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Rig Rundown: Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit

“Cooder-casters,” boutique amps, classic Gibsons, and a healthy amount of pedals give fire to Isbell’s brand of Southern-bred rock.

FX-Controller

Tech Michael Bethancourt designed and built Isbell’s effect system. Pedals live in drawers, not the floors. At his feet is a RJM Mastermind GT22 Midi Controller, Selah Effects Quartz Timer, Mission Engineering Expression Pedal and a TC Electronic PolyTune 2 Noir that live on a Trailer Trash ProSeries 30”x18” Pedalboard w a built junction box featuring six inputs, seven outputs. Ac provided by a T-Rex. The junction box on Isbell’s pedalboard was built by Randy Gabbard, at Tour Supply Nashville. Wampler Faux Tape Echo was modded by Eastside Music Supply in Nashville, TN. Best-Tronics Pro Audio in Chicago assembled all pedalboard looms. Jason’s loom and junction box were my design, and all else (regarding Jason’s rig only) was designed, built, wired, etc. by me personally.

Special thanks to Tech Michael Bethancourt for taking PG through the nuts and bolts.

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Yungblud's first signature features a mahogany body, P-90 Pro pickup, and SlimTaper C profile neck.

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On this season finale episode, the actor and musician leads a Prine-inspired songwriting session about how few tools we have in our collective toolbox.

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John Mayall in the late ’80s, in a promo shot for his Island Records years. During his carreer, he also recorded for the Decca (with the early Bluesbreakers lineups), Polydor, ABC, DJM, Silvertone, Eagle, and Forty Below labels.

He was dubbed “the father of British blues,” but Mayall’s influence was worldwide, and he nurtured some of the finest guitarists in the genre, including Eric Clapton, Peter Green, Mick Taylor, Harvey Mandel, Coco Montoya, and Walter Trout. Mayall died at his California home on Monday, at age 90.

John Mayall’s career spanned nearly 70 years, but it only took his first four albums to cement his legendary status. With his initial releases with his band the Bluesbreakers—1966’s Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton; ’67’s A Hard Road, with Peter Green on guitar; plus the same year’s Crusade, which showcased Mick Taylor—and his solo debut The Blues Alone, also from 1967, Mayall introduced an international audience of young white fans to the decidedly Black and decidedly American genre called blues. In the subsequent decades, he maintained an active touring and recording schedule until March 26, 2022, when he played his last gig at age 87. It was reported that he died peacefully, on Monday, in his California home, at 90.

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Donner andThird Man Hardware’s $99, three-in-one analog distortion, phaser, and delay honors Jack White’s budget gear roots.

Compact. Light. Fun. Dirt cheap. Many cool sounds that make this pedal a viable option for traveling pros.

Phaser level control not much use below 1 o’clock. Repeats are bright for an analog delay. Greater range of low-gain sounds would be nice.

$99

Donner X Third Man Triple Threat
thirdmanrecords.com

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A huge part of the early White Stripes mystique, sound, ethos, and identity was tied to guitars and amps that, at the time, you could luck into for cheap at a garage sale. These days, it’s harder to score a Crestwood Astral II, or Silvertone Twin Twelve with a part-time job in the ice cream shop. Back in the late ’90s, though, they were a source of raw, nasty sounds for less than a new, more generic guitar or amp.

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