The Black Squier–Update

Saturday, November 7th, 2015

More pressing of words, less booking of faces. This is an update to an earlier post about my beloved E-series Squier Strat from 198something.  It might be of use to you if you are thinking of modding or rehabbing a Stratty guitar. Since that post, I’ve done the following: Started playing in a band called […]

Guitar repair/mod – The Black Squier

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

My friend Richard has had a lot of music gear, and much of it has been pretty interesting. A lot of it has been so interesting that, when he’s decided to sell it, I’ve bought it. I played guitar in Richard’s band for a couple of years. After decades of playing bass, it was my […]

Guitar repair/mod – Festus the Mystery Guitar

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

One of my many annoying habits is sending emails to my musician friends about instruments I know they will: a) love and not be able to afford. b) completely hate. I sent a link to a Craigslist ad for a guitar to a bunch of my friends. The guitar in the ad had started life […]

Pedal Mod – Ibanez LA Metal

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

I’ve always believed two rules about bands and pedals: Any group of three or more musicians with a decent amount of talent and commitment can write at least ONE good song Any pedal has ONE usable sound in it.  It might only be usable in the most limited context, but you can always find ONE […]

Pedal Mod – BBE AM64

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

This one is really simple. The BBE AM64 is a distortion pedal for guitar.  Yep. I love overdrive pedals, particularly medium-gain ones, that let you control the amount of crunch with your picking or the volume knob/pdeal. I love fuzz pedals, particularly the insanely gain-y ones where you hit the button and hold on for […]

A beer in time

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

A friend of mine got a really great deal on an amp.  It’s a Traynor YCV40, of which I am a big fan.  In fact, I have a Traynor YCV40WR, and I love it. The YCV40 is a 40 watt tube combo amp with a single 12″ speaker.  Like a lot of combos, the amp […]

Seymour Duncan Tweak Fuzz Repair

Friday, January 4th, 2013

Should you ever need to repair a Seymour Duncan Tweak Fuzz, you will probably find this schematic. It is largely accurate, and I am always grateful to anyone who takes the time to make such things available. But there is one correction you should know about: P2 (the Gain potentiometer) is a 2KC. That is, […]

Whooper Looper!

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

Holy crap! It’s a true-bypass effects loop, with a wacky twist! I use bypass loop pedals all the time in my pedalboard.  I have two double loops made by Loooper which are just great–he does excellent and tidy work.  If you don’t want to build your own stuff, I highly recommend getting one made by Loooper. […]

Ninja Secrets of Geddy Lee

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

I am going to save you some money here, because I know you are all trying to get that Geddy tone. I own an Ashly SC-40 preamp. This is the pre that Geddy Lee used for many years.  It’s not Ashly’s bass-specific preamp (that was the BP-41), but a very good piece of kit that […]


Sunday, June 12th, 2011

I sometimes play with and always tech for, an Irish band called “Ellis Island.”  The band was playing both Friday and Saturday nights this weekend, about 4 hours per night. On Friday night (Friday NIIIIGHT?), the cross-brace at the back of Mick Doyle’s bodhran broke.  I think that this had something to do with it […]