Rig Rundown: Lake Street Dive
See how a Tube Screamer and a pair of POGs mesh with badass bassist Bridget Kearney’s carved double bass. Plus, touring guitarist James Cornelison shows the oddball guitars and pickups he chose to funkify the band’s neo-soul dance parties.
College internships can run the gamut. They can lead you into a career or dissuade you from pursuing one altogether. In 2004, while still attending the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, singer Rachael Price, bassist Bridget Kearney, founding guitarist Mike “McDuck” Olson, and drummer Mike Calabrese joined forces to perform as what they dubbed a “free country band,” where they intended to play country music in an improvised, avant-garde style. As it goes with many college-years experiments, it didn’t stick, but the fervid foursome pushed forward in continuing to develop their own sound. They quickly graduated to a bona fide band cultivating a buzz with infectious concerts, creative covers, and complex, groovy originals. Through their mutual influences and complimentary counterpoints, their sound matured into a harmonious fusion, as if Berry Gordy produced the Beatles in Nashville’s RCA Studio.
If starting a band and shaping their sound was an internship and bachelor’s degree, self-releasing records and organizing U.S. tours would be their master’s and doctorate. They self-released 2007’s In This Episode... and 2008’s Promises, Promises before joining Signature Sounds, who put out 2010’s Lake Street Dive and 2014’s Bad Self Portraits. (The latter slotted them on the Billboard charts—No. 18 in the 200 and No. 5 in Top Rock Albums.) They then signed to Nonesuch, where they’ve dropped three more albums—most notably 2016’s Side Pony, which put them atop the Top Rock Albums chart, while 2021’s Obviously netted them their highest single, with “Hypotheticals” hitting No. 2 on the Adult Alternative Airplay chart.
And while the band has continued to evolve, experiment, and expand their signature sound, they have kept to their core identity—having fun. They seem never to miss a Halloween dress-up show, and still aren’t gun-shy about covering classics and making them their own. Setlists are often littered with audience requests and reinterpretations of the Beatles, Hall & Oates, George Michael, Bonnie Raitt, Elvis, Shania Twain, the Pointer Sisters, the Jackson Five, the Kinks, Steely Dan, Annie Lennox, Sly & the Family Stone, and countless others.
The afternoon before their second consecutive sellout at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, Lake Street Dive’s Bridget Kearney and touring guitarist James Cornelison welcomed PG’s Chris Kies on stage for a casual gear chat. Kearney explained how she uses a pair of octave pedals through her standup double bass, and what she’s doing with four tuners! Plus, she explains what restarted her slow-burn courtship with electric bass. Then, Cornelison walks us through his setup, which includes leftover pieces from retired guitarist Mike “McDuck” Olson and a ratty pickup bought off a former PG staffer. It both honors the band’s catalog and carves his own musical fingerprint.
Brought to you by D’Addario Nexxus 360 Tuner.
All About That Bass
Bridget Kearney is known for almost exclusively using a standup double bass on stage and in the studio with Lake Street Dive. (As you’ll see in a minute, she’s fostering her connection with electric bass.) She’s been thumping on this one since LSD took shape. She acquired the 50-year-old carved double bass (all solid-wood construction) from fellow bass player and friend Ben Davis. When she received it from Davis, he had already added a David Gage Realist LifeLine pickup, but she’s opted to add and amplify via a Fishman Full Circle Upright Bass Pickup (“the heart of the tone”) and a Pierre Josephs String Charger magnetic transducer (“helpful getting extra juice to cut through when playing with a full band”). The Fishman provides a pure, clean signal to FOH, while the String Charger handles all the effects Kearney puts on her instrument. It’s been years since she’s changed strings, but she thinks they’re D’Addario Helicore Orchestral bass strings.
In Brooklyn for Halloween 2020, Lake Street Dive recreated the iconic Beatles rooftop concert. In doing so, the entire band doubled down to look the part (wigs, sideburns, and shaggy coats included). To be as authentic as possible, Kearney borrowed a friend’s Höfner for the performance. She enjoyed the playing experience and wanted to further investigate the electric bass, then bought this Höfner Limited Edition H500/2-RLC-O Club Bass. “Before this, I hadn’t played electric bass for nearly 20 years. It took me to the age of 35 to think, ‘I wonder if electric bass could be a cool thing?’ Höfner and that rooftop concert was my gateway drug back to solidbody electric basses.”
Kearney landed this brown beauty just a few months ago while instrument-shopping in Seattle. She had saw this 1975 Fender P bass on a store’s online inventory, but Bridget realized after arriving that she had went to the wrong store. However, the “wrong” store had a 1969 P she couldn’t pass up. Even after buying a vintage gem, months later, the above ’75 was still haunting her. So, the next time she visited Seattle, Kearney went to the “right” store and made the purchase. She hasn’t used it in the studio yet, but during this run of shows, she brought it for the band’s cover of “Love Doctor” from her 2017 solo record Won’t Let You Down. (The Cookin’ Outlaws stickers were put on prior to the score, and Bridget notes they are a part of the instrument’s charm.)
Bridget Kearney’s Pedalboard
“My pedalboard is a little bit ridiculous. It’s composed of four Boss tuners [laughs],” concedes Kearney. Unraveling the 4-tuner conundrum, she explains that she uses a pair of TU-3s for each pickup on her standup bass. The ingenious silver plate allows her to mute both signals with one kick. A passive TU-2 stays on all the time to help her play the fretless standup as close to in tune as possible. And the fourth Boss tuner is for her electric basses. Her duo of Electro-Harmonix Micro POGs each have a specific duty—one goes low (for “Good Kisser”), and one goes high (for solos and melodic lines). An Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer adds some sting to the double bass for “Bobby Tanqueray” and other parts. A couple of Radial Firefly Tube Direct Boxes send all her bass signals to FOH.
Gather ’Round This Gibson
For this batch of shows under the Gather Round Sounds Tour umbrella, LSD revamped their catalog for stripped-down, alternative arrangements. This is how they described the tour on social media: “Join us for these easy going, semi-acoustic evenings full of the fan favs, some deep cuts, and maybe even some works in progress in our most relaxed, basement couch setting yet.” Accommodating those cozy cabin vibes, guitarist James Cornelison brought along this 2010s Gibson J-35 reissue.
When the band reaches maximum campfire camaraderie, they perform as a guitar trio. In that arrangement, drummer/percussionist Mike Calabrase uses this Gibson Songwriter Standard EC Rosewood acoustic-electric.
This late-’60s Harmony H165 is singing better than ever, thanks to the facelift handed out by Old Style Guitar Shop in L.A. Aside from bracing upgrades and a proper setup, it’s been given two pickups (a piezo) and what looks like (but is unconfirmed) a variation of Seymour Duncan’s Hot Rails. When asked during the Rundown, James was unsure but did note that Old Style uses this pickup on all their acoustic overhauls. You’ll also notice a rubber bridge giving this storyteller even more vibe.
Cornelison’s roommate received this Excel SS from D’Angelico, but James gravitated more towards the instrument, so it unofficially became his. (What a friend!) Since adopting the 6-string, he’s designated it as his “Frankenstein project” as he’s tried several experiments on it—using flatwounds, playing in open tunings, and replacing the stock neck humbucker with an old Teisco gold-foil pickup. It currently is the slide guitar for LSD material and stays in high-tension F-tuning for “Hush Money” off 2021’s Obviously.
We’re Not Worthy!
Single-coil sweetness is provided by this ’90s Squier Wayne’s World Stratocaster. (As you would assume, “Stairway” is not allowed on this Strat—denied!)
Big Ups to Big Thief
“I’m a big fan of Adrianne Lenker and I always enjoyed that she played semi-hollow guitars with P-90s in it. I thought it was cool to have the reversal of the hollowbody archetype with P-90s instead of humbuckers,” admits Cornelison. This D’Angelico Deluxe DC features a set of Seymour Duncan STK-P1 Stacked P-90s and is serial #3.
Original guitarist and cofounding member Mike “McDuck” Olson left this ’50s Les Paul Standard (finished in Heritage Cherry Sunburst) for Cornelison to use in his absence. James remarks that this electric does the bulk of the work when the full band is represented.
On this subdued set, Cornelison plugged all his electrics into the above Magnatone Twilighter 112 combo.
James Cornelison's Pedalboard
This dialed-in setup was designed and built by longtime Jason Isbell tech Michael Bethancourt. Cornelison has onstage control of everything via the RJM Mastermind GT. Also, out front is a Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner and an Ernie Ball VP Jr volume pedal. His two-drawer rack holds the following pedals: a Source Audio EQ2 Programmable Equalizer, a JHS SuperBolt V2, a Behringer US600 Ultra Shifter/Harmonist, a JHS Colour Box V2, a Keeley Katana Clean Boost, JHS Morning Glory, and a Strymon Flint & Deco. Everything is powered by a pair of Strymon Zuma units. Additionally, an RJM Mini Effect Gizmo MIDI controller helps organize the signal paths.
Rig Rundown: El Ten Eleven
Three abnormal basses, two loopers, and a few warping stomps help Kristian Dunn morph and multiply his buoyant post-rock tones.
Pedals can be a source of inspiration. But can they be the catalyst to start a band? The argument could be made that without a looper bassist Kristian Dunn and drummer Tim Fogarty would’ve never taken flight as El Ten Eleven. (The band is named after the Lockheed L-1011 TriStar airplane.)
“I knew I wanted to start a band—in my mind it was probably going to sound like El Ten Eleven—but I didn’t know exactly how I’d do it. I got Tim [Fogarty] to play drums and I thought I’d get a third person for keyboards,” recalls Dunn.
Fogarty wondered if Dunn had ever heard of a looper pedal. He hadn’t, so Dunn borrowed one from a friend and brought it to band practice. “We tried it, and right out of the gate our eyes lit up and we thought out loud, ‘Oh my god! Could we just do this with the two of us?!’”
Since 2002, the live-looping masterminds have taking to the skies performing their organic, net-free, high-wire act. (Even Fogarty loops electronic drum parts through Dunn’s Boomerang that runs into a Gallien-Krueger MB Fusion 800 and a GK 115 RBH cabinet that sits near Fogarty.) And to celebrate two decades of their clever, playfully poetic, post-rock instrumentals, they’ll release their ninth album, New Year’s Eve, on March 4, 2022 via Joyful Noise.
Before El Ten Eleven’s headlining show at Nashville’s Exit/In on January 26, juggling, tap-dancing, bass-playing Dunn gave PG’s Chris Kies 30-plus minutes to detail his cockpit. He explains how a late-night Genesis video influenced his doubleneck duality, illuminates why he always carries a marker, and then unlocks some expressive cheat codes with his pedalboard and signal chain.
Brought to you by D’Addario XPND Pedalboard.
Two Instruments, One Musician
“I’m a bass player,” declares Dunn. “I’m a terrible guitarist [laughs].” Late one night while watching VH1 Classic, Dunn saw a Genesis video where Mike Rutherford used a guitar/bass doubleneck. Up to that point, he was crudely looping by putting on and taking off various instruments. (He still uses several instruments during one song.) This doubleneck would alleviate all that rigmarole. So Dunn pivoted to eBay and immediately found this 1977 Carvin DB630 Doubleneck that has a 6-string top and 4-string bottom (30" scale length). It features a bird’s-eye maple
body, a bolt-on, hard-rock maple neck, APH-6S pickups (guitar), and APH-8 pickups (bass). Each set has master volume and tone controls, plus phase switches and coil splitters. Dunn uses Ernie Ball 2221 Slinkys (.010–.046) for the guitar and Ernie Ball 2852 Short Scale Regular Slinkys (.045–.105) for the bass. The guitar neck is tuned to E-A-D-G#-B-E, while the bass neck is tuned to D-A-D-A.
A Head Above the Rest
Here are the matching headstocks for the doubleneck, revealing both have a zero fret.
A Wal of a Good Time
“For me, Wals are the best basses in the world,” contends Dunn. “I’ve never heard a better-sounding bass.” This 1988 Wal Mk1 was bought from Rig Rundown alumnus Tim Lefebvre. It has a Brazilian mahogany core that’s masked by a bird’s-eye maple cover. The fretboard is made from Indian rosewood. The humbuckers are controlled by a master volume that can pulled out to engage “pick attack” circuity that Dunn describes as having “a brighter sound.” The pickup selector is actual a knob that dials in each pickup for maximum blending control. And each pickup has a low-pass-filter knob.
On their upcoming album, New Year’s Eve, Dunn rides the bridge pickup’s low-pass filter at about 4 and kicks on his Marshall Guv’nor for the nasty groove in “Meta Metta.” He did use roundwound strings on this instrument for years, but after having the fretboard sanded down from the wear they caused, he’s since opted for Ernie Ball 2813 Hybrid Slinky Flatwounds (.045–.105) that are kinder to the wood and still give a brighter tonal sheen.
Hungry Like the Wolf
“When I was a teenager, one of my bass heroes was John Taylor of Duran Duran, so I’ve always wanted an Aria like his,” states Dunn. This is an Aria Pro II SB-1000 with an ash body, a 7-ply maple/walnut neck (with thru construction), an ebony fretboard, a 34" scale length, a MB-1E Double Coil pickup, a 6-way low-pass filter preset, and Gotoh hardware. Varying the low-pass filter allows Dunn to loop several parts atop each other, providing tones to handle bass, guitar, and keyboards. This one takes Ernie Ball Hybrid Bass Slinkys (.045–.105).
El Ten Eleven has had the pleasure of opening for Peter Hook and his various outfits several times. Hook is known to perform with custom Shergold Marathon 6 basses. (The difference with this instrument are the extra two strings are higher-tuned, allowing it to creep into a guitar’s range. Most standard models have the standard four bass strings plus one higher and one lower.)
With the help of Hook’s son, Dunn was able to secure one of the beasts. He did several tours with it, but has since retired the unique instrument because supposedly only about 100 of the 6-string models were made. Luckily, in 2019 Eastwood struck a partnership with the famed New Order and Joy Division bassist and released the Hooky Bass 6 Pro. Dunn admits to trying several other 6-string models from Fender and Schecter, but says those are designed more for guitarists, whereas the Shergold and the Hooky have bassists in mind—with wider string spacing that allows Dunn to play fingerstyle as he would on a normal 4-string.
Its ingredients are a solid alder body, bolt-on maple neck, maple fretboard, an Eastwood custom humbucker, and a 30" scale length. Dunn tunes his D-A-D-A-B-E and uses a custom range of Ernie Balls that starts with Hybrid Bass Slinkys (.045–.105), and the 5th-string is a .042 and the 6th-string is a .030.
With a Little Help from My Marker
To help him see the upper register for more precise picking, he added in some Sharpie inlays to give guidance when the lights go low during the show.
Growling With the Gallien
Dunn only plugs into this Gallien-Krueger MB Fusion 800. He gooses the treble control to help the guitar and keyboard sounds push through the other layers. He swore by GK’s 4x10 extension cab for years, but after doing a shootout with different configuration and speakers, he surprisingly favored the ported GK 115 RBH cabinet that has a ceramic driver and tweeter. He loves this setup’s hi-fi sound.
At one point, Dunn had three pedalboards and would have to crouch down and manipulate settings all night. Most of the swatches coloring his sound come from the Line 6 M9 Stompbox Modeler. The two Boomerang III Phrase Samplers are what make an El Ten Eleven show (or record) happen. In line, they’re separated by the DigiTech Bass Whammy. Dunn routes his signal this way so he can use the Whammy to shift octaves or keys on entire loops in Phrase Sampler one. The second Phrase Sampler, after the Whammy, allows him to pitch-shift specific loops without impacting the whole song or other loops (which can be done by the first Boomerang). The Strymon TimeLine sees the spotlight for precise repeats and specific delay settings not in the M9. The Electro-Harmonix Superego is a secret weapon harnessed by Dunn for sleek, reverse-sound bends. When he holds down the freeze function, it holds the original note. Then he continues holding down and plays the next note (which is not audible), but once he releases the switch, the ongoing audible note bends into the second note. The remaining two pedals are more standard fare: a Nu-X NFB-2 Lacerate FET Boost and a Marshall GV-2 Guv’nor Plus. A Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner keeps his instruments in check.
Simplifying scene changes and making life a little easier for Dunn is this Custom Audio Electronics RS-T MIDI Foot Controller. The unit talks with the M9 and Strymon, alleviating some tap dancing for Dunn to pull off an El Ten Eleven performance.
Reader Pedalboards 2022, Pt. 1
These days, there’s more time to spend in the pedal vortex. Behold the boards of fellow guitarists from around the world.
It’s that time of year, when Premier Guitar readers get the chance to show off their pedalboards and share how they approach these tools to unlock their sound. There’s no wrong way to wire up your effects—as we know, the options are virtually endless. But that’s the fun of it! Read on to see a completely blacked-out pedalboard created by a pro guitar tech, a repurposed Target dish-drying rack, a family tree of 12 (!!!) pedalboards, and much more. Some boards are painstakingly planned and arranged, and some are visually appealing. Whatever you like, stomp on!
Alec Palmer: Brand Loyalist
I use my board to practice and record from home, and I love jamming with a couple of my musician buddies every so often. I’d say my favorite pedals are the EarthQuaker Devices Plumes and the Big Ear Albie. I can get a ton of different effects out of the Albie, and the Plumes is the best overdrive I’ve ever played. I’m a bit of a brand loyalist. When I find a pedal I love, I tend to go back and buy more pedals from that specific company. Lately, that company has been Mythos Pedals!
Signal chain: Mythos Pedals Golden Fleece (Au79 Mass Street Music exclusive), Ibanez BigMini Tuner, Boss OC-5 Octave, EarthQuaker Devices Spatial Delivery, Mythos Pedals Positron Collider Fuzz, Mythos Pedals Wildwood Vipera, Onkel Amplification Stratoblaster, Ryra Klone, EarthQuaker Devices Plumes, Big Ear Pedals Albie (2), Mythos Pedals Oracle Analog Echo, and a TC Electronic Ditto Looper.
Brad Konick: Is It Humble, Though?
Here’s my humble pedalboard submission for your consideration. Each pedal is listed in order of the signal chain. I’m also including a photo of the electric guitar I use, which I made a few years ago. It’s a handbuilt custom solidbody, black walnut T-style electric guitar, with handcarved bas-relief and handmade steel inlay. Pickups are a Seymour Duncan Hot Rodded humbucker set: Jazz (neck) and JB (bridge). The guitar plugs first into the Boss volume pedal listed below.
Pedals - Signal Chain:
- Boss FV-30H Volume Pedal >
- Korg Pitchblack Mini Tuner >
- Kokko Mini Compressor >
- Electro-Harmonix Synth9>
- EarthQuaker Devices Arpanoid V2 Polyphonic Pitch Arpeggiator >
- DOD Carcosa Fuzz >
- Boss BD-2 Blues Driver>
- Death by Audio Echo Dream 2 Advanced Echo Modulation >
- TC Electronic T2 Reverb >
- Pedal Projects Undertow Tremolo >
- EarthQuaker Devices Organizer Polyphonic Organ Emulator >
- MXR Phase 95 >
- MXR Six Band EQ >
- EarthQuaker Devices Aqueduct >
- Electro-Harmonix Canyon Delay/Looper >
- Walrus Audio Slö Multi Texture Reverb >
- Roland JC-22 Jazz Chorus (amp)
Power and Cables:
- MXR M239 Mini Iso-Brick Power Supply
- Donner DP-2 Power Supply
- Snark 9-volt power adapters
- 1/4” Audioblast pancake patch cables (6", 8", 3')
- Fender tweed 1/4” TS 15' instrument cable
I’m also including a photo of the electric guitar I use, which I made a few years ago. It’s a handbuilt custom solidbody, black walnut T-style electric guitar, with handcarved bas-relief and handmade steel inlay. Pickups are a Seymour Duncan Hot Rodded humbucker set: Jazz (neck) and JB (bridge).
Chris Gibbs: Load In, Load Out
This is the pedalboard I use for gigs with my band, Triple Engine, in York, Western Australia. The board is actually the lid of a Craftright tool/accessory case.
When the gig is finished, I can pack leads, extra pedals, power supplies, and more into the case, flip the board so that it becomes a lid again, re-insert the removable hinge pins, and load out!Here’s how it flows: DigiTech HardWire HT-6 Polyphonic Tuner > Outlaw Effects Hangman Overdrive > MXR Phase 90 >Vox Satchurator Distortion > Outlaw Effects Vigilante Chorus > Tech 21 Fly Rig 5 > Outlaw Effects Boilermaker Boost.
Clint Roth: Vision Board
Here’s my current small board I’m using for writing with my band, Big Jaw. I plug into a TC PolyTune 2 Noir that feeds a Loop-Master A/B Box. The “A” loop is my JHS Charlie Brown overdrive, and the “B” loop is my fuzz, which is an old EarthQuaker Devices Hoof fed by a TC Electronic Sub ’N’ Up Octaver. I usually use the octave and fuzz together so it’s helpful to have them on a loop like that so I can switch to both with one click. The output of the Loop-Master feeds my TC Electronic Flashback Delay, which is usually just giving me a little slapback. Thanks!
David Reaume: Bass and Bow
Here’s my bass board! I use it mostly for ambient music to create textures, but it covers a lot of territory as you can see. I use a cello bow frequently. Paired with the octave and additional reverb, it really makes for a convincing string section.
- TC Electronic PolyTune 3 >
- Boss OC-5 >
- Chase Bliss Audio Automatone Preamp MKII >
- Gamechanger Audio Plasma Pedal >
- Dunlop DVP4 Volume (X) Mini >
- Boss DC-2W Dimension C (split in stereo for the rest of the chain) >
- Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo >
- Strymon Flint Tremolo & Reverb >
- Neunaber Audio Immerse Reverberator MKII
All powered by a Strymon Zuma power supply on a custom board (made by yours truly) with custom-length Mogami patch cables. The Analog Endeavors Dual Favorite switch is for the Strymon pedals.
DeMatt Harkins: The Dishwasher
My name is DeMatt Harkins and I live in Jackson, Mississippi. I made my pedalboard out of a wooden dish rack from Target.
- Guitar ->
- Boss TU-2 Chromatic Tuner ->
- Catalinbread SFT Overdrive ->
- TC Electronic Vortex Mini Flanger ->
- JHS 3 Series Chorus ->
- MXR Phase 95 ->
- Danelectro BLT Slap Echo ->
- Strymon Flint Tremolo & Reverb ->
- EarthQuaker Devices Dispatch Master
Thanks very much!
Jack Thompson: The Alan Parsons Project
I’m a musician based out of the Twin Cities, Minnesota, and I saw that you were taking pedalboard submissions! So, here’s mine. I’ve been refining and building this in a variety of ways the last seven years. I hope you enjoy and get a laugh.
High Level Overview:
The board consists of two loops (two different boards) controlled via EarthQuaker Devices Swiss Things. This sends the signal to a Mesa/Boogie Mini Rectifier 25 and Fender Hot Rod Deluxe III. The left board is pre-loop, and loop 1 (distortion based) with Dr. Evil in a moonsuit holding Austin Powers’ mojo. The right board is loop 2 (modulation based) with Dr. Evil holding Mr. Bigglesworth. My guitar cable is an orange Divine Noise Curly Cable, purchased from Chicago Music Exchange.
Pedalboard 1 (left):
- Pre-loop section:
- Guitar goes straight into an Emma Electronic Okto Nøjs.
- Then to a Pigtronix Philosopher’s Tone Germanium Gold Micro (this is an “always on” pedal).
- Next is the Dunlop Dimebag Cry Baby from Hell Wah.
- And then finally a MXR Uni-Vibe set at minimal settings (this is typically an “always on” pedal).
Loop 1 (via EarthQuaker Swiss Things):
- Behringer SF300 Super Fuzz
- Horizon Devices Apex Preamp
- Electronic Audio Experiments Model feT
- Boss DD-7 Digital Delay
- EarthQuaker Devices Afterneath V2
Pedalboard 2 (right):
Loop 2 (via EQD Swiss Things):
- JHS Bonsai (minimal drive settings, “always on”)
- Subdecay Quasar Phaser
- EarthQuaker Devices Rainbow Machine
- Moog MF Flange
- Dwarfcraft Devices Witch Shifter
- Black Cat Pedals Black Cat Vibe (Proline expression pedal on the far right is hooked up to it)
- EarthQuaker Devices Avalanche Run
- EarthQuaker Devices Astral Destiny
And that’s it! I’m fortunate to play with some of my best friends in a band called the Electric Honeycomb. Blessings to all of you.
Joe Grant Jr: Satisfying Symmetry
My pedalboard is a Temple Audio TRIO 43 Templeboard. All cables—patch, power, and MIDI—are hand-soldered. I have USB ports on the side to update firmware and program MIDI.
Underneath the pedalboard:
- Strymon Zuma
- Strymon Ojais (2)
- Voodoo Lab Control Switchers (2)
- Goodwood Audio Audition
- Goodwood Audio The TX Interfacer
- Kingtone Battery Box (2)
- Xotic RC Booster
- Dunlop Volume
- Origin Effects Cali76
- TC Electronic Ditto Stereo Looper
- Mythos Argo Octave Fuzz
- Peterson StroboStomp Tuner
- Mythos High Road Fuzz
- Wampler Ratsbane
- J. Rockett The Dude
- Analog Man King of Tone
- Walrus Audio Julianna
- Chase Bliss Automatone Preamp MKII
- Strymon TimeLine
- Chase Bliss Gravitas
- Chase Bliss Thermae
- King Tone The Duellist
- Walrus Audio Slö
- Chase Bliss CXM 1978
- Electro-Harmonix POG2
- Eventide H9 Max
- Universal Audio Golden Reverberator
- Universal Audio Astra
- Universal Audio Starlight
- DigiTech FreqOut
- Catalinbread Echorec
- Morningstar MC8 Midi Controller
Malcolm Carmichael: Like Angels Singing
So many pedals, so little time. I don’t think there’s one pedal I haven’t tried out at some point in time but now I just keep it as simple as possible to have everything I need for the setlist my band plays. Also, I’m terrible with patches and programming. All of these are powered just by a simple Power-All 9V/2A wall wart. I’ve tried lots of power supplies and this is light and reliable.
First, the Mooer Baby Tuner is very simple, works every time. Next, is the Dunlop Cry Baby Mini Wah. I’m the rhythm player in my band, but there are a couple tunes where I solo, and I use this when I’m just winging it. It helps and makes me sound better than I am! I think all distortion pedals are a trade-off, but the MXR Distortion III is as good as any and it’s tried and trusted.
Then we have the Electro-Harmonix Holy Grail Nano. Everybody needs a Holy Grail! I’m always surprised how many pro pedalboards I see it on. Very versatile pedal and easy to use. Next is the Hotone Eko delay: I go through all sorts of these little pedals. I find them in bargain bins. This delay is perfectly fine with all the adjustment you need. The Donner Echo Square is a little gem. It’s got everything, including a reverse, which is what I use it for on an original song we play, but it’s got a lot of other great options as well. I like the TC Electronic Stereo Ditto Looper because it’s so simple.
Lastly, I have one of the best ABY switchers in the game, the Radial BigShot. With this, I send out into a Fender Blues Deluxe Reissue and a Vox AC15. Together they are like angels singing. All we have to do now is get this craziness behind us so we can get gigging again. Cheers!
Matt Straw: The Blackboard
I saw the all-white pedalboard from last year’s reader pedalboards, and it reminded me of my black one. My pedalboard(s) are constantly in a state of evolution: I’ve since ditched most of these and gone back to basics. I was using this board from 2014-2016 back when I lived in Nashville and was in the band Things That Crawl. I’ve always hated branding of any type, and I found the varied colors and designs kinda messy and a distraction.
I’m also a professional guitar tech (Robert Plant, Bonnie Raitt, Jack White, Shania Twain, etc.) and am used to fans trying to sneak a peek at the pedals onstage, so I liked the idea of keeping a bit of mystery there (not that anyone could care less about what I was using).
Here’s the list of pedals:
- Boss Tuner
- Boss NS-2 Noise Suppressor
- Ernie Ball Volume Pedal
- ZVEX Super Hard On
- Electro-Harmonix POG
- Tech 21 NYC SansAmp
- Electro-Harmonix Bassballs
- Electro-Harmonix LPB-1
- Boss DD-7 Digital Delay
- Red Witch Medusa Chorus Tremolo
- Electro-Harmonix POG2
- MXR Classic 108 Fuzz
- Marshall The Guv’nor
I eventually added two EarthQuaker Devices pedals (Organizer and Talons), plus a TC Electronic Alter Ego and an MXR Ten Band EQ.
In 2016, I formed a short-lived band called Buffalo (before moving to Joshua Tree) and built a totally new pedalboard with the El Rey Mystic Fuzz, El Rey Fuzz De La Muerte, Electro-Harmonix POG, TC Electronic PolyTune, and a Lehle Dual. Both the El Rey pedals remain unpainted as I think they look super cool! Enjoy.
Nedim Kirlic: Streamlining in Sweden
I’m a guitarist in Sweden. As a 40-year-old, I decided to build my first pedalboard because I wanted to simplify my rig and give myself fewer options than there are in my Line 6 modeler products. Having said that, I quickly realized that it’s not as simple as just putting a few pedals on there. I wanted a pedalboard with a simple pitch shifter-overdrive-distortion-chorus-delay-reverb setup. But it turns out I needed four utility pedals, and more than one overdrive. I was never into fuzz, but I decided to go for it.
The board right now consists of the list below, with the signal chain in order. Though the Boss delay will probably be moved early in the chain, along with a second reverb that I haven’t gotten yet.
- T-Rex pedalboard, 70 cm wide
- T-Rex Fuel Tank Chameleon isolated power supply, mounted underneath with a rail (two pieces)
- Boss TU-2 Chromatic Tuner
- TC Electronic Brainwaves Pitch Shifter
- MXR Uni-Vibe
- Boss GE-7 Graphic Equalizer
- Donner Noise Killer Noise Gate
- Donner Ultimate Comp Compressor
- MXR GT-OD Overdrive
- Boss BD-2 Blues Driver
- Mad Professor Fire Red Fuzz
- ProCo RAT
- Boss DD-8 Digital Delay
- Electro-Harmonix Canyon Delay & Looper
- TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2 Reverb
- Ibanez Tremolo Mini
- Boss RC-3 Loop Station
- The empty spot is reserved for a Boss IR-200 Amp & IR Cabinet
The signal chain right now is going straight into the front of the amp, but sometimes I use the FX loop. In that case, I put the delay, reverb, and tremolo pedals into the loop. And lastly, the loop pedal is last in my signal chain for trying out quick ideas: I record a riff, loop it, and see what bass notes and what sort of bass line I’m going to play over it. The bass line makes a huge impact on the idea and on the finished song.
Ronald Caminati: Aesthetically Pleasing
Here’s my list of pedals: Dunlop Cry Baby Mini Wah, TC Electronic PolyTune3 Mini, Sweet Sound MoFaux Vibe, Toms’line Cream Distortion, Stax Phaser, Mooer Hustle Drive, Rowin Chorus, and finished off by a Boss FB-2 Feedbacker Booster. All powered by a Pedaltrain Volto.
Steve Kellett: The Family Tree
I recently decided to take a family portrait of my pedalboards. I had to take two photos to get it all covered! Spoiler Alert: I have 12 pedalboards.
In the first image, there’s a custom-built flight case containing a TC Electronic Nova System plus extension footswitch and a Dunlop Mister Cry Baby Super Volume/Wah.
Pictured above that, is a Gator Pedal Tote board with the following on it:
- Boss TU-2 ->
- Barber Tone Press ->
- Fulltone Ultimate Octave ->
- Fulltone Full-Drive 2 FM ->
- Om Labs Sahasrara Overdrive ->
- Fulltone Mini-Deja’Vibe ->
- ZVEX Box of Rock Vexter
(Just to prove that nothing is permanent in the pedal world, the Sahasrara has since been replaced by a Fulltone GT500.)
The second photo (do I really have to do this?) ... DEEP BREATH.
Top row from top left we have my Leftovers Board:
- A beat-up CNB case containing a cheapo tuner
- XFX Boutique Destroyer (Friedman BE-OD clone)
- DemonFX King of Drive (clone of a guess what)
- Twinote Pi Fuzz
- Reverend Drivetrain II
- Twinote BBD Chorus
- Twinote BBD Delay
- Ibanez TS-9 RI
Moving clockwise to the right is my Workhorse Board 1:
- Cry Baby Wah
- LY-Rock King of Tone clone
- ProCo Vintage RAT
- Korg G4
- Rowin tuner
- Ammoon Nano Delay
- TC Electronic Spark Mini Booster
Next, to the right, Grab and Go Board 1:
- Boss BCB-30 board
- Boss DS-1 40th Anniversary Edition (which I won from PG’s Stomboxtober giveaway in 2018)
- Keeley-modded Boss BD-2
- ’80s Ibanez AD9
- Fender in-line tuner that gets used when required
Moving on to the second row and starting on the very left is my Chopping Board 1:
- Rowin tuner
- Muslady Golden Horse (Klon Klone)
- Mosky Red Fox (Timmy-based overdrive, CE-2-based chorus, and a delay; FX loop between overdrive and chorus)
- Mosky Black Rat in the FX loop
- Mosky Spring Reverb
Moving to the right is Chopping Board 2 (Yes, they really are bamboo chopping boards that fit into laptop slip cases):
- Rowin tuner
- Rowin Frenzy fuzz
- Mosky DTC (Suhr Riot-based distortion, TS-9-based overdrive; FX loop, and delay)
- Rowin Nano Phaser in the FX loop
Poor Person’s Pink Flow Board:
- Ghost Fire case
- Tomsline AGF-3 G-Fuzz (Germanium Fuzz Face clone)
- Mosky Mini Muff
- Rowin Tuner
- Mosky Tone Bus (Dyna Comp, TS-9, and OCD clones plus power supply for the board)
- Tom’sline AMS-3 Mod Station
- Mosky Tone Makestation (Plexi distortion, FX loop, EP booster, and delay)
- Mastersound Flanger in the FX loop
- Tom’sline ASR-3 Shaper (cab sim)
- Mosky Mini Clean Buffer
Grab and Go Board 2:
- Ammoon pedalboard (containing all XFX Boutique pedals)
- Nine O Nine (TS-based low-gain overdrive)
- Tikus (RAT clone)
- Classic 741 Distortion (MXR Distortion+ clone)
- Slowpick Analog Delay
Bottom row from left to right:
Workhorse Board 2:
- Boss BCB-60 board
- Korg Pitchblack Mini Tuner
- Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer
- Keeley DS-1 Ultra Mod
- Keeley SD-1 Overdrive
- Boss JB-2 Angry Driver
- Orange FS-1L
- Boss CH-1 Super Chorus
- Boss DD-8 Digital Delay with Mosky tap tempo
- Mooer Pure Boost
The Cheese Board:
- Pedaltrain Mini
- cheapo tuner
- 6 ModTone Mini-Mod pedals (Fuzz, Distortion, Overdrive, Chorus, Delay, and Boost)
The Hendrix Board:
- Ammoon pedalboard
- Dunlop Hendrix 70th Anniversary Fuzz Face
- Hendrix Octavio
- Hendrix Univibe
Whew! And that concludes my family tree of pedalboards. Strewth!
Taylor Schlupp: Tom Bukovac Inspo
Hey guys! Here’s a pic of my studio board that I use for recording music and YouTube videos. It’s got a bit of Tom Bukovac inspiration here after seeing his Rig Rundown lol.
- TC Electronic PolyTune
- J. Rockett Blue Note Overdrive (always on)
- Wampler Belle Overdrive
- Nobels ODR1 Natural Overdrive
- Boss GE-7 EQ
- Joyo Ironman Molo-Trem
- Wampler Faux Tape Echo
- Electro-Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb
- Truetone 1 Spot Pro CS7 Power Supply
Tom Foreman: Tone Hunters
I hope all is well with each of you. I look forward to seeing the issue with these photos because it’s always nice to hunt for ideas. I made the pedalboard out of some hardwood sugar maple wood bits left over from a “music-lesson-for-lumber” trade I did with a local forester. It is roadworthy and weighs a ton (just in case I ever need to stun a drummer with it, I suppose).
This board serves a dual purpose with supporting my acoustics and electrics. For acoustic, I run a 1963 Gibson J-50 and a Crafter D6/N through the Radial Tonebone PZ-Pre Preamp with a SolidGold FX Horizon Compressor in the effects loop.
For the electric side, I run a Gibson ES-339 or my Tele into the following:
- Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner
- Midnight 30 Music Upstate Drive (Always on, always awesome! Josh Eiler makes some absolutely killer gear, and this pedal was one of the earlier ones.)
- Late 1980s Pro Co RAT (I got it from Not Just Another Music Shop in Vancouver, BC, while on tour sometime in the early ’90s ... I think)
- Stomp Under Foot Civil War Fuzz (sometimes it sits in for the RAT)
- Barber Electronics Barb E.Q. (boost, grit, chime)
- MXR Six Band EQ (for when I blow a string on my 339 and have to shift over to the Tele mid song)
The effect-loop chain includes: a Line 6 Roto-Machine or TC Electronic Thunderstorm Flanger, a Line 6 DL4, and a Marshall RF-1 Reflector Reverb.
Everything goes into a Dr. Z MAZ 18 NR and a Port City Waves 2x12 cab that I think has one vintage Greenback and one WGS Veteran 30 speaker, but I haven’t looked under the hood in a long time so who knows? Love the magazine and I look forward to it showing up each month!