velvet underground (picture of amp question)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by e???, May 2, 2016.

  1. e???

    e??? Member

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    is that a brownface deluxe Lou is plugged into in the picture? If not, what is it? Can't tell, don't know, so thought I'd ask. Thanks!

     
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  2. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    Brown face Deluxe, yup .
     
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  3. lpdeluxe

    lpdeluxe Member

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    Sterling is plugged into a Silvertone 1484. He was a big fan of that model and suggested I buy one when it came up for sale in Austin. I knew him in graduate school there.
     
  4. bealtown

    bealtown Member

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    Nailing VU tones shouldn't be a challenge but somehow is. The scratchy rhythm on 'I Can't Stand It' is prettt tricky at first go. Any pointers from the experts?
    I have a Tele with Texas Sp. p'ups, a Brownface Bandmaster and a HoF mini for plate Reverb but can't just nail it yet. Maybe a hollow body Gretsch would do it but alas I am missing that implement from my arsenal.
     
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  5. Cado

    Cado Member

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    Before you break the bank on a new guitar try tuning down a full step (low E to D) etc.. and putting on flatwound strings if you haven't already.
     
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  6. bryan83

    bryan83 Member

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    Beautiful version of Ride into the Sun, I love some Lou Reed and VU. Can't even find this anywhere except youtube. Very cool.
     
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  7. bealtown

    bealtown Member

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    It occurred that Flatwounds were the vintage music Standard until Ernie Ball's shop in Hollywood started making waves in the later 60s. I can't nail Beatle tones without them and found that 12 string electrics strung with rounds always sound horrid. I've switched to Pyramid Gold 12s and 11s on various of my axes (including Dano hollow 12) and may try them on my Tele next string change. I've used half-rounds on it and my Mosrite to good effect.
    A used Chinese Epiphone Casino may be a more affordable substitute for a Korean Gretsch - they play and sound better, although the fret wire is poor and will wear out quickly, costing half the guitar's price to replace.
    The knowledge of VU downtuning is the big revelation here and besides the benefits of Flatwounds, may account for a lot of the peculiarities of their sound, including odd intonation. For instance "I Can't Stand It" is in the key of F but without use of a capo, which is unlikely for a rocker like Lou Reed, executing the scratchy rhythm chording is awkward. Downturns, it plays in G which makes for much easier strumming. Also the psychedelic bluesrock lead guitar on the other uptempo tune from the "VU" album, "Foggy Notion" (in concert A) would be easy with heavy strings at lower tension. The lead guitar never gets into the upper neck and Morrison or Reed would certainly not be playing in the XIXth position!
     
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  8. Cado

    Cado Member

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    Let me know how it works out. I've never tried to get their tones or even play the songs with the proper tuning. Transformer & Berlin are also down a full step. I played Walk On The Wild Side last week at a gig & did it with a capo on the 3rd fret so I could approximate the F6 chord Lou played.
     
  9. lpdeluxe

    lpdeluxe Member

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    Sterling told me VU tuned down because that allowed them to use heavier gauge strings and still be able to bend them. He used .012s, if I remember correctly. I know he counseled me to use the heaviest strings I could manage.
     
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  10. muchXS

    muchXS Member

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    The good part is about two minutes in.

    .
     
  11. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    You need calamine lotion, too -- ex-treme-ly important to get the right friction for that song..
     

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