60 SECO NDS with…

A minute’s all it takes to find out what makes a great gui­tarist tick. Be­fore he jumped into his limo for the air­port we grabbed a quick chat with Lance Lopez of Su­per­sonic Blues Ma­chine

Guitar Techniques - - INTRO - Head­to­su­per­son­icblues.com for­mor­e­in­foand­tour­dates.

GT: Do you have a type of pick that you can’t live with­out?

LL: I have used Dun­lop .73 MM Tor­tex picks, the yel­low ones, since 1988 when I was just start­ing to play gui­tar. I have tried a lot of dif­fer­ent ones but I al­ways came back to the yel­low Tor­tex picks. I love the way they feel and I love the tone, and it takes me a while to wear them down

GT: If you had to give up all but three ped­als, what would they be?

LL: I would have to have my Big Joe Stomp Box Co. Johnny Win­ter Texas Screamer, Big Joe B-304 Ana­log de­lay and a Korg Pitch­black Tuner.

GT: Do you play an­other in­stru­ment well enough to be in a band, and have you ever done it?

LL: Other than gui­tar I play bass, drums and key­boards. I have played both drums and bass on dif­fer­ent gigs and ac­tu­ally played all the in­stru­ments on my 2007 al­bum Higher Ground.

GT: If a mu­sic chart were put in front of you, could you read it?

LL: I do re­ally good with chord charts, but notes take me a minute.

GT: Do gui­tar cables re­ally make a dif­fer­ence? What make are yours?

LL: Ab­so­lutely! I work with a com­pany in Austin, Texas called Sabre Ca­ble and they usu­ally use Mogami ca­ble and Neu­trik con­nec­tors made in Ger­many. I also use Mogami Gold cables as well as Mon­ster Cables. They all sound dif­fer­ent, and I al­ways try to use a very heavy gauge wire for my speaker cables.

GT: Is there any­one’s play­ing (past or present) that you’re jeal­ous of?

LL: All of the up­side-down left-handed play­ers like Eric Gales, Doyle Bramhall II and Al­bert King be­cause they can do bends that right-handed play­ers can’t do by pulling the strings down.

GT: Your house or stu­dio is burn­ing down: which gui­tar do you sal­vage, and why?

LL: That would maybe have to be ‘Big Red, my her­itage cherry Gib­son Ex­plorer 120 with Burst­bucker Pro pick­ups in it and ‘Sugar’, my clas­sic white Gib­son Fly­ing V that my gui­tar tech in Dal­las, Spencer Deaton, hand wound a cus­tom set of PAFs for. I would have to grab them both!

GT: What’s your favourite amp and how do you set it?

LL: That would be my Bogner He­lios 100, or my Mo­jave Am­p­works Scor­pion and about five dif­fer­ent Mar­shalls. Ev­ery­thing I play is based on the old Holy Grail, Jim Mar­shall de­sign, which is kind of strange, be­cause most other Texas Blues guys are all into Black­face or Tweed Fender amps. I have al­ways used Mar­shall amps or amps based on Mar­shalls.

GT: What kind of ac­tion do you have on your gui­tars?

LL: Medium to low. I don’t like to fight with the gui­tars. Back when I was younger and played mostly Strats, I would set the ac­tion to fight it. But Billy Gib­bons played my Strat years ago and said: “Man, you are work­ing way too hard!”

GT: What strings do you use?

LL: Ernie Ball Cobalt Slinkys or Reg­u­lar Slinkys 10-46. I love them and al­ways have. Slinkys are the best strings in the world. Iconic gui­tarist for decades have built em­pires with Ernie Ball strings on their gui­tars. I love the Cobalt Slinkys be­cause of how re­spon­sive and pow­er­ful they sound.

GT: Who was your first in­flu­ence to play the gui­tar?

LL: Jimi Hen­drix

GT: What was the first gui­tar you re­ally lusted af­ter?

LL: Jimmy Page’s #1 1959 Les Paul. When I was young boy, I would watch the movie The Song Re­mains The Same all the time and would dream of play­ing Jimmy Page’s Les Paul.

GT: What’s the most im­por­tant mu­si­cal les­son you ever learnt?

LL: Us­ing my emo­tions, good or bad, and putting them into my play­ing, mak­ing it re­ally au­then­tic. There­fore, if it’s old blues or not, you will feel the blues in the mu­sic.

GT: Present com­pany ex­cepted, who’s the great­est gui­tarist that’s ever lived?

LL: Past, Jimi Hen­drix. Present, Eric Gales.

GT: Is there a solo you re­ally wish you had played?

LL: Ma­chine Gun from the Band Of Gypsy’s al­bum or Al­bert King’s An­gel Of Mercy.

GT: What would you most like to be re­mem­bered for?

LL: That ev­ery night when I went out to per­form I put ev­ery­thing I had into the per­for­mance and in­spired other young gui­tarists to carry on what I was do­ing.

GT: What are you up to?

LL: Su­per­sonic Blues ma­chine have just re­leased our de­but al­bum, West Of Flush­ing South Of Frisco on Provogue and I am very proud of it. I am in a band with the great­est drum­mer in the world (Kenny Aronoff) and the best bass player I know (Fabrizio Grossi), and then all of my favourite gui­tarists and close friends – Billy Gib­bons, Eric Gales, Wal­ter Trout, War­ren Haynes and Robben Ford – were in­volved, so I am pretty happy with that! (laughs).

When I was young I would dream of play­ing Jimmy Page’s Les Paul

Lance Lopez: rare Texan blues­man who plays Gib­son and Mar­shall

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.