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West Coast Blues Thread Version 19

fretshop

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,026
I try not to recommend a particular pickup over another, but as this discussion centered around Telecaster pickups, I decided to offer some details on some new stuff that we at The Fretshop/Fretworks have been very impressed with.
Mojo Music supply has formally entered the custom pickup market. We had a chance to preview their 10K ohm vintage Broadcaster bridge pickup, and we gave it a 4.O out of a possible five for touch sensitivity, tone, and quality of build when compared to an original Broadcaster pickup in the shop. The bridge pickup had a nice bite to the tone without the ice pick, while the original sounded a just a tad sweeter, and rendered a slightly better compression, most probably due to its age. I also ordered a prototype Broadcaster style neck pickup wound to 9K ohms, with a three wire configuration (third wire connected to the pickup cover) and a raw nickel silver cover. That pickup received a 5 out of a possible 5 in terms of versatility. The instrument was outfitted with CTS 270K audio taper pots (we metered out a whole bunch of OEM Fender pots until we found a matched pair), a .039mf tone cap, and a Mojo treble bleed capacitor. Although not inexpensive, these pickups sound great, they have just the right amount of grit to the tone, and will not break the bank. I hooked up a 5 position super switch and was amazed at how versatile the guitar became. Both the in series and standard neck positions were very useful for jazz and all sorts of rhythm work.

Ciao-4-Now
 

StaxKing

Member
Messages
697
Ok my turn to stick my neck out - YOU GUYS ARE GONNA DEFO LIKE THIS:


[skip to 4:35 if it has been a long day and you need an immediate laugh !! Killer Django esq arpeggio lick!! - kudos goes to the first person to work out said arpeggio and share it here - lol :) :) :) ]


Heck - I also wanna learn that 4:53 chord JrW signature lick thingy(!!) if anyone can explain it! :) :) :) :)
 

RickyKing

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,643
Ok my turn to stick my neck out - YOU GUYS ARE GONNA DEFO LIKE THIS:


[skip to 4:35 if it has been a long day and you need an immediate laugh !! Killer Django esq arpeggio lick!! - kudos goes to the first person to work out said arpeggio and share it here - lol :) :) :) ]


Heck - I also wanna learn that 4:53 chord JrW signature lick thingy(!!) if anyone can explain it! :) :) :) :)
@ 4:35.. D at 12 frett D string, G12th frett G string, Bb 11th frett B string, D 10th frett E string, G 15th Frett E string..I think..
 

straightblues

Member
Messages
9,714
What guitar do you think Otis is playing on that track? It sound a little more hollow than a ES335/355 to me. Or if not, how can I tune up my ES335 to make it sound more like that? Mine tends to get a much more solid body tone than that.
 

fretshop

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,026
What guitar do you think Otis is playing on that track? It sound a little more hollow than a ES335/355 to me. Or if not, how can I tune up my ES335 to make it sound more like that? Mine tends to get a much more solid body tone than that.
Otis switched around on a few different guitars and amps, including an Ampeg amp with the original speaker that he liked alot. I restored/refurbished most of his instruments, and the woodiest sounding of all was his Epiphone Riviera with the minibuckers. It had a snarkier/raspier tone than either of the 355's. Clifford Antone told me that he gave Otis the lefty '63 ES 355...(who knows ?), and it was around the time that he acquired the two 355s that he retired the Epiphone. He also used a Fender Jaguar here and there from what I was told. The 355s malfunctioned electronically from day one, and he'd frequently pick up a late 70's Strat that Ronnie Earl gave him or pick up the Epiphone in a pinch. In 1987 and 1989, I made new harnesses for both 355s. I used stereo output jacks but added a jumper wire to each jack so the instruments would function monaurally. We had terrible problems with the stereo guitar cords and going to mono solved all the problems.

Regarding the tone you are hearing in the song, Listen closely to the amp in this particular tune...It's saturated, and on the verge. The notes sound wooley and sustain easily. Otis usually dimed his amps, and to quote him: "to get the melody...that old sound". Rehearsals were a rare occurrence, but when he did attend, he'd plug into the amp which was provided, dime the treble and mid controls, and turn the bass somewhere about half way up...or a little less. He'd strum his "Charles Brown Chord" (which almost everybody who attempts it, does it wrong) while adjusting the volume, then maybe play a few lines from Chitlins Con Carne, and then go to G, A, and D Keys and fuss a little. If he didn't like the response he was getting, he'd order me to go get him another amp. I usually had my '65 Twin Reverb in the truck as a stand by, and later on, I had to buy a Mesa MK II head for him to use. The speaker configuration I provided was a '65 Bandmaster loaded with two EV SRO's and a single 12 Mesa cabinet with an EVM 12L. Otis played LOUD.

BTW: The has been some conjecture regarding personnel on the Cobra sessions. Ike Turner helped Otis out quite a bit, and word has it that Turner played some of the solos, although I never really got a complete answer on that one.
 
Last edited:

pete kanaras

Member
Messages
2,947
That sounds like the 355 to me, the Riviera is much more hollow sounding and "bouncier", for lack of a better word. the Riv is brighter but less direct sounding. my alltime favorite Otis tone by far is on the live "So Many Roads, Live in Japan" album on Delmark. Definitely the Riviera there and probably a dimed Twin Reverb. good god almighty his ideas, tone and passion are just off the chain there. and yeah George, Clifford did indeed give Otis a mint 355; i saw that guitar up close, at Antone's, back in '87. somewhere i have pics of a verrry young Doyle Bramhall Jr playing it
 
Last edited:

Schwalbe

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,121
Otis switched around on a few different guitars and amps, including an Ampeg amp with the original speaker that he liked alot. I restored/refurbished most of his instruments, and the woodiest sounding of all was his Epiphone Riviera with the minibuckers. It had a snarkier/raspier tone than either of the 355's. Clifford Antone told me that he gave Otis the lefty '63 ES 355...(who knows ?), and it was around the time that he acquired the two 355s that he retired the Epiphone. He also used a Fender Jaguar here and there from what I was told. The 355s malfunctioned electronically from day one, and he'd frequently pick up a late 70's Strat that Ronnie Earl gave him or pick up the Epiphone in a pinch. In 1987 and 1989, I made new harnesses for both 355s. I used stereo output jacks but added a jumper wire to each jack so the instruments would function monaurally. We had terrible problems with the stereo guitar cords and going to mono solved all the problems.

Regarding the tone you are hearing in the song, Listen closely to the amp in this particular tune...It's saturated, and on the verge. The notes sound wooley and sustain easily. Otis usually dimed his amps, and to quote him: "to get the melody...that old sound". Rehearsals were a rare occurrence, but when he did attend, he'd plug into the amp which was provided, dime the treble and mid controls, and turn the bass somewhere about half way up...or a little less. He'd strum his "Charles Brown Chord" (which almost everybody who attempts it, does it wrong) while adjusting the volume, then maybe play a few lines from Chitlins Con Carne, and then go to G, A, and D Keys and fuss a little. If he didn't like the response he was getting, he'd order me to go get him another amp. I usually had my '65 Twin Reverb in the truck as a stand by, and later on, I had to buy a Mesa MK II head for him to use. The speaker configuration I provided was a '65 Bandmaster loaded with two EV SRO's and a single 12 Mesa cabinet with an EVM 12L. Otis played LOUD.

BTW: The has been some conjecture regarding personnel on the Cobra sessions. Ike Turner helped Otis out quite a bit, and word has it that Turner played some of the solos, although I never really got a complete answer on that one.
What is the "Charles Brown Chord"?
 




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