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It's All About Me...The Amp Matters

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by LSchefman, Oct 10, 2005.

  1. LSchefman

    LSchefman Member

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    Someone always says it's the player not the gear in threads here, and maybe that's true for them, but it's all about me and my ears when I play on my own projects. I gotta be inspired by the sound.

    Over the past week I composed and recorded a few ad things. Since I had sold off my Onyx Sig in what I can only refer to as a painful tradeoff of gear for career, I had to play a buddy's Mesa Blue Angel with a friggin' PEDAL to get in the ballpark of what I was trying to achieve.

    The Blue Angel is a nice amp I once owned and really liked. But compared to my old TR, the thing sounded like it was covered by a blanket, even through my own cab. I have a Keely pedal I got in a partial trade, so I threw that onto my pedalboard to see if I could create some usable tone (I even hooked it up ;)). Pffft! Sounded like a solid state pedal through an amp, exactly what Tag used to complain sounded crappy back when he had some tone taste and played a TR (just kidding, Tag ;)).

    Yeah, I got through the session fine, and no, the clients couldn't care less what amp I used. But I wasn't inspired, and I didn't play as well as I would have liked.

    Bottom line for **me** (YMMV): The amp really matters, a LOT. For both sound and inspiration.

    (I'm in saving up for new amp mode)







    :D
     
  2. VaughnC

    VaughnC Supporting Member

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    Yup, I can definitly relate to what you are saying. Due to some unexpected tough economic times I was forced to sell my favorite amp a couple different times. And, even though I'm just a weekend warrior, I felt like I was just going through the motions at my gigs with my substitute amp....and I felt VERY uninspired. And it just wasen't the tone of my old amp that I missed....its how it felt and breathed with my input. Here's hoping for better economic times ahead now that I have my favorite amp back....again ;) .
     
  3. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    I agree......an amp with good tone & feel inspires me to play at a higher level.
     
  4. Ogre

    Ogre Member

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    Agreed. I was playing some Custom Shop Teles through a 65 London today, and that left channel is hotrodded Marshall heaven.
     
  5. LSchefman

    LSchefman Member

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    I'm glad you guys understand where I'm coming from!
     
  6. TaronKeim

    TaronKeim Member

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    I COMPLETELY AGREE!!!

    I was stuck playing a solid state Fender Princeton 65 while I was doing some trouble shooting on my Germino... the Princeton is by far the worse amp I have ever owned, or played... even the little 10 watt Nevada piece of garbage that came with my first guitar could cop a good blues lead tone with a fuzz pedal pushing the front-end, not the Princeton though, useless bright, brittle clean, and the noisiest most unrefined distortion channel I've ever played... I couldn't even do solo's because the amp gave so little in the way of dynamics, I just would start then stop because what I was putting into the amp just wasn't coming back to me.

    Now that my Germino is fixed though, thats all over... I LOVE THIS AMP more than anything else I've owned, I've had better amps for clean tones... but all-round tone and for my personal taste in a DRIVE tone... nothing beats the Germino LoVo Lead 55 for me, it gives me back exactly what I put into it, I love beaing able to squeeze every last ounce of tone you play out of a note.

    -TJK
     
  7. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    I have said this before, it isn't the player or the gear.

    It is the sum, the entire "system": the player combined with the rig that "fits" them.

    And what it leads to is indeed inspired playing. Anyone, assuming some ability here!, can sound good through decent equipment and even lots of cheap equipment. But hand that same player equipment that has that "spark" or "fit" for their taste and style and BOOM. Magic.

    All anyone who posts here is doing, really, is either seeking that moment of balance when it all clicks or telling others about that moment when it all clicked.

    And some, like Les, post about both.
     
  8. Lerxst2112

    Lerxst2112 Member

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    ...and then there's me. I can get some pretty killer tones, I just suck! :)
     
  9. raz

    raz Member

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    I suck, and my tone probably sucks too, but the gear looks good onstage.
     
  10. AdamGian

    AdamGian Member

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    A bad player won't know the difference between a good amp and a bad amp.

    A good player can make bad sounding amp sound good.

    A great player can only be himself through the amp of his choosing.
     
  11. shallbe

    shallbe Deputy Plankspanker Gold Supporting Member

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    I don't agree with the last one at all. I've heard many players through a rented backline (not their normal gear) be awe inspiring. There are a few player's abilities that just trancend the gear. I can't say I'm one of them.

    Lastly, you left out:

    A bad player can make a great amp sound bad, even when playing open strings. :)
     
  12. markp

    markp Member

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    I am in the Les camp on this one.
    Differant amps make me play differant.
    My Flexi I get all touchy feally and play with more dynamics and try to achive difif. tones with my pick hand.

    Then I plug in my Avenger and just shread my face off.

    I am 2 dif. players with those 2 amps.
     
  13. Mondoslug

    Mondoslug Supporting Member

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    ditto. Ultimately you should be able to plug into anything & be able to do the gig, maybe not how you intended but at least be able to pull it off. Sh*t happens, airlines trash/ lose pedalboards, amps break, backline gear company has bjork for gear, etc etc.
     
  14. Roccaforte Amps

    Roccaforte Amps Member

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    Come on guys, everyone knows its the chicks.
    Who really cares about tone anyways?:D :D :D
     
  15. Scumback Speakers

    Scumback Speakers Gold Supporting Member

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    Hey, if the tone ain't there, the playing won't be either. It ain't just the amp, that's for sure, but I guarantee you I can play a so-so guitar through a killer amp and get by. It doesn't work in the reverse, though.

    Without decent amp tone, I'm not only uninspired, I'm not likely to be plugged in at all.
     
  16. sabbath90

    sabbath90 Member

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    i agree big time. my first experience with this was when my first band was on tour. 5 kids between 19 and 21 in a van for 6 weeks haha...but anyway. we get to the club and my 2203 (which i worked forever to buy and still have) blows it's power tubes due to the crappy wiring. we had spent all of our money on food and gas rather than important stuff like tubes and strings, so i had to borrow some really really terrible solid state half stack from the opening band. it was probably the worst show i've ever played in my life. it was like the amp was fighting me. no sustain, no dynamics, NOTHING. the worst part was that it was at the starwood (i'm dating myself here). we had to pretty much beg just to go on 2nd and we sounded god awful (well i did anyway), and it turned out that there were several a&r guys in attendance. not to sound like we had a shot at some big deal, but my playing sure didn't help anything.

    yep, good amps are fun.
     
  17. BobbyRay

    BobbyRay Supporting Member

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    I agree.

    I also agree with Scott Peterson on the "fit" thing.

    I've had good friends who see me play often, comment that they preferred my "tone " with amp "a", but that I play more inspired through amp "b". Mainly because it fits me as a player better.
     
  18. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    a big +1 here. I couldn't agree more. I can make anything work if I'm forced to. But like Jim said, if it doesn't sound and feel right I'm likely not to plug in at all. I'll just grab an acoustic instead.
     
  19. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

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    Me, too.

    Just to be clear, what fits for me is not necessarily the most expensive stuff I've owned. Sure, my #1 amp is the second most expensive amp I've owned but my other two keepers aren't even in the top five. Heck, between the two of 'em, they just make the top five. My "magic" cab set me back all of $120, loaded with Celestions.

    Finding the right gear is joy. Finding it costs less that a lot of other stuff you've owned is bliss. :D
     
  20. TNJ

    TNJ Gold Supporting Member

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    In the context of playing in a band, the right rig is crucial to pull out my best (inspired) stuff.
    It's just as crucial for me to hear myself fully (in the onstage mix) for my playing to be 'on'. The more detail I hear, the more I can play with touch and make use of dynamics.
    S.
    j
     

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