I had used Fender amps from the beginning: Supers, Pros, Twins, Bassmans, Bandmasters, but when Fender began bread boarding their amps, I became disillusioned with the response, performance, and reliability. I also have used Peavey Delta Blues, Marshall JCM 800 and 900 lead series….All of which have been adequately and happily replaced by the Pritchard Amplifier.
The Pritchard Amp is a highly technologically advanced amplifier that produces a wide array of vintage amplifier sounds. It is small, light, and powerful. Its harmonic clarity is completely unsurpassed by any amp in its price range and even more expensive amps don’t display the versatility of the Pritchard. I use a one channel “Black Dagger” model but two channel amps are available and offer even more flexibility for the discriminating musician. The amp is as loud as a Marshall Stack or a vintage Twin Reverb with better harmonic clarity. It produces great, full guitar tone AT LITERALLY ANY VOLUME which its vintage big brothers don’t do so it can be used in a small club setting or on a concert stage.
My effects are simple. I have always used an Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer and a Boss DS1. I recently began using a Barber LTD Distortion device which is a lot like a Tube Screamer but has an internal presence and bass adjustment (if I had to choose one or the other I would choose the Barber LTD). In the past I used a Morley Wah pedal but have switched to the Zak Wylde Cry Baby…I like it better. I use a Digitec Delay pedal for slap-back on the Country stuff. I now use a Hardwire CR7 Stereo Chorus but not frequently. I occasionally use a 1962 Hammond Leslie from an old Hammond organ.
Like a lot of guitarists, I was initially drawn to the Les Paul. The first guitar I got was a 1972 Les Paul standard. I played it for 6 years until a good friend of mine bought me a Fender Stratocaster. I was amazed at the tonal possibilities of the Stratocaster and eventually purchased a 1962 Fender Strat. I played the ’62 for years and recorded my first record with it but it was stolen in 1995 and never recovered. I replaced it with a 1965 Strat and eventually, a 1972 Stat. In the late 1990’s I began playing Fender Telecasters and also loved them for their no nonsense, stripped down feel and sound. I have always played Gibson hollow bodies for playing straight ahead Jazz. I have owned many different Gibson hollow bodies over the years varying from 1919 to early 1970’s models, most noteably a 1956 ES 175 and also a war era ES 350 (I believe).
I became disillusioned with the Fender guitars about the time they began making them in Mexico and after investigating custom shop guitars which were very pricey, I began making my own guitars. I call them Hummingbirds and I now own the Hummingbird Guitar Co. The first guitar I made was what I call a “Telebastard” (don’t laugh). I made it with a hammer and a chisel from a block of ash. It is completely hollow with a chambered sustain block. The top is Cherry and it has bent Maple binding. Telebastards are 1 inch wider, ½ inch longer, and one half inch thicker than a Fender Tele but because they are hollow, they sound richer and have a way better acoustic response than a solid or semi hollow Telecaster. I also created the “Stratobastard” which is shaped like the Telebastard but hollow under only the pickguard….yet still the tone is more rich than a standard Stat.
I also began making my own Arch Tops and now use that I call the “Monarch” which is a carved back and top hollow body arch top. It is a fine guitar for my purposes.
In my electrics, I use a various assortment of pick ups but I always make sure they ohm out at below 6k. The low ohm pick ups coupled with the increase acoustic response of my hollow electrics allow for unsurpassed warmth and punch. As a matter of fact, many people have commented on my records, thinking my Telebastard was an archtop. That’s how warm they sound.
I use GHS only…Boomers to be exact, in the following gauges: 11-15-18-28-38-52 on both the Telebastard and the Stratobastard. GHS Strings, for me, are the best. They seem to have tighter winds and they are a little less “round-wound” than their competitors, from my observation.
I use small hard picks for my hybrid picking style. Dunlop Jazz III will work yet many companies make a similar, just as useful pick.