60 sec­onds with...

A minute’s all it takes to find out what makes a great gui­tarist tick. Be­fore she dived into her limo for the air­port we grabbed a quick chat with Mie De­bray of South African garage-punk rock­ers, The SoapGirls.

Guitar Techniques - - INTRO -

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

MD: Dun­lop 1.5mm Max­grip picks. When I have some of those I know it’s gonna be a good show. I can’t play with floppy soft picks, it hon­estly does my head in.

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

MD: The only pedal I use and can’t live with­out is my Zoom G5 multi-ef­fects pedal. The sounds that come out of it are just in­sane and you’re guar­an­teed to find some­thing you like.

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

MD: If it were a sim­ple mu­sic chart, yeah; but if you’re talk­ing about sheet mu­sic for an orches­tra, then no.

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

MD: Shitty thin cables can re­ally mess up your sound. We usu­ally use Fen­der or Kir­lin.

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

MD: Lind­sey Buck­ing­ham. He’s my gui­tar hero; how he can make his gui­tar speak is amaz­ing. I love emo­tional play­ers and he uses his fin­gers – you just have to watch him live on an acous­tic song to want to play like him. John Fr­us­ciante too, he’s also an amaz­ing player; very emo­tive with his play­ing. I’m big on the melody and emo­tion. And Steve Vai. I mean, who wouldn’t want to play like him?

GT: Your stu­dio is burn­ing down: which gui­tar do you sal­vage?

MD: It would be my Ibanez Jem77 Black Rock Mir­ror gui­tar be­cause that is my baby!

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

MD: Black­star have an amaz­ing range of dif­fer­ent amps but my favourite right now is the HT Metal 100. I usu­ally go through the clean chan­nel. Be­cause of my ef­fects pedal I find the patches work bet­ter that way with my vol­ume turned up nice and high; tre­ble at around 6 o’clock and the bass at 4 or 5. I like us­ing the Mod­ern voice set­ting on this amp (it has dif­fer­ent style chan­nels). If I’m not us­ing my pedal then I like the OD1 chan­nel for its ag­gres­sive tone, again with the vol­ume nice and high.

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

MD: I pre­fer higher than lower but not too high. I feel that the tone is warmer and wider when it’s higher.

GT: What strings do you use?

MD: Ro­to­sound Pure Nick­els, ei­ther .009s or .010s. They last re­ally long and the tone is amaz­ing. On my acous­tics I use Ro­to­sound Jumbo King Bronze – 010s – the tone and feel are just great.

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

MD: I fell in love with the gui­tar play­ing on Billy Idol’s track White Wed­ding. Steve Stevens is a very un­der­rated gui­tar player. Then I heard Fleet­wood Mac and fell in love with Lind­sey Buck­ing­ham.

GT: First gui­tar you lusted af­ter?

MD: A neon pink Ibanez Jem 777 – I still do!

GT: What was the sin­gle best gig you ever did…

MD: Def­i­nitely at the Rock And Bike fes­ti­val in Derby this year. Per­form­ing to such a huge crowd who just love mu­sic and are hav­ing a good time is price­less!

GT: …and your worst play­ing night­mare?

MD: We per­formed at one venue and red liq­uid was thrown full in my face and all over my gui­tar, ped­al­board and mic. It sucks play­ing with only one eye work­ing and hav­ing your hard-earned equip­ment trashed!

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

MD: When it comes to mu­sic there’s no wrong or right way; ex­per­i­ment and ex­press your­self.

GT: If you could put to­gether a fan­tasy band with you in it, who would the other play­ers be?

MD: My sis­ter, Mille on bass, def­i­nitely; Lind­sey Buck­ing­ham and John Bonham.

GT: Is there a solo by some­one else that you wish you had played?

MD: Jimmy Page on When The Levee Breaks – I love that!

GT: What’s the solo/song of your own of which you’re most proud?

MD: I love what I did on the song Wait­ing In The Wings – the quiet break­down I think is beau­ti­ful.

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

MD: For our mu­sic and for our mes­sage of non-judg­ment, and anti-an­i­mal abuse.

GT: What are you up to at the mo­ment - gigs, record­ing, etc?

MD: We are cur­rently just fin­ish­ing this leg of our tour in the UK, and about to do a mu­sic video for an up­com­ing sin­gle. Then we are tour­ing the rest of the EU from Septem­ber be­fore com­ing back to the UK from mid-Oc­to­ber for some fi­nal shows be­fore we head back to South Africa. But we will be re­turn­ing in 2017!

Mie and sis­ter Mille of The SoapGirls

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