Let me start off by saying I am not a big fan of the obnoxiously overused sound of a wah pedal in many classic and modern recordings, but I do believe is has a certain place where it fits more naturally. When I use a wah pedal, it is almost always in conjunction with a delay and/or reverb pedal. I use the wah before these effects to make extreme modulation in real time. It’s as if using the wah as an expression or volume pedal like a swell, making the sound lush and huge without murdering everyone in the first 10 rows due to treble bleed. I also use a compressor post wah, and if at all possible, a wah with an EQ for mellower sweeps to prevent this bleed. The wah I’m currently using is a Dunlop Q95 Crybaby which I hand painted in a greek/ocean theme. This will soon be replaced by a Wilson QWah (12 position). Moving on to expression, I find this effect very useful for any musician who needs full control over their delays or modulation effects. I use a Mission Engineering SP2R, which is a dual output, and reversed polarity expression pedal that is nearly indestructible. I run output 1 to a Strymon Timeline, which controls almost anything on the damn thing, and output 2 runs to and early version of the DMB Lunar Echo. The Timeline is ran in stereo, with the Lunar Echo in mono, later on in the right output signal. I hoped this was a little helpful in trying to use these pedals for an abnormal purpose! Happy recording!
Most people who run effects in their guitar signal will at some point or another use a volume pedal for easy and quick changes in their output level. I am one of these people, yet am unlike most of them in the way that I apply it to “my” sound. Most musicians use the volume pedal primarily for a mute switch that overrides the other effects, or to even out guitar levels (ex; Les Paul vs Stratocaster), placing it after the effects which can choke them out. I run mine first in the board, so reverb, delay, and other types of time-based effects naturally trail off into the amplifiers. Not only is my volume pedal used in this way for ambient and lush volume swells, but also as a gain control for my overdrive and fuzz pedals. The lower the volume, the less load is placed on the effect, therefore it has a lower gain, and thicker sound. I have used many types of volume pedals, yet have mainly stuck with a late 60’s Fender Volume pedal, and as of late, a Mission Engineering EP2 Buffered Volume Pedal. Volume control is the simplest form of guitar signal control, yet plays such a crucial role in all other effect applications, and that is why it is so important to me. Next post, we’l be covering Wah and Expression pedals! Happy recording!
As I normally cover the emotions and opinions of myself at the time, I have yet to empress my opinions upon my absolute favorite type of musical expression, through the usage of effects pedals. Starting with my next blog post I will go in depth with each type of effect I use, what my favorites are, and why I love them. Below I have included my favorite song for the freshmen O.M.A.M. album, Yellow Light. Happy recording!