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Tips For Using a Tele & Pedal In Worship Band

Discussion in 'Worship Service Players' started by Clouds84, Jan 22, 2021.

  1. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    I recently transitioned from an acoustic to a telecaster electric and it's taking a while to get the settings, tones and volumes correct from my Boss ME-80 pedal. I use a wireless transmitter and receiver so that I can go to the back of the church at practice and test the sound volume. However, it's quite different when the whole band is playing and I can't quite go to the back of the room to test when we're meant to be practicing. So I listen to the recording after each practice and service and make tweaks during the week.

    At the moment I'm struggling with a few things. A strumming tone, a Rock/overdrive tone and and picking tone.

    Strumming

    I currently use the pre-amp settings to try and make my tele sound like an acoustic, and while it does sound nice, I think I have too much bass and mid as it gets drowned out by the keyboard still. The available knobs are gain, bass, mid and treble. I don't really know what gain and mid does. I use single-coil for this one.

    Rock/overdrive

    This is sounding ok, but it's a bit too bassy if you understand my drift. I maybe have the overdrive up too much. But I think it's sufficient for now. It blends in nicely to the mix with more upbeat songs.

    Picking
    I use a slight reverb and delay setting for this, but it gets drowned out when the whole band plays. I'm just wondering what to use when the whole band plays and still be heard. The small riffs I do needs to be heard as it's part of the worship and song. Do I transition to a slight overdrive sound mid song?

    As always, being in a worship band is about being a servant and I'm just trying to get the sound levels right.
     
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  2. Pineears

    Pineears Tele-Afflicted

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    When I have strumming acoustic in the same space (tone and frequency) as the piano I usually kill the acoustic. When the song only has 2 verses I often repeat the 1st verse for a 3rd verse bringing back the strumming and killing piano.
     
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  3. hotraman

    hotraman Tele-Afflicted

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    I play my Telecaster and Jazzmaster often in worship, too.
    I think you are on the right track.
    I would offer two suggestions:

    1. Really work / adjust the tone knob as you play, even on each song. It took me years to learn that the tone knob on a Tele, is where blending comes in.
    2. Maybe think about "where" on the guitar you are playing.
    Open position chords vs. barre chords / or triads. You need to find a place to "park" sonically, where the keys are not at ( especially if its a acoustic piano setting)

    It takes time, too. Just be patient and don't overthink it.
     
  4. CapnCrunch

    CapnCrunch Friend of Leo's

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    This^

    I'd add that if you can talk with your keyboardist/pianist communicate about what each of you are going to do within your arrangement. The Pianist should avoid your parts as much as you are avoiding the piano parts within an arrangement.

    This goes for the acoustic and the bass as well. Best case, all of the musicians are aware of what everyone else is doing, and can hear everyone else, and you all work out what and who goes where. It definitely helps, if you have more than one guitar, for the guitarists to play chords or parts of chords at different spots on the neck.

    The other thing is that what is recorded may not reflect at all what is actually coming out of the FOH. Do you have a sound tech, sound guy, sound engineer at the board for the PA? It is his or her job to get levels right. It's your job to give him or her a good tone, or good set of tones. You may have to dive into some menus to change your EQ on the Boss. You basically want the signal that you are sending to the board to be pretty flat so that the sound guy can set your bass, mids, and treble at noon and have it sound right. If the sound guy has to cut your low end, you're sending him/her too much low end. Same goes for mids or treble. What sounds great to you when you play alone is likely too bassy and mid scooped when you start playing with the band. That is my experience anyway.
     
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  5. scooteraz

    scooteraz Friend of Leo's

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    I’ve been through most of the Line 6 lineup for church, starting with the kidney bean. It can be a challenge to get good tones. Remember, you will be your own worst and most critical listener. Usually, 99% of the congregation won’t know truly great tone from merely OK tone.

    You’re on the right track. My one suggestion is for you to ask your worship leader to allow you to sit one practice at the back of the hall so you can tweak your tone to your satisfaction with the whole band. Most of the folks I have worked with would appreciate that level of commitment and would be happy to accommodate for a practice once in a while.
     
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  6. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    Thanks for your replies. I forgot to mention that my telecaster goes through the main PA. Just wondering what peoples opinion is on this. I know some people go through an amp but that might be quite a lot of faffing about.
     
  7. hotraman

    hotraman Tele-Afflicted

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    All of the four churches I'm fortunate enough to play for, all of my electrics ( Tele, Jazzmaster and Black Falcon) run through the PA. The days of my loud amp being heard apart from the PA, are far and few between. I still have my Mesa Express 5:25 and will play loud at home, when the wife is gone. It sounds glorious and to feel the air being pushed by the amp, is a crazy feeling.
    Electrics were made to be played loud !!
     
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  8. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    How does your electric sound through the PA? I find my tele blends in and it can be hard to hear sometimes.
     
  9. hotraman

    hotraman Tele-Afflicted

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    it depends who is mixing lol
    I have a Youtube clip where I am the second guitarist, and playing more rhythm. I'm not a great player, but you can get a sense of what Im talking about.
    Its a long service so you'll have to scroll through. I am playing "amp less" and in stereo.
    I am the old guy, stage right.
    Lots of clean Gretsch and Overdrive. My buddy Ian is playing the Eric Johnson semi hollow Strat, with two off stage amps.
    We have a second person who mixes the "online" feed.


     
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  10. PastorJay

    PastorJay Tele-Afflicted

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    Lots of good advice above.

    I've never used that particular processor, but I've got some suggestions or answers to your questions.

    The tone knobs on your preamp section will work sort of like this:
    Bass will cover your actual notes up to someplace around your open G string to the first fret on your B string.

    Middle will affect most or all of the rest of the notes on your guitar all the way up your neck. And some overtones from your lower notes.
    For example, I've got an acoustic on which the open D string rings so loud that it will feed back unless I tame it with EQ.
    That note is technically covered by the "bass" knob. But I don't tame it by turning down the bass, I tame it by turning down the mids.

    Treble will affect only the highest notes on your guitar or maybe only the overtones. It affects how "bright" your guitar sounds.
    I"m not very bright, but my Tele is.

    Gain will affect how much dirt your base or "clean" sound has.

    You need to find a way to get your occasional fills/leads to stand out a bit. Making that happen is as much or more a function of using your volume control and your pick attack as it is of your settings. When I'm playing a Tele, I use the volume someplace between 2/3 and 3/4 of the way up for rhythm, and turn it up for fills/leads, or just hit the strings harder for short fills.

    Given your comments, I'd suggest two things.

    First your base tone: Adjust your tone controls. Turn down your bass.
    Maybe your mids. Maybe not. Experiment with that.
    Maybe turn up your treble.
    Ask your Worship Leader or Band leader how much dirt he or she wants on your clean sound.
    If he or she doesn't know, find something that sounds good to you.

    Second, and I'm sure someone said this above: figure out how to stay out of the way of the keyboard and any other guitar players.
    That's harder than it sounds. Both keys and guitars can fill up a whole bunch of sonic space.
    Who's the main instrument or driver on any particular tune?
    If it's keys, stay out of the keyboard player's way. Lay out sometimes.
    Do stuff up on the neck.
    Or in the middle couple strings if that works better.
    Don't think you have to play all the time.
    If the guitar is driving the song, the keyboard player has to stay out of your way.
    This is all a matter of communication and 3 way communication between you, the keys player, and the Worship/band leader.

    Hope this helps. As always, your mileage may vary.

    Prayers for your ministry.

    Pastor Jay
     
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  11. studio

    studio Poster Extraordinaire

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    Pastor Jay has some incredible insight into the live service.

    First thing I would do is find myself in the monitor mix
    and then in the mains mix. Of course this all depends
    on the capabilities of your sound team.

    If your sound team is limited, then may I suggest to take it
    upon yourself to dial in what sounds clear and decent for
    your ears on rehearsal then adjust you guitar volume from stage
    if need be.

    So, have the keyboard player hit the keys the loudest he is going to
    play during the service, then you hit your guitar at the same time and
    match his/her volume. That part is usually missing from a sound check.

    Then you can move on to the next step Pastor Jay talked about and
    adjust the guitar to cleanup at 3/4 volume on the dial and slight
    boost when dialed in full. Note that distortion is the byproduct of
    compression. When you add a little dirt to your signal you have
    a variant of choices, compression, overdrive, fuzz, distortion etc.

    I would add just a hint of overdrive to compress that bass tone
    we're talking about and smooth out the guitar tone. Easy does it.

    So if you are okay in the monitor mix, be it wedges or in ears,
    then your only concern is how you sound in the room.
    Everyone wants to be heard but judgement calls and fear
    of "feedback" will always dictate a live mix with a less than
    prepared sound team. Feedback is in quotes because it's not always
    the sonic feedback that dictates a mix. It could also be that
    big donor and his wife that have a disdain for anything electric guitar!
    So leave your Hendrix wardrobe at home. Thanks.
     
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  12. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    Here is an example of our practice we had this week. You can just about hear my guitar if you listen real closely! I'm thinking I need to be a bit louder or maybe change the tones?

    I'm thinking I should maybe use different chords (same key) as it sounds quite muffled being in the same capo as everyone else.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2021
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  13. Pineears

    Pineears Tele-Afflicted

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    I’d suggest working with tone and frequency before adding volume. A free spectrum analyzer on a phone will tell if you are right on top of the piano frequency wise. Are you using the neck pickup?

    If you can record a practice multitrack, with individual tracks for most everyone that would give you a means in DAW to learn how better to put it all together.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2021
  14. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    For this, I was using blues distortion and the bridge pickup. It sounds quite bassy through the PA. I've changed it to an overdrive effect which sounds a little cleaner.

    This is quite hard work getting the right volume and tone in the mix!
     
  15. Pineears

    Pineears Tele-Afflicted

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    I find that same bassiness when thru the pa. I use significant EQ and a tech21 Sansamp effect in the pa to make it sound like a guitar amp again.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2021
  16. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    Thanks for this. I will try out an amp in the future, but at the moment it might be a lot of messing around. Definitely on the agenda though. Am going to try and get the best I can through the PA. Might have to do some tweeks.
     
  17. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    I've increased the volume a bit and changed the tone. I will also play further up the neck 5o the rest of the band to see if that helps. Service is tomorrow.
     
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  18. hotraman

    hotraman Tele-Afflicted

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    Yep. Keep at it. Blessings !
     
  19. Pineears

    Pineears Tele-Afflicted

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    I’m not advocating a guitar amp, I’m proposing a low cut filter at around 150 hz in the PA on your guitar channel.
     
  20. Clouds84

    Clouds84 TDPRI Member

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    Is this something that's connected to the PA system?
     
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