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Eric Johnson confesses to having cloth ears

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by xoso, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. xoso

    xoso Senior Stratmaster

    May 7, 2012
    Birmingham UK
    All you 'tone hounds' who worship to the alter of Eric Johnson and swap 9 volt batteries in your effects pedals to chase EJ's tone should check out the vid below. Specifically about 00.33 - 00.40 secs where he confesses that he has no idea why he likes the sounds of his strat without a tremelo back plate but suggests it's 'probably just another of those neurotic things i'm famous for' :D:D

    Eric Johnson Jimi Hendrix Experience Tour Soundcheck - YouTube
     
  2. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member

    Jun 8, 2009
    Area 51
    Yeah, he's the first to laugh at himself - although he does hear the stuff.
    I've read interviews with his producers and also had converstaions with his drummer Tommy Taylor and they all confirmed that it's the real deal.
    Tommy described it more as a curse than something that EJ is proud of - that Eric kind of wishes that he couldn't hear that stuff so that he could just relax and make more music. (on a similar note I knew a guy in college who had perfect pitch and one day he was hanging out in my dorm room and asked me to turn off my stereo/cassette player because it played slightly fast, causing it to be however semitones sharp and it was driving him crazy.)

    Truth be told, EJ also admitted that it kind of annoys him how big a deal people make of it - he said the battery thing was, like, a two minute decision he made 20 years ago - and everyone still clings to it and jumps on it.
     
  3. Teddy Watkins

    Teddy Watkins Senior Stratmaster

    Sep 25, 2009
    Florida
    I'd venture to say if he wasn't as meticulous as he is he wouldn't be the player he is either. It's all coming from the same place.
     
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  5. GuitarMechanic

    GuitarMechanic Senior Stratmaster

    Most likely
     
  6. abracadabra

    abracadabra stationcalling? Strat-Talk Supporter

    Oct 5, 2009
    UK
  7. SoWhat?

    SoWhat? Strat-O-Master

    516
    Nov 28, 2012
    South Carolina
    ^^^^^^Great video!
     
  8. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member

    Jun 8, 2009
    Area 51
  9. ripgtr

    ripgtr Senior Stratmaster

    Feb 16, 2012
    austin
    I don't know how fast I would be to dismiss the battery thing, though. I remember using an MXR compressor in the 80s, long before I heard of Eric Johnson. I noticed the Duracells, when they got older, seemed to lose power slowly. Like, I would notice the pedal just wasnt working right. I was playing in a country band and using the comp a lot. Energizer, they would just go and then, just die. Like in the middle of a song. So they did sound different as they lost power. You can look at the datasheets, they do have different power curves as they age.

    I couldn't tell the difference new, but they do make pedal mods for the "dieing battery" sound, so I ain't the only one who noticed. And batteries do have different power outputs depending on what they are attached to.

    It cuts both ways - just because you hear it doesn't mean it is real, and just because you CAN'T hear it doesn't mean it isn't real.
     
  10. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member

    Jun 8, 2009
    Area 51
    Yup - I use multimeters at my work and have tested brand new batteries in different brands, side by side, and there in quite a bit of variation in voltage amounts. You get a finicky circuit like a fuzz face and those seemingly minute differences are audible...
     
  11. Sonny

    Sonny Most Honored Senior Member

    Age:
    51
    Aug 9, 2009
    Ballerup Denmark
  12. xoso

    xoso Senior Stratmaster

    May 7, 2012
    Birmingham UK
    yeah +1. I don't like his guitar style but at least he's got a good sense of humour. Always nice to see someone who can take the mick out of themselves

    ......Or is he having a dig at all the people who blew the whole tone shebang way out of proportion?

    Answers on a postcard!
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
  13. BHighkin

    BHighkin Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    23
    Aug 24, 2010
    Portland, Oregon
    I've got to say, the batteries vs outlet power is actually legit, especially on pedals like BOSS pedals. They just sound better with batteries. Also Fuzz Faces.

    As far as his other stuff, like the backplate and the finish things, I don't know how much difference it makes. It changes the feel of the instrument for sure, and that can in some instances be enough to change the way you play it, hence changing the tone. I wouldn't ever be that obsessed though.
     
  14. Electgumbo

    Electgumbo Most Honored Senior Member

    Dec 26, 2010
    Scott La.
    Back in the mid 70's I had a Red Fuzz Face. The common 9 volt battery at the time were Ray O Vac or we called the Black Cat cause they had a Black Cat on them. All I know is the FF sounded really good just before those batteries would die.

    Also I remember reading an interview with Carlos Santana and Neal Schon and they would have the roadies put there batteries in little transistor radios and listen to music on them all day. At night those were the batteries they would put in the fuzz pedals for that nights show.
     
  15. xoso

    xoso Senior Stratmaster

    May 7, 2012
    Birmingham UK
    Have you seen the price Santana charges for his concerts these days? - I think he was just too mean to use brand new batteries lol
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
  16. Electgumbo

    Electgumbo Most Honored Senior Member

    Dec 26, 2010
    Scott La.
    Back then shows were cheap. $10 bucks or so. Im glad I seem him back then 3 times. But every bodies show are expensive these days. Clapton, Eagles, Elton John.... All will cost a pretty penny. It cost you $10 to get in a club to see me.
     
  17. Strato67

    Strato67 Former Member

    Feb 19, 2011
    Texas
    Its in the water here...:)
     
  18. ripgtr

    ripgtr Senior Stratmaster

    Feb 16, 2012
    austin
    Oh, go and get scientific on us! lol
    Yea, exactly. If your 9V battery with no load measures 9V, it is half way to dead. :) That is why pedals on a power supply sound differently than on a battery.

    All you have to do is go read the energizer and duracell datasheets.

    And Black Cats - yea, remember those. I have heard some people liked them better than alkaline.
     
  19. thomquietwolf

    thomquietwolf Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    75
    Dec 2, 2010
    Sierra Nevada
    If ya woke tomorrow and discovered you were now Eric Johnson
    I guess some would complain
    But
    Some would complain if they were hung with a new rope
    He said
     
  20. sevycat

    sevycat Custom Shop Cat Strat-Talk Supporter

    Aug 8, 2008
    Newark, DE
    :rolleyes: Yeah, Eric is a tone freak!
     

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