The indie rocker combines’ vintage Gibsons and Hiwatts with modern Fenders and a Bradshaw system.

Premier Guitar met up with Adam Granduciel of The War on Drugs at Marathon Music Works in Nashville. Granduciel described how he builds moody, swirling walls of sounds through a Bradshaw pedalboard, two Hiwatt amps and a full-time spinning Leslie.

Guitars

Through a serendipitous amp breakdown at a show in Phoenix, Granduciel began a relationship with Fender. It started with a new Japanese-made Gretsch White Falcon.
The Falcon was soon followed by this American Vintage ’56 Reissue Strat.
Although his array of Fender-related axes skews towards the modern side, Granduciel’s goes vintage for his collection of Gibsons. The oldest one is a totally stock ’64 Gibson SG Jr.
A previous owner loaded up his ’66 non-reverse Firebird with a pair of Lollar P-90s, but Granduciel added the Bigsby.
Finally, a stock ’72 Les Paul Deluxe rounds out the trio.

Amps

Granduciel travels with an impressive arsenal of vintage amps. He runs a 1974 Hiwatt Custom 50 into a Matchless 2x12 cabinet loaded with Celestion Heritage speakers.
He combines this amp with another Hiwatt, a ’72 Custom 100, that goes into a funky, old Earth Sound Research 2x15 cab.
Finally, Granduciel add a swirly vibe with a constantly running Leslie cabinet that’s driven by a Fender ’65 Princeton Reverb reissue.

Effects

A long time lover of the stomp, Granduciel recently took his board to the next level and employed Bob Bradshaw to bring his vision to life with a loop-based pedalboard. The heart of the rig is a Custom Audio Electronics RS-T MIDI Foot Controller. Sitting next to his RS-T is a Custom Audio Electronics Line Driver—which feeds the Princeton—a Boss TU-3 tuner, and an Ernie Ball volume pedal.
The pedalboard includes a JHS Bun Runner, Wren and Cuff Tall Font Russian, Mountainking Electronics Loud Box, Blackstone Appliances MOSFET Overdrive, a vintage MXR Flanger, Moog Minifooger Tremolo, a vintage Electra Phase Shifter, Wren and Cuff Phat Phuk, Hardwire DL-8 Delay/Looper, Hardwire RV-7 Stereo Reverb, Auralux King Trem, Ibanez Echo Shifter, and finally, two vintage Electro-Harmonix Memory Man Delays (one sits on the floor next to the board).

SWShopTheRigButton

The author’s Collings D2H rests on his favorite Fender amp combination for acoustic guitar: a Bandmaster Reverb atop a 1x12 extension cab with an Eminence Maverick inside. The amp has a custom-made baffle board with two 8" speakers, so can go it alone for smaller gigs.

Interested in plugging a flattop into your favorite silver- or black-panel beauty? Here’s what you need to know.

Have you ever tried to plug your acoustic guitar into a classic-style Fender amp? There are some hurdles to overcome, and this month I’ll provide some advice on how to get past them. But first, some background.

Read More Show less

A lightweight, portable amp series developed after months of forensic examination of vintage valve amps.

Read More Show less

Need an affordable distortion pedal? Look no further.

We live in the golden age of boutique pedals that are loaded with advanced features—many of which were nearly unthinkable a decade or so ago. But there’s something that will always be valuable about a rock-solid dirt box that won’t break your wallet. Here’s a collection of old classics and newly designed stomps that cost less than an average concert ticket.

Read More Show less
x