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how to get a good americana or folk sound

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Johanns, Jan 15, 2021.

  1. sgierling

    sgierling TDPRI Member

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    True North Tweed Drive
     
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  2. Twang Deluxe

    Twang Deluxe Tele-Holic

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    Just crank your amp
     
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  3. mmannaxx

    mmannaxx Tele-Meister

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    Americana is all over the place. A simple Tele overdriving an amp for a bit of grit or using a pedal will do it. I have a HWY 1 Texas Tele that has slightly hotter pups than your standard Tele. It was designed probably for Texas blues style but it can do an "Americana" sound if there is such a thing. Really how you adjust the basic tone and volume on your guitar and amp in combination should be able to get you there. You don't really need a specific guitar or amp to my thinking. What is Americana? I kinda know it when I hear it. Can I define it? Probably not.
     
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  4. capgun

    capgun Tele-Meister

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    It would help if OP states his definition of Americana, but I agree he’s already got the tools for the job. Is Lucinda Williams your only reference point?

    Capgun
     
  5. cousinpaul

    cousinpaul Friend of Leo's

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    Depending on the song, I might break out some of my old school dirt pedals. Dist+, CSOD, Red Llama/Tube Sound Fuzz... All that stuff, used in moderation, can help get a more retro sound from a DR.
     
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  6. OneOcean

    OneOcean TDPRI Member

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    The DR starts to come alive around 5 on the volume, so start at 5 and only go up from there while turning the bass down in proportional amounts. Volume up/bass down keeps the bottom from farting out and also carves out the guitar's proper place in the mix with bass, drum and vocals. If you're mostly playing by yourself, you will probably like hearing more bottom coming from the guitar, but try to get used to using less bass, perhaps by playing with drum/bass backing tracks.
     
  7. oregomike

    oregomike Tele-Meister

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    Not to derail the thread, but how are you enjoying the 64? It's made my shortlist of amps. That and the Twilighter 112.
     
  8. fenderchamp

    fenderchamp Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    practice
     
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  9. rockinstephen

    rockinstephen Tele-Meister

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    Also, (going way back) Kenny Vaughn. Lucinda can get the best!
     
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  10. Charlie Bernstein

    Charlie Bernstein Poster Extraordinaire

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    "Americana"? Do you mean Dylan and Woody the Band and Townes Van Zandt? Or the Jayhawks and Wilco and Uncle Tupelo and Son Volt?

    Regardless, you already have what you need to pull off righteous Americana: A Tele and a Fender tube amp.

    The rest is just experimenting. Roll knobs up. Roll 'em down. Roll 'em to noon.

    I get my best Americana sounds from a flattop Guild acoustic. But the truth is, Americana isn't in the gear, it's in the attitude.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2021
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  11. Johanns

    Johanns TDPRI Member

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    first of all, thank you very much for all the advice I got from you. I can do a lot with that.

    when asked if I can tell you a bit more about my preference: The Delines, Stephen Simmons (with Dave Coleman), JW Roy ...
    ah, there are so many.

    I realize that the term americana is not so cleverly chosen, it is much broader than I had suspected.

    I infer from the tips that you have to turn the amplifier up a bit (I even read 5) and adjust the volume (and tone) on your guitar. In any case, I have already experimented with that and it is going in the right direction. Valuable tip for me. My wife was less happy with the tip, by the way ;-)

    also the tips regarding FX pedals. I read every time people use a pedal. I sometimes use four overdrives in a row and now I notice that this quickly leads to compression. I'm using one drive now, but that's still a bit of searching. I will try the tip of the Fuzz. I watched some YT videos and a video from Pet Thorn was very informative. again combi with volume control of your guitar.

    Many of the songs that I like often turn out to be SG or LPjr with P90. to what extent is it possible to get a telecaster towards P90 sound ... maybe also save for an LPjr or SG (although I find it less comfortable due to neck-diving).

    I really like the Fender DR custom '64. The sound is very full and it is a very good platform for pedals. I also have a HOOK R20. Also insanely good, bluesy, but it is very loud.

    And indeed, 90% of music comes from you, the rest from your gear. And practice goes without saying. If you have any tips for good videos or books, I will be recommended.

    I'm just looking at more music examples.

    again, thank you very much for your efforts. I will keep following.
     
  12. Chester Burnett

    Chester Burnett Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    I played with Bo Ramsey several times in the early nineties. He was mostly playing a National electric at the time. I can’t remember what kind of amp he used either:)
     
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  13. WYfish

    WYfish Tele-Meister

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    get a EH soul food pedal and put it in between your tele and your amp... done!
     
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  14. Dik Ellis

    Dik Ellis Tele-Meister

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    That 5E3 sound is Classic Fender, to me. A 5E3 amp is a top of the bucket list for me.
     
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  15. Sea Devil

    Sea Devil Friend of Leo's

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    Here's a pretty simple idea: ditch the pick.
     
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  16. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    Most of the sounds in this vaguely defined genre are actually pretty simple to get. You usually just want more midrange and amp od than you’ll get with a basic tele and blackface amp. But nothing too crazy. You could get that just by adding an eq pedal in your chain, if anything. If you want it at quiet volumes, that becomes more challenging.
     
  17. Martian

    Martian Tele-Meister Gold Supporter

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    That record - her records in general- are so well done. They’re beautifully recorded. I’m not exactly sure what Johann is going after but if it’s the sound of a Lucinda Williams record, he’s got good taste.
     
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  18. Fatlip

    Fatlip TDPRI Member

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    What exactly is the “Americana” tone? Americana covers pretty much everything from Buddy Guy to Blue grass, Skynyrd to Hank Senior and all points in between.
     
  19. Willie Johnson

    Willie Johnson Tele-Holic

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    Sturgill Simpson said Americana is a song that takes 5 minutes to tell the same story that a country song can tell in 3 minutes.

    I played with an Americana-styled singer-songwriter for a while, and did a lot of clean-toned, simple fills and volume knob swells.
     
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  20. cyclopean

    cyclopean Poster Extraordinaire

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    unless you have some kind of zany outlier tele (like maybe with two active emg pickups or something) that guitar and amp should sound like that genre by default.
     
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