The Canadian Guitar Forum banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,438 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Guys i am trying to get some info on any type of pedal synth to reproduce a steel guitar sound out of my Tel. Any info on models and maker of pedals or synths much appreciated. Cant find anything on the old Web.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,690 Posts
Guys i am trying to get some info on any type of pedal synth to reproduce a steel guitar sound out of my Tel. Any info on models and maker of pedals or synths much appreciated. Cant find anything on the old Web.
The last effect that I used that did that was a Roland G50 with a GK2 synth driver. It did a pretty good job. The G50 wasn't a pedal. It was a rack mount unit. and the GK2 was a pickup that fit under the strings back by the bridge. It did all sorts of other stuff as well, flute, grand piano, strings, etc. The steel guitar sound was pretty good.
That was back in the 80's so I"m sure that Roland has something else that will do this.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,438 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
The last effect that I used that did that was a Roland G50 with a GK2 synth driver. It did a pretty good job. The G50 wasn't a pedal. It was a rack mount unit. and the GK2 was a pickup that fit under the strings back by the bridge. It did all sorts of other stuff as well, flute, grand piano, strings, etc. The steel guitar sound was pretty good.
That was back in the 80's so I"m sure that Roland has something else that will do this.

Thanks for the quick response. I also had one of those but i could not figure out how to use it properly. I only had one voice i would use and it was slow strings. Pretty expensive back then at 1600.00 if i remember. Will look at the Roland and Boss site to find more info. Much appreciated
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,690 Posts
The last effect that I used that did that was a Roland G50 with a GK2 synth driver. It did a pretty good job. The G50 wasn't a pedal. It was a rack mount unit. and the GK2 was a pickup that fit under the strings back by the bridge. It did all sorts of other stuff as well, flute, grand piano, strings, etc. The steel guitar sound was pretty good.
That was back in the 80's so I"m sure that Roland has something else that will do this.
As good as that Roland setup was at some sounds the steel guitar patch wasn't the greatest. A pedal steel sound involves a lot of bends which those synth devices don't like. You get a lot of that cheap synth sound come through on bends. Using a Telecaster and the correct technique is something I did specialize in and got a much closer sound. Having a B bender and\or G bender doesn't hurt either.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,560 Posts
I wouldn't say you could not get a steel guitar pedal or synth because I am not experienced enough with all the newest effects that are out there. I found this link for you which will get you what you want with a little work. I would give Line 6 and Roland a dingle and see what they have.

Pedal-Steel Effect

Line 6 Company Contact

You can sign up with Roland and contact them via email.

Roland - Backstage - Log In
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,438 Posts
Discussion Starter #6

·
Registered
Joined
·
24,365 Posts
There's pedal steel, and there's pedal steel. I guess what's not clear to me is what you want in the way of pedal-izing a Telecaster. Is it the sustain? the tone? the pedal action? Is there a particular style of pedal steel you're aiming for?

I made myself a clone of an old Univox compressor I used to have in the late 70's, and find that the sluggish gain recovery on it makes double and triple stops on the bridge pickup sound remarkable pedal-steel-like. Perhaps a small part of what you seek can be achieved by appropriate use of "hard squish" compression.

Of course the ingredient in pedal steel that is hard to achieve is individual string-bending. B-benders and palm pedals aim to achieve that but B-benders only do one string, and palm-pedals are not quite precise enough. Both are expensive, as well.

Pondering what synth technology could do makes sense, though, provided one is using a hex pickup. That way, pitch bend could be applied to individual strings. I know there are state-of-the-art guitar synths that only require plugging a normal mono cable into a normal guitar, without divided pickups. Those are certainly capable of applying wholesale tonal and envelope transformation to the individual notes detected. The trouble is that pitch-bend effects can not be applied selectively to individual strings on the fly. Hence the need for divided pickup.

If your playing style is to only apply pedal-like bends when picking one note at a time, then one of the plug-and-play current synths could work. Heck, for that matter, a one of the newer generation pitch-shifters with momentary single-shot shift like the Digitech Ricochet or EHX Pitch Fork pedal might do the trick. The caveat is, of course, that you can't mimic differential detuning of 2 or more strings like on an actual pedal-steel.

But it's a tall ask. A worthy one, but tall nonetheless.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,438 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
There's pedal steel, and there's pedal steel. I guess what's not clear to me is what you want in the way of pedal-izing a Telecaster. Is it the sustain? the tone? the pedal action? Is there a particular style of pedal steel you're aiming for?

I made myself a clone of an old Univox compressor I used to have in the late 70's, and find that the sluggish gain recovery on it makes double and triple stops on the bridge pickup sound remarkable pedal-steel-like. Perhaps a small part of what you seek can be achieved by appropriate use of "hard squish" compression.

Of course the ingredient in pedal steel that is hard to achieve is individual string-bending. B-benders and palm pedals aim to achieve that but B-benders only do one string, and palm-pedals are not quite precise enough. Both are expensive, as well.

Pondering what synth technology could do makes sense, though, provided one is using a hex pickup. That way, pitch bend could be applied to individual strings. I know there are state-of-the-art guitar synths that only require plugging a normal mono cable into a normal guitar, without divided pickups. Those are certainly capable of applying wholesale tonal and envelope transformation to the individual notes detected. The trouble is that pitch-bend effects can not be applied selectively to individual strings on the fly. Hence the need for divided pickup.

If your playing style is to only apply pedal-like bends when picking one note at a time, then one of the plug-and-play current synths could work. Heck, for that matter, a one of the newer generation pitch-shifters with momentary single-shot shift like the Digitech Ricochet or EHX Pitch Fork pedal might do the trick. The caveat is, of course, that you can't mimic differential detuning of 2 or more strings like on an actual pedal-steel.

But it's a tall ask. A worthy one, but tall nonetheless.

Thank you Mark. Much appreciate the input. What i am looking is for is the sound of the pedal steel. I do get by with the limited Tele bends i do on a regular basis and actually sounds okey for the kind of material we cover.There is a guy in Ottawa who has come close to what i am looking for and he uses some kind of synth i know for a fact. I dont know what it is or the make and trying to contact him on Facebook. He is quite an accomplished player. The other thing i should try is a good volume pedal and practice with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24,365 Posts
When you say "sound", do you mean the sustain or the tone, or both? Have you ever tried one of those "sustainer" pickups? Fernandes makes one, but so do other companies. Sustainer

Here's a cute video of a diy sustainer system.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,438 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
When you say "sound", do you mean the sustain or the tone, or both? Have you ever tried one of those "sustainer" pickups? Fernandes makes one, but so do other companies. Sustainer

Here's a cute video of a diy sustainer system.

I guess i mean sound Mark. The tone is important too but looking for the big swell if you want to call it like that. Not what the guy in the video sounds like.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,492 Posts
I get pretty dang close with my setup. Fender BF/SF style amp, roll my tone knob off about a third to sweeten it up. Boss CS3, and a B/G Bender.

Just listen to Peaceful Easy Feeling 100 times in a row and remember that was all done on a Tele.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,438 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I get pretty dang close with my setup. Fender BF/SF style amp, roll my tone knob off about a third to sweeten it up. Boss CS3, and a B/G Bender.

Just listen to Peaceful Easy Feeling 100 times in a row and remember that was all done on a Tele.
Good example buddy i agree. I also use a compressor most of the time with the country trio i play in. The volume pedal would help. I wish i could download the video of this guy in Ottawa but he is on Facebook and cant do it for some reason.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,690 Posts
Good example buddy i agree. I also use a compressor most of the time with the country trio i play in. The volume pedal would help. I wish i could download the video of this guy in Ottawa but he is on Facebook and cant do it for some reason.
Can you post a link to this guys playing? I wouldn't mind seeing it if possible. If he's a well known player there could be videos available on youtube. Somewhat like Steve Pitico who is a noted country player, I think from around Ottawa.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,492 Posts
Good example buddy i agree. I also use a compressor most of the time with the country trio i play in. The volume pedal would help. I wish i could download the video of this guy in Ottawa but he is on Facebook and cant do it for some reason.
Volume pedal is next on my to do list.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,690 Posts
Volume pedal is next on my to do list.
I always think life would be easier with a volume pedal and once or twice over the years I've used one but always end up going back to the volume knob of my Telecaster. Its in a great spot for volume swells and I just prefer the technique.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24,365 Posts
There are things one can do with the pinky that are maybe not achievable with the foot. Even though, in theory, a volume pot is a volume pot, they have different feels. Sometimes one gets you what you want and sometimes the other does. I've experimented with using a guitar-mounted photocell instead of an expression pedal, and the pinky can operate at different speeds than your ankle.

We've seen compressors mentioned, and volume pedals mentioned. But we haven't seen their combination noted. One of the things I used to do back in my band days was connect my EHX Hot Foot controller pedal to the volume pot of my compressor to make swells smoother. Inserting a volume pedal after a compressor would do pretty much the same thing. Plus, you can still choose to use either your foot or your pinky. That doesn't get one over the pitch-bend thing, but it's a start.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,438 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Can you post a link to this guys playing? I wouldn't mind seeing it if possible. If he's a well known player there could be videos available on youtube. Somewhat like Steve Pitico who is a noted country player, I think from around Ottawa.
His name is Carey Blackwell but the video was not on his Facebook page. He is just as good as Steve (who i have had the pleausure of sharing the stage with 2 years ago) You Tube have a few videos of his old band called Blackwell.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top