As a musician I always think it is important to have a great “Rig”. A rig Is basically the equipment that any musician uses for their music life. A Rig is very personal to any musician but all comes down to preference and style of playing. An example of this for jazz players, jazz players commonly have clean amps with light overdrive pedals to achieve the classic “Jazz sound”. However Metal players don’t always think about using clean amps, they go for high gain, compressed, high volume rigs to suit their genre.
As previously mentioned in my blogs, I have a Vlog page which features my life as a degree student. Even though my page is fairly new, it features footage from my time on my degree. In the future it will show in detail my whole experience of being a degree student. For this video I thought it would be handy to share a link from my first video which basically shows my home studio and live rig. Here is a link to my first video and rig rundown – http://str.ie/ZYWHtd0P
To start with Id like to take a quick look at my guitars….
My first guitar in my collection is my 1993 Epiphone SG G-400.
My Epiphone SG was my first official electric guitar which started my obsession with music. Its a really special guitar to me as not only was it my first proper electric guitar but also it was made in 1993 which makes it 3 years older than me which is great. Because the guitar was made in 1993 it actually makes the build quality a lot better to the SG G400s that are made today. Gibson use to offically own Epiphone and built the Epiphone guitars to a great quality but unfortunately had to sell a huge percentage of the company to another company which brought the build quality of the the guitars significantly down. This also meant that the new company had to build the guitars in other factories with their own way of creating the guitars. The old epiphones (like mine) use to be hand made but now unfortunately are machine built which again loses the quality. My SG was built very well in 1993 for a Epiphone in comparison to the new G400 and some people even argue that these Epiphones are very close if not better than the Gibsons back then and even now. I personally love this guitar and would never part with it due to its sentimental value and great build.However this guitar is probably my least used electric in my collection. This has been a great guitar to me and served me really well. Occasionally I still use my SG as it sounds great but due to the level that the other guitars in my collection that are used, I don’t always have time to play this one. However currently it is having work done on it at Clevdon Music shop (my favourite shop in northsomerset) by Mark (their technician) as im getting it upgraded with really high end components like Bare knuckle pickups, groover machine heads etc. I will make a blog post about it when I get it back.
Anyways thats my SG Lets move on…..
My next guitar is one of my favourites from my collection. Its my 1995 Epiphone Les Paul.
I picked up my les paul around 3 years ago now. I wasn’t able to afford any les paul at the time. As a guitarist I have always wanted a les paul but at the time I wanted a brand new Epiphone Les Paul. When I bought this I was actually in a guitar shop looking to buy a new set of guitar strings for my SG. With my Birthday around the corner I knew that I had money on the way. I walked past the window of one of my favourite guitar shops in Clevdon and was Instantly attracted to the look of this Beautiful Les paul in the window. At that point I then went into the guitar shop and demanded to play the Les Paul. At the time I didn’t have the money to buy this guitar but I knew that this was the one. For me “The One” sums up a guitar that really means something to me. This les paul for me was “The One” as it felt and played so nice in comparison to other guitars I played in the past.
When I first played it I noticed that it was quit beaten up, in the sense that it had quit a few scratches and cracks on the back of the guitar. Before this point, I never bought a guitar that was used to the point that it had loads of wear. I also use to be very OCD about my equipment in the sense that I always wanted everything to be clean and in pristine condition. To buy this Les Paul would brake my Habbit.
At the time I was wondering wether buying this Les Paul would be a Mistake but I physically couldn’t walk away from it. For me, If I can’t walk away from a guitar then I know its “The One”. So `i put a £100 deposit on it and paid it off over a 2 month period and eventually I got my Les Paul. For me my les paul is one of my favourite guitars that I own as its been through a lot with me, Ive gig’d it a lot, and added to the scratches/cracks that was originally on it.
Funnily enough this les paul was built in the same factory in Korea as my SG but just 2 years later. I actually feel quit a strong connection between both of these guitars as they are both very similarly built in quality and feel even though they are completely different guitars from the same brand.
My Fender stratocaster 2011 Model
This is my Fender stratocaster which I actually bought a year after my Les Paul. Like my Les Paul my Strat was a unexpected buy. 2 years ago I had issues with my Les paul where the wiring with the pickups wasn’t working properly and would cut out with the volume every so often. Unfortunately I had to wait around for the technician Mark (at calved music shop) to get back from his Lunch. I was waiting for him to fix my guitar as I needed it desperately for the gig that week. In normal cercamstances I would have come back another day but as I had a gig that week I needed the guitar to be fixed. So while I waited, I thought id try out a couple of guitars whilst I was waiting around. In the end I played on a squire classic Vibe stratocaster, a mexican telecaster and this guitar. Instantly when I played this guitar I fell in love with it. At the time I had a old strat copy that I enjoyed playing but was never happy with it. I often thought very badly of the stratocasters from my previous experience of playing my dads strat until I played this one. I ended up playing this Strat for a straight hour in the shop and couldn’t let it go. I knew this was “The One” so I bought it. Thankfully I had enough money at the time to buy it with so I bought it.
Heres a modern up to date picture of it now…..
As you can see it looks slightly different as I have modded it slightly.
Now you might be thinking what is a Mod? The word “Mod” Is short for Modification which used in this example basically means an upgrade. I upgraded my strat with Lace sensor pickups, changed the wiring, added custom shop pots and changed the Machine heads for Fender custom shop locking machine heads for extra running stability. This Upgrade changed my strat from a good guitar to a amazing guitar. The sound of the strat is perfect for that classic Fender sound but retains clarity with heavy amounts of gain so you can hear each individual note when play lead lines or melodies which is perfect for my style. This is a fantastic guitar apart of my collection and I will treasure this guitar for a very long time as it was the first Stratocaster that I ever truly loved when I first played it.
Finally for my electric guitars is my Prs Se 24 Custom
I bought my Prs about a year ago now around November time. For years now Ive supported a famous Youtuber called Rob chapman who I will discuss in other blogs in the future. Rob owns his own guitar company called Chapman guitars which I have seen progress over the last 3-5 years. Ever since Chapman guitar were created I was always interested in the company. Before I bought my Prs, I wanted to buy a Chapman guitar. The only place I could buy a chapman guitar was in guilford. The store that sold Chapman guitars is called Andertons which is the biggest and most highly rated Music retailer in the Uk which is based in guilford. So I travelled to Andertons. In the end I tried 6 Chapman guitars, 1 Gibbson and a Hagstrom. At this point I was pretty set on a Chapman Ml-1 Rabea Massad model until I stepped into the Prs section of andertons.
Since the start of my journey with guitar, PRS has been in my opinion a highly rated Brand in my books. When I walked into the room I was instantly attracted to this PRS. In the room I was surrounded by guitars that were worth thousands of pounds each and as soon as I looked at my PRS I instantly assumed it was a high end model. Then when I looked into the model and the specs I soon realised how much the Prs was worth. With this in mind I ran back to my practise room with this guitar, played and instantly loved it. For me this Prs was everything I wanted out of my next guitar to suit my needs for my collection. This was why I bought this guitar.
I also use a Faith Neptune, which has been a recent purchase for me. This Is my only acoustic guitar in my collection but is fantastic. As I am primarily a electric guitar player I don’t generally find myself playing a lot of acoustic but when I do I really need a nice acoustic.
My Faith Acoustic was always planed unlike my other guitars. From a very early age of playing guitar I knew that I wanted a Faith acoustic. Since having a job I saved for months to try and buy a faith and finally I own one. Faith are a fantastic modern brand that have produced some fantastic instruments over the years by the one and only Patrick Eaggle who is a phenomenal luthier and designer in the Uk. Like with all of my other guitars, this guitar stood out to me for looks, sound and feel. This was what pushed me to buy this beautiful guitar.
The Final Part of my Rig is my Amp which Is a Blackstar Id 260tvp which is a very versatile digital valve modelling amp. Ive owned my blackstar for around a year and a half now and I’ve gigged it a lot. It has served me really well and is loud enough to play at nearly any venue.
Heres a picture of it…
with this amp you can recreate your favourite valve amp sounds without the burden of having a valve amp
. Valve amps can break from dropping the amp, bashing it or even playing the amp too loud. With this amp you don’t have that problem and it still retains the sound of a valve amp itself digitally. For me this is the closest solid state amp that captures the sound of a valve amp. Valve amps sound and react differently to solid state digital amps. This is a fantastic, versatile amp with a wide variety of tonal options which makes it really good for any guitarist.
Thats it from me, apart from a couple of pedals this is my main gigging and professional music gear. All of the equipment listed, I use on a dayily/weekly basis for my music life and thought id share this with you as it is a fundamental part of my sound and style. A guitar rig is super important to any musician as it can change the way you play and the way you sound within the genre that you play. My Rig isn’t the most expensive rig of all but it is perfect for me as a guitarist as I love all of my guitars and have sculpted the sound to my style of playing and to what I like.
Hope you guys enjoyed the Blog, Make sure you stay tuned for my future Blogs and I will catch you guys soon! Cheers!!