Tone goals?

Tone goals?

Postby Smolder » Sun Mar 04, 2012 8:45 am

Just curious how the tonal aspirations shape up hear. I'm a huge fan of both Jer and Bobby's playing and one. They hugely influence what's in my head, but I'm not looking to clone or imitate the sound. But then I'm not looking to do a tribute thing. Wondering how that shapes your playing, how much of you comes through in your shows, and if your setting your own style aside in order to nail Jerry or Bobby's?
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Re: Tone goals?

Postby Dwarf Rat » Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:57 am

My band is a four piece with bass, drums, electric and acoustic guitars. The drummer and acoustic player are very strong vocalists. I sing the occasional lead and most harmonies.

We don't try to ape Jerry tone. We play the tunes to the best of our abilities. We mix our sets with Dead, Ry Cooder, Lindley, Taj Mahal , Traffic, Hot Tuna, Country Joe, Kinks, Haggard, Staples Singers, Curtis Mayfield, Lyle Lovett, Hendrix, and my originals.

If I need to quote a Jerry line, I will. Playing Bobby's chord shapes is useful depending on the tune. We are a cover band like the Dead were a cover band in that we play the tune our way.

The last thing I want to do is play or sound like Jerry. He taught me to be myself.
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Re: Tone goals?

Postby Jon S. » Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:12 pm

Perhaps my fave Dead (and Allmans) cover band is Great Caesar's Ghost. I love the way they respect without idolizing the Dead's spirit, arrangements, and tone. Though I may be prejudiced - their lead guitarist is one of my best friends and I, too, count Jerry and Dickie as my top influences. Butch Trucks joins them on their latest CD, by the way - pretty cool. :smile:

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Re: Tone goals?

Postby milobender » Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:59 pm

We don't try to ape Jerry tone. We play the tunes to the best of our abilities. We mix our sets with Dead, Ry Cooder, Lindley, Taj Mahal , Traffic, Hot Tuna, Country Joe, Kinks, Haggard, Staples Singers, Curtis Mayfield, Lyle Lovett, Hendrix, and my originals.If I need to quote a Jerry line, I will. Playing Bobby's chord shapes is useful depending on the tune. We are a cover band like the Dead were a cover band in that we play the tune our way.The last thing I want to do is play or sound like Jerry. He taught me to be myself.


Ditto! :smile:

Which reminds me of a mystery... I wonder why every guitar player doesn't use the UGB/OBEL technology, no matter what sound they like... it just makes everything better :-) ]
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Re: Tone goals?

Postby Smolder » Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:04 pm

Thanks guys... My ask (pretty transparent) is aimed at determining just how far to push the pursuit of tone. A giant Mac and the OBEL system seem extreme from where I am sitting, but having not tried them I really can't tell. What I do know is that stadiums aren't in my future ; )

Always wanted to put together a band that does covers - but do them in a style like the dead would. Basically taking the concept a step towards the mainstream. Could be fun.
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Re: Tone goals?

Postby milobender » Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:57 pm

The big Mc and/or a Twin is too much for 99% of the places I play... but the OBEL/UGB is essential I think...
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Re: Tone goals?

Postby tcsned » Sun Mar 04, 2012 7:01 pm

I've go for get close enough without trying too hard to get it exact. We do mostly dead tunes but I play a ton of other stuff from bluegrass, to gypsy jazz, i do musical theater, and an occasional AC/DC tune. I try to bring it all with me when I play any song. I've always been a Fender type amp guy but I've never liked DiMarzio pickups. I like the OBEL and buffer but to me that's really more functionality than tone. So as most of us are, I'm a mixed bag. But Dead music is my favorite.
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Re: Tone goals?

Postby Tony6Strings » Mon Mar 05, 2012 11:09 pm

As far as gear goes, I'm really happy with my tone. My rig is prolly gonna seem really simple compared to some of your guys' stuff, and that's how I prefer it. I play an Am. Std. Strat (with DAllen CS 69 Voodoos) decked, with 10's, through a 100 watt silverface twin, in which one of the speakers is a D120 (can't wait to get another!). Before the twin it was a 70 watt silverface Pro Reverb. Both are amazing amps, the trade deal actually worked out to where I get to keep them both, basically a trade and then buyback in installments. Between guitar and amp is an early 80's MIJ Boss DS-1, an Ibanez CS-9 chorus (also early 80's, really good years for effects IMHO) a standard Cry Baby wah, and an Ernie Ball volume pedal. Oh, and a Boss stompbox tuner. Soon to go in the chain will be a MXR Dyna Comp compressor and a Tube Screamer of some sort. I was thinking on getting an Earth Drive but I need all the extra cheddar I can get for another D120, so I'll prolly get a Maxon or an Ibanez and have it modded a la Analogman. I use Mogami cable, I buy it in bulk along with Neutrik plugs and make what I need. So that sums up my rig, and I gotta tell ya it sounds amazing. Does everything I want it to. I guess my main tone goal is more in keeping up my chops and being in a constant state of improvement and learning with guitar playing. It's easy to get complacent, and then out of the blue you hear something or play something that makes you wake up and get back to work. I want to be progressing every day, at a rate similar to that of when I get a proverbial fire lit under me.
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