ALO’s Dan Lebowitz: On Amplifying Acoustics

“The Difference Between Running An acoustic guitar through a electric rig and using a solidbody is like the difference between sculpture and painting,” says Dan Lebowitz. “Painting is about addition, whereas sculpture involves reduction. You have to prevent the notes you don’t want from coming through while letting the ones you do ring freely. It starts with using your palm and available fingers to mute everything unwanted. You’ve got to avoid feedback, and there are extra considerations on stage where various sounds are shooting at you from different angles.
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I avoid using side fills and front wedges because each source produces different frequencies, and that can lead to an unmanageable situation. I rely solely on my amp and a Klon Centaur pedal for an occasional boost. I find that having an amp with variable power-output options helps me adjust my playing touch to the size of the venue. The Custom 33’s variable 17/33-watt power option facilitates drive from the EL84 tubes at appropriate levels. The 17-watt setting is great for smaller rooms, while the 33-watt setting allows good headroom in most other situations. Regardless of room size, I often use a 1x12 extension cabinet loaded with a Tone Tubby 12 alnico hempcone speaker to broaden the sound. The warmer alnico tone complements the brighter ceramic speaker in the combo. They sound stellar together.”