Jeff Beck – Do You Agree With Him?

Jeff Beck – Do You Agree With Him?

  • Yes, a LP's tone is delicate with regard to amp volume

    Votes: 26 57.8%
  • No, a LP's tone is strong with regard to amp volume

    Votes: 2 4.4%
  • A LP is just as musical, distractable & abusable as a Strat

    Votes: 7 15.6%
  • JB made a generalization & failed to mention exceptions

    Votes: 6 13.3%
  • JB sounds like "Jeff Beck" regardless of guitar, amp, volume

    Votes: 7 15.6%
  • JB's opinion is nonsense: overloading = lost "voice" of guitar

    Votes: 1 2.2%
  • JB should have said the following: (now you fill in the blank)

    Votes: 2 4.4%

  • Total voters
    45

X–Ray

Cowbell by Misadventure
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MC:
You've played both Les Paul and Fender Stratocaster guitars during your career.
How do they compare and contrast?


Beck:
It's a totally different animal. One is for very subtle and, I would say, more musical things that you can distract and abuse.
You can't do that with a Les Paul. It's too delicate.
It's got a very delicate tone; most people don't ever realize that because they are plugged into monstrous amplifiers
which completely, instantaneously covers up the unique sound quality it has.
All those years of development go straight out the window when you overload the amp.


(Music Connection, April 2010, page 37)
 

JMV

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Interesting. I do agree (probably even more prevalent with SGs) it's likely just the overuse of gain with guitars like LPs. People tend not to cover up a Strat's sound in the same way with gobs and gobs of gain.
 

BUDOKAI

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But an LP with tons of gain sounds different from a Strat with lots of gain so it still maintains it's "character".
 

Benjammin

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alot of players do use too much gain with LPs IMO but alot of those people are bashing chords and heavy riffing, they arent playing the type of music that lends itself to delicate intricacies of the LP. I read a similar sentiment from Peter Green, that he thinks of LPs as special, beautiful instruments and felt that alot of players abuse them (I think he said thats why he wont use them now)

But I think there is a range of gain that doesnt diminish the quality of the guitar, examples: Clapton/Beano, Beck/Truth, Page/LZII

Personally I dont like too much dirt with my LP, but I cant get enough of it with Strats
 

Quill

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Totally, totally, totally agree. I love that word - delicate - with the Les Paul in mind. And I searched for years for the lightest, almost feathery-light Lester I could get, because it's that light, woody, airy quality, almost that of a great jazz arch-top, but with a bit sharper attack, that I have to have somewhere nearby or can't sleep properly.

I always think of the two perfect electric guitars as the Les Paul and the Telecaster. And I think of those guitars catching the best qualities of a great arch-top acoustic with F-holes off to each side and a great steel-string flat-top acoustic with a big round hole in the middle. That they each take the best qualities of those two old traditional instruments and focus those qualities, concentrate and condense them, in a way that suits amplification.

Fantasy? Maybe. But - despite my dismal failure in River's latest experiment (though I don't consider it a "failure", except for rhetorical effect) - the acoustic qualities of my very real Les Paul or of my totally imaginary (for now) Telecaster, coming out of the wood and the hardware, are critical, way more important than all the rest of it - in fact, "all the rest of it" has to carry that acoustic quality up, out, into and through the room and me, or I get confused and upset and can't play nuthin'.

Strats? I'm completely baffled by strats, though I love 'em when someone else plays 'em. Especially Jeff!
 

Benjammin

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I voted for "Jeff made a generalization", and refer back to my post, there is a spectrum of gain, and alot of players now run at the higher gain end of the spectrum (and all the DSL, TSL, triple rectified amps are helping :laugh2:) but there is an retro, 'light gain' style that lends itself perfectly to Gibsons IMO

And since I got my LP, I find myself using less and less gain, I tend to approach it as an amplified acoustic in that way, no tricks or anything, just guitar/amp/speakers. I do still like some crunch in my chords and a bit of feedback in my sustain though :cool:
 

Quill

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I do still like some crunch in my chords and a bit of feedback in my sustan though :cool:
Heh. That's where the "up, out, into and through the room and you" part comes in! :thumb:

We don't need low-wattage amps. We need bigger rooms. WAAAY bigger! Cranked Plexi big.
 

DRF

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Every guitar has a unique sound,supposedly. To this day I think of an L.P as a smooth Jazz guitar forced into over driven rock.

"Delicate tone and monstrous amplifiers" I can imagine him saying that in his snooty 65yr old accent:laugh2:
 

Damien

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My LP feels more responsive, and "delicate" than any of the strats I've owned.
You can really hear the subtlety in how you pick each note and how you strum, and that does go away quickly with gain.
With a strat I always find myself playing more percussively and really just walloping it and it does seem to me like the effect of how you pick a note does remain far into overdrive, where a LP might loose the playing dynamics a bit with heavy overdrive/distortion. Although instead of being delicate I think it's more that it's just a higher output guitar - it's like an amp with not much headroom, of course you're gonna lose some dynamics when you turn it up.

I gotta agree with Jeff Beck.
 

coldsteal2

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Jeff plays alot different than most guitarists
he feels the strings with his thumb and fingers
instead of picking, and mostly plays harmonic overtones,
what he says is corect for the way he plays
for someone else maybe not so much.
There are alot of things Jeff cant do on a LP
that he does with his strat, that requires
the tremolo arm, its part of his playing now
 

Liam

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I agree with him completely on this one. A Strat really is the most musical guitar for what he is playing nowadays and he gets fantastic tone from it. He seems to be able to make it do pretty well anything he wants, and does so with minimal use of effects, and not even that much gain. Went to see him last year and it was just jaw-dropping.

Many Les Paul players use a lot of amp gain (probably me as much as anyone) and end up masking a lot of the subtlety of the instrument. If you listen to some of what Kossoff did with Free, it's very low gain, very straight guitar sound; I think it's just amazing, and I also think it's what Beck is talking about.

Liam
 

a Mad Cow

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I'm not sure, because Tool and Iced Earth both use massive gain and LP's and I can tell that guitar sound from anywhere - and it sounds like a LP
 

mono

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Can't believe you mentioned Tool in this thread.
I agree with Coldsteal, Beck is talking about his own playing and in doing that is correct. From what Les originally played on the Les Paul, it was and is a smooth jazzy guitar.

As has already been mentioned, the beauty of the LP is when you turn up the gain to further articulate the notes and elicit harmonic feedback, but don't go overboard and cover up the dynamics of your playing.
 

a Mad Cow

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why can't you believe I mentioned tool?

You're talking about LP's with a lot of gain not sounding like LP's anymore.

Completely related.
 

mono

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It was just a curve-ball, I wasn't expecting it.
I would put Tool in the "overboard and cover(ing) up the dynamics of (the) playing" half of my previous comment. It's not bad tone, just, not very.... good.
 

a Mad Cow

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Right, your opinion of tools tone has a lot of say vs the 9.5 million albums sold just in the US alone.

And no, it's not pop, so don't give me that response.
 

a Mad Cow

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And no, I don't base a musicians skill off records sales, but the point is, don't walk up to Roger Clemens and tell him his pitching isn't "good" if you just watch baseball and play it with friends on the weekend.
 

mono

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Chill out dude, I like Tool.
I'm just saying that, IMHO, the best thing about them is the song structure not the tone.
I listen to much older records to hear good tone.

Anyways, this thread is quickly derailing. My apologies to the OP.
 

Drudeboy

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It's got a very delicate tone; most people don't ever realize that because they are plugged into monstrous amplifiers
which completely, instantaneously covers up the unique sound quality it has.
Ah yes, so there you have it kids! that be 'Slash tone' :laugh2::thumb:
 

River

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Jeff's unique and monstrous talent aside, I think anyone who disagrees as to what amps and other gadgets do to pave over the sound of the guitar design, materials, pickups, etc. is not listening very closely - just hearing what they want to hear.
 


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