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EricHaven
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PostSubject: John Gallagher of Raven   Sun Mar 22, 2009 8:50 pm

Easily my biggest influence, and someone I consider a friend. John is without a doubt one of the true pioneers of bass tremolo usage, as well as a player of truly frightening abilities. You can check out John with Raven at: www.ravenlunatics.com

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Mar 23, 2009 2:42 am

Word! Hopefully, my Destroyer will look something like that some time soon! Cool
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Mar 23, 2009 2:57 am

Actually, I have to send John a message to get him over here to the new place! Shocked
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Mar 23, 2009 12:27 pm

Did he ever post on the old board? I'd imagine he'd be pretty busy.
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:11 pm

Not once.
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Tue Mar 24, 2009 7:06 pm

I think since John is so busy with Raven, he doesn't have a lot of free time to be cruising boards. But I sent him an invitation, and he is registered here now. Hopefully he'll get some time to pop in and say hello soon. Cool
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Tue Mar 24, 2009 8:26 pm

Hi Eric!
thanks for the invitation & hello to all the fellow heretics out there!! Yep,we are not hiding in the wings pumping out
plodding 8th notes...I love the look on most peoples faces when they see one of my trem basses " a trem? ON A BASS???"
priceless!! it was always a dream of mine from the first time I had a bass - back in 1981 I bugged a guy at a local music store in Newcastle(England - my home town) - he was a tech guy & I brought in my red explorer and said "think you can do a trem for this?
he was up for the challenge & one week later - bang!!! the marriage of a schecter strat trem block, a new top plate & some
p-bass bridge pieces & we were away...for 5 mins until the bar broke!!! so...he took a chrome vanadium screwdriver &
thats what I use for the bar to this day! I also have a kahler equipped bass & a hipshot..both very cool but my beat up rusted & bashed custom job still rules for me!!! as soon as I can figure out this forum technology I'll get some ix & stuff up!
We have a new album coming out March 25th in Japan (check out www.ravenlunatics.com) and I do have a short trem solo
on one song...its all about not always doing the bleedin 'obvious mate!!! ...I'm sure I'll post more nonsense as we go..
cheers, John
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Tue Mar 24, 2009 8:51 pm

For those that are not initiated, johng is in fact the John Gallagher of Raven! Smile

Awright, John! Welcome to the house! Wink It's great to have you here, and you have a few fans here that are eager to talk to you about bass tremolo things, as well as what Raven is up to.

If anyone wants to hear some truly incredible and frightening bass riffs with a heavy does of tremolo, I strongly suggest getting a hold of the Raven album Live At The Inferno. John's solo on the album is called I.G.A.R.B.O., and it is mind-blowing!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Wed Mar 25, 2009 1:06 am

Pleasure to see you on here, John! Welcome!

I'll have to check those out, Eric.... Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:13 am

Fantastic to see you here John.

I was hoping you would join in the discussions in the old forum, espcially to hear more about your custom trem, and your take on X2N's.
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:23 am

I agree! That red Explorer has been quite an inspiration to us. What a Face
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Wed Mar 25, 2009 5:53 pm

Indeed it has! I also told him that he has been the inspiration for our love affair with the DiMarzio X2N! Wink

Here is a live video of Raven taken from the Destroy All Monsters tour of Japan done back in 1995. There is also a CD of this exact entire show. I have it. It's KILLER!

The track is Live At The Inferno, and John is using his Hamer eight-string. Sorry, there's no trem action in this one, but the tune ROCKS! He does get some wicked neck-bending, not to mention his incredible dexterity finger-picking an eight-string bass! It is not to be missed!

By the way, if you look closely during shots of John's rig, you can see his infamous red Explorer bass with X2N pickup and custom tremolo sitting on its stand. The first view can be seen at 0:38, and the best view comes in at 4:03.

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:20 am

Very Happy hi!
yeah, thats a cool clip - and actually thats a Hamer 12 string!! dunno if I have any bass solos on video
but will try & track 'em down...or I can always fiddle around & shoot a mpeg4 here - & make a fool of myself!
anothr pickup I used to use was the EMG 81 which has a pronouced mid-peak...the x2-n is a wider freq. p/u.
cheers, john
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 9:53 am

Nice!! That was 4 minutes of me being knocked out of my seat and dooling Laughing

I wonder what it's like to play one of those 12 strings. Would probably confuse the hell out of me. No longer could I do my lazy picking! scratch
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 11:11 am

I would assume its not much harder than an 8er, which is suprisingly easy.
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:49 pm

Aw, crap! It was a 12-er! Sorry, John! Wink

The thing is that John plays using his fingers, and it is notoriously hard to play a 12-er in this way. Most guys I see using them resort to a pick, but you can clearly see it isn't an issue for John.

You're a madman, John. And an undisputed master!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:28 pm

I'd love to take a shot at it, I almost always play my 8 with fingers.
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 8:35 pm

To paraphrase Monty Python......"he's not a master..he's a very naughty boy!"
techno-challenged as I've spent 15 mins trying to load pix here - Eric - help!!!
What can I say...I'm a fingers guy - its just preference, somethings you can only do with your fingers
and you can always imitate a pick - I play with a combo of fingernail & fingertip so with some left
hand muting I can imitate that guitarish "chunk chunk chunk"..or just pretend my index fingernail
is a pick!
That 12 string is pretty easy - most my basses are since I use ridiculously thin strings... put it this way, the G
string on my 8 & 12 string basses are set with the bass string being a 0.25 & the octave is a .011!!!
that way if I want to, I can bend the hell outta them...
anyway - let me digress.....check this page out & scroll down...8 string with trem...10 string with trem!! I gotta talk to these guys!!!
http://www.cc.rim.or.jp/~tune/tune/framepage,custom,order.html very cool basses...
back to the trem...as I can't yet upload pix as I'm illiterate - found some pix at this link from a club show we did in S.F.

http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3119/2791112733_04c146262a.jpg%3Fv%3D0&imgrefurl=http://flickr.com/photos/acrofish/2791112733/&usg=__iGGhu4sgeF5ETI5IiLi5hKY33UY=&h=500&w=333&sz=111&hl=en&start=363&um=1&tbnid=5AJ7nQH3IHa_DM:&tbnh=130&tbnw=87&prev=/images%3Fq%3Draven%2Bmetal%2Bpix%26ndsp%3D18%26hl%3Den%26client%3Dfirefox-a%26rls%3Dorg.mozilla:en-US:official%26sa%3DN%26start%3D360%26um%3D1

you can see the horror of my fave bass...the cracked paint...the string retainer( a piece from my bro's 1st ever electric)
and the multiple holes where I tried to make it fit...and the piece of plywood that I had to use when the trem unit was in danger
of just getting pulled off!!!....heres the specs:
body - plywood!!!
neck: a "Sumbro" jazz copy neck ..hey it cost $30.00 back then!!!
tuners: schallers
front pickup: Dimarzio P-bass
back pickup: Dimarzio X2-N
strings: 0.25, 0.35, 0.75, 0.95 ("rubber bands" as my brother calls 'em...)
and this bass is great to play - & it sounds great!
Also the 8 string is a Carlo Robelli - its now got another MM pickup up front - its an amazing 8 string!!!!
and before I bore you all to freaking tears...heres some bits where I've actually USED the trem on recordings:

Chainsaw(wiped out album) - on the intro - thats all bass folks!!
Run Silent, Run Deep(all for one album) intro solo is trem bass
IGARBO(live at the inferno) ...bass solo...
Gimme just a little(Mad) lotsa dives with my ESP "flash" kahler equipped bass
Pick your window(lifes a bitch) lots of crazy stuff at the end...
Hard as Nails(nothing exceeds like excess) intro solo - trem bass then in the middle bass & guitar trem duel !
short bass solo on "destroy all monsters" our Japanese live album...and bits through "break the chain"
new album has a bass break on "breaking you down" & "hard road" with my Fender urge hipshot trem equipped bass

i'm done - good night!!!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 9:12 pm

WOW! I do believe that Mr Gallagher is officially in the house!!! Shocked

Awesome!

And hey there, kiddies! If that weren't enough, lookie here what I just found on YouTube. Raven performing live in the 80's doing Lay The Law Down, and John is playing that wonderful red Explorer we all know and love!

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 9:20 pm

By the way, John, isn't the title of the album that Hard As Nails appears actually Nothing Exceeds Like My Breasts? Laughing

Sorry....couldn't help myself there! I remember on the Destroy All Monsters album, you made a reference to this. Wink

Here are a couple of the pictures John is referring to, and you can see the infamous red Explorer up close and personal, trem and all:



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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Thu Mar 26, 2009 11:14 pm

Nice...that is quite the machine!! What a Face I really dig how the X2N has red bobbins. Those string gauges--are those piccolo strings?

Man, your playing just blows me away, man. I enjoyed every second of those recordings. Horns!!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Fri Mar 27, 2009 6:05 am

Awesome stuff! Love the close ups of the bass!

johng wrote:
strings: 0.25, 0.35, 0.75, 0.95 ("rubber bands" as my brother calls 'em...)
and this bass is great to play - & it sounds great!
Pretty sure my guitar has heavier strings than that! lol!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Fri Mar 27, 2009 5:58 pm

Maybe so, but John still makes it sound like pure thunder! Wink

Personally, I've tried lighter-gauge strings, and they just don't feel right to me. I guess I'm locked-in to the old 45-65-80-105 thing. Cool

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Fri Mar 27, 2009 9:23 pm

Man....you never know what you'll find on YouTube! Here's an interview with John done back on 08/02/08 in College Park, Maryland for radio station WMUC.

Part I



Part II



Part III


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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Fri Mar 27, 2009 10:46 pm

It does go like thunder! (been listening to The Who all day Rolling Eyes )

Cool interview! Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Fri Mar 27, 2009 10:56 pm

Cool

By the way, John. I've been wondering about your custom trem design. Did you have that built before you had a Kahler, or afterward? What made you think of the idea to have one made? How does it compare to a Kahler or a Hipshot? And what kind of range does it have?

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 4:12 am

EricHaven wrote:
Maybe so, but John still makes it sound like pure thunder! Wink

Personally, I've tried lighter-gauge strings, and they just don't feel right to me. I guess I'm locked-in to the old 45-65-80-105 thing. Cool

Oh I don't doubt it for a second, I used to use a set of Thomastic Jazz Roundwounds, with an 83 for the low E, and they brought the bass!
They were the best tremmin' strings ever, huge, huge, range, but broke a bit too easily, being that they were too expensive to change often. Crying or Very sad
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 2:50 pm

Yikes! An 083 for an E string? That's like the gauge of the average A string! Shocked

But I can imagine that it was really easy to play! Wink

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 3:10 pm

I had more trem range than an average strat, in fact more than any trem barring a double locked floyd rose, and played so easy..... Crying or Very sad
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 3:18 pm

This seems to confirm my suspicions about the differences in string tensions between guitars and basses. It would appear that the thinner the string, the less the tension, ergo, the further that a trem will affect the range.

Shoot....am I gonna have to start playing with really thin strings now? scratch

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 4:10 pm

EricHaven wrote:
This seems to confirm my suspicions about the differences in string tensions between guitars and basses. It would appear that the thinner the string, the less the tension, ergo, the further that a trem will affect the range.

Shoot....am I gonna have to start playing with really thin strings now? scratch


Yup! 70's for your low E :p
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 4:25 pm

Very Happy thats why I use the thin strings...I can dive over an octave on the D string...it has a tighter feel than the kahler
if you've ever compared guitars with floyds to guitars with kahlers...its similar - both are good, just different!

but the reason why I started on thin
strings was back in nineteen hundred and frozen to death....I mean 1976/77...I was playing a jazz bass copy & kept breaking
strings..I figured if I tried lighter strings & hit them hard, they would go BOINNNNNG..you know, bottom out & I would compensate by playing a little lighter - and not break the string - I tried it & it worked - I also found out now I could bend strings...
a lot!!! so when I set up the explorer I just took it to a new level.
I wanted a trem on a bass from day one - 1974!!! and after bothering various people found a guy that could /would do it
in 1980...full story? a small indie guitar shop was building me a bass...it got stolen out the shop (shame - a blue flying v)
so we started over...neck through, body shape sort of rick front end, T-bird back end - played/sounded great. Now, as yu do at a gig if you are a nut job like me, I threw it up high at the end of the gig...in midair..without touching anything...the head snapped off!!!!! I caught the pieces & being pissed off..destroyed the rest of the bass!
Next day brought the case to the shop..explained what happened (the look on their faces when I opened the case...!) and said
"build me a bass that will not break!" so, from odds & ends, they made the explorer.
So I had the trem way before Kahlers came out....I don't think I saw one until 1983/84??

So my strings last quite a long time - and usually I have to do a full reset when I change them...the screws holding the trem
to the body tend to bend over time & over the years I've went to a heavier E string..and a lighter G to balance the set
out a bit...like Eric, I've glued in the neck as I abuse the bass way too much...no fake relicing on this bass - its all
torture!...I even set it on fire once! well..just a bit...
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 4:27 pm

aaggghhh..still cant uplod pix!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 6:48 pm

Wow! Thanks for filling in the story, John! I always wondered if your custom trem came first, and yes, the first Kahlers showed up in the very early 80's.

In fact, I have been wanting to try and build my own trem based upon your design. You can drop your D string an entire octave??? YIKES!!! That's far more range than I think any other bass trem can do if I'm not mistaken. I can drop my E string a whole octave, but my D only goes down maybe half an octave. I want as much divebomb range as I can get, so I will definitely have to cook up a custom job one of these days.

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 10:15 pm

Very Happy yep, and I get pretty much the same results with my kahler & my hipshot.
of course, you may just wanna lighten up on your G & D strings a little if dealing with
the skinny strings is a bit much!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 10:35 pm

There is SO much that we can all learn from you, John. And having you here means more to me than I can put into words. Cool

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:17 pm

Oh nice, man! I dig lighter strings and I'll bet a tremolo would love the feel of them. I dig the bendiness, especially on a short scale neck, but from trying lighter gauges on long scale basses, I have been pleased with the result. The sound changes drastically as well. It's something to ponder, I guess Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sun Mar 29, 2009 8:50 pm

On the subject of the gauges of strings, i use 100 gauge B on my Basstar. So I do like not having tension, but i plan to tune it back to E but to take an A for the E string. And i'm planning to buy an Iceman(tuned B100,E80,A65,G45) and have a trem on it! It's gonna rock! =D

By the way john, you rock!!! cheers
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:13 pm

Damn, John Gallagher is on our forum. I knew about it ahead of time, and yet I'm still in awe. Anyway, what brand/model strings do you use? I know Rotosound make a set like that I want to try out once I actually get a bass with a trem.


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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Mar 30, 2009 12:36 am

Mmhhh Rotosound *Martin drools a little* albino

I know...it's an honor to have him here!! bounce
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sun Apr 12, 2009 1:00 pm

Very Happy

Hi, finally figured this photo thing out! heres my "flash" bass - ESP built it for me back in the 80's...great bass
but so friggin big I'd NEVER get it on a plane as baggage!!


no trem (theres an idea!!)but just to be out there..my 7 string bass!



heres my Fender urge with the hipshot trem...a very cool bass...



and my latest project - got the body from my mate Alan in the UK...I've just stung it up & acoustically its killer..
the trem is perfect - gotta paint it (antique white I think) & go for 2 pickups..so more routing(ugh!)
but this bass is killer!!!
cheers, John
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sun Apr 12, 2009 1:36 pm

Congratulations on figuring out picture posting, John! Wink

Great shots! I totally remember your lightening bolt bass from the 80's, and the 7-stringer looks awesome.

Keep us posted as to how the T-Bird develops. It looks great! Are able to leave the Kahler surface-mounted? Or are you going to have to counter-sink it to be able to get your action low enough?

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sun Apr 12, 2009 5:32 pm

How are you liking the Conklin, John? I love those. Sexy as hell. Also, what kind of pickups do you have in the Urge?
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Sun Apr 12, 2009 9:00 pm

Oh god that's awesome, man! What a Face

Tried a bass with an X2N for the first time today...more on that in another thread Cool
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johng

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:08 pm

Very Happy questions!!! lemme see...I use rotosounds but also stings from a site called juststrings.com
as they do a 0.25 G string that ROCKS!
the 7 string is a monster - of course, its fun to try and do guitarish things on it..chords sound
great but the bass ..as a bass..just has a great sound...now all it needs is a trem!
the urge came with 'orrible feedback prone pickups..it currently has 2 hamer J pickups &
a no name P pickup...and still a bit feedback prone...the bad kinda feedback...so I gotta work on that.
Also, looks like my X2-N is hurting...same disease - feedback..(could it be throwing the bass around
finally loosened up the coils???) so I'm gonna try the EMG 81 again and maybe try to wax pot the X2-N
I'll keep ya posted!
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:19 pm

Man, those tiny strings sound like they'd be a blast on a 32" bass or something. What a Face

I'd imagine that EMGs would probably cure you of the microphonic squeals. Those things are hermetically sealed Laughing

I wonder why so many people use the 81 in the bridge...I always thought the 85 ripped in the bridge position, but I'm not the biggest fan of EMGs to begin with. Have you used EMG guitar humbuckers on any of your basses before?
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EricHaven
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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Apr 27, 2009 9:05 pm

Well, of course there are questions, John! After all, you're our resident celebrity! Wink

And I have a feeling that given the way you play, you could probably destroy even a titanium pickup! Laughing

Might I suggest replacing your original X2N with an X2N-7 to give you better string spacing?

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Mon Apr 27, 2009 9:14 pm

johng wrote:
the 7 string is a monster - of course, its fun to try and do guitarish things on it..chords sound
great but the bass ..as a bass..just has a great sound...now all it needs is a trem!

That's kind of the impression I got from reviews, etc. I've wanted one FOREVER, but have never been able to justify the cost. But if I could find a top mounted 7 string trem... \m/ Twisted Evil \m/

I've had this idea for a band with just 2 bassists, a drummer, and vocals. One of those would be perfect for that kind of thing. Well suited for chords and crazy upper register solos.

And seriously, just listen to this thing:

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Tue Apr 28, 2009 8:18 pm

Shocked

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PostSubject: Re: John Gallagher of Raven   Tue Apr 28, 2009 8:38 pm

That man's right hand technique is fascinating...
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