Magnatone Giveawya

September 2014
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Interview: Eric Gales & Doug Pinnick - Gospel Grooves & Abnormal Blues

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Interview: Eric Gales & Doug Pinnick - Gospel Grooves & Abnormal Blues

Do you use a pick or your fingers, Doug?
Pinnick:
I use a pick mainly. I can use my fingers, but I’m not as accurate as I am with a pick.

You’re known for using 12-string basses, too.
Pinnick:
I only have one right now. I sold the rest of them to pay some bills. They were my old, old 12-strings, so I don’t feel bad about selling them. Although I would have loved to keep them.

Did you get a pretty penny for them?
Pinnick:
I don’t think I really got a lot for them, but they’re in good hands. It’s a Hamer collector who has them all, so I know where they’re at. The Yamaha, which I use live, was made specifically for me. John [Gaudesi], the guy that built it, made it for me in his spare time. There are people in high places that are King’s X fans and are really good to me and give me things and help me out. People in these companies appreciate what I do, and I appreciate them. Most of them aren’t going to make a lot of money off of me, so they’re not going to make a signature anything. I’m using Schecter basses now. I’ve been with them for a couple of years, and they told me they’re going to make me some 12-strings.

What are your main axes now then, Doug?
Pinnick:
I used my Schecter Model-T bass in the studio, but I also have a Baron-H bass, which looks like a Telecaster and is kind of a hollowbody. They just started making that for me.

Is it prone to feedback because it’s hollow?
Pinnick:
I don’t know—I like the way it looks [laughs]. Whatever I play, it’s more because I like the way it looks than how it plays. I get pretty much the same tone no matter what I play because of the pickups I use.

What are those?
Pinnick:
It’s a Seymour Duncan pickup with three switches on it. There’s no name on it, but it’s the only bass “domino” pickup with three switches on it that you’ll ever see. I have it rigged up with two 9V batteries.

Does that get you super-high output?
Pinnick:
Yeah, super high. They stopped making them about 15 years ago. I have five of them, and I’ve been taking them out of my old basses and putting them in my new ones, so I have a garage full of basses with no pickups in them. Maybe someone will come along and be able to make me something comparable.

Eric Gales’ Gear

Guitars
Fender ’62 Strat, Magneto Sonnet Raw Dawg, Xotic XS-1, St. Blues Blindsider

Amps
Two-Rock signature model

Effects
Tech 21 Boost D.L.A., Dunlop EVH Phase 90, Mojo Hand FX Colossus, EWS Brute Drive, TC Electronic Nova (for delay), Dunlop Cry Baby wah

Strings, Picks, and Accessories
Dunlop .010–.046 strings, medium-gauge custom Dunlop picks, custom leather strap with straplocks, Shure wireless

How about you, Eric, what are your main guitars?
Gales:
I have an original ’62 Strat that I take out on the road. I also have a number of different guitars from companies that I’m endorsed by, and they’re all based on the three-single-coil configuration. I don’t particularly like to choose one that’s exclusive. I learned that from Jimmy Dunlop. He said, “Man, that’s why Baskin-Robbins made 31 flavors.” To me, it could be a Sears Silvertone and a Pignose amp—it isn’t what it is, it’s what you do with it. I’m not what you’d call a gear freak.

But you have a signature amp from Two- Rock, a company that represents the holy grail for many a gear freak.
Gales:
[Laughs.] Right, right. But I just take what I have and work with it. See, amp-wise, I use my signature model Two-Rock, but predominantly I use the clean channel on it because I like to use floor pedals—I also use a Mojo Hand fuzz pedal and an EWS Brute Drive. But I do love the gain channel of my amp.

So why not just use the amp’s gain channel?
Gales:
It all depends on how I feel. See, I purposely chose not to have an effects loop in my amp.

Your sound often incorporates a good amount of delay, and without a loop, you can’t place your delay after the amp’s dirt.
Gales:
Exactly. Now I could go and have them modify the amp, but I’ve gotten so comfortable doing it this way. It’s a personal thing and not a matter of a better or worse way of doing it.

Doug Pinnick’s Gear

Basses
Schecter Model-T (studio), Schecter Baron-H, custom Yamaha 12-string built by John Gaudesi

Amps
Fractal Audio Axe-Fx Ultra (soon to be replaced by the Axe-Fx II), Ampeg SVT-4Pro, Ampeg cabinets

Strings, Picks, and Accessories
DR Strings .045–.100 sets, custom picks, handmade straps

Had you guys worked with Thomas Pridgen prior to this project?
Gales:
Thomas played on my previous solo record on Varney’s label, so I’ve know him for about six or seven years.
Pinnick: I met Thomas once before this project—I’m good friends with a friend of his—but I never had a chance to really talk to him until I met him when we got together to make the record.

Is Pinnick Gales Pridgen an ongoing project?
Gales:
Absolutely. We’re already talking about going back into the studio. It’s a side project, but it’s far more than a side project. The reason I say it’s a side project is that we’re not excluding the stuff that we do on our own.

Doug, earlier you referenced Living Colour. Will Pinnick Gales Pridgen be this generation’s version?
Pinnick:
If it was 1990, we would have MTV and radio, and the war would be trying to get the band to sell lots of records. Nowadays, it’s like the Wild West, so I have no idea what can or will happen. We can make plans—touring, making records, and doing all the interviews in the world—but at the end of the day, it’s a new way of thinking. There are no guarantees [laughs].

With any star-studded lineup, one might expect a clash of egos. Was there any drama in the sessions?
Pinnick:
[Laughs.] No, not at all. There was no time for that. We knew that we had to get the record done so everybody was on top of their game.
Gales: An important thing is that we didn’t want to take away any of the elements of who we were before we got together. If anything, we wanted to add to that. I think that’s exactly the point.
Pinnick: We were just excited to hear what the other guys would be contributing. With Eric and Thomas, they can play “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” and it’s got style and passion to it.

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