Highlights from the Nashville Music Gear Expo

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Last weekend we hung out at the Nashville Music Gear Expo here in Nashville, TN. It was pretty much a toy store for gear lovers like us. Representatives from microphone, live sound, and lots and lots of guitar and pedal companies took over 10 floors of the Hotel Preston. Here were our 5 favorites:

Kemper Amplifier

Kemper has been turning heads with their Profiler series of amp heads. We’re pretty sure there’s NASA technology in these bad boys. It amazingly recreates hundreds of amps from vintage to modern. Close your eyes, you’ll think you’re playing your guitar through a vintage Blackface Twin and be smiling ear to ear. While this modeling technology is also the bragging rights of some other manufactures Kemper moves ahead by letting you model amps yourself. Loved that weird Silvertone amp in the studio you tracked at? You can use the Kemper Profiler to model it and be able to have the same tone when you hit the stage, or record direct at home and want to re-amp. On the flip-side, it’s just as useful if you have a small studio and don’t have the room or money for dozens of vintage or boutique amps. Plug a guitar into the Profiler and now you do! Check them out here: www.kemper-amps.com

Michael Joly Microphones

Michael Joly’s name is one of the top names in the mic modding industry. He got his name modding those funky Russian Oktava mics to sound amazing. He’s now moved up to modding new mics to sound like vintage mics. He had his MJE-K47H there to shoot-out with an actual vintage U-47. It was amazingly close. The top end on Joly’s mic was just slightly brighter but definitely not in a negative way. And considering you could buy 17 MJE-K47Hs for the price of one U-47, it seems like a pretty amazing deal. We’d definitely recommend them to those of you with small studios on a budget, but they would have a place in larger studios as well. Check out more info at: www.oktavamodshop.com

Wampler Pedals

First off, they more amazing sounding overdrive and distortion pedals than you can shake a stick at. Brad Paisley even has a signature pedal through them and Brad is a highly respected guitarist both in and outside of the country music scene here in Nashville. Our favorites were the Triple Wreck, a straight-up wall of distortion with 3 separate styles on board, and the Latitude, an in-depth Tremolo which was great at getting that great vintage sound or dialing in some cool choppy effects that you could sync up with the tap tempo. See all the pedals here: wamplerpedals.com

Revv Amplification

If a swiss-army knife and a guitar amplifier had a baby it would be named the Revv Generator 120. This is basically 4 amps in 1 with about every conceivable customization and input/output (inluding MIDI!) imaginable. This is for the gun-for-hire musician who plays a jazz gig one night and a metal gig the next (we know you’re out there!). For those of you who still want tubes and analog signal paths, this amp would work equally as well in a studio setting for tracking or re-amping due to the amount of amps it can ‘become’. We were also big fans of the smaller Generator 7-40w. This is a 2 channel version of the bigger 120 that’s a little more stripped down and easier to haul around than the bigger 120. Make no mistake though, it still had tone and versatility for days. revvamplification.com

That’s My Gig

This one is for our gigging musicians and managers. That’s My Gig is an online gig-finding service with posts involving everything from paying bands calling for musicians to full-time music related jobs. There are different pricing structures which allow you different levels of exposure and communication on the site. One of the highlights they discussed with us is their network of career counselors. Through the service, you have access to industry professionals, successful musicians, image consultants and more. We think that’s a great offering in the music world where every connection and every bit of helpful advice is as good as gold. Find out more info at: www.thatsmygig.com/

Find out more on the Nashville Music Gear Expo by going to their site here: nashvillemusicgearexpo.com

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