Posts Tagged ‘Hartman’

Been living life outside the internet for a bit. It does exist, which is really crazy. However, that also means that the tonal and not-so-tonal thoughts and ideas constantly spinning around in my head, have not been spewed for a while. Life is music, and music needs to be shared. Especially the tone part. Mmm…tone.

Been thinking about effecting a reverb’d octave sound post-amp, with a mic into some ambient pedals and then into another amp. Oh ya, with a fuzz. That wouldn’t be overkill at all.
Has Coldplay called yet? I really want to run three amps again. But I can’t do that until they call, as they would provide the funding, as well as the authority to not have the sound tech and worship leader look at me like I am the primadonna that I probably am.
I would like a new pedal. Doesn’t matter what. Just new, and unfortunately, I’m really liking my guitars and amps right now. But a new amp could be cool, too. And a guitar. Mmmmm.
Let your female vocalists lead. They are usually incredibly talented.
Some weeks direct boxes need to be on ground, and some weeks they need to be on lift. What the difference between weeks is, I have no idea. I just know those are the magic buzz-killing switches.
I think we are the only church in the US not doing Transiberian Orchestra this Christmas Eve. Nothing wrong with Transiberian Orchestra…except for maybe some amp modeling. ;) Just stating a fact. hehe
Taylor’s have the best pickup systems on their current models that I have yet heard. Just mic’ing the guitar…no adding. I’ve yet to find that anywhere else. Even high end stuff like Collings. With enormous thanks to Sal Hamby, for letting me borrow his 710. It is a beautiful axe, my friend. Can you call acoustics axes?
I need a new pedal that no one else has. The Hartman was that for awhile, but then everyone bought one. Stupid everyone.
Mmmm…fuzz. Pedals, not just fuzz in general.
I really like Christmas music. My wife says almost in a frightening way. But I live my life by believing that ‘frightening’ and ‘awesome’ are perpetually interchangeable.
The Catalinbread WIIO controversy has been fun. Stupid people, buying and selling gear. Unthinkable! ;)
Definitely talked with Neal McDonough at The Grove in LA this week. He was wearing the coolest 1700’s vest and indie slacks I have ever seen. And I wanted them. For those of you who don’t know, he’s this guy:

    See that bleach blonde hair towards the center right background of the photo? Yep, that’s him. I would never survive as a paparazzi. But see, then whenever we actually go up and meet these people, they’re so nice that it just feels lame to ask for a photo with them. He even shook our hands and asked for our names. Really cool guy. I told him that I too, was famous, and had upwards of 25 people subscribed to my youtube demos. He didn’t seem to care. No, that didn’t happen. But if it did, he wouldn’t have. Oh ya. And the guy on the left is not famous, even though he’s the only one I actually succeeded in getting a clear photo of.)

    Okay, here’s what he’s from:

    The guy flying with Tom Cruise there. He’s also acted with Al Pacino in 88 Minutes, which makes him insta-cool. And Cruel Doubt, Band of Brothers…oh, and those of you ’90’s children like me might remember him as Wit Bass, the crazy pitcher on Angels in the Outfield. Oh ya. So, what does any of this have to do with music? If I was wearing what Neal McDonough was wearing when we met him, I would have killer tone.

    Heard pirates singing an Irish folk tune in four part harmony. Life doesn’t get much better than that.
    Change your strings. No seriously.
    So nice to have bassists who hit the chord inversions when you forget to.
    Just found out The Editors have a new album. Best ever. And their singer looks like he’s fighting with his own face when he performs, which is an added bonus.
    I hugged my Matchless. That one’s true.
    Pickup height is the hugest difference ever.
    Taylor Swift’s ‘Silent Night’? Whoa. Talk about worshipful. Those are some killer lyrics, that I’d not noticed in years during the traditional version. Plus, they add the ‘With or Without You’ chords at the end, which is never a bad thing. (Hopefully not, because that progression is in about 83% of songs in history…even Pachelbel in the 1600’s. But U2 still invented it. Some would say that doesn’t make sense. And they would be correct. U2 defies logic.) And I’m choosing to believe that liking Taylor Swift is not akin to rocking, ‘So I put my hands up, they’re playing my song…moving my hips like ya ya ya…’ Oh. Disturbing. Billy Ray, what are you thinking? And yes…now my google search bar has ‘Miley Cyrus lyrics’ in the history. Blast. But Taylor Swift is okay, right? Right? Hope so. ‘Cause now this is happening:

      Just ignore the static glam shot. But the song…whoa. Gets me every time. And tone is wonderful. Sure, of the steel guitar in the song; but also, just in general.



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    Fuzz is one of those effects that a lot of guitarists kind of overlook. I was the same way…used to feel like it was kind of outdated, and that I would only use it for those rare times when I needed a retro, Hendrix-y vibe. And then I started looking into some great tones I was hearing from different bands…Coldplay, Death Cab, Elliot Goldenthal, U2, The Listening, Chris Tomlin; and I kept finding that it was fuzz pedals behind some of the best sounds.

    So I did a little research, and a little playing. And I just started to fall in love with fuzz pedals. (Ya, I know, that’s probably not a surprise. I’ve fallen in love with pretty much every effect I’ve ever heard……except for flange! Yikes, I can never get into that effect! Go listen to U2’s ‘Numb’. The flange just kills that song. Wow! This is a first in my posting life! Talking bad about a U2 song! Get ready, folks, the world just might be coming to an end right now.) More specifically, the germanium transistor ones. There are also silicon transistors, which tend to be a little more straight up and down, and dryer. And they sound great, too. The germanium ones just really seemed to fit me.

    Now, fuzz can be really daunting, because it reacts to everything. That’s fair warning, because you have to find the one that reacts right to your rig, and you’ll think you’ve found it, and then you haven’t. I know that sounds odd, but that’s just how they work. It has to be first in your effects chain, it doesn’t like certain effects, it reacts to how loud your amp is, it’s picky about what overdrives you stack with it, and it’ll give you different harmonics for different stacked notes and for different octaves. Really interesting pedal, but really, really fun. And you just can’t substitute the fullness and sustain that those crazy harmonics give you. Granted, most of the time you will still want to use an overdrive pedal, but for some of the most killer tones, it’s really nice to have a fuzz every once in a while.

    So I made a few videos of using fuzz in modern music, and you’ll notice that most of the chords I play over are worship-style chords. The fuzz used is a germanium transistor Hartman fuzz. And my apologies in advance for youtube’s video compression, which takes away some clarity when I have a couple loops going.

    Video 1. This one runs through the obvious, upfront and aggressive fuzz tones. It also goes into how to use fuzz in conjunction with some modulation pedals to use the fullness of fuzz to just fill up the mix in the background. And lastly, it will hit some swells. Swells with fuzz are really, really cool because of the harmonics and sustain.

    Video 2. This will pick up with the swell tones, and do a couple more synthy-type things, and then go into using fuzz a little more aggressively, but without going into vintage or blues sounds. More so getting out of what we think fuzz is, and into looking at it as a full, harmonic, and unpredictable effect that can offer a really cool tonal palette that will really drive the parts you want to take to the next level. (Oh, ya, and there’s an unplanned tuner plug in there somewhere.)

    Video 3. And this one ends by doing some more driving stuff, and also noting how the fuzz can offer some vintage blues tones by rolling off on the guitar’s volume knob.

    So hopefully those give a little flavor of what fuzz can do to modern music (hehe in a good way), and more specifically, how it can really drive those parts of worship songs that need bringing up, and can really sit in the background without drawing attention to your guitar. Both of those techniques can really, really help in worship music.

    And just for fun, here’s the one U2 song I can’t stand. What were they thinking.

    But of course, because I have such large big boy crushes on them, or maybe just one huge collective big boy crush on the band in general (whichever one you want), I can’t end a post with a horrid song by them. So here’s the song that first got me thinking ‘what in the world is he using for that sound’ and then finding out it was a fuzz. Well, a fuzz, a vintage guitar, great amps, and a bit of talent. But, you know. And oddly enough, this is from the same concert as the above song. This is one of my all-time favorite songs by them. Just emotionally compelling…forever. Just like fuzz. I like fuzz. Fuzz. Fuzz and U2. U2 and fuzz. Doesn’t get much better than that. Here it is:


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    The Present Players…waiting on two more:

    FuzzWeigh-insmall-1.jpg picture by rypdal95

    Not really a shootout yet; more of just a weigh-in. Or you know, like in movies how before the shootout scene, the two groups always have to meet a couple times first. Tough talk each other a bit, say things like ‘I’m your huckleberry’, show their guns to each other, and then inexplicably walk away without resolving anything. Usually the ‘level-headed’ one says something like, ‘They’re not worth it’ (seriously, if I here that one more time in a movie), or something much more convincing like, ‘Come on, let’s go’ (that one too), or just the move where the best friend goes up to the main character and kind of buries his shoulder into the guy’s chest and lays his head on his shoulder, pushing him backwards with his hands kind of on the hero’s hips. Ya, it’s awkward. But count the number of times you see it in a movie.

    So anyway, it’s just a weigh-in; and I didn’t film it yet…I want to wait until all the fuzzes are in. The Lovepedal Karl is finished next week, and the BJFE Candy Apple Fuzz won’t be in until probably mid-November. So since these four were in, I just couldn’t wait…I had to do a little mini-shootout.

    From right to left in the above picture is a Monsterpiece Three Headed Fuzz (3 pedals in one–NPN silicon, AD2000 silicon, PNP germanium & silicon…homemade by a guy on the harmony central forums…killer pedals), Axis Research Fuzz Faze (germanium…handmade, made to order Canadian pedal), Hartman Vintage Germanium Fuzz (germanium, obviously…brand new boutique company getting a lot of props), and one of my first pedals, some homemade clone germanium Fuzz Face I got off of e-bay years ago that I have yet to find something that sounded better. So we’ll see after the shootout.

    And thus far, they all sound fantastic. And yes…I did turn them all on at once. It might have been the single, greatest thing I have ever done. Not the greatest thing I have ever heard, because it really didn’t sound all that great. But that’s beside the point. The point is that 6 fuzz pedals were just on at the same time. All feeding into each other. Stacked. I don’t know if I can be much clearer. At times such as those, sound is of no consequence. Only pedals.

    So the fuzz shootout is coming soon! We just gotta have a few more tough talk sessions, flashing of the guns, and awkward men hugging each other away from fights, and then we’re off. Video and all. Well, actually I just need my Lovepedal and BJFE to be finished being built. But it sounded cooler the other way.

    ValKilmerTombstone.jpg picture by rypdal95
    (Sorry. You just absolutely can’t talk about shootouts and ‘I’m your huckleberry’ without a picture of Val as Doc Holliday. Another big boy crush…and remember! ‘Big boy crush’ means you want to ‘be them’…rather than ‘be with them.’ Very important to point that out.)


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