These Stompboxes Have Been Carefully Considered to Work Best with Fender Tweed Amps
Function band guitarist and tonehound, Ed Oleszko, recently contributed to a feature in The Guitar Magazine all about Fender Tweed amplifiers where he mentioned how great our Cali76-TX sounds with his Tweed combos. We got in touch with Ed to chat about amps and compressors and after a lengthy conversation we hooked Ed up with a compact Cali76.
We spotted the new pedal on Ed’s board thanks to Instagram so asked for some info about why he chose these specific pedals to work with his Tweed amps and he came back with a whole load of geekiness! We’ve copied it out here for all you gear nerds… put a brew on!
— Ed Oleszko (@EdOleszko) May 29, 2016
“I run a Gibson Collector Choice #CC15 with Monty’s PAF’s, a Gibson Memphis Custom ES345 with Monty’s PAF’s, a custom built Durnaley Taff Delta Blackguard Tele replica with oil city pickups, a custom built ’61 spec Strat with Home of Tone pickups, a custom built La Cabronita with a special custom made set of unpotted Mcnelly Sparkletron Filtertrons, a Gibson ’56 Goldtop with Tyson Tone P90’s.
“I run the board into old vintage Fender Tweed amps (as you’ll see in the mag). Depending on the gig requirements it’ll be a combination of either a 1959 5F6-A Bassman, a 1956 5F4-A Super or a 1957 5F11 Vibrolux – all the amps have different combinations of Celestion speakers in as, despite loving the tone of old Jensens, they just aren’t roadworthy.”
“The Bassman and Super have a mix of Celestion Gold Alnico and G10 Vintage Ceramic 10inch speakers and the Vibrolux (which originally had a 10inch speaker baffle) now has a 12inch Celestion Blue.
“For every gig, I always run a combination of two amps – for tonal reasons (and in case one goes down mid gig). I run the pedalboard into a Lehle p-Split which removes any ground loops or phasing issues when using more than one amp, both amps are always on and set to where they are naturally overdriven when you hit hard but cleanish when you play softly.”
“As for the pedals, to be honest, I use them more as ‘sweeteners’ than always on pedals and could easily get away with no pedals at all. However, like most guitarists, it’s great to have some options (especially when playing a range of covers from ’60s stuff to modern stuff) so depending on the gig/song/room/band/etc I will use the compressor to actually lower the signal to the amps producing a clean sound which is like rolling your guitar volume down only you can control the compression level also- very useful! I also use the compressor with a Telecaster/Strat into the Bassman for clean stuff.
“For heavier stuff or solos I’ll step on the Ibanez TS9 (it’s a very early vintage 1980/81 low serial number JRC4558D chip model) and if further amp boosting is needed (or in quieter venues when I can run the amps loud enough) I also turn on the Kingsley Page valve booster (a fantastic pedal that’s best described as sounding like you’ve just turned up your amp a few notches).
“The AD9 is also an 80’s vintage one and is the best sounding delay that just melds into your sound rather than sits on top of it like many modern pedals do. I use it sparingly but it’s great. The only delay that sounds better than this is my old ’73 Maestro EP3 Echoplex – it’s quite temperamental at gigs but I’m determined to get into bringing it along to gigs so currently, the little AD9 does a good job.”
The Signal Chain
“The Wah is a Bonamassa Wah – only used occasionally but it’s great and very vocal sounding.
“The tuner is a true bypass Polytune noir – bought because it’s black and looks cool and it does the job of course!
“The MXR Reverb is a great little pedal – but I only use the ‘shimmer’ setting to make faux keyboard pads for songs that require it. The spring setting on it is good but I prefer the tone of real analogue stuff hence the massive but brilliant Carl Martin Headroom Spring Reverb -it’ss new to me but it sounds utterly fantastic and doesn’t actually suck any tone (unlike the old Fender tanks) and again despite it being quite large on a board, it has two selectable levels and is easier to carry around than an old Fender tank.
“The pedals are quite strategically placed to take advantage of the buffers in some and true bypass in others to keep as much tonal strength as possible without needing to resort to a GigRig G2 switcher or anything. As I mentioned, I only really switch the pedals on every now and again and as such have no need for a big switching system – however, I may invest in a strip of true bypass loops like a gig rig quartermaster at some point – although my signal chain is very clean sounding with very minimal tonal loss so there’s no huge need.
“I power it all with a Strymon Zuma – great and quiet power supply and use a combination of George L, Bullet Cable, Hosa, Planet Waves patch cables and Klotz cables, all high-end stuff.”