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Clean or Dirty - how do you play yours?


windhoek

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As an electric guitar newbie, I initially found myself drawn to the dirty side of my 175D, but now that the novelty has worn off, I love it nice and clean :)

 

What about you; do you play it nice and clean or all badass and dirty?

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The older I get the cleaner I become. [rolleyes]

 

When I was young I wasn't that great of a picker, so I liked the dirty sound to hide my flaws. Now I can play good enough so that I don't fear them. The weird thing is that I'm originally a piano player. But because I haven't practice piano in years I lost my chops. I sometimes want to mic my piano and run it through a distortion pedal to hide my mistakes!

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I prefer multi channel amps so I can switch between clean and overdriven tones at will. If either channel is lacking then the amp goes up for sale. I want everything in the amp and don't care to deal with overdrive pedals.

 

Clean or dirty, a Les Paul Classic and Bogner Shiva is great sound. :)

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for me it's how I justify all my gear.......

 

Depends on mood, what I've been listening to, etc.

 

Some days it's a tele on a nice warm clean tone

 

Some days it's a strat with a light crunch

 

Double cut special with p90's and a heavy crunch

 

or dime everything and pull out the explorer with the super distortion in it.

 

I do find myself playing fairly clean when "practicing" or learning something so it forces me to play better. If I'm just looking to blow off stress, the gain it up and let it eat.

 

NHTom

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With my LPs most of the time I play mostly clean; perhaps 85% clean with 15% 'lint' when I dig in deep. PG's 'Black Magic Woman' if that's any help?

Sometimes, though, I'll go quite a bit more 'Beano' / B.F.Gibbons.

 

With the Strat I vary it a lot more. Think 'Derek'-era Clapton / Rory Gallagher for the majority of the time.

Occasionally I'll go down the cleaner Knopfler route.

 

With the D'Angelico (if amplified) I'll play pure clean with the tone rolled back quite a bit. I'd hesitate to claim JoePass/HerbEllis tone but that's sort-of the aim.

Most of the time I play the D'A as an acoustic, though, so the right-hand positioning and attack is the main determining factor.

 

Pip.

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Back in the 80's I was always searching for my sound and only got it once.I borrowed a Marshall 50 for a big gig and the sound was perfect. No fuzz, just amp distortion. That sound of the Marshall at full volume with an MXR micro amp in front for solo boost. My Marshall's never gave me what I wanted. Perhaps I should have tried something else

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On the 175-types, one or two pups, functionally pretty clean, with perhaps just a tad bit of reverb and/or chorus on a SS and just a tad bit of reverb on tubes if available.

 

But "clean" IMHO has to do as much about overall settings on an amp. We'll get a somewhat different sound regardless depending on both amp and guitar settings. For example, on my two-pup 175 I use a bit of the bridge pup as well as the neck, then adjust a bit on tone and volume pups. Thence into the amp. On the single-pup, pretty much whole hog on volume and mess with tone to "fit." Then if I'm in a place where volume is too much, tone it down to fit.

 

Overall though, I tend to want a guitarry sound as opposed to a sax played "dirty" which is what I think distortion pedals were designed to do in the olden days anyway - then a good sax player was unneeded in a four-piece two guitar and bass and drum combo.

 

I've pretty much done that even in my olden days of playing variations of rock and country in dance halls and saloons on various guitars.

 

Strings too make a diff - and all of my archtops basically wear the same string gauges as my semis and acoustics, 9-42, which is a lot lighter than most folks, but then I've almost always preferred a lighter touch than many, regardless what style I was playing. My final "country saloon" guitar from my olden days has also done solo jazz, btw; it's a mid '70s Guild S100c that's pretty much an SG copy, and it has worn 8-38 from the beginning; sometimes in the late '70s with a real mechanical Leslie for some bluesie saloon stuff to pretty much emulate a B9 playing it fingerstyle chording to simulate a saloon B9 blues player.

 

m

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