Robert Fripp Tone...

Jumblefingers

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856
I grew up listening to the first 5 KC albums, Fripp & Eno No *****footing etc and know Fripp used Guild Foxey Lady (triangle big muff) on his board along with a wah and volume.

Which of the fuzz that are currently available (boutique / mass) comes closest to the original Big Muff / Foxey Lady tone...including the way the Tone control worked which is much different than most pedals.
 

Dajbro

Silver Supporting Member
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2,253
I don't have an answer for you, but I love that tone too.

David
 

Craise

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1,250
Funny that it's basically all digital these days!
Check out this thread with photos I took of Fripps solo tour 2006.
https://www.thegearpage.net/board/index.php?threads/134762
I played my friends Little Big Muff a few weeks ago...and was surprised at how good it sounded...
I'm sure most would say Skreddy's the muff man...
I myself use a BJF Candy Apple Fuzz for those tones...
Be sure to use a LP with Humbuckers too...(neck pickup, tone rolled down) ;)
 

re-animator

Senior Member
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8,240
I'm using a big muff and it works pretty damn good... just the stock unexciting NYC version.


He also used a Foxx Tone Machine from time to time.


For no *****footing era stuff, he started using significant amounts of reverb as well.... most of it can be had with virtually ANY big muff variant along with a volume pedal. Neck pickup is where its at.... but not as low on the tone control as you would think.
 

rah3

Member
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1,383
Henry Kaiser did a series of tests that was recently posted on TGP. The Dice Works Triangle Muff Fuzz with Cornish mode came the closest to the Big Muff/Foxey Lady tone as I remember.

-RAH3
 

KRosser

Member
Messages
14,673
Henry Kaiser did a series of tests that was recently posted on TGP. The Dice Works Triangle Muff Fuzz with Cornish mode came the closest to the Big Muff/Foxey Lady tone as I remember.

-RAH3

I was just gonna say - I bought the Dice Works based on that demo and it nails the 70's Big Muff 'thing' I grew up on....

That said, I use the Skreddy Screwdriver more, but it's a different beast...
 

kludge

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Those old Big Muffs are inconsistent, but some are real beasts. A few years back, a local shop had a beat-up vintage example in for $250! I thought that was silly, but I tried it... and darn near dropped $250 right there. It was AMAZING.
 

kludge

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Oh, I should add that if you're really after that Fripp/Eno tone, it's not just the fuzz. First, consider Fripp's astounding right-hand precision. Somewhere, I have a "Fripp pick", triangular, made of hard rubber, that I got at a League of Crafty Gentlemen show. They might be for sale somewhere still. That pick has a distinctive sound.

Also, keep in mind that the sounds were heavily processed in realtime by Eno, mostly through old Revox tape recorders. And I'm pretty sure Fripp was playing direct rather than through an amp for that stuff. At some point long ago, Fripp talked about recording technique in Guitar Player. He said he just used a Les Paul into pretty much any fuzz and any amp, and it always sounded like him. And when he uses Digitech rackmount preamps, it ALSO sounds like him. It's in the hands and the head and the heart, not the gear!

And finally, much of Fripp's tone comes from his brilliant use of feedback. It almost never sounds like "feedback"... he's really good at keeping it on the fundamental, rather than letting it drift to a harmonic.
 

Jumblefingers

Member
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856
I believe his early board went Wah->Guild Foxy Lady->Volume Pedal and that was it. The processing on No *****footing by Eno was nothing more than (!) his use of the two Revox A77 with the feedback loop. I remember distinctly that this was the first time Fripp came over to Eno's apt, plugged in and the outcome was this track.

The record company did not want to put it out as they thought something recorded so cheaply could not be "worthy". Thus, they then went into the studio to record Swastika Girls with the backgound EMS Synthi glitter sequence from Eno and Fripps overdubs. it still came out on Island's HELP 16 low cost label. Recall the first time I heard it...was blown away. Fripp called it some of the best playing he had ever done. Remember all the press/interviews back then as I was an Eno junky.

I also agree that with the neck pickup, a really good fuzz and a wah you can get very close. I recently hooked up my Wison Wah into the Sun Face with High Gain NKT's and a Strat on the neck PU and I was VERY close. It is pretty much a square wave with 50% duty cycle. However, the Foxey Lady / Triangle Big Muff DID have a unique sound and he used the Tone control to chnage the...tone. Not 100% sure if the Wah was before the fuzz or after. Saw Fripp do the original Frippertronics shows at some loft down in Soho NYC in 76 I think. The old days for sure...
 

re-animator

Senior Member
Messages
8,240
Oh, I should add that if you're really after that Fripp/Eno tone, it's not just the fuzz. First, consider Fripp's astounding right-hand precision. Somewhere, I have a "Fripp pick", triangular, made of hard rubber, that I got at a League of Crafty Gentlemen show. They might be for sale somewhere still. That pick has a distinctive sound.

Also, keep in mind that the sounds were heavily processed in realtime by Eno, mostly through old Revox tape recorders. And I'm pretty sure Fripp was playing direct rather than through an amp for that stuff. At some point long ago, Fripp talked about recording technique in Guitar Player. He said he just used a Les Paul into pretty much any fuzz and any amp, and it always sounded like him. And when he uses Digitech rackmount preamps, it ALSO sounds like him. It's in the hands and the head and the heart, not the gear!

And finally, much of Fripp's tone comes from his brilliant use of feedback. It almost never sounds like "feedback"... he's really good at keeping it on the fundamental, rather than letting it drift to a harmonic.

yep, fripp's "cross-picking" technique is a huge impact on his tone. I find it useful in my overall guitar playing now.... even acoustics.


Fripp's playing isn't a tone or a style, its whole outlook at music, and i think becoming well-versed in it makes you a much better-rounded musician.

Nowadays he uses Roland preamps (gp-100 and GT-pro mostly), and TC Delays.


When he went on the fripp and eno tours, he sometimes switched from the tape racks to the EHX 16 second-delay. He said its not quite the same as the tape towers.

As for his recordings I think he said he tried Princetons, Marshalls and eventually stuck with Hiwatts because the marshalls always broke down. He said any half-decent tube amp would do though. He also said he would have liked to use a JC120, but they are atrocious for sustain.


as for his feedback, i agree its very unique. I think a lot of it comes from his volume and wah technique.
 

ethan walker

Member
Messages
216
I always wondered what Fripp used on Eno's "Baby's on fire", that is one ripping tone! Sounds like a Marshall being tortured and about to blow up, but in a good way!

Ethan
 

fieldsroyal

Member
Messages
2,146
I can replicate Fripp's tone on my old Ibanez "Overdrive" - despite the name it's really a Muff sounding pedal - from 1978 i believe. Worth keeping an eye out for one - when I bought it and plugged it in I immediately thought David Bowie's "Heroes" sound.
 

bionic

Member
Messages
662
Look no further the MJM Foxey Fuzz which is spot on take of the Guild Foxey Lady. There used to be a pedal called "Fripp in a Box". Whatever happened to that.
Fripp played on "Here Come the Warm Jets" Would make sense as that solo definitely sounds like Fripp
 




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