Searching for the right sound on a session can sometimes eat up a lot of time in the studio. That wasn’t the case today. I was working with Jason Roller, a great studio musician who has worked with Ken Mellons, John Berry, Darryl Worley, Mark Chesnutt, Tracy Lawrence, Dolly Parton, The Lost Trailers and Joe Diffie. Jason had been laying acoustic guitar tracks all day and after we were done I needed him to play some electric guitar. He didn’t have any of his electrics with him, but I said no problem, as I had just gotten a new Epiphone Slash Les Paul Standard Plus Top
Photo: Jason Roller
I setup a Gibson GA 20 amp and a couple of mics. I’d already been using a Peluso 22 47 LE tube mic on the acoustic, so I put it in front of the amp along with a SM 57. We went back in the control room and started recording. The tone was spot on! Jason was as floored with the sound as I was. I’ve been recording for many years and I find that sometimes it still takes time to get a great guitar tone. Trying different guitar/amp combinations and finding the right mic to capture the sound of the amp can be a bit of work. Today it was plug in and go! The Slash Les Paul and the Gibson GA 20 is a match I’m sure I’ll be using again.
Tip: At the start of a session, place a variety of mics in front of the amp at once and audition each one to find the one that works best for you. I’ll put up a Ribbon, Tube, Condenser and the SM 57 and choose the two I like best. Most of the time, I’ll put up two different ribbons instead of the condenser.
Here are some photos of the amp and mic placement, along with audio clips of the recording.
GA 20 mic setup