Why is the Les Paul switch labelled 'Rhythm & Treble'?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by mikenixon316, Oct 31, 2008.

  1. mikenixon316

    mikenixon316 Member

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    Surely it should be either 'Bass & Treble' or 'Rhythm & Lead'.

    Was the whole idea when they first made it that the neck pickup was strictly for rhythm and the bridge for leads?

    Discuss...:banana
     
  2. guitarfish

    guitarfish Member

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    Yes. We're talking the 1950s after all.
    But us musicians never do things the conventional way do we?
     
  3. RvChevron

    RvChevron Member

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    I don';t know.

    Front and back, bass and treble, rhythm and lead, neck and bridge, sing and scream, thick and fat, woody and gnarly........angelic and demonic..:stir

    It's all good.
     
  4. RockStarNick

    RockStarNick Supporting Member

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    Why was the Whammy bar called a Tremolo bar when it actually performed vibrato on the strings?



    Well, I work in advertising... and from my experience, my guess was that it was some stupid ass ad-executive that thought of it...
     
  5. Bussman

    Bussman Member

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    I take the switch ring off precisely so I don't have to think about this deep and controversial dilemma.
     
  6. bazooka47

    bazooka47 Member

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    I think to know for sure how Gibson decided on those words you would probably have to ask Les Paul (probably not on forum) or Ted McCarty (no longer with us), but I would surmise that in the early 50's when the LP was first produced there was no such thing as "Lead" guitar, and "Bass" would have been a poor choice, as that word specifically describes a different instrument.
     
  7. Allthumbs56

    Allthumbs56 Member

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    Same guy at Fender that called tremolo "vibrato" on their amps ...
     
  8. BettyFjord

    BettyFjord Member

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    This sounds so sensible that I expect it's what actually happened.

    Exec 1: So, we've got two pickups and two sounds. What do we call them?
    Exec 2: Well, you've got a treble-ish one and a bass-ish one. Why not call them that? Treble and Bass.
    Exec 1: Yeah, that's just what I need. Some guy complaining to the dealer that his bass guitar doesn't work when it's in the 'Bass' position. No thanks.
    Exec 2: OK, ok. How about the parts they play in the orchestra? Rhythm and... err... something. Solo? Do guitarists have solos?
    Exec 1: How the hell would I know? What if we put it on there and everyone's upset because they never get a solo and can't use half of their guitar? Uh-uh.
    Exec 2: Fine. Let's split the difference: rhythm and treble. Everyone's a winner.
    Exec 1: Sweet. Time for lunch.
     
  9. Rosewood

    Rosewood Member

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    That's basically it, and probably for the same reason strats don't have a tone control on the bridge pickup, (older strats) it was the "lead" pickup.
     
  10. PFCG

    PFCG Supporting Member

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    why not just label them up and down? or no label at all?
     
  11. RichieRich

    RichieRich Senior Member

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    muddy and shrill
     
  12. Rosewood

    Rosewood Member

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    That's pretty close.:banana
     
  13. soldano16

    soldano16 Member

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    My fav is the light on my plexi marked "indicator".

    Now that's profound.
     
  14. Rock Johnson

    Rock Johnson Member

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    I always thought it was because ''red" and ''green" would've looked silly.

    Seriously, I always remove that stupid ring because it looks retarded.
     
  15. Alvis

    Alvis Supporting Member

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    Nah,Muddy was already taken

    [​IMG]
     
  16. RockStarNick

    RockStarNick Supporting Member

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    Hahahaha. Exactly!!!!
     
  17. guitarfish

    guitarfish Member

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    Well, the switch goes up & down, but the pups are right & left....:eek:
     
  18. bazooka47

    bazooka47 Member

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    By the way (and a little OT), the guy that designs and produces Girl Brand Guitars has some interesting and often amusing variations on the pickup selection labels. For those who haven't seen this, check them out:

    http://www.girlbrand.com/
     
  19. somedude

    somedude Member

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    Play one through a clean amp... it'll all make sense.
     
  20. morlll

    morlll Supporting Member

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    I liked forward and reverse. Or Holy and Unholy
     

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