My Favorite Pedal and Favorite Pedal-Fixer

I was fortunate enough to get one of these newer Electro-Harmonix Deluxe Memory Man Tap Tempo 1100 pedals when they came out a few years ago. They only made a handful of them because they ran out of the new old stock analog chips to make them with. They started making the Deluxe Memory Man Tap Tempo 550 (green instead of the blue 1100) after that…and it still sounds great! It just doesn’t have the delay time and sound that the 1100 had. Since they stopped making them, they’ve become rare to find for sale and have at least doubled in price, so I’m super glad I got when I did!

I love this delay pedal. It sounds amazing…just like an older Memory Man, but with tap tempo and more features! I see it being one of those pedals I always keep. I first heard about it from a friend and have been talking about it long enough that I’ve had a few friends pick one up along the way.

Now that I have the Disaster Area SmartClock, I wanted to start using it with the DMMTT, but the tap tempo input jack isn’t working on the DMMTT. I have a couple of weeks that I’m not playing, so I decided to ship it off to my friend Jack Vaughn at JHV3 to take a look at it. Jack has been a friend for many years and is my go-to guy when it comes to asking questions about pedals, modding pedals, fixing pedals and building pedals. I’ve used some other guys over the years too, but I’ll always think of Jack first. I’ll never forget everything he’s done to help me over the years…he’s just a great guy and we always have a good time hanging out.

If you need anything modded, fixed or built, reach out to Jack and JHV3. And if you ever find a Deluxe Memory Man Tap Tempo 1100 (at a good price)…get it.

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Hillsong NYC

We recently went on a short trip to New York City. I had never been and we decided to take a short trip with my brothers, sister-in-law and a good friend. So the six of us set off to NYC and did a lot of awesome things.

One of which was getting to attend a service at Hillsong NYC. It was so cool to be a part of what God is doing in and through Hillsong Church literally all over the globe. I had been to Hillsong concerts, conferences they’ve led at and have sat under their teaching a few times, but it was so cool to see how they “do church”. I personally loved how much time we spent in worship and how comfortable and much like home it felt. The worship team sounded great and led so well! We sang about 4-6 songs including Hillsong and Bethel tunes with a full band and choir. Their pastor, Carl Lentz, spoke on faith that leads to freedom and it was so dynamic and challenging.

Thanks for having us Hillsong NYC!

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Charting Out Songs with OnSong

When we have to learn songs, everyone approaches it differently. Sometimes you’re given a chart, but sometimes you have to make your own. When I have to make my own charts, I use an app on my iPad that my friend Stephen suggested to me.

It’s called OnSong and it’s a chord chart management app. It has loads of features and some that you can use live, including lyric projection, a scrolling feature based on the BPM and more! However, I use it for simply making chord charts easily that have a professional look.

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Once I enter the song title and artist, I figure out what key it’s in, transpose it into that key (there are no chords in yet, but it defaults to a key, so it’s nice to do this at the beginning) and type that in with the other info. Once I get the lyrics into the editor (typically copying and pasting from Google into the editor on the app), I start to put chords in. The chord builder gives you lots of options for the chords, and gives you a quick button option on the most common chords in that key (the 1, 4, 5, 6, etc…). Once you’re finished, you tap done and it looks great automatically!

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But my favorite feature is the ability to transpose the song from whatever key you typed it in into whatever key you need it in. A few taps and you’re done! Export it in a few different options (I always use the PDF), sync it with my OnSong database in Dropbox and send it to my team or use it myself!

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I hope this helps you in some way or another. I don’t benefit from this post or anything…I just wanted to pass something on that’s worked well for me and may for you! Here’s a free download of my chart for “Noel” by Hillsong Young & Free.

And be sure to check out OnSong at the iOS App Store here!

Delay Overload: Why Use More Than One Delay Pedal?

A couple of months ago, I posted this picture of my board that I had just changed up on Gear Talk (I just posted about the Facebook Group Gear Talk here if you don’t know about it or you’re not a part of the group): NathanWrightPB2Do you see it? Do you see the “problem” with this pedalboard?

Ok, it’s really not a problem. But some people that saw it that it was insanity…

Count em…1, 2, 3, 4, 5. FIVE delay pedals!

I had just changed out a few things and was deciding what I wanted to keep vs. sell/trade out. But I figured I’d share because that’s what all the cool kids were doing. And a couple of people were blown away that I had FIVE delay pedals. In all honesty, I didn’t need 5, I didn’t even need 3, but I had gotten one in a trade and had a blank spot on my board (and I hate having blank spaces!), so I threw an extra few on. Each of them were different and did different things, but reading through the comments did make me laugh…

Flash forward to now and I posted my current board on the page to share:

A little different, but the biggest difference is being down to three delay pedals now. But even after posting this, some people still wondered why I had 3 delays on my board (especially when one of them was the Timeline!). SO…here’s my explanation:

I started using 2 delays when I bought a DD-5 to go with my DL4. I heard the way Alex Nifong layered delays and had a dotted 1/8 delay going into a 1/4 or 1/8 note delay and it sounded really cool. My friend Brian, who was playing with me at the time, starting doing this as well. I loved the sound and got my own. Ever since then, when it fits, I’ll use the two delays at once.

I’ve had a handful of delay pedals over the years, but I love a few of them more than others. I love my DD-5…it’s the best digital delay I’ve found in my opinion. I use it mostly for 1/4 or 1/8 delays, dotted 1/8 delays and even some reverse ambient stuff.

I am also attached to my Deluxe Memory Man Tap Tempo. They only made a small number of these…true analog, but with tap tempo. I bought one new and now the price has doubled that they go for, but it just sounds too good. I mainly use this for 1/4 or 1/8 note delays, with some modulation to go with the unreal analog sound. I’ll also use it for ambient stuff and swells with the repeats and mix higher, as well as a slower tempo.

Other than being attached to the sounds in these two pedals, I’ll use my Timeline for programmed delays…mostly the tape setting because I’ve found that’s what I like the best. I have a few swell, ice and digital machine settings.

I’ll use two delays to give some longer delay or cool dotted 1/8 through 1/4 or 1/8 note delay sounds. I’ll use all three sometimes for swells or something. Maybe a reverse on DD-5, 1/2 or whole note on the DMMTT, and a 1/4 note tape or swell on the Timeline.

I find lots of use for multiple delays…whether using them together for really ambient stuff or for different kinds of sounds. But let’s be real, usually deciding between an analog, digital, tape or some other sound is more work that you want to. Sometimes using having one or two sounds is easy enough…and I find myself here a lot. I typically have a good feel for what I’ll use based on what the song sounds like or what we’re going for.

Hope that helps some and explains to some of you that were asking. Different sounds or lots of layers of delay. Obviously you can go a lot deeper with all this (hence the five delay pedals) or just roll with one delay. I’d say figure out whatever it is that you like and whatever works best for you and roll with it. You definitely don’t want to be caught looking down at your board and switching things on and off the entire set rather than leading worship or putting on a great show (whichever or whatever it is that you’re doing in music…)!

Gear Talk [Facebook Group(s)]

I hinted at this in a post recently, but a few years ago, I started doing “Gear Talk” posts on this blog that looked at different players’ setup. I actually just posted two new “Gear Talks”…one updating Daniel Carson’s rig and one on Brian Carl’s setup.

I’m also part of the Facebook group called “Gear Talk” and it’s a great little community there. It’s branched out to multiple groups now, including a classifieds group on Facebook where you can post and sell gear. If you’re on Facebook and play guitar, it’s a pretty cool thing. I remember when Lance added me and there were like maybe under 100 people there, and now there’s over 13,000 in “Gear Talk”, over 11,000 in “Gear Talk: Praise & Worship”, and 21,000 in “Gear Talk: Classifieds”! It’s become quite big, which has made me consider changing my name of our “Gear Talks” to something else, but I’m just going to keep going…

Since it’s just such a cool page (actually plural: pages), I wanted to post about them. It’s sort of like though…you can easily get lost in lots of new gear, fads and may lead you to spend more money than you’d like to. Check out the Facebook Groups by using the search bar in Facebook! The ones I’m on are Gear Talk, Gear Talk CLASSIFIEDS, Gear Talk: P&W, Gear Talk Bass, but there are others! Also be sure to follow @GearTalk on Instagram as well!

Gear Talk: Brian Carl [Passion Band]

Brian Carl has been one of my good friends for about 8+ years now. Brian and I played in a band when he was in high school and the rest of us were in college. He’s an amazing guitar player and has a heart for Jesus most of all. Brian started playing with Brett Younker a few years ago and has started touring with the Passion Band on the Let the Future Begin Tour and the Take It All Tour, as well as playing at the Passion Conferences and Passion City Church.

Here’s Brian’s current gear lineup:

BrianCarlPB3Brian plays a Fano JM6 or a few Fender Telecasters through this board and into a Morgan Dual 40 and a Morgan Envy 40.

Here’s the chain:

  • JHS Little Black Buffer
  • Keeley Compressor
  • Walrus Audio Voyager
  • Fulltone Fulldrive 2
  • Blackeye Effects White Pine
  • Xotic RC Booster
  • EHX POG2
  • Ernie Ball VP Jr
  • Boss DD-5
  • Walrus Audio Transit 3 True Bypass Looper
    • JHS Panther
    • Strymon Timeline
    • Strymon Blue Sky
  • Boss RV-5

Follow Brian on Instagram or Twitter.