So part of the fun part of my job is when I have a little spare time, which isn't often, I work on new stuff for friends of mine who are searching for THAT tone, the one in their head. One of those friends is a guy called Isaiah who plays in a bunch of bands and projects, my favorite of which is a band called Eathless.
I have made some stuff for these guys in the past and all three have some of my pedals inc Mario, the drummer who is also a great guitarist. Mike who plays bass has a couple of my pedals which I've incorporated into one pedal to become an Earthless bass fuzz.
Making stuff for Isaiah is ..... Complicated. He knows what he wants but gives me cryptic riddles, which is kinda cool because after almost 20 years of doing this, I still don't talk "tone" with people, especially by email. What's in your head, no matter how well you THINK you're describing it, is in you're head.
So last time I was talking to Isaiah and the topic of gear came up he mentioned wanting something new, and different. When I made his last fuzz we had talked Big Muffs and he said he didn't like them that much. When people say they don't like Big Muffs I just say you haven't played the right one. They vary SO much and can be anything from crisp, clear overdrive to full flabby fat thick fuzz. What's not to like in there ?
We have talked about "heroes" and tones before. Hendrix, Gallagher etc, and most of them had a connection in that they mainly played single coils and some sort of fuzz. So I said "are you a Gilmour fan?" The answer was typical Isaiah "Absolutely! Different eras yes but I like them all. Basic gearzn usually a strat and a wonderful feel. One of my favs!"
Because Gilmour used Big Muffs I am determined to hook Isaiah up with great circuit and convince him this is where the action is. Gilmour is famous for using two different versions of the Big Muff in the Ram Head (my personal favorite) and the Civil War (probably my second favorite) I thought I'd start by working on variations of these two.
This is the first version I'm making for him which is my Civil War Mudd with a couple of small mods to give him some movement from the original circuit. This is my standard version, as cloned off THE BEST sounding one of these I'd heard with a couple of ideas borrowed from my Super Mudd.
The first is the mid switchwhich flattens out the mids and gives the same result as the tone stack bypass switch, but still with the tone pot usable. With the tone knob at 12 o clock, it's the same flat response as the bypass switch.
The other mod is the battery drain pot which simulates a battery going flat and feeds less voltage to the circuit. This "thins" out the gain and changes the input impedance so can be used as a type of input selector for the difference between single coils or humbuckers.
So next up will be a Ram Head with a boost after it to get Gilmours more famous tone where he used his favorite version from this period followed by a Colorsound Boost/OD or a Tube Driver. More soon.
This may (or may not) be a one off depending on my moods ......... :)