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  1. #161
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wilko View Post
    It's interesting that you met someone who thinks that EC's amp was a regular JTM45.
    Maybe I should expand. He's not just a "someone", for want of another way of putting it. At the time, he was a well known player around the London circuit. He was a very early Marshall adopter, I bought his block logo JTM45, which he bought with the proceeds of selling his white front JTM45. He also owned what was, very likely, the first 'burst in the UK which he bought in early '62. He's an extremely honest and methodical man, with a pin sharp memory, so I don't take what he told me lightly.

    He'd seen Eric play a few times, and after a small club gig mid-week somewhere (I can't remember where he told me, but he remembered precisely), they chatted after the show. He talked to Eric principally because he was interested in his amp. His strong recollection is that the amp was an ordinary JTM45 in a 2x12 chassis with 652's. They also talked guitars, both being 'burst players, which was very rare back in the day.

    So, this guy wasn't just a regular music fan. He was a working musician and guitar geek.......as he remains to this day.
    The artist formerly known as "A-hole".



  2. #162
    Les Paul Forum Member mistersnappy's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by F-Hole View Post
    Dude, I was three months old when all this went down.
    Haha! Me too. I'm too young for the era that I'm obsessed with and too old for the kids. Oh, Well....

    Thanks for speaking with your friend and relating the info!
    "That's what I love, man, to hear that backbeat popping, that damn bass plonkin' down. Jesus God!"-Duane Allman

  3. #163
    Les Paul Forum Member ourmaninthenorth's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    ...and the account is still strong... I'll hold that position until a similar eye witness account that refutes it comes along.

    Anyone?
    Shakespeare walks into a pub, the Landlord says "get out, you're Bard"

  4. #164

    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Standard JTM45 chassis, T652s...bingo! What my ears have told me all along (well, not that I could tell it was a non-trem chassis). But the part about it being a custom job. It all makes sense, sonically, visually...

    Thanks for providing us with this info, Banker!

  5. #165
    All Access/Backstage Pass Wilko's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by F-Hole View Post
    Maybe I should expand. He's not just a "someone", for want of another way of putting it. At the time, he was a well known player around the London circuit. He was a very early Marshall adopter, I bought his block logo JTM45, which he bought with the proceeds of selling his white front JTM45. He also owned what was, very likely, the first 'burst in the UK which he bought in early '62. He's an extremely honest and methodical man, with a pin sharp memory, so I don't take what he told me lightly.

    He'd seen Eric play a few times, and after a small club gig mid-week somewhere (I can't remember where he told me, but he remembered precisely), they chatted after the show. He talked to Eric principally because he was interested in his amp. His strong recollection is that the amp was an ordinary JTM45 in a 2x12 chassis with 652's. They also talked guitars, both being 'burst players, which was very rare back in the day.

    So, this guy wasn't just a regular music fan. He was a working musician and guitar geek.......as he remains to this day.
    That's why I said it was interesting. Who are the people who made the reissues tremolo, and why do pics like the most popular one show a wider cutout?

  6. #166

    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Marshall preusmably made the reissue not knowing very much about the details of Clapton's amp, other than it being a JTM45-style 2x12 combo. All other 2x12 combos with a JTM45 chassis made back then were equipped with tremolo, so they probably assumed it would be a trem chassis.

    Even with all error margins counted in, wouldn't it be possible to make a good estimate about the overall width of the amp from the Bluesbreaker session photo? In that photo the amp still has its script logo. IIRC those logos measure about 6" (I can check). To my eyes, that combo cab is no more than 70 cm wide, so only marginally more than a smallbox head cab, and the chassis cutout doesn't look any wider than on a smallbox head cab to my eyes.

  7. #167
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wilko View Post
    Who are the people who made the reissues tremolo.......
    That would be Marshall, the same people who will write you a letter telling you that your Music Ground fake is genuine.

    It's the amp equivalent of Gibson doing a run of "Beano" 'burst reissues.
    The artist formerly known as "A-hole".



  8. #168
    Les Paul Forum Member jrock1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Of course it's possible that by March of '66, he may have blown the 15watt AlNiCos and was using the newer G12m 20 watt ceramics...unless someone can find a pic of the back of the amp at the time of Beano session we'll never know for sure. And one would sure like to have corroborating evidence that could confirm what John's friend recollects from 50 years ago per the non-trem variant and the AlNiCos...a second confirming source, so to speak...you know, the type of thing that the press used to do before reporting something as fact. But with all the time having passed, the light is flickering dimly on that possibility. So, from my perspective, John's friends recollections are really interesting and certainly worthy of consideration as it's the closest I've heard anyone come to "knowing"...but not enough in my mind to put a final nail in the coffin.

  9. #169
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by shakti View Post
    Even with all error margins counted in, wouldn't it be possible to make a good estimate about the overall width of the amp from the Bluesbreaker session photo? In that photo the amp still has its script logo. IIRC those logos measure about 6" (I can check). To my eyes, that combo cab is no more than 70 cm wide, so only marginally more than a smallbox head cab, and the chassis cutout doesn't look any wider than on a smallbox head cab to my eyes.
    Based on the "live" photo in the OP - and my ridiculous photo mockups upthread - it would appear that Clapton's amp was likely 30" x 24". This is the same size as a Style I combo...what are the dimensions of the "cutout" on a Style I to accommodate the trem chassis?

  10. #170

    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    I would rather use an "internal" measure from the Beano sessions photo for reference, such as the script logo. On first look, the proportions to me look like it could well be around 70 cm wide, just like an 18W 2x12 combo...but slightly taller, to allow for more clearance due to a larger, deeper/taller chassis with KT66s.

  11. #171
    Les Paul Forum Member mistersnappy's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by F-Hole View Post
    It's the amp equivalent of Gibson doing a run of "Beano" 'burst reissues.
    Thank you!

    (I would include all of the CC/Artist runs as well, but I digress...)
    "That's what I love, man, to hear that backbeat popping, that damn bass plonkin' down. Jesus God!"-Duane Allman

  12. #172
    Les Paul Forum Member mistersnappy's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    .
    "That's what I love, man, to hear that backbeat popping, that damn bass plonkin' down. Jesus God!"-Duane Allman

  13. #173
    Les Paul Forum Member mistersnappy's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by jrock1 View Post
    Of course it's possible that by March of '66, he may have blown the 15watt AlNiCos and was using the newer G12m 20 watt ceramics...unless someone can find a pic of the back of the amp at the time of Beano session we'll never know for sure. And one would sure like to have corroborating evidence that could confirm what John's friend recollects from 50 years ago per the non-trem variant and the AlNiCos...a second confirming source, so to speak...you know, the type of thing that the press used to do before reporting something as fact. But with all the time having passed, the light is flickering dimly on that possibility. So, from my perspective, John's friends recollections are really interesting and certainly worthy of consideration as it's the closest I've heard anyone come to "knowing"...but not enough in my mind to put a final nail in the coffin.
    It might also be possible that having spoken to someone who became very famous just a year later might have *cemented* the facts in this man's memory.
    "That's what I love, man, to hear that backbeat popping, that damn bass plonkin' down. Jesus God!"-Duane Allman

  14. #174
    Les Paul Forum Member goldtop0's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by jrock1 View Post
    ...but not enough in my mind to put a final nail in the coffin.

    A final nail in the coffin might be a step too far........

  15. #175
    Les Paul Forum Member ourmaninthenorth's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    The eye witness account will do me. JTM45 in a "possibly" non stock 2 x 12.

    Same time, same place next year Gents?

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  16. #176
    Les Paul Forum Member becks bolero's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    does a non-trem JTM45 sound significantly different than a trem JTM45?

    ps if the amp had trem, wouldn't EC have used the trem at some point? he was an active tinkerer/experimenter I think
    "First off, nobody cares if you know how to play scales. Nobody gives a shit if you have good technique or not. It's whether you have feelings that you want to express with music, that's what counts, really." -Neil Young

  17. #177
    All Access/Backstage Pass Wilko's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by becks bolero View Post
    does a non-trem JTM45 sound significantly different than a trem JTM45?

    ps if the amp had trem, wouldn't EC have used the trem at some point? he was an active tinkerer/experimenter I think
    Tremolo models don't "seem" to have as much gain, though cranked that effect is minimalized.

    And you bring up a great point. I think Clapton would have wanted trem, and used it a lot. He went full on Leslie!

  18. #178
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wilko View Post
    Tremolo models don't "seem" to have as much gain, though cranked that effect is minimalized.

    And you bring up a great point. I think Clapton would have wanted trem, and used it a lot. He went full on Leslie!
    Well, EC's very next amp was a 45/100 Super Trem.


  19. #179
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by becks bolero View Post
    ....ps if the amp had trem, wouldn't EC have used the trem at some point? he was an active tinkerer/experimenter I think
    I'd never really thought of that. Good point indeed.
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  20. #180
    Les Paul Forum Member TM1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    On mine, one I built about 10 years ago, when I pull the Trem circuit tube, the B+ voltage goes up. Not by alot, say maybe 20 volts d.c. More voltage doesn't normally mean more gain.. I can get more gain out of the front end by replacing the two 100K resistors on pins #1 & 6 with 220k's as that drops it down. So sometimes less voltage results in less clean headroom.

  21. #181
    Les Paul Forum Member jrock1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    I would say that EC was anything but a tinkerer. Lack of effects, other than a wah and Leslie for years...and just not known as one. Additionally he was a blues purest at that time, so his lack of use of the tremolo assuming his amp had it would not have been unusual. And of course all we know about is the recorded history. So he could have messed around with it a bit, but not captured on anything recorded or recorded and saved. Just another perspective...

  22. #182
    All Access/Backstage Pass Wilko's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    I believe that his combo was a tremolo version.

    1. The picture is clear enough (as I've demonstrated) to see it has a wide control cutout.

    2. Marshall 2x12 combos were already being made with tremolo

    3. Clapton was a fan of tremolo and his next amps were tremolo heads

    So, what different about his? It was likely the first thin-edged (series II) combos making it slightly smaller and matching the cosmetics of the head cabinets.

  23. #183
    Les Paul Forum Member Fish Fingers's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Mr Bonamassa reckons the amp used was an 18 watter.

  24. #184
    Les Paul Forum Member TM1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fish Fingers View Post
    Mr Bonamassa reckons the amp used was an 18 watter.
    What? A 2x12 18 watt combo? I don't think those came out until mid 1966.

  25. #185
    Les Paul Forum Member goldtop0's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fish Fingers View Post
    Mr Bonamassa reckons the amp used was an 18 watter.

    Where did you get this info from?

  26. #186
    Les Paul Forum Member jrock1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Not a chance that was an 18 watter.

    He certainly wasn't gigging with an 18 watter. It wouldn't have been loud enough for the gigs they were playing and I can't imagine they had one sitting in the studio for him...and by all accounts the engineers couldn't believe how loud he wanted to record. He would have used the amp that he was gigging with as that's the sound he knew he could produce with his guitar and amp. And that sound is all KT66 JTM45.

  27. #187
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by TM1 View Post
    What? A 2x12 18 watt combo? I don't think those came out until mid 1966.
    Late 65, or extremely early 66
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  28. #188
    All Access/Backstage Pass Wilko's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    How do we know how loud a Bluesbreakers gig would have been at that time.? Maybe an 18 watter was damn loud in those days.

  29. #189
    Les Paul Forum Member goldtop0's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wilko View Post
    How do we know how loud a Bluesbreakers gig would have been at that time.?

    That would depend on the venue wouldn't it.
    F-Hole's acquaintance would have experienced that.

  30. #190
    Les Paul Forum Member jrock1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Look at the amps in the pics pre-Bluesbreaker amp. Half stacks, etc. Then Cream with maybe 50 watter, then 100 watters. Logically, with the popularity of the Bluesbreakers, I can't imagine he went from 1/2 stack 35 watts or so early Marshalls and AC 30's then to 18watters, then to Marshall 1/2 stacks, and more with Cream. 18 watter in the middle of that timeline/progression...I think not. As popular as they were they would have gotten progressively louder in decent size venues.

  31. #191
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fish Fingers View Post
    Mr Bonamassa reckons the amp used was an 18 watter.
    You sure.... .... ... .

  32. #192
    Les Paul Forum Member 66SuperTremMKIV's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    if Eric was used to playing and carting around his JTM-45 half stack and wanted it as a combo to fit in his car, I doubt he would have tossed the JTM-45 and gone 18w.

  33. #193

    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    No way that was an 18w. It can sound somewhat close, especially with alnicos, but there's just much more muscle to the Bluesbreaker tone.

    Also this; why on earth would he ask for a custom combo cab that was *taller* than a stock 2x12 18W combo? Clapton's combo is obviously a custom job, with dimensions that don't match any other Marshall combo ever produced. The latest pictures really prove that. The only logical reason is that it needed to be taller to accomodate a larger chassis. Whether the chassis was a trem or non-trem is another matter, but I say it's almost certain that it's a JTM45-style chassis, to the point where there is alsmot no reasonable doubt about it.

  34. #194
    Les Paul Forum Member Roe's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    yes, probably a 2x12" jtm45 combo
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  35. #195
    Les Paul Forum Member tangerine's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by TM1 View Post
    Guitar Strings in England was a very small selection. You had Rotosound, Cathedral, Selmer(which were made in Germany by Pyramid), Gibson and maybe a couple others..
    F-Hole, do you remember what was around?
    Don, the British Blues book has an article by Peter Green reproduced from Melody Maker from the period. In it Peter says that he uses Clifford Essex strings. Given that Eric was his idol at the time there's a reasonable chance that Eric used these strings also perhaps.

  36. #196
    Les Paul Forum Member Roe's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by tangerine View Post
    Don, the British Blues book has an article by Peter Green reproduced from Melody Maker from the period. In it Peter says that he uses Clifford Essex strings. Given that Eric was his idol at the time there's a reasonable chance that Eric used these strings also perhaps.
    yes, clapton has been reported to use those strings. he allegedly used very light gauges, like 8-42 or something. the e string might have been a banjo string though. EC himself mentions these strings on p. 53 of his autobiography:
    https://books.google.no/books?id=9cN...lapton&f=false

    In Clapton - The Autobiography (2007), Clapton says, "On my guitar I used light-gauge guitar strings, with a very thin first string, which made it easier to bend the notes, and it was not uncommon during the most frenetic bits of playing for me to break at least one string. During the pause while I was changing my string, the frenzied audience would often break into a slow handclap, inspiring Giorgio to dream up the nickname of 'Slowhand' Clapton."

    See also:
    http://www.cliffordessex.net/index.p...&productId=113http://www.cliffordessex.net/index.p...&productId=612
    http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/showthread.php?t=202217http://acravan.blogspot.no/2011/09/v...ll-guitar.html (on Peter Green)
    Last edited by Roe; 10-19-16 at 02:53 PM.
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  37. #197
    Les Paul Forum Member TM1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Cheers guys!! Appreciate the info. I don't think that the Clifford Essex strings are like they were then as I know they use Hex core. Hex core wasn't really in use by most until the early `70's.. Round core sounds better anyway. I get really close using .010-.044 Pyramid round core Monel Classics. The tonality of the Monel is punchier and has more upper mid bark and great clarity. I prefer these over the pure nickel Pyramid "Nickel Classics".

  38. #198
    Les Paul Forum Member Roe's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    yes, the monels are great (and the clifford essex strings probably changed even if the gauge stayed the same). I don't like the pure nickel strings too much personally, although one of my LP replicas sounded good with the pyramid max performance strings. The monels give me perfect Kossoff and Townsend tones, but I am a little less sure about EC.

    I really think that light gauge strings are crucial for getting the 60s Clapton tone. An interview from the cream period indicated that clapton used fender 10-38 strings. The light bass strings are very important with JTMs (which are bass heavy amps). I personally like 9-11.5-15-22-30/32-40/42, but 8-38s can also sound great for 60-70s british tones. 10-46s doesn't work imho

    Another thing is that EC jtm45 may not have the 500ish picofarad mixer cap. The cream tone was based on using the dark, normal channel but the Beano tone is different. He could have used any of the two channels. It really does not matter without a mixer cap on the brilliance channel, except the brilliance channel may have used a 100pf bright cap.

    Systematic testing of output transformers would be another matter. The primary impedance could have been 3k3, 4k, 6k6 or 8k. I guess the two last are most probable and the first the least probable. Finally, the filtering on screens and phase inverter could have been either the standard 32uf and 16uf or the slightly rarer 20uf and 20uf.

    Chokes could have been 20h/690ohms or 3h/110ohms or even 5h perhaps. And we do not know if the amp had a flying 1k resistor (this resistor is not really needed with the radiospares choke)
    Last edited by Roe; 10-20-16 at 02:59 AM.
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  39. #199
    Les Paul Forum Member Fish Fingers's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    The Bonamassa quote was from, I think, an article in 'Guitar' magazine (UK).
    I will see if I can find the back issue. It was within the last six months or so.
    An 18 watter would be plenty loud for the pubs of the time, trust me!
    (Especially as Mr Clapton was winding his amps up at the time).

  40. #200
    Les Paul Forum Member jrock1's Avatar
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    Re: Eric's Bluesbreaker Marshall Combo: new pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fish Fingers View Post
    An 18 watter would be plenty loud for the pubs of the time, trust me!
    You must not have tried to use 18 watt Marshalls in a full band then because you would realize they can barely keep up with a drummer let alone a whole band with keyboards etc. Have you heard live Bluesbreaker clips. They sound all cranked up. The 18 watter if turned up with its compression would never have cut through like you hear Clapton cutting through. I just find it close to implausible...

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