Compressor pedal for Bill Frisell Like tone.

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by echo unit, Dec 10, 2005.


  1. echo unit

    echo unit Member

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    I am looking for a currently manufactured compressor pedal that will give the kind of compression tones that you hear on Bill Frisell's guitar on records like Ghost Town and The Willies.

    He originally used the TC elctronic Parametric EQ/Sustainer pedal for compression. Would the Barber tone bress, the Analog Man Bi-Comprossor, Keely Compressor or the BJF mint green get me closer to the Bill Frisell tone?

    Warm and round is what his guitar sounds like to me. I think you can hear the kind of squishyness of the compression in his tone but it's not in a way like a dynacomp that ruins all of the attack. I guess you can hear the compression and it's not invisible but it is not kiiling the guitar's transients in an awful way either.

    Thanks for any help with this very specific question.
     
  2. mischultz

    mischultz Member

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    I've been thinking about that myself, albeit not in a really focused way. I think the problem that you might run into with the Ross-derived circuits is that they tend a little toward the dark side, tonally. It may be that with a Tele, which he tends to favor live, you'd push enough high frequency content through. Or, the Blend knob on the Barber can be quite effective for regaining that front/top end of the sound.

    But I might also widen the net a little. An Orange Squeezer type like the Pedalworx McSqueeze or Analogman Juicer would be one route toward an "affected" comp sound that maintains the top end. Another option would be to go as neutral as possible - something like the Diamond Compressor or Menatone JAC - and let the instrument and amp do the tonal heavy lifting.

    FWIW, my favorites have been the Tone Press, McSqueeze and the Maxon CP101, with the McSqueeze sounding the most 'Strat-like' of the bunch (which is what I was after). And that may be the key: if you can find one that really matches *your* dynamics, it may end up getting you even closer to Bill's deal than something closer to his setup.

    Now if I had the first clue about how to get his ambient delay thing, I'd be gettin somewhere...

    Happy hunting.

    Michael
     
  3. Dajbro

    Dajbro Member

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    For what it's worth, Bill has not been using a compressor in his rig for many years now and the lack of one does not seem to have hurt his tone any.

    Having said that, I do like the Tone Press, and especially the blend feature, for getting that type of sound. With that, my RC Booster, and using the modulated delay on my Digitech Digidelay, I can get a close approximation of his sound when I want to.

    David
     
  4. KRosser

    KRosser Member

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    I'm selling a TC Sustain + in great condition if you're interested.....
     
  5. echo unit

    echo unit Member

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    Can you tell me a bit about the sound of your TC electronic EQ-sustainer?

    Does the compressor on the TC have an effected squish sound when you turn it up or does it allow the attach to come through more and behave in a more transparenet manner? More like a dynacomp or Ross or like a Barber?

    Thanks
     
  6. Dave Orban

    Dave Orban Gold Supporting Member

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    Do you happen to knnow what is current rig consists of?
     
  7. WahmBoomAh

    WahmBoomAh World Crass Guitarist Silver Supporting Member

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    I`ve been through a few myself...including the TC the Orange Squeeze,.the AL dyna=ross ....AND I don`t know why references to the Demeter Compulator are so few and far between ...to me it works great for the more studio quality...less squashy feel .
     
  8. HBob

    HBob Member

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    It's been several years since I saw him ( 8-10? ) and he was using a Boogie 1x12 ( MK series ) combo with the Boogie satelite 1x12, the weird Klein(?) guitar and for effects he had a TC Electronics Chorus pedal, a DOD FX-17 wah/volume pedal and a Rat. Some kind of Lexicon rack as well if I remember.
     
  9. Dajbro

    Dajbro Member

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    Here's a link to a list of some of the equipment he has used over the years:
    http://www.jazzguitar.be/guitar_rig_bill_frisell.html

    The most recent setup, effects-wise, that I am aware of is:

    Ibanez Tube Screamer (seems to have replaced the Rat);
    Line 6 DL4 for looping
    Boss DD-3 for a 400ms(ish) delay with 3-4 repeats that is on most of the time;
    DigiTech PDS 8000 Echo Plus for looping;
    Lexicon MPX 100 for reverb, harmonizer, and stereo outs.

    Cables are George L

    Regarding amps, he says that he likes them clean, but not too powerful, so that they can be pushed a bit. His favorites are Gibsons and Fenders from the '50's. He has a Mesa Boogie Subway Blues 1x10 and Blue Angel 2x10 that come close to that type of sound. On tour, he asks for Fender DRRI.

    David
     
  10. fatback

    fatback Member

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    I've had a t.c. Sustainer for years. As comps go, it's a super-squasher. Think Slow-Volume meets comp with noise gate and a band of parmetric eq for the mids. It's an effect compressor. It will change your tone and almost eliminate your attack. For what it is, I love it, but don't expect and all around, chicken pickin', od boosting comp. For fans it's pretty close to old ECM "Bill in a box";) Just crank up the reverb, add some ambient delays, and start Frizzing away...
     
  11. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    They are tricky to dial in and the effect alters a lot depending on the input level, but it's a sweet sound when you get it.

    A lot of Bill's earlier tone (Where In The World, This Land) had a lot to do with his Klein, I couldn't get that thick note attack on a clean bridge pup until I got a Klein, even with the TC.
     
  12. jayn

    jayn Member

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    I was on stage crew at a local folk fest this summer and helped him set-up. That day, his rig was a MIM thinline Tele RI with the poly neck finish removed and a nitro one applied, Digitech Digidelay, Line6 DL-4, rented DRRI. Now, he probably flew in for the gig and brought a small rig with easily replaceable components. Sometimes both effects were on, but not normally...
     
  13. rwe333

    rwe333 Supporting Member

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    Nothing really cops the TC's vibe. If you want that sound/feel, look at picking up the Sus/ParaEQ KRosser's selling...
    While I've never tried it, I think the Carl Martin compressor may have some similarities to the TC.
     
  14. WahmBoomAh

    WahmBoomAh World Crass Guitarist Silver Supporting Member

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    if someone else is interested after Krosser`s ...I have an extra one I`d sell too ....cosmetically it`s got typical paint chipping but does the job , I found an incredible use for it ....before a wah with distortion after the wah ..It pushes the para freq you dial in and creates synth like sustain morphing notes that feel like a synth ...and with the wah you don`t feel the squash of the note ...try it . it`s sick !
     
  15. echo unit

    echo unit Member

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    Which compressor will get me closer to Bill Frisell's tone when he has used a compressor pedal:

    1. The Analog Man Bi-compressor

    2. Barber Tone Press


    Thanks for all your help!
     
  16. Brett Valentine

    Brett Valentine Member

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    I get that Bill Frisell sound running a Barber Tone Press into a PedalworX McSqueeze on one board and a Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer into another McSqueeze on a second board. The Tone Press is set with volume and sustain at 3:00 and blend at 10:00 to give me a lot of sustain but retain some attack at around line level, and the internal presence control is set to full (the Boss is set up to get a similar sound). The McSqueezes are basically left at the factory settings (maybe a little less). The interaction of the two compressors together do a great job.

    The Analogman BiComp might give you a similar effect if a bit darker. I don't know how the noise floors between the Analogman and my setup compare (mine remains quiet).

    Brett
     
  17. echo unit

    echo unit Member

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    Right now I'm sort of torn between picking up the Analog Man Bi-Comprossor and the Barber Tone Press to get my guitar to sound like Bill Frisell's.

    Any other thoughts on making the right choice?
     
  18. Dajbro

    Dajbro Member

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    What is your guitar, amp, pedal set-up currently?

    David
     
  19. echo unit

    echo unit Member

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    I have Two Strats. One with Kinmans (Alder) and one with the awful Lace sensors (Ash) which will be changed as sson as I figure out how to get a Bill Frisell type of pickup sound out of it!

    I also have a Gibson ES 135 with P-90's and an SG with the 490's

    My Amps are VOX AC30cc and Fender Vibro King

    My Pedals are:

    EH Memory Man (thinking about seeling it and getting Memory Lane)

    Line 6 DL4 (ruins my tone and I am thinking about the Echo Park)

    EH 16 second delay reissue for creating loops


    Rack units are:

    Lexicon PCM81

    TC 2290

    Eventide Eclipse


    I hope this helps! I am wanting to add a compressor to get a Bill Frisell like tone.

    I am also looking for the right pickups to put into my Ash Strat to further get that kind of tone and was thinking about the Duncan Little '59's in the neck and bridge since Bill Frisell is listed on the website as using those. They seem to have a very round and warm tone like Frisell's when listening to the soound samples compared to the other strat replacement pickups.

    I know that Bill also uses a P-90 by Lollar in the bridge position but I am not sure that I can get a P9- tone out of strat without carving up the body to make more room for a real P-90.
     
  20. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    The Carl Martin is a nice comp, especially since it has a threshold control and the LED tells you how much it's compressing so it's cake to dial in but it won't really do the TC thing.
     

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