august 2018

Very few country stars have the chops, skill, and taste of this award-winning picker, singer, and songwriter. Here’s a look at how to cop his cosmic Tele vibe.

Chops: Intermediate
Theory: Intermediate
Lesson Overview:
• Learn a few classic country licks that outline chords.
• Create licks that emulate the pedal steel.
• Learn the secrets of combining open strings and sixths. Click here to download a printable PDF of this lesson's notation.

Very few can claim they’re highly successful singer-songwriters and respected guitar players, but Vince Gill is one such musician. As a recording artist, Gill has a nearly endless list of awards, including no fewer than 21 Grammy Awards. At the same time, he’s not afraid to pick up his guitar and play, and there are countless examples of him tearing it up on his own recordings, as well as with many other legends.

This lesson will focus more on his hot country playing, but he’s an accomplished blues player and has a great Western swing band, the Time Jumpers, so if you want to dig further into his playing there’s a lot to explore.

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For at least a decade, the classic Ampeg SVT was the dominant bass amp for power and tone.

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From the giant, hefty beasts of yore to their modern, ultra-portable equivalents, bass amps have come a long way. So, what's next?

Bassists are often quite well-informed about the details of their instruments, down to the finest technical specs. Many of us have had our share of intense discussions about the most minute differences between one instrument and another. (And sometimes those are interrupted by someone saying, "It's all in the fingers.") But right behind our backs, at the end of our output cables, there is a world of tone-shaping that we either simply ignore or just don't want to dive into too deeply. Turning a gear discussion from bass to amp is a perfect way to bring it to an abrupt end.

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Flexible filtering options and a vicious fuzz distinguish the Tool bass master’s signature fuzz-wah.

Great quality filters that sound good independently or combined. Retains low end through the filter spectrum. Ability to control wah and switch on fuzz simultaneously. Very solid construction.

Fairly heavy. A bit expensive.


Dunlop JCT95 Justin Chancellor Cry Baby Wah


Options for self-expression through pedals are almost endless these days. It’s almost hard to imagine a sonic void that can’t be filled by a single pedal or some combination of them. But when I told bass-playing colleagues about the new Dunlop Justin Chancellor Cry Baby—which combines wah and fuzz tuned specifically for bass—the reaction was universal curiosity and marvel. It seems Dunlop is scratching an itch bass players have been feeling for quite some time.

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