Geek Out: Guitars

We thought we’d do a quick feature about Farrah’s guitars and amps for those geeky people out there!

20080823 Guitars

One thing to remember is that we always tune down a whole step so for those of you trying to play along you may end up confused! We use 12-54 (sometime 13-56) strings so the guitars stay in tune – partly because of the lower tuning but also sweaty hands on stage and slippery banana fingers bending strings unintentionally.

When we started out Jez was playing a Guild Bluesbird Goldtop which featured heavily on the first two albums. It contrasted well with Andy’s American Telecaster (with a coil-tapped Seymour Duncan “Little ’59” bridge humbucker) as his sounded more wirey and new wave and Jez’s sounded warm and chunky.

In those days Jez was playing on stage through a Marshall JTM60 head (the most unreliable amp ever) and 4×10 cab but a lot of the first record was through a really nice old Vox AC30 owned by the producer. Andy has always played through a Fender Blues DeVille.

20080823 Pedals

Jez’s current live setup is a USA custom telecaster and a Vox AC30 CCX. For FX he uses a pedalboard comprised of an ancient CO-01 Yamaha Compressor, Maxon OD9 Overdrive, Bad Horse 2 Wah and a Line 6 Delay modeler. However, for shows abroad I take a PODxt and shortboard as I never know what kind of amp I’m going to play through and the Pod means even if the amp is terrible I can still get a usable sound. I bought the model pack add-ons for the Pod as they have some great tube delay sounds and some weird and wonderful sci-fi FX as well

Andrew had built his own FX – a customised tubescreamer clone and an analog delay – and was using them alongside a Danelectro Rocky Road Leslie simulator, but they were lost (or stolen) at a gig last year. So until he finds time to make some more he’s compromising with a Maxon Tube Screamer, Danelectro PB&J Delay and a Boss CH1 Chorus.

When recordeding the “Farrah” album we were pretty spoilt in terms of amps and guitars as we were recording at the awesome¬†Diversion Studios. Most of the heavier guitar sounds were recorded with a vintage Tele, or sometimes a P90 fitted PRS, through a Mesa Nomad 45 head and 2×12 cab. The cleaner sounds were mostly a Badcat or the Fender Deville.

20090117 Jez & Rickenbacker

We used a Rickenbacker 12-string on a few songs as well as a Gretsch which, we’re told, was formerly owned by Bachman Turner Overdrive and plays the classic riff on “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet”.

The acoustics were either Jez’s 1985 Taylor parlour guitar or the more modern Taylor at the studio. The bass was usually Michelle’s trusty precision recorded through an Ashdown rig (which used to belong to John Entwistle from The Who!).

Hope you geeks are happy!

ja & ac