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Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by fjrabon, Feb 23, 2020.
Definitely. The ending is unreal
I played a couple of rounds of golf with Dickie many years ago... My tone remained the same... despite that I gave him strokes on the 5's .. I mean, what do ya have to do .. Strokes.. even on the short 5's...
I tell people all the time, exactly this when I speak to the greatness of Duane. If Dickie was the only guitarist in the ABB we'd still know who they were, or if he started in another band we'd still know who he was, and he'd be considered among the greats. The fact that Dickie got overshadowed only happened because of who was in his band. Dickie deserves a lot more credit than he gets.
He has always been good but I preferred him with Duane cause he had a fire under him.
I can't common on Dickie as I dont know all his new stuff, but I think you got it when you said there was a fire under him. I have noticed this with a couple of others too. They were proving themselves and perhaps having a friendly competition as well. Eric Clapton comes to mind - when he went solo, he was still great but things got a bit less interesting. The same with Ritchie Blackmore with early Deep Purple doing songs like Wring that Neck.
That makes sense that you are getting his tone from a semi-hollow. I like to play loud and clean and the drop in the midrange makes my 335 much more articulate than most of the Les Pauls that I've owned. I do have an R7, though, with Burstbuckers that get almost a fat Tele type tone. I never liked the Burstbuckers in any other guitar, but in that one they just work. Maybe his guitars/pickups have just been chosen to get that magical combo.
Any Les Paul style guitar and a set of Duncan 59s will put you there.
A sweet Les Paul, I find lighter weight sounds a little more open with warm Vintage Humbuckers, 10's for strings, Marshall 1987 "strapped" channels, Marshall 4X12 GB or mixture, Clean volume with a hint of overdrive, turn it up....
Les Paul guitar and a bright amp just on the verge of breakup. Also using the middle pickup position to coax a little country sweetness when needed from the bridge pickup.
Amp is as important as guitar. My Metropoulos Super-Plex with KT66s channels my inner Allman Brothers. It has a certain sweetness about it irrespective of gain none of my other amps have.
I feel the opposite, generally. I think a lot of his best moments were post- Duane when he rose to a lead role in the band or his first few solo records.
I went on a Dickey Betts tone quest a few years ago.
The answer is JBL D120 speakers.
Picked a couple up, put them into an open back 2x12, plugged my 1987x into it, and instant DB tone.
For me I lucked into an R8 that has lower output, bright custom buckers. Plug into a Germino 55 LV in the bright channel around 5-6 and turn back the guitar volume to around 7-8. I prefer middle position, neck volume around 4-5
Dickey Betts is my favorite guitarist, hands down. That TONE. Dickey's tone changed a little through the years - early on with Duane he had more sting then it sweetened up when he switched to Les Pauls, especially after Duane died and he started adding more clean country influences. From the late 1970s on it stayed pretty consistent, even when he started switching guitars in the 1990s - PRS, ES335, Strat (say what?), SG - he still sounded like Dickey Betts. A lot of it is just in the fingers and style. But I definitely think a Les Paul set to the neck pickup will get you closer to that classic Dickey tone. Pretty sure he used SD pickups later on.
The loud Marshall stacks with JBLs was definitely a huge part of his tone. The amazingly talented Jack Pearson had to leave the band because of the volume. But that's also one of the reasons he could switch guitars and still sound like himself.
Obviously the Duane & Dickey material is the band's pinnacle, but those shows where Dickey was the only guitarist are pretty amazing, never mind the 5-man band period where he was the only lead instrument before Chuck Leavel arrived.
I was on a big Dickey/Warren era ABB kick in December. I actually liked his tone with the PRS McCarty and the uncovered Pearly Gates in the neck. I'd say it was more gainy/compressed than his earlier tone, but his guitar still sang when he played. Woodstock 94 om youtube has some great playing by both of those guys.
The biggest factor is Dickie.
Listen to him on an acoustic, he still gets that sweet, crying tone.
High headroom marshall style amp, using both pickups, and knowing how to work the volume and tone knobs.
It's not black magick... just a set of learned skills.
Clapton was absolutely on fire with Cream and I agree with you on his solo career.