and thus can steer you in the right direction more times than not. Still, there are some respected (and expensive!) pedals that the status quo swears by that I personally think are total WEAK SAUCE. I just don’t get it but other people love em and different strokes DO make the world go round.
First thing I looked at was my Boss Flanger.[BF-2] I was tempted to upgrade to Boss’ BF-3 but it has extra knobs and we are talking about a Flanger. Besides, Prince used this on Purple Rain and hundreds of other songs. And see, I use the Flanger as a subtle sweep effect. And if you back off it a lot it barely does anything AND STILL SOUNDS GREAT. it doesn’t take over but can add that little something you can’t get at home. The BF-2 stays in the picture.
Next up is a really good Fuzz/Octave pedal. I need to have great ‘Johnny Echols’ type Fuzz, like on the solo to Your Mind. Now THAT’S Fuzz. And i need the Fuzz/Octave combo to thicken some solos but also to make them more interesting, esp. with the Octave happening. I tried a Fulltone Octave pedal (Octafuzz) today but found it a bit dry. The Fulltone ULTIMATE OCTAVE FUZZ is supposed to be the sh*it but I was too lazy to look for an AC plug so that one will have to get a try tomorrow. So I need to find the right thing. Project still pending.
The Delay I’m currently using is a Digitech DIGIDELAY that I rather fancy. It’s very simple and sounds great. I should probably read the manual. it also has a Loop function, although i’m not sure what exactly i’d be looping. The Digidelay stays in the picture.
I used to use an Arion Stage Tuner until my buddy David Jenkins turned me on to the Boss TU-2 stage tuner. Folks, this is the only tuner you’ll ever need for the studio, home and the stage. The TU-2 stays in the picture.
Now, for overdrives I used to use the Hotcake. For all those Love and Baby Lemonade shows (from ’98 and on) I used the Hotcake. Before that I used an MXR Dist+, which is a kick ass pedal. Now, my pal, Phil, and myself have been working on our own Overdrive pedal for 6 months now. We are soooooooooooooooooo close to it being done and it sounds great, I’m glad to say. Hopefully we have it on the market by summer. it’s going to be called the HTO (Hussey Tonal Overdrive). And so i’ll either use that or a Fulltone OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Distortion). Project still Pending.
Next up, I’ll need a proper boost for clean signals and a bit of ‘hair’ on it for already overdriven signals. Thus, I need a Boost pedal that has a volume and gain, but can still remain clean and clear for simple clean boosting. Someone mentioned the MXR M133 but i’ll have to check with Dave Jenkins, as well as try out some boost pedals. Project still Pending.
Last but not least is the Phaser. I use Phasers as sort of a ‘rotary’ wet effect and i used them on every Baby Lemonade record just about. My favorite, hands down, is the MXR Phase 90. Some people prefer others but for me, that’s it. Jenkins has an extra one so maybe I’ll borrow his? Borrow this sucker.
So, that’s my pedal predicament.