Compressor for funk band advice

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by LawDaddy, Jan 25, 2011.

  1. LawDaddy

    LawDaddy Tele-Holic

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    I just joined an 11-pc '70s R&B/funk outfit with a bunch of casino dates on the books. Very cool find.

    I come from about a decade of backing traditional blues/soul acts and have not had a pedal board in many years.

    I did some research into rigs for players in this genre, and I picked up a compressor based on some of the advice I read. My local store had an MXR Super Comp, so I got that.

    We had our first gig last Saturday night. Went real well, I think I'm going to lose weight in this band :) I am playing my Jerry Donahue CS Tele into a Fender Jazzmaster Ultralight. The band was real impressed with the tone.

    But I had one issue I seek the TDPRI mindhive advice on: Given my background, I am used to totally controlling my stage volume with my guitar volume knob. In this gig, the compressor needs to be on nearly all the time for the chicka-chicka rhythms. But I seemed to have lost most of my volume knob functionality with the compressor on. I had the attack and sensitivity set to both about 10 O'Clock.

    How do I get my stage volume control back? Is there a better compressor? Settings? Is a volume pedal post-compressor the best option?
     
  2. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Poster Extraordinaire

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    I can't come up with anything that is not stupid (as I don't use a comporessor, did many years ago) but I can ask a few questions?

    If you have the compressor on most of the time anyhow, why not just turn your amp UP to compensate for the volume loss with the compressor ON, and then just turn your guitar volume down when you have the compressor OFF??? just my idea

    Do you have to use a compressor?- what do your parts sound like w/o it? I'm just curious - sounds like a fun band!

    BTW, I had the Fender JD Tele (Japan) for a few years (like 10 years ago) and did a band demo CD (country instrumentals/R&B/blues) mostly with this guitar. It was the red finish/white binding/ black guard model-very cool pickup switching and still only 2 pickups (don't like Tele's with a middle pickup they just look weird to me!;))
     
  3. ironmike

    ironmike Tele-Meister

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    I would lean towards a volume pedal after the compressor myself. I play alot of funk but I don't adjust my volume much at all during my sets, as I typically either play in a 3 pc power trio or a 2 pc. ala Black Keys.
     
  4. Impulse

    Impulse Tele-Meister

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    That's it. The compressor tries to amplify your quiet signal if you turn the volume knob down on the guitar. However, if you put the volume control (a volume pedal, usually) after the compressor, it won't be able to affect it anymore, and you'll be able to control the volume of the compressed signal.
     
  5. LawDaddy

    LawDaddy Tele-Holic

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    I've never used one before, but in rehearsal it sounds right for the genre, you get that squishy rhythm thing going, and it helps bring out the scratchy funk thing. It sounded great live, it helped the minimalist parts sit in the mix real nice. Also, it just a feel thing. Many of the parts are percussive, and the compressor seems like the secret weapon in this genre.

    I'm mainly looking to turn down during verses, I'd hate to be toe-tapping all night long :/

    One other option is I have a Boss FBM-1 Bassman pedal, I could set it real clean and use the compressive feel of that in conjunction with the volume knob. That might be a good option, it gets a real nice chime when set clean.
     
  6. callaway

    callaway Tele-Holic

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    What if you roll the tone down? It won't exactly take your volume down, but I think it might take your apparent volume down if that's all you're looking for to back off during verses. Other than that, either a volume pedal or a fixed boost after the comp may be what you have to do.
     
  7. gitold

    gitold Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm sure you don't want to spend more money but I have a Super Comp and a MXR Custom Comp and the Custom comp could really solve your problem. It has 2 pots on the inside for attack and tone. If you set it for more attack coming through, your volume knob on the guitar will have more of an effect. You also have the option to make this pedals tone really bright so your rhythms will cut through. It is a very transparent and quiet pedal. If you can, try one out.
     
  8. detuned

    detuned Tele-Holic

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    I played in a funk band for many years. In my experience, a good wah pedal is more useful than a compressor, especially if you're using an amp "small" enough (given that you're in an 11 piece band) that you can turn it up enough to get a little compression form the amp's output tubes. YMMV, but it worked for me...
     
  9. Ricky D.

    Ricky D. Doctor of Teleocity

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    Just even out that right hand technique. A compressor takes away all the accents from those "chika chika" rhythm parts. Listen to James Brown Live at the Appollo - Volume 2 for an example.
     
  10. markxander

    markxander Tele-Holic

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    My Mad Professor Forest Green Compressor interacts really well with the volume knob. Might be voodoo?
     
  11. linn-art

    linn-art TDPRI Member

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    My Boss CS-2 is very responsive to the volum knob - it is a very good comp too.
     
  12. lareplus

    lareplus Tele-Afflicted

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    i like compressors. . .lots of compressors!!
     
  13. czech-one-2

    czech-one-2 Friend of Leo's

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    Once again my DOD FX80B has won another shoot out,this time with a 78' dyna comp,a Tonepad Ross compressor clone, a boss LM-2 and a modded Boss CS-3. The DOD is the quietest, has the most transparent sound by far [except for possibly the LM-2] and has a really nice,subtle high end enhancement.I have a Boss CS-2 on the way,but I have a feeling the DOD will be the only one I keep. I will have 5 compressors on ebay in the near future!
     
  14. andrenighthound

    andrenighthound Tele-Afflicted

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    i play lots of funk, and zydeco never used a compressor.
     
  15. LawDaddy

    LawDaddy Tele-Holic

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    Thanks guys for all the help. I may ditch the compressor, or at least use it far more sparingly. I tried the FBM-1 pedal set very clean and that may give enough "natural" compression to the solid state Jazzmaster to help, along with excellent volume control.
     
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