Tone Tips

Looking for the perfect lead-boost pedal? Perhaps what you really need is a good EQ that’s set for a healthy level boost to drive your amp’s front end, with the mid frequencies set to stun.

It’s underappreciated and not as sexy as an overdrive or fuzz, but an EQ on your pedalboard can open myriad tonal doors.

Greetings, tone hounds! This column is, of course, called “Tone Tips," and I've been writing it every month for a number of years now. Still, there's an incredibly powerful tone tool I haven't yet covered: the often underappreciated EQ pedal. Most guitarists get excited about drives and delays, but relatively few have an EQ on their boards. I've just recently gotten acquainted with the relatively new Boss EQ-200 Graphic Equalizer, and it's allowed me to rediscover the magic and power of integrating an EQ pedal.

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Rick Beato gets the string-gauge experiment started with a Les Paul Standard running through a Marshall JCM2000.

...There's a lot more to it than whether Billy Gibbons or SRV was "right."

Greetings, tone hounds! I'd like to discuss two terrific YouTube videos Rick Beato and Rhett Shull recently made regarding string gauges. In Rick's video, a group of players recorded themselves playing the same Les Paul and Marshall JCM2000 setup with the only variable being four different gauged sets: .011, .010, .009, and .008. Both videos reveal the differences in tone between different gauges, and I'd like to expand on this by adding a few observations I've discovered over the years.

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How to Stay Happy and Healthy on the Road
Give our columnist coffee, a guitar, an interface, and his laptop (plus a decent hotel room), and he'll be upbeat on tour. Did we mention coffee?

Sideman to the stars Pete Thorn shares his regimen for avoiding the pitfalls of touring.

Well, that time is upon me again. I'm headed out on the road! I'm actually writing this in a New York hotel room, and tonight I'll be on a plane to the U.K. to start a run of 30-plus theater dates with the Classic Rock Show, an extravaganza of rock classics played by a top-notch band. I've really had to woodshed these songs and it's going to be a blast to perform them.

The upsides of touring are many. Of course, it's awesome to make a living doing what we love, but the pitfalls can be numerous as well. This month, I'd like to give you some pointers on how to avoid those pitfalls so you can stay happy and healthy on tour!

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