We’ve seen a lot of this before. In this video, Joe Bonamassa is going to get a bunch of different sounds out of a Les Paul without stepping on pedals or messing with his amp.
I know all of this. When I was in high school I had this super loud, solid state Peavey 2×12 with a built in chorus (that I never used). It had a clean channel and a drive channel and a foot switch to swap back and forth. I didn’t use a lot of pedals, apart from a wah wah, and that amp foot switch did all of my clean/dirty work for me.
Then in 1988 or ‘89 or so, we did a gig in a parking lot. I put that huge Peavey into the back of the mini van along with the rest of the band’s gear. The foot switch was plugged into the back of the amp and in the process of squeezing everything in the plug got squashed and was unusable.
I had a ton of switching channels to do, but now I didn’t have a switch to switch with. My work around was to use the drive channel, but set my neck pickup volume way down low so that it sounded nice and clean. Then instead of using the foot switch, I just flipped the pick up switch.
These days I have pedals for all of that so I generally keep all four knobs on the guitar up full. It bothers me a little though when I see people refer to cleaning up with the volume knob as a trick. It’s just the most obvious thing there is, right? Anyone whose messed with an electric guitar through a distorted amp figures out that lowering the volume on the guitar cleans the signal… don’t they? Why does Mr Bonamassa (and countless other YouTube guitar players) make it sound like it’s news to us? I don’t get it.
I have nothing but respect for Joe Bonamassa and I would literally kill to have his chops. I actually have his signature Cry Baby Wah on the band pedal board right now. Someday I’d like to try out his signature Fuzz Face too. Joe may tell us to use the guitar instead of pedals, but I’ll be okay using pedals with his name on them for now.
This post seems to have rambled a smidge. Sorry, I’m really tired.
Have a good night, friends.