Friday, May 9, 2008

classic: Quicksilver Messenger Service

"All I Ever Wanted To Do Was Love You"
A couple years ago I made my pilgrimage to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, located on the beautiful Cuyahoga River (famous for bursting into flames) in lovely Cleveland, Ohio (aka The Mistake By The Lake). While I can't vouch for Cleveland in any way, shape or form, I can say that a trip to the Rock Hall is definitely worth it (Tip; Bring a sealed CD in shrink wrap and claim you are the band who recorded it, you'll get in free. Trust me.) While there are no shortage of mega-fucking-cool items in the Hall (Garcia's guitars, Byrne's Big Suit, and a shit loa of Bowie costumes, Prince's Purple Rain motorcycle), the coolest thing in the hall is by far John Cippolina of Quicksilver Messenger Service's amp setup (above). According to John, here's how this behemoth of sound was configured:
Gibson Custom SG with two pickups, one treble and one bass; the bass pickup fed into the two Standel bass amps on the bottom of the stack. Each Standel was equipped with two 15-inch speakers. The treble pickups fed the two Fender amps-a Fender Twin Reverb with two 12-inch speakers and a Fender Dual Showman- that drove the six Wurlitzer horns.

Custom foot-switched system to select reverb, tremolo, Astro Echoplex (the unit mounted on the right of the Twin Reverb), Standel Modulux (on the left of the twin reverb) or the horns. Truck running lights indicated which effect was being used. Also employed were a Gibson Maestro Fuzz, a Vox wah-wah and multiple volume pedals.
Regardless of what you think about the jammy San Francisco psychedelic rock quartet, there is no denying that Cipollina, his custom SG, and his fucking monstrous amp are inherently more badass than any Jaguar toting, Orange amplified indie kid. Rock excess at its finest.

Quicksilver Messenger Service "Dino's Song" at Monterey Pop.

1 comment:

Will said...

It was october of 06... get it right...