Today’s pedal line is from Al Russell. If you have a pedal line (doesn’t have to be in a board) for your rig, please email me a photo, bio, description of pedals and routing to email@example.com. Every Friday I’ll showcase a pedal line submission. Make sure you include any links to your band or music page.
My name is Al and my full time job is as a brewer at a craft brewery. I have been playing in bands since I was 15 (I am now 31) and currently play in my churches praise team. When not playing worship music, I like to play a little bit of everything, but am especially into classic rock and stoner rock. I am currently trying to get a guitar oriented 80’s cover band together, because that would just be way too much fun.
Here is the info on my pedalboard:
Board: My dad is quite the craftsman and built this for me from scratch when I was 16 or 17. It has served me well ever since. I have made some modifications over the years, but the basic shell is the same and it is both burly and easy to use. I just wish it was not quite so heavy.
Footswitch: When playing through an amp, I use my Traynor YCV-50 Blue’s drive channel for all of my dirt and kick the boost on for leads, so the foot switch is an important part of my setup.
Power: I use a T-Rex Fuel Tank Chameleon to power all my pedals. I chose this because it’s versatile enough to power just about any pedal out there.
Cables: I know a lot of guys are into the George L solderless stuff and it makes your board look really neat and nice, but I used to work as a stagehand and prefer good old patch cables. It makes it a lot easier to swap something out if a problem arises during a performance and I trust soldered connections way more than solderless.
Pedal Risers: I actually discovered these from following this site. I only have one currently and use wood blocks for the other two back row pedals, but they work so well that I will be buying more.
For direct/headphones: Boss TU-2-> Budda Bud-Wah-> VintageFX ColorDrive-> Joyo ACTone-> Earthquaker Dispatch Master-> Boss DD-20
For playing through my amp: Boss TU-2-> Budda Bud-Wah-> VintageFX ColorDrive-> Traynor YCV50Blue-> Loop send-> Earthquaker Dispatch Master-> Boss DD-20-> Loop return
Routing notes: I actually re-patch my board to route it one of two different ways. Pictured is my setup for going direct or using headphones. When I run it through my amp, I put my Dispatch Master and DD-20 through the effects loop and bypass the ACTONE. Ideally, the dispatch master would be after my DD-20 due to the fact that it has reverb, but it’s easier to setup a stacked delay with it in front of the Boss and it sounds just fine in that position anyway. Also, the DD-20 has a headphone out so that makes it super easy to run it last and plug some cans in for silent jammage.
Boss TU-2: Just a great tuner and also works as a buffer to push my signal through the true bypass pedals at the beginning of my chain.
Budda Bud-Wah (Rev. B): Out of all my current pedals, I have owned this the longest. I originally bought it because I was having tone suck issues with my Crybaby and this was true bypass. It turned out to be a great sounding wah and has served me well over the years. Not sure what the new ones are like, but this one’s a dandy.
VintageFX ColorSound: My wife bought me this as a present. It is modeled after the old Colorsound overdrive and I use it mostly as a slight clean boost to add some character and gain to my dirty sounds. It’s also fun to crank up the gain once and awhile as it yields a nice singing lead tone in the higher registers and a wooly stoner tone on the lower stuff.
Joyo ACTONE: I currently work 3rd shift and after a lot of research, I bought this as the cheapest/best sounding solution to having a headphone amp. Turns out that it sounds so good, I go direct through it at church every week.
Earthquaker Dispatch Master: My newest addition. I was looking for a reverb pedal when going direct (my amp has a nice, large spring reverb tank) and stumbled across this. The reverb sounds a lot like a vintage plate to me and is very sweet sounding. It can get HUGE and the fact that it also has a great analog sounding delay is just icing on the cake. When I am messing around and start twisting knobs, this is my go to pedal.
Boss DD-20: In my opinion the best delay in it’s price range. Sounds great, super versatile, lots of features and well built. I especially like the analog, tape and modulation delay settings. I used to have a phaser and a chorus on my board, but with some tweaking the modulation setting on this pedal ended up replacing both of those effects.
I dig the site. Keep up the good work!