1. The Rules have been updated regarding posting as a business on TGP. Thread with details here: Thread Here
    Dismiss Notice

Cover band amp: Swiss Army Knife or Machete?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by geoangus, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. geoangus

    geoangus Member

    Mar 22, 2007
    Connecticut shore
    Wow - very similar story here. Similar set list. Tired of chasing with my Axe-Fx XL, thinking about the TC-50, but now the new DSL 40. Leaning towards the FX8 as well.
  2. Jaji

    Jaji Member

    Feb 7, 2018
    SW Michigan
    Once upon a time I was in a cover band where I felt like I had to match tones. Granted, I was mistaken, but I chose to go the modelling route. After a couple years of that, I went back to tube amps and did what many have said here already - clean, light crunch (or edge of breakup), and hot-rodded overdrive. I was using an Electra Dyne, but am now on a TC50. I also have a Mark V, but don't really want to use that as much as I do the TC50. Being able to use 6V6, EL34, or 6L6 in that amp is fantastic. I ran with 6V6 for quite a while and am back to the stock EL34s. Amazing amp!
    djw likes this.
  3. honeyiscool

    honeyiscool Member

    Dec 26, 2012
    San Diego
    If I’m playing covers (and I do play my fair share of them), then I do whatever. If I’m in a tribute act playing nice venues, I’d try to match tone. I did play two sets in a Blondie night but that was a one off thing in a dive bar.
  4. boldaslove1977

    boldaslove1977 Silver Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2007
    my approach for a wide-ranging cover band was aways to put a few OD pedals into a bassman and go from there. was always very happy with that.

    i recently got a friedman smallbox 50. 2 channels, with an effects loop. i love the amp. sounds insanely good. i've only done a few gigs with it. but it's a totally different animal, especially because the "clean" channel sounds best when it's not exactly clean. and now i start feeling like i need different OD pedals, at different stages, for each channel. that solo boost for channel 1, doesn't sound nearly as good with channel 2, etc.

    so the pedals into a clean amp approach is definitely a lot simpler.
  5. gixxerrock

    gixxerrock Member

    Apr 25, 2005
    Parksville, B.C.
    For a rock gig, I really like a higher gain channel switcher (Rivera or Mesa). For a country or roots gig, nice single channel amp and use a pedal for gain.
  6. FbIsNotE

    FbIsNotE Member

    Apr 28, 2017
    Think of the TC50 as 3 Machetes in a Swiss Army Knife housing.
    Jaji likes this.
  7. ferrinbonn

    ferrinbonn Member

    Feb 27, 2017
    I have a Friedman Runt 50 head and a 1x12 Avatar cab with V30. Between the drive channel and a handful of pedals for the clean channel, it covers all of the bases for me.
    1. Friedman drive channel with gain about 3:00 for most classic rock to hard rock. Roll back the guitar volume to clean it up a bit, boost with my Prince of Tone for leads.
    2. The clean channel is a blackface style circuit that sounds great on it's own.
    3. Caline Pure Sky on the clean channel (Timmy style pedal) for low gain edge of breakup.
    4. Honey Bee OD on the clean channel for a Vox style vibe. Really bright and chimey and cuts like crazy.
    5. Big Muff Nano cause nothing else really sounds like a Muff.
    Those really cover all of the bases for most things rock. It's not going to be a direct sound-alike without a bunch of knob tweaking, but it's close enough for nearly everything. The only thing I don't have is a Recto or 5150 style for metal stuff, but that's not really my thing.

    RUSHFANnLV Member

    Dec 5, 2003
    Las Vegas
    I say this: many cover bands where I live. I'll compare two. One works very hard and succeeds at getting the exact tones and playing the parts correctly. Place is packed every night. The other doesn't work as hard and sounds nothing like what they are covering. The guitar and bass player use the same tone throughout the entire show. They're playing is 70% to the song covered. Place is packed every night.

    My point, 98% of your audience doesn't care. It's the same reason Angus could go out with four other replacements and sell out stadiums.

    That said, we care and that is imortant. That's why we are here discussing this topic. Do what makes you feel good about yourself but know, two people tops in the audience will notice.
    FbIsNotE and djw like this.
  9. CaliCaveMan

    CaliCaveMan Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2016
    Northern Ca
    Mesa TC50 is the ticket for me. Covers everything in my cover band. Funk, rock, hard rock, blues, etc....
  10. Hamer95USA

    Hamer95USA Member

    May 27, 2005

    I use the 1992 blue vinyl Marshall 6101 combo amp and a Korg DL8000R delay (not the Rocktron Replifex in the picture) as one of my cover band guitar rigs.

    The Stiff 90-AD 50 watt amp head, Marshall 1912 1x12 closed back cab (dry), and Marshall 1936 2x12 closed back cab ( wet left/right, Celestion Vintage 30 speakers) is what I use in my '80s tribute band. You can see the Korg DL8000R and Mosvalve 982 single space power amp slightly behind the amp head. It's my favorite sounding guitar rig, but I can't always bring this amp rig due to the size of the venues and the amount of stage space available since our band is a 7 piece group.


    The Reverend Kingsnake 20/60 1x12 combo amp with the Jensen Neo 12-100 speaker is a recent addition to my amp rig and is my main amp in my current Top 40 band where I don't play as much rock/blues guitar and more clean rhythm guitar. I'm using an MI Audio Crunch Box programmed into the loop of my Zoom G9.2tt floor processor presets.

    I use a Zoom G9.2tt floor processor for effects for all of the amps before the amp's input and as a MIDI controller to change effects & amp channels. I plan on upgrading to the Fractal Audio FX-8 for my effects and MIDI control.

    Guitar George
  11. Kingpin2

    Kingpin2 Member

    Dec 20, 2017
    Same - through my Fender HRD. Our band does try to get fairly close to the original tones and effects, and I found myself needing an octave pedal for one song, a harmonist for another, so sold of some single use stuff and bought the MS3. Works for me.
    sugarlou likes this.
  12. Pastafarian

    Pastafarian Member

    Jan 3, 2017
    So. NH
    I have been gigging a Katana head now for over a year and it's perfect for the cover bands I am in. I can get in the ballpark of many different tones with it and it IS a Marshall flavored amp for sure. 8 channels on there to get you there. I am personally trying to go all direct lately to save setup time, SUV space and my back but the Katana is a tremendous amp especially for doing covers. I can get anything from lush Pink Floyd tones to over the top early Van Halen with flange or phase to 60's and 70's edge of breakup JTM45 stuff and much more. Different delays etc etc.

    Tough to get Fender cleans out of it but the cleans are usable just not Fender like.
    sugarlou likes this.

Share This Page