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Old November 10th, 2004, 09:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Finding Keith Urban's Tone ?

I'm heck bent on finding Urban's fat overdrive in a box...any ideas gang ? It sounds like maybe a Rat ? It's very Marshall-esqe. The newest cd "Be Here" has Line 6 effects and Bad Cat amps on the credits.

Anyone find anything close ? He's got some great tones and cool playing on the new cd.

John

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Old November 11th, 2004, 12:28 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Yeah, I'd like to catch a glimpse at his pedalboard!
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Old November 11th, 2004, 09:51 AM   #3 (permalink)
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i just seen him a few weeks ago.

using badcat, bogner, & even a bf fender head. last year he used a marshall head for the dirty tones & matchless for cleans.

i could not see his pedal board.didn't seem to step on alot.
there is a brief article in guitar player magazine that gives a little detail on his gear but no pedals.

also guitarone mag has tabbed out "days go by"
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Old November 11th, 2004, 10:04 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If memory serves....

His main Tele, the tobacco burst double-bound, has only one pickup. An EMG strat pickup, modified to mount in a Tele bridge. I'm not sure which model EMG it is, or what else the controls may do (EMG Afterburner maybe?).

That probably has something to do with his tone.
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Old November 11th, 2004, 10:16 AM   #5 (permalink)
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i didn't like...

urban all that much when he first hit but man, my interest has grown th dude can play and play well i think almost any given country picker going can play circles around most guitar gods ...one thing about some of this newer country is that i hope it brings out to the masses how good these guys are, people like keith and brad paisley and some others who are out front and showing their talent ...maybe some of the mags will focus more on them ..i was kinda shocked when i saw th article on keith,years ago there was a mag just for country guitar but it mainly was Eagle type stuff and more jangle stuff no real meat and potato stuff ....sorry to go off topic
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Old November 11th, 2004, 12:34 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: i didn't like...

Quote:
Originally Posted by teledude66
urban all that much when he first hit but man, my interest has grown th dude can play and play well i think almost any given country picker going can play circles around most guitar gods ...one thing about some of this newer country is that i hope it brings out to the masses how good these guys are, people like keith and brad paisley and some others who are out front and showing their talent ...maybe some of the mags will focus more on them ..i was kinda shocked when i saw th article on keith,years ago there was a mag just for country guitar but it mainly was Eagle type stuff and more jangle stuff no real meat and potato stuff ....sorry to go off topic
Yeah, imagine that Guitar Player magazine doing a story/interview with Urban, Paisley, Olander or Gill...nope, hasn't happened. I dropped my subscription two years ago after trading posts with their editor on another board about country pickers (he didn't think they would sell mags....yeah, we need Clapton and Hendrick or Page every other month). At least Vintage Guitar has done two Paisley interviews in the past 4 years.

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Old November 12th, 2004, 12:51 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Finding Keith Urban's Tone ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnK24
I'm heck bent on finding Urban's fat overdrive in a box...any ideas gang ? It sounds like maybe a Rat ? It's very Marshall-esqe. The newest cd "Be Here" has Line 6 effects and Bad Cat amps on the credits.

Anyone find anything close ? He's got some great tones and cool playing on the new cd.

John
Hi John,
I can nail it with my laney vc-30 (which is basically an ac-30 type amp, which the bad cats that keith uses are based from) into a compressor, into a modified rat (email me and I can give you the details about the mod), into a 2x12 cab. The rat isn't critical, but the vox-ish chimey tone is, IMO. Your bd-2 MAY get you close with an eq pedal behind it.
Lotsa compression. If I recall correctly, Keith doesn't use pedals too awful much, and gets his tone through the guitar/amp, and some rack mounted stuff.

Hope that helps! :)

Thanks,
Brian
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Old November 13th, 2004, 10:50 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I got in the "Urban" zone...

I'm using my Rt. 66 pedal with both the compressor and TS808 side...the trick was to use the bass boost on the TS side and set the drive up to 1 o'clock. Using the tele bridge pup and playing with the tone knob, I got very close to his solo tone in "Somebody Like You". It's the bass boost that really pulled this together. I keep my Blues Jr. running pretty clean and slamming it with these two effects seems to work.

Keith's playing style also seems to show his use of light gauge strings (.009s I'm betting), his fills and solos are really bending and fluid. I can't get that with the .010s I'm working.

Oh well, that's it.

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Old November 14th, 2004, 01:47 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Finding Keith Urban's Tone ?

I got this off another forum. It is from last year's setup but I saw him recently in Atlanta and the sound is the same. I have 4th row tix in a couple weeks so I can really try to see the setup this time..........

For the people wondering about how Keith get's his tone ... I got
this information direct from Scotty Huff ... a member in Keith's
Band ... and from watching Keith live ...

Keith's main component of sound are the nine (9) (yes, 9) Amp's
he uses. 7 of these amps are Matchless DC30 2x12 combo's Then
Keith has two Matchless 2x12 Cab's and a Matchless DC30 head
powering one of the cabs, and an old Marshall Plexi Head powering
the other. 6 of the amps face towards the audience and are directly
behind Keith. You can see the old Matchless head in the upper left
and the old marshall head in the upper right. the last 3 matchless
combo's are facing towards the back of the stage and they are behind
the wall of the 1st 6.

Now, as for effects...this is direct from Scotty...

He has 2 GCX loop switchers with a Bradshaw Foot Controller
Carl Martin Compressor
Cry Baby Wah Wah
Fulltone Overdrive (Blue)
Fulltone Overdrive (Yellow - with comp settings)
Phaser
Line 6 Echo Pro

Nashville Anniversary Tele with the Neck and middle pickups removed,
Fender Clapton Strat, Gibson SG.

I hope that answer's any questions on how Keith get's his tone.

..............ok now for my situation. I just bought my first tele yesterday. A standard sunburst with maple and I love it. Keith Urban is also my 'guitar hero' and I would love to get his tone the only problem is I have a marshall amp and it's nowhere close. I know my playing isn't either LOL but I'm working on it. I do have a gnx1 that might could help but I'm clueless how to operate. If anyone could help point me in the right direction I would be grateful. I already downloaded the gnx patch from the magazine for days go by, but it was made for a gnx4. I 'transposed' it to work with a gnx1 but it sounds way too clean and isn't close at all. Thanks again.
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Old November 16th, 2004, 11:45 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Finding Keith Urban's Tone ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by todthebod
I do have a gnx1 that might could help but I'm clueless how to operate. If anyone could help point me in the right direction I would be grateful. I already downloaded the gnx patch from the magazine for days go by, but it was made for a gnx4. I 'transposed' it to work with a gnx1 but it sounds way too clean and isn't close at all. Thanks again.
I run a Tele w/ a SD Alnico II Pro (sweet bridge pup) into a GNX2, then into a Hot Rod Dlx. I don't come anywhere near his ability, nor his tone, but it works for me for now. I'd like to replace the GNX2 w/ analog pedals one of these days, but haven't made the leap yet. It sounds much better for rock (distorted) stuff, than Country (clean) in my opinion, the way I have it set up. Anyway, my main patch uses the HotRod amp type, which is supposed to emulate a Mesa Boogie Mark II C. I have Delay, Reverb, Eq, Compression, and Chorus on it also. We play some Keith Urban stuff, and it works 4 me 4 now. I've found that generally, when playing his stuff, the FEEL is the most important thing...(and flailing around the stage, knocking stands and people over...)
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Old November 16th, 2004, 12:22 PM   #11 (permalink)
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that tone...

I think the basic indgredients are an EL84 amp (which compresse and overdrive differently than a 6L6 amp), a compressor (properly set to not lose attack) a bit of echo and, occassionaly, an overdrive pedal. The MAIN ingredient, of course, is Keith's playing style and approach. He does a lot of finger snaps with his right hand, seems to use a light touch and excellent techique. If you can develop your playing to mimic his approach, I don't think his tone would be that hard to cop.

Its interesting to read that he uses an EMG Strat pickup in his main Tele. Steuart Smith is another guy who gets an amazingly snappy Tele type tone from his Strat, which has EMG pickups. So many people disregard EMG pickups, but I've heard great tones from them.

Dave
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Old November 16th, 2004, 08:48 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Finding Keith Urban's Tone ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldGTR
Quote:
Originally Posted by todthebod
I do have a gnx1 that might could help but I'm clueless how to operate. If anyone could help point me in the right direction I would be grateful. I already downloaded the gnx patch from the magazine for days go by, but it was made for a gnx4. I 'transposed' it to work with a gnx1 but it sounds way too clean and isn't close at all. Thanks again.
I run a Tele w/ a SD Alnico II Pro (sweet bridge pup) into a GNX2, then into a Hot Rod Dlx. I don't come anywhere near his ability, nor his tone, but it works for me for now. I'd like to replace the GNX2 w/ analog pedals one of these days, but haven't made the leap yet. It sounds much better for rock (distorted) stuff, than Country (clean) in my opinion, the way I have it set up. Anyway, my main patch uses the HotRod amp type, which is supposed to emulate a Mesa Boogie Mark II C. I have Delay, Reverb, Eq, Compression, and Chorus on it also. We play some Keith Urban stuff, and it works 4 me 4 now. I've found that generally, when playing his stuff, the FEEL is the most important thing...(and flailing around the stage, knocking stands and people over...)
Thanks for the info. I'll play around with the gnx this weekend and see what I get. I find that I can get close to his sound sometimes when I'm lower on the neck, but when i go higher is when I lose the tone. Could changing pickups help with this or should I just keep practicing instead of worrying about tone since I'm not that great anyway. hehee
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Old November 17th, 2004, 10:04 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Finding Keith Urban's Tone ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by todthebod

Thanks for the info. I'll play around with the gnx this weekend and see what I get. I find that I can get close to his sound sometimes when I'm lower on the neck, but when i go higher is when I lose the tone. Could changing pickups help with this or should I just keep practicing instead of worrying about tone since I'm not that great anyway. hehee
Yes, sadly, I think I'd concentrate on the practice. Look at Angus: guitar --> cable --> amp. Don't get me wrong, I'm as gadgety, tone-dreaming, this effect/that effect, as the rest of us, but a lot of guitarists come down to feel (SRV, Urban, Angus, Mason, on-and-on).
Good luck! I'm right there with ya...
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Old November 20th, 2004, 10:42 AM   #14 (permalink)
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i liked the EMG's in a friends tele quite a bit-had some in a strat and couldn't wait to get something else in there...it's interesting that Urban uses the strat EMG(and all those amps for that matter)but as has been said before,it's the player more than anything-what's your guitar/pedalboard,etc sound like when you put it away?
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Old November 23rd, 2004, 04:35 PM   #15 (permalink)
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guitar player does still feature a lot of cool artists and some good articles....at least i think they do....

http://www.guitarplayer.com/archive/..._features4.htm

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Old February 14th, 2005, 10:15 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Thought I'd dredge this post back up, what with Keith's rousing performance on the grammys- I came across a photo of his current setup...

how do I post a pic from the C: drive?[/img]
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Old February 14th, 2005, 11:03 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruger9
how do I post a pic from the C: drive?
You don't. ruger--you can only post a pic that's 'hosted' somewhere else on the internet. People use their own sites if they have one, or use a free hosting site (photobucket comes to mind) or a pay for hosting site (lilypix comes to mind).
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Old February 15th, 2005, 06:09 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Thanks for letting me know. Oh well.
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Old May 10th, 2007, 02:28 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Last time he was on the Opry, I noticed he had a BadCat 2 tonepedal, or the Matchless equivalent.
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