Traveling With Electronics : Of Dirt, Delay & Density

volume : distortion : delay

.....the holy trinity of tone




Recently I've had interactions with a couple of young acoustic bass players looking for information about the best way to add electronics to their amplified bass rigs..... which can be a daunting experience indeed. For any acoustic instrumentalist who is interested in making this transition you must begin with procuring both a pick-up or microphone and an amp or powered speaker capable of transparently reproducing your tone. Until this first step is completed adding more will only bring confusion. 


 Which is Better :TAPE : ANALOG : DIGITAL : In the end they're just different  


When you are ready to enter the realm of electronics getting a delay and a dirt-box is the best place to begin. Here is my pick for a very inexpensive compact option that covers the widest possible range of time based effects.....Highly Recommended


                                                EHX CANYON Delay & Looper


   For the analog purist or for those who just want a simple basic delay  


either of these excellent units (EHX & MXR) will teach you allot about time


The DIRT-BOX : Distortion : Overdrive : Fuzz are three flavors of tone sculpting and truly the most subjectively personal choice you will make on this journey. The bad news is that talking to guitar players about which one is "the right one" will get you nowhere, but maybe that's really the good news. The bottom line is that you will save yourself allot of grief if you take your rig down to an actual music store and play through as many dirt-box options as you can before you buy anything, trust me. 

at Musicians Friend the combined options for dirt pedals is 545.....that's a long list


     I suggest giving each of these a good long listening as a place to start     






         (for me it's the black arts toneworks pharaoh fuzz my absolute favorite dirt-box)          

        In the end your ears will make the choice for you.....so trust them!        


The final component of the equation is a VOLUME PEDAL (or a volume/wah if you want to add even deeper tone-sculpting ability with a single pedal). Then there's the math of pedal order (vol/dirt/delay : dirt/vol/delay : dirt/delay/vol), but pedal order is once again a part of the journey that is best learned through personal experience.

As always, I hope that this information helps you find your voice.....so enjoy the ride.



***If you use a keyboard for anything and are not hip to the Reface Keyboards*** 


you might want to check this video out : I've been using the CP and LOVE IT!!!



   The March Project Chamber Ensemble : Liminal Sound Series & Density512   


I'm going to leave you this month with some recordings from my AUSTIN TRIP 

& the dulcet tones of KARL UND KARL


until next month, safe travels.....dino


 Conduction : Liminal Density I

What I find most interesting about Conduction, this gift that Butch Morris gave to the music world, is the transparency of the vocabulary which allows the ensemble, each particular group of players, to create music that is unique to them.....it humbles me.