Morning Jam

I was home this morning with sick kids.  One child was in the other room on the couch, the other was following me (I’m not sure he’s very sick).  My pedal board, amp, and headphones were still out from last night, so I plugged in my guitar…and unplugged my headphones.  I didn’t turn it up loud, but it wasn’t quiet either.

It was a lot of fun.  My son started dancing, especially when I recorded a power chord riff on the Boss RC-20 Loop Station and soloed over it.  Then I started a delay, reverb, tremelo, wah, distortion, overdrive, every pedal wall of sound.  Then I used the volume pedal to add swells of individual notes.  It was fun.

My son watched as I stepped on different pedal switches.  Then he got into the act.  So I just started playing and enjoyed what he liked and didn’t like as he explored my pedal board.  Every setting was changed, but it was worth it.

The interesting thing was that for the first half of my playing (before my 20 month old son got into the act) I was not happy with my sound.  I tried every pick up configuration and pedal configuration.  Nothing sounded really good.  Then, as if a switch had been flipped, it all started to sound good.

I started to hear and like the differences between the P-90, single coil rail, series humbucker and parallel humbucker in the neck pick up.  Same for the bridge pick up.  I reverse wired the 4 pick up wires to the triple shot mounting rings for the bridge position (per the instructions that show you which colors go where for standard and reverse wiring to the triple shot).  I really like the concept of putting both switches on the triple shot mounting rings in the direction of the coil I want to use.  I’m glad I did this because I need uniformity between the neck and bridge pick ups.  And I find it very easy to switch between the different configurations while playing.  I can go back and forth between the neck and bridge pick ups, switching things up depending on what I want to play and what sound I want to get.  I don’t know how to explain it very well for the purposes of the blog….but here it goes.

For example.  If I want a biting P-90 bridge sound, I just have to push the two selector switches on the triple shot that direction.  If I want a smoother humbucker sound for cleaner chords, I push the triple shot switches both out (away from each other).  When I want a searing solo sound, I push the switches together for a humbucker signal that pushes the amp into a better overdrive lead sound.  And when I want a bluesy or twangy sound, I push the switches both toward that rail.

Then I mix and match the neck and bridge pick up configurations with each other for even more fun.  Add the independent volume and tone knobs for each pick up and I try not get lost!

Anyway, none of the pick up configurations sounded good for the first half of my playing.  My sound seemed to have too much bass.  It sounded muddy and kind of foggy.  It was still a guitar sound through an amp, but it just didn’t sound crisp and exciting.  Then it all started to sound good.  I don’t know what happened, but it was a gone one moment, then back the next.  The opposite thing happened to me when I played my new guitar at my local guitar shop on the Old School Amp.  When I first plugged it in, it sounded great.  I could really hear the differences between the different coil configurations.  Then it all started to sound bad.  I couldn’t get anything to sound right.

I don’t know if I screwed something up in my wiring or if my ears finally woke up, but right now it is working properly and sounds good.  If it goes back to sounding bad, then I’ll have to trouble shoot it.

So far, when I can hear the differences, I’m very happy with the P-rail and triple shot match up!

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