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Gear and Tone Decisions

 

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Making Good Decisions

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What gear and tone to use is completely dependent on the musical context. There are guitar tones that will work for 95% of all situations, and then there are all the other sounds that may be super cool but only work once in a blue moon. It's very important to be able to tell those two apart! Take for example those lightly overdriven tones with a little bit of reverb that we've used a bunch throughout the curriculum - those are almost always a safe bet.

But they can also get a little boring if you use them all the time, so that's when you can sometimes get away with some cool weird effects, strange fuzz tones and delay settings. It's up to you to experiment with this and develop the judgement you need in order to determine whether something fits the musical context or not. For example don't use a heavy metal distortion for your rhythm part in a sensitive ballad or don't add a ton of delay to a raw and gritty southern rock riff.

For this tutorial we're going to use a basic overdriven tone as the starting point, coming from a small Fender amp being turned up almost all the way. Then we'll add some more sounds and effects throughout the tutorial. We're going to pick a handful of effects that we can choose from, which could be similar to the pedals you may have on your board or in your drawer. Of course you don't have to use all of your pedals in one song, but for the sake of practicing some good decision making, we'll use them all in this tutorial. The effects we'll choose from today are a fuzz pedal, a flanger pedal and a delay pedal.