The Grammy-nominated high minister of funk guitar and host of PG’s Wong Notes podcast take us through his spare but carefully tailored setup.
Hey, what’s happenin’ people?!!! For Cory Wong, who kicks off episodes of his Wong Notes podcast with that question, the answer is he’s currently deep into an international tour—while still recording new episodes, writing music, and producing. But that didn’t stop the prodigious, prolific picker from taking the time during a recent stop at Nashville’s Brooklyn Bowl to guide us through his rig. By the way, the new season of Wong Notes begins March 9 with a big-deal guest, so stay tuned.
Dracula Is in the House
Okay, so that’s a guitar case and not a sarcophagus, but there’s a bloody cool instrument inside. Cory Wong tours exclusively with his signature Fender Cory Wong Stratocaster. This sapphire-blue-transparent-satin-lacquer-finished Strat features a scaled-down alder body with sculpted contours, a maple D-shaped neck with a 10–14" compound radius, Seymour Duncan Cory Wong Clean Machine single-coils, a vintage-style 6-screw synchronized tremolo, and deluxe locking tuners. A panic button push/push pot on tone dial 2 bypasses the 5-way switch and defaults to Wong’s favorite sound: position 4. Wong tours with two of these instruments in standard tuning and one tuned down a half-step. While Wong’s on tour, Fender sends examples of his signature Strats for him to play—and quality check—at shows before they are sold. The Strats stay strung with Ernie Ball Paradigm steel .010 sets and he uses Dava Delrin medium picks.
Plenty of Bark
Wong runs two DV Mark Eric Gales signature Raw Dawg heads. They’re solid-state but have a 6205 mini tube in the preamp, and, despite weighing less than six pounds each, power out 250W at 4 ohms and 150W at 8 ohms.
Convene the Cabinets
To run with the Dawgs, Wong uses a pair of DV Mark cabinets. One has a Jensen 12" and the other an EV EVM12L—all in service of staying clean.
The Chairman’s ’Board
Wong runs his Strat into a Shure GLX D16 Wireless. From there the signal hits a Wampler Ego Compressor, Hotone Soul Press II volume/wah, GFI Systems Rossie envelope filter, a Beetronics Vezzpa octave fuzz, Vertex Ultra Phonix Special Overdrive, a Jackson Audio The Optimist overdrive, a Strymon BigSky reverb, and a TC Subnup dual octave pedal.
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Which one do you prefer?
Rhett and Zach unpack the big news for secondhand guitar sellers and buyers: Sweetwater has launched their new Gear Exchange. How does it compare to Reverb, Craigslist, and Marketplace? To find out, Zach takes the site for a spin and buys a pedal. He calls the process both “very easy” and “normal.” They discuss the pros and cons of the various used-gear outlets and share tips for not getting got when buying gear. Plus, Zach grew a mustache, Mythos Pedals is moving, and he talks about his forthcoming line of Strat pickups inspired by Hendrix’s reverse-stagger setup.
Sweetwater vs. Reverb
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The Reference II Series 112 and new 115 feature a new look, ceramic magnets, and Poplar ply shells.
With gigging musicians in mind, portability was paramount to the design of these cabinets, which still feature all of the power that you expect from Bergantino. Using a lightweight Poplarply shell and Baltic Birch baffles to encase the ceramic-based speakers, these cabinets are extremely easy to transport, while still packing all of the low-end presence and warmth that is required for professional bassists in any genre of music. Covered with rugged tolex finishes and cloth grills, these cabinets look as good as they sound and provide long-term durability that is required for the wear and tear of touring and gigging musicians.
The Reference II Series utilize ceramic magnets with vented pole pieces for the fullest and roundest low-end possible. Along with their high-power handling capability, the Reference II Series cabinets boast versatility fit for players who utilize fingerstyle, pick, slapping, and tapping techniques. Their presence and punch matches their low-end output and produce an accurate, full-bodied, and authentic representation of your bass guitar in both live and studio settings.
Reference II Series 112
The Reference II Series 112 is new and improved, featuring the tone that bass purists love, but in a lighter package without sacrificing any of the full-bodied, robust properties that have made this a favorite. The 112 can achieve any sonic palette you desire while faithfully reproducing the natural tone that comes directly from your bass and your fingers. Many bassists love the Reference II Series 112 because of the “blank canvas” it provides the player seeking a solid, no-frills bass tone, and this updated edition upholds that, but with noticeable improvements. Seamless, tight, quick, and responsive, this cabinet is the right choice for players of all levels.
Reference II Series 115
After receiving many requests to bring back our 115 cabinets, lovers of rumbling low-end can rejoice, as the latest edition to our lineup is here to maximize your bottom end with a responsiveness second to none. We’ve taken everything our players loved about our previous15” offering, shaved some weight, and updated its design to fit our high standards of the Reference II Series. With our proprietary speaker curves, it can be made to sound full and modern or vintage and rolled off, but never dry. The 115 cabinet provides a massive sound in a lightweight, easily transportable package that is ready for small venues, arenas, and everything in between.
Reference II Series 112: $1059.00
Reference II Series 115: $1099.00
These Cabinets Currently Shipping in the USA. For more information, please visit bergantino.com.
The Royale was designed to deliver loud and vivid clean tone with a responsive, tactile low end.
Designed to offer massive headroom, the 50-watt Royale Head lets you indulge in smooth clean tones at even higher volumes on stage without any breakup. Select between class A and class AB modes, with its variable mode switch, so you can choose between gushing Supro tone or a punchier, tight midrange response.
Introducing the Royale Head & Extension Cabinet | Supro
The Royale 1x12 Extension Cabinet features the custom Supro BD12 high-power driver, offering the same mid-range punch and clean articulation as the Royale combo but with additional stage volume. More info: suprousa.com.
Royale Head | $1,499.99
Royale Cab | $669.99
D'Addario Foundation's education project sets out to help schools throughout the country and kicks off with an online auction.
The D’Addario Foundation will host a virtual auction from November 9 to November 30, 2022, with the overarching goal of raising $30,000 for the D'Addario Foundation’s Immersive Music Challenge.
Inspired by a new study published in the Journal of Youth Development, the D'Addario Foundation recently launched the Immersive Music Challenge. This ambitious project will help school districts and charter systems throughout the country boost academic achievement by implementing effective, multi-day-per-week music-based mentoring programs that include training, administration, and evaluation. The D’Addario Foundation has invested in an incredible team of consultants that include school superintendents, public health experts, and data analysts to ensure sound results. In addition, D’Addario is actively seeking corporate partners to support the establishment of these programs and champion their success.
Thanks to the generosity of D'Addario artists and industry partners including Gibson, PRS Guitars, D'Angelico, Taylor Guitars, and more, one-of-a-kind items & experiences are up for bidding. Some of the items include:
- Evans Drumhead signed by Anderson Paak
- ESP Mirage Deluxe '87 Signed by Bruce Kulick of KISS and Grand Funk Railroad
- Gibson Les Paul Custom electric guitar
- D'Addario bass string set signed by Bryan Beller of the Aristocrats
- PRS S2 McCarty 594 Singlecut
- Virtual Lesson with Marty Schwartz