Jimi's secret Strat wiring?

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by msteeln, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. msteeln

    msteeln Member

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    http://www.furious.com/perfect/randyholden2.html

    ''Jimi's road technician came up with the idea of placing a resistor in Jimi]s guitars, in line between the pickups and the volume control that reduced the output, reducing the overdrive of the guitar, allowing the individual notes to come through, letting the overdriven amp produce the sustain. It made perfect sense. I never considered anything like that. But I plugged it in, and incredible, there was Jimi's exact sound, and everything he played was suddenly so easy to play it was magical, and effortless. It was totally beautiful. I was really taken aback by that. More yet, that particular sound made playing the guitar so easy, and effortless, with no struggle. It permitted playing anything I could imagine, as quickly as imagined. It was the dream sound. It was beautiful, and fun/enjoyable to use. There is nothing more enjoyable to a musician than a sound that allows them to play with ease anything they can imagine. Jimi had that sound.
    The really amazing part to me was how on earth it was arrived at. I was told by the guy who knew him, who brought me that guitar, that it was an experiment done by tech guy who handled Jimi's equipment. I've always been curious at what point in time the idea became reality, since the sound is on Hendrix's first as well as future albums, and what thinking and circumstances led to it. From the explanation given to me, it took all of two minutes to cut the wire, and soder a resister in line. It was a really inventive piece of thinking, and solution. Like most things of that nature it was an experiment, but an experiment that worked. At first I thought my leg was being pulled. Until I plugged it in, and I never had a Strat either before or after that produced that sound. It was only that Strat of Hendrix given to me to mess around with, that had that sound. It was really amazing. I never was given the exact information of where the resistor was placed, or what load the resistor itself was. For that matter I can't remember if it was a resistor or a condenser, only that it was one of those items, and the explanation to me of why it was done.
    I know for a fact that had I been able to keep his guitar I would have wreaked literal havoc on the rock guitar scene with it in conjunction with my Sunns. That would have been seriously damaging. I also know that had Jimi been able to get hold of my Sunns, and use his guitar through them, he would have cleaned my clock before I had the chance, and I would have stood to be accused of mimicking him.
    Whatever that whole scene was about, the one thing I can say with direct certainty is my entire style of playing would have changed had I had that guitar, or mine wired like that one. It was completely different sound than what I had, even though what I had was completely different. That guitar was more musical - it bled music. Those are few and far between. There have been only two or three occasions in my life I picked up a guitar that just made music that wouldn't stop, and that was one of them.
    But Jimi's Strat really had an incredible sound. The Strat I had, I hand picked direct from the Fender plant, and it was a good one as they go. I wasn't real interested in any risky experimenting with that one, since I couldn't replace it that easy if anything went wrong, if I did any wiring experiment not knowing exactly what I was doing, nor knowing anyone else who would know enough to understand it. Basically I forgot about it and kept doing what I was already into.
    That guitar sure was a pretty singing bird though. Its secret passed into history with it's inventors. At the time it was in my hands, I really wanted to put it through the paces with my whole Sunn setup. It would have been a completely different sound than I was getting, but also would have been very different from Hendrix because of the amps. I really wanted to trot with that thing.''
    thanx to Randy Holden
     
  2. Billy Moss

    Billy Moss Member

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    When did Jimi start doing this?
     
  3. stratovarius

    stratovarius Supporting Member

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    From what I have read, Jimi would go through Strats like paper cups using them a few times before giving them away.
     
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  4. wildschwein

    wildschwein Member

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    Bill Lawrence scheme:
    [​IMG]
     
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  5. 27sauce

    27sauce Supporting Member

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    Sometimes. He had favorites, though, that he used for long stretches. Relatively speaking.
     
  6. Pedal Dan

    Pedal Dan The Island of Misfit Pedals Gold Supporting Member

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    I thought he just pulled them off the wall at Manny’s...

    An then, well, he was Hendrix.
     
  7. HugoTheCat

    HugoTheCat Member

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    Was the interviewee freebasing speed?
     
  8. Balls

    Balls Member

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    Off topic, but who is that in your avatar? She is just stunning.
     
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  9. joelster

    joelster Silver Supporting Member

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  10. Pedal Dan

    Pedal Dan The Island of Misfit Pedals Gold Supporting Member

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  11. Balls

    Balls Member

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  12. Papanate

    Papanate Gold Supporting Member

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    Uh Huh....so it was a resistor that made Hendrix great. I see....so a simple
    resistor that dropped the pickup output 1/4 Ohm was the Hendrix Secret.
    Okay....
     
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  13. Pedal Dan

    Pedal Dan The Island of Misfit Pedals Gold Supporting Member

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    I only “discovered” her in July.

    I was shocked how deep her album is, since she penned most of the material.

    She doesn’t sound like any of the other “pop stars”.
     
  14. msteeln

    msteeln Member

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    uh, nobody is saying that, it's less genuine than derailing this thread with what PMs are for.
     
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  15. Pedal Dan

    Pedal Dan The Island of Misfit Pedals Gold Supporting Member

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    Sorry... Dua’s guitar player has a Strat.

    But I didn’t hear any resistors. ;)

    Btw... I picked up one of those tribute Strat’s that Fender sold in ‘97, it’s a lefty flipped and restrung with a mirror image decal.

    Maybe I should pull the pick guard and look for the mod..,
     
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  16. Angeln

    Angeln Member

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    OP - thanks for the link. I had never heard of Randy Holden before this. Judging from the interview, he was a firm believer in Magic Gear: secret Sunn amp circuits, mysterious silver stompboxes, and Jimi's Enigma Condenser / Resistor. But he couldn't get the tone he wanted from an SG into Marshalls. Interesting career. After a stint with Blue Cheer he formed a heavy metal duo with a keyboardist-drummer; I wonder how that worked.
     
  17. Pedal Dan

    Pedal Dan The Island of Misfit Pedals Gold Supporting Member

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    Roger Mayer was crucial to Jimi’s tone.

    He built him the first Octavia, and modded his Fuzz Faces.

    Not sure if he worked on the Marshalls.
     
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  18. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

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    That drawing, if I'm not mistaken, shows a treble bleed circuit on the volume control. Was a treble bleed circuit Jimi's wiring secret?
     
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  19. Pedal Dan

    Pedal Dan The Island of Misfit Pedals Gold Supporting Member

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    I’ve watched film of Jimi over and over... like a lot of others.

    He favored the neck pickup, for it’s bassier response, and tone control in the circuit.

    A stock mid to late 60’s Strat would have had a 3-way, and no tone on the bridge PU.
     
  20. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

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    I don't know about that....I'm just talking about Bill Lawrence's Hendris Strat wiring diagram....in addition to the treble bleed circuit there's also a blend pot....
     
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