How I do what I do...

I make my music alone and I play it alone. It can be a little lonely being a one man band! If you'd like to know how I do it then here goes. 

 

On stage my main piece of kit is my loop pedal. It is an Electro Harmonix EHX 45000. A 4 channel looping machine with 2 inputs. I use one input for the microphone and one for the guitar. I build up the full sound with these 2 inputs and use the 4 mono channels to mix the music live on stage. Each track has a fader and left and right balance so I can bring sounds in and out. 

Microphone track: 

I use the mic track to record the beatbox drum track, percussion (tambourine, shaker, triangle, agogo and woodblock), and vocal loops ('ooh', 'ah' and  'mmmm'!)

The mic runs through a few effects pedals before it goes into the looper:

>EQ - This is so I can bring out the bass frequencies of the kick sound on the beat box track.

>Overdrive/gain - This roughs up the sound, giving it a more raw, distorted quality.

>Reverb/Delay.

>Nose Suppressor - The most important one. I can set a volume level where the mic will stop recording sound. A big issue with looping is re-looping the track you have already looped that is playing in the background. The sound bleeds from the stage monitors into the next recorded track. This pedal is great at minimising this. 

 

Guitar track:

This is used to record regular guitar (with various effects pedals) and bass guitar (using a bass octave effects pedal. Pedals I use:

>Overdrive - mainly for the bass track and for a cleaner sound.

>Distortion.

>Electro Harmonix Bass Octave Multiplexer.

>Electro Harmonix B9 Organ Machine - this makes my guitar sound like various analogue organs

>Tremelo

>Delay

 

I usually start with the beatbox track and build from there (it's much easier to build around a solid sounding rhythm track). I have a few guitars but my go to favourite (mainly because it is so small and light, because I'm lazy) is my Spongebob Squarepants Banned From Bikini Bottom 3/4 size children's guitar. It cost me £20 on Ebay. I replaced the tuners and exchanged the cheap pickup with a Gibson humbucker and a Hot Rails humbucker. It sounds amazing. 

 

Here are some video links that show the process:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZvVACbC9Kc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cg64opMy1w

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7yn-BQFuzdc

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