Mike tours with Decca/MCA recording artist Gary Allan. The Gary Allan group tours extensively throughout the U.S. in support of his album "Used Heart For Sale". A second Decca release is due out in the spring of 1998. Mike can also be heard with Wylie and the Wild West on the albums "Get Wild" on Cross Three Records, and "Way Out West" on Rounder Records.
1\20\98-Mike Fried, email@example.com
I currently own two of these fine-sounding guitars from the early 1980's. They're somewhat smaller and lighter than Sho-Bud Pro II and Pro III guitars. Both steels are set up the same and are identical except for finish and pickups. "Number One" is sherbet orange and cream colored, and sports George L 10-1 pickups in both necks. "Number two" is cream colored with silver painted necks and has the original factory pickups in it. Both guitars have wooden necks. I'm currently using John Pearse nickel pedal steel strings, which last almost as long as stainless-wound strings and are richer sounding (to my ears, anyway). I play through a Matchless Chief 100 amp head and Matchless 1-15" EV open-back cabinet. The only effects I use other than amp reverb are a Boss DM-2 Analog Delay pedal and a Voodoo Labs MicroVibe "univibe" pedal clone. I mic the amp with a Sennheiser MD421 dynamic mic.
Tuning Notes: I'm using a fairly standard E9/C6 setup. On E9, LKV with P1, P3 or P4 give me two accurate "C"s without needing split tuning changer stops, which the guitar doesn't have. You might notice that the C6 is missing the usual fourth pedal changes (A's to B); instead I've opted to raise the fourth string only, on RKR with a half-stop at Bb. I'm using the fourth pedal on E9 (IVmaj7 chord and other effects).
1968 Baldwin Sho-Bud "crossover model" D10
I got this very pretty "Pete Drake model" crossover Sho-Bud a couple of years ago to ogle and experiment with. I've been intrigued by this model guitar ever since I saw Ernie Hagar play one with Commander Cody many years ago. It's the classic clear lacquer on birdseye maple with black wrinkle fininshed end caps. It also sports white fretboards and original pearl-button Grover tuners. The tone is really warm and round, not as much top-end as other Sho-Bud models (it does use different pickups). It records beautifully as an alternative to the current "Nashville sound". The C6 sound is amazing.
Tuning Notes: As this guitar only has two knee levers, I've had to use the additional available pedals for the E9 changes I've grown accustomed to. This requires a lot of both-feet pedal dancing ala Ralph Mooney and takes some getting used to. In a pinch, the "student "setup is there with the first three pedals and both knees. The C6 neck has the classic 5+1 setup with a D on top. Anyone out there have interesting alternative tunings? I'd love to hear from you; e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org .
1950 Rickenbacker DC16, Cast Metal Body
Front Neck - E13 Tuning Back Neck - C13/A6 Tuning 1 .012 G# 1 .013 G/F# 2 .015 E 2 .015 E 3 .018 C# 3 .018 C/C# 4 .020P B 4 .022W A 5 .024 G# 5 .028 G/F# 6 .032 E 6 .032 E 7 .036 D/C# 7 .036 C/C# 8 .040 B 8 .042 Bb/A
A friend found this near-mint condition instrument for me in a Santa Monica pawnshop a few years back. The rear neck pickup was dead, so we sent it to Seymour Duncan to rewind, and it came out great! I believe the front neck tuning is the one you use, Bob. It is indeed easy for E9 players to acclimate to this, and the 13ths and minor 9ths are addicting. The back neck is C13 or A6 voiced one inversion higher than some players do; I find it easier to "keep my place" with this voicing. This guitar sits on a foam-padded "folding x" keyboard stand when on a bandstand, and is louder than G*d.
Paul Beard 8-String Resophonic, E6 Tuning
1 .014 E 2 .016 C# 3 .018 B 4 .024W G# 5 .032 E 6 .045 B 7 .052 G# 8 .059 E
Paul Beard custom-built this square-neck "dobro" for me. It's made of solid mahogany (as opposed to the plywood construction of "real" Dobros) and has a Quarterman resonator and a McIntyre transducer installed on the bridge spider. The workmanship is flawless and it sounds terrific. I highly recommend the McIntyre pickup; it needs acoustic guitar-style preamplification, but sounds better than anything I've heard other than a mic. It will get VERY loud before feedback with minimal EQ, and even sounds really good through a guitar amp. Paul Beard sells and installs them.
This E6 tuning allows standard dobro playing on the lower 6 strings (three half-steps down), and greater chord flexibility with fewer bar slants when including the top two strings. Also, less bar movement is required for single-note playing. I use a capo for playing bluegrass in G or A. I use D'Addario phosphor bronze strings on this guitar.
Epiphone "Spider" Resophonic, C13 Tuning
1 .014 E 2 .017 C 3 .020p A 4 .024 G 5 .032 E 6 .046 Bb
I got this "dobro" recently as part of Gary Allan's Epiphone endorsement deal. It's a sturdy workhorse road axe made in Korea. It has the small "Regal"-size body with a skinny square neck. The C13 tuning suits this guitar's purpose well - it's for the bus and for songwriting ensemble sessions.
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