The British music legend welcomed us into his studio
In the past 25 years, no musician has epitomised Britishness quite as much as Graham Coxon. His out-of-the-box creativity combines with an intellectual wit brings to mind what is best about the UK. During his time in Britpop mega-group, Blur, to his solo work, Graham has always pushed the sonic boundaries of the guitar and produced music which is both innovative and harks back to musical traditions of the past century.
Knowing that Mr Coxon was already a proud owner of a Cali76-CD we contacted him to see whether he would like one of our Union Jack Cali76 Compact Deluxe pedals – who better to represent our British engineering heritage?
Graham kindly invited us to deliver his new pedal to his home to have a play with some guitars, amps and pedals. Our Engineer, Ed, is an uber-fan so we had to bring him along to meet his idol!
It was a sunny August day when Graham met us at the garden gate of his London home with a warm smile and a firm handshake. Of course, tea was made before we headed into the home studio where Graham spends much of his time writing, recording and painting.
He was quick to show us his guitar collection and we had a noodle on a baritone which belonged to Sly Stone as well as a lapsteel from the Blur years.
The lapsteel provided a perfect segue to our SlideRIG-equipped pedalboard so we plugged in and Graham had a spin. He seemed to love the extra sustain provided by the pedal and we set it up for a Paris, Texas sound which was soon dubbed Paris, Essex.
Graham then plugged in an electro-acoustic into a Cali76 Compact Deluxe and we dialled it in to get a perfect parallel compression effect; perfect for Graham’s fingerpicking style.
We also had a gander at Graham’s plethora of outboard gear and mics which included a Chandler Germanium compressor and a lovely valve microphone.
The Union Jack Cali76-CD is going to sit pride of place on the studio desk whilst Graham’s other Cali76 is attached firmly to his pedalboard, which was built by Daniel Steinhardt of TheGigRig.
It is always such a pleasure to meet our artists and Graham Coxon proved to be one of the nicest we’ve ever met. He’s so genuine, humble and happy to talk shop. He makes a great cuppa tea too!