Belated "thank you" to (1st gig w. amp)

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Belated "thank you" to (1st gig w. amp)

Post by Rich_S »

I built my amp, what... four? Five years ago? It's a Lite II built on an old Bogen PA chassis, with ECL86's doing double duty as PI and output stage. It's been residing in my family room for all this time, with a Mini-MASS keeping it throttled down to family-friendly volumes.

This past weekend, my old college frat-parties-and-bars band etc... (that's the name of the band) got back together to play our 25th college reunion - Drexel University Class of '84. Some of us hadn't seen or talked to each other since graduation. Several of us hadn't been actively playing except for some at-home noodling for most of this time, either. We came in from upstate NY, Dallas, and San Francisco for the reunion weekend in Philadelphia. We practiced 6 hours last Thursday, got in a short touch-up rehearsal Friday morning, then played a warm-up show at a friends house Friday night. The big gig was Saturday evening at a reception for the Class of '84 alumni.

Our hour-long set was pulled directly from our set list back in 1984: Pretenders, Police, Pat Benetar, and some other band that don't begin with P. Some pics from the Drexel show and a video from the warm-up party are posted here, with more to come:

Long thread with more details about the people, gear, reunion weekend, top 5 lists, lessons learned, random observations, etc... over at the Seymour Duncan forum: ... p?t=165446 (No sense in repeating it all here.)

This was the first time I had a chance to use my 13 Watter in a gig setting. Practicing by myself in preparation for the weekend, I was starting to worry I didn't like it - it was shrill and honky, and the low end tended to get farty.

But... it sits in the full band mix perfectly. The trick is opening up the Mini-MASS (get better soon, Ted) and relying more on sheer volume for sustain than on gain and overdrive. The sweet spot is with the amp volume on about 4, with the MASS at halfway or higher. Friday with the MASS around 30% it sounded good, but Saturday with the MASS at 50%, it KILLED.

An added bonus of keeping the amp a bit cleaner is that the dynanics are much easier to control with just my right hand. I found on Saturday, that I could play songs like "Message in a Bottle" without having to roll back the guitar volume for the clean parts, just lighten up my picking. This is all stuff that I've been reading and writing about for years now, but didn't appreciate back in '84 when I was young and stoopid, and haven't had a chance to put into practice until now. Maturity has its rewards. Knowing this stuff is good, but actually doing it is a lot more fun.

Anyway, thanks to and especially Zaphod Phil for all their help in putting this little baby together those many years ago. I LOVE MY AMP!
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La, la, laaaa... la-la, la, la!

Rich Stevens

See the 2-Tone Blue Mutant 13 Watter!

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