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Welcome to our Wiki. Here we will explain how different popular (and not so popular) pieces of musical equipment work. We will discuss how amps work, how guitars work, how basses work and how pickups work. We'll talk about how drums work, how microphones work, how various pedals work, how different speakers work, and how each works in the context of a signal chain. If we're really ambitious some day we'll tell you how a harmonica works. Hopefully you get the idea.
Where possible, we will identify artists, recording studios, and/or specific kinds of methods that use these different pieces of equipment, the order that these pieces were (or might have been) arranged, and the purpose to which those pieces of equipment were/are used.
There's a wonderful new world out there. You can get schematics for just about any tube amp that's been built. You can get the world's most comprehensive list of all the effects pedals ever made...
We aim to do things a little bit differently. We aim to demonstrate not just how to use the equipment, but how this equipment has been used.
You're unique; just like everyone else. As such, it follows that everyone else is unique; just like you. It goes without saying that it's impossible to exactly replace or imitate the fingers, feet, lungs, hands, and vocal chords of the people who actually created, create and perform our favorite music. It's possible to have a copy of every single piece of equipment as used by Eddie Van Halen, but don't expect that your fingers will enable you to sound exactly the same. Your cymbals and stands can be the very same models as Bill Ward's on Master of Reality. Don't expect for the crashes that come from your hands and arms to sound exactly like his. You can practice and practice and practice to sing and hit notes as powerfully as Merry Clayton. You'll only ever get so close.
This reality can either be hugely disappointing, or hugely freeing. It depends on your perspective. We presume you're here for the same reasons we're here. We want to be better musicians. We want to help create and share music experiences that offer glimpses of transcendence. We want to live the satisfaction of a well-rehearsed piece of music executed expertly, appreciated by an excited, grateful, and jubilant audience. We want, like a whirling dervish, to experience this over and over. We want you to live this experience as well. And then we want you to share that experience with us. We want you to share that experience with the world.
Finding your way to sounding like *you* by first trying to sound like your heroes is perfectly acceptable. The greatest artists only ultimately came to running their own paths by first learning to tread in the work of those they love and admire. The real question we want you to ask yourself: Is the endpoint of your journey a place where you are determined to sound like someone else? Or are you determined to make other people so love what you've done that they want sound like you?
Choose well. :)
The Important Stuff