As a guitarist, I've done a lot of live shows and recordings. People have almost always praised my guitar sounds and the spectrum of tone that I've used on stage or in the studio. I get asked a lot about what I did to get this or that sound, and while there's no simple answer, here's a run down of what I'm currently using.


First, I should note my official endorsement of Dot On Shaft Guitars and those two axes. For more information, check this article.

Next on the list I think would have to be my Ibanez S Series. The five position toggle switch for the two single coil (neck & center position) and dual-coil humbucking pickup in the bridge position make it one of the most versatile of the electric guitars I own. Purchased in 1992, the finish is what Ibanez calls "Antique Violin". The guitar features abalone fret markers on a maple fret board and neck with a tung oil or matte finish on the back of the neck. It's also sports a Floyd Rose Low Pro Edge locking tremolo system.

Next in terms of versatility, though purchased more recently in 2004, would be my Carvin AE 185. This is Carvin's acoustic/electric hybrid. It's a single cutaway, almost tele-style, semi-hollow body with an F-hole, two of Carvin's 22 pole dual-coil humbucking pickups and an active L.R. Baggs Ribbon transducer for the acoustic sound. The bridge is a classic acoustic fixed bridge. The finish is what Carvin calls "Classic Sunburst" on quilted maple. It sports gold plated hardware, a master volume, one tone control each for the electric and acoustic sounds, a blend control for the electric and acoustic sounds, and separate output jacks for each sound. It also has two coil tap switches to turn the humbuckers into single coils, a phase switch between the pickups, and the obligatory three position toggle for choosing between the electric pickups. It also has Sperzel locking tuners, Graphite nut and Ebony fretboard.

Finally, there's my Epiphone Sheraton . Having been influenced heavily by Rush guitarist, Alex Lifeson in the late 70's and going forward, I wanted something that would provide the raucous, warm bodied and crisp tone of so many of those early Rush recordings and the Sheraton fit the bill perfectly, without breaking my budget. This guitar has what Epiphone calls a "Mahogany Sunburst" finish, Rosewood fretboard with Abalone/Mother-of-Pearl fret markers, and gold plated hardware. I recently had the gold plated covers removed from the pickups in 2003. The result was increased volume and a total loss of the microphonic characteristics of those pickups which tended to cause unwanted feedback.



After the guitars, the root of my tone comes from a Mesa Boogie Dual Rectifier Half Stack . The 4x12 cabinet is the more compact of the two half stacks offered by Mesa Boogie.



I'm basically a purist with a mild streak of techno-joy. By that I mean that I'm not afraid to try new technology if it might enhance my palette of sound or ultimately simplify my job as a guitarist. All of my amp channel and effect switching is provided by a Digital Music/Voodoo Lab Ground Control Pro MIDI foot controller and GCX Audio Switcher . The actual effects come from a Line 6 POD XT Pro, as well as a few standard stomp boxes like the vintage Electro-Harmonix Small Stone Phase Shifter & Electric Mistress Flanger , and a BOSS AC-2 Acoustic Simulator that I use occasionally with the 12 string side of my Dot On Shaft Twin Tiger. I also use the POD XT Pro to do some very minimal amp modeling to get a nice Roland Jazz Chorus type sound on occasion.