22 Dec Minor Schaffer-Vega Replica Prototype Test in simulated band context

Using a Drum Loop found on youtube. I often look out for inspiring drum loops.

Three guitars used, left 1963 Gretsch Firebird, right and center recent Gibson 1959 Les Paul Replica.

Bass is 1974 firebird.


Amplifier used is 1976 Marshall 1959. settings are presence 0, bass 5, mids 3, treble 5, volume 6.

Prototype settings are TX compression/gain 3 o’clock; output clean boost 10 o’clock for Les Paul, 9 o’ clock Gretsch (cleaner).


I am only playing with the prototype of recent. Despite it being hissy (PLEASE NOTE: all guitars were “gated” here) it does bring me back my beloved original Schaffer-Vega Diversity vibe.

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15 Dec The Schaffer-Vega Diversity Replica (Updated)

And now Ladies (any ladies here at all? :) ) & Gentlemen.

A moment of Respect & Admiration for the man himself, Mr. Ken Schaffer.

I presume all of you are able to feel the respect and admiration that I have for Mr. Schaffer. I have read his biography (though partial and summarized, see his site ) several times, and it would appear that he has lived 5 or 6 different lives all packed into one. By itself this is cause for admiration, but reading what he has achieved, and how he has achieved it really ‘does it for me’. Also, last but not least, the making of the SVDS with its history and accompanying stories is overwhelming.

So please enjoy these two images of Mr. Schaffer.


[singlepic id=584 w=1024 h=768 float=none]

and today (more…)

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24 Nov SoloDallas at the Air Studios: The London Blog post

Dear Friends,

finally I can begin updating you on all of this.

The first premise that I would love to make is that this has been probably more of an emotional experience than a technical one (to me). Although I will report to you all the several key points that I grasped out of these two intense days at Air Recording Studios, the amount of emotional content for me was far beyond the technical one. It was a sort of “about the people” thing, which doesn’t surprise me too much (after all, the payoff to this blog of ours is “First String Classic Rock Contents For Emotional Learning“.

This choice of mine is always more and more confirmed as I go by these very precious experiences of mine, with you – the Member, the Reader – and with the outside world.

I will break this “report” of mine on at least two main blocks: the first one being, the who was there in terms of presenters. Then, I will adress the friends and other aspects contents. The latter is by no means subordinated to the first; but I thought I owe you to start digging right from the contents that may interest who wasn’t there.

Please note: if I can suggest you how to approach this reading, do not look at it as “now I’ll know the secrets of recording” as it won’t be like this for the most part of this report. 

I suggest you sit down and read with a light-hearted state of mind. I surely am writing this on cloud nine.

So the first Presenter I would like to talk to you about, is for both technical and personal reasons, Mr. Elliott Randall.


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13 Nov The “Mystery” of AC/DC “Let There Be Rock” tone solved?

How’s everyone doing? Been away for some time, but back we are.

I *think* I “solved” this one as well. How arrogant of me!
Though I am not an arrogant individual (I hope you folks know me a bit by now :) ).

But chatter apart, I remember some debate about the nature of the guitar(s) sound of AC/DC 1977 album “Let There Be Rock”.
I remember several hypothesis, of amps, boosts etc.
Roe had suggested – for example – that it may be an older Marshall and a treble boost.
I tried that route extensively, but it never satisfied me.

So I figured out eventually why it does sound so special and “raw”. It is – and now that I say, some of you – the interested ones – might “Gee, should’ve though myself about this” because it really is that simple: go back to it some, and listen to it some again.
Do you hear… solid state distortion as well as tube distortion? Yes you do. And do you know why? Because the mic preamp has gone into considerate, conscious (wanted) distortion while tracking. It was meant as an effect and seemingly, it worked out.
It was Marshall 2203s with no boost of any kind, just brand new 2203s (for the time, 1977) with Neumann U47 FETs fed into distortion into the mic preamp of the (I think Neve) console.
That’s it. I have video(s) ready to post, will do so shortly.
I have a very close match and if you think about it some, you’ll agree that it isn’t a strange combination at all.
Both the brothers had always stated that with the exception of Angus on a Schaffer Vega Diversity (that wasn’t there until August of that same year, 1977, so not there at the time of the recording of this studio album) on most of the following album and stage shows, no effect of any kind has ever been used.

They did say the truth after all. Not that I’d ever doubt, but it’s nice to have a sort of “sonic, sound” proof of this once more.


(PS posting videos soon)

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16 Oct Air Studios Training: Tony Platt & Elliott Randall Teach! SoloDallas Goes.

So… member (and friend) Emplexador pointed to me during the Italian night, that Mr. Tony Platt & Mr. Elliott Randall are going to teach microphone placement for guitar recording! It is going to be held in London. I thanked quickly Emplexador and booked – paid instantly! – the two days training in London, Air Studios. Next November

(26th – 27th November 2011 Master Class: PLEASE see below).

Copying and pasting the training detail here. Who is coming? 😛 😀 😉

For more information, please click on Air Studios Training


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