Thursday, November 7, 2019

THE AXEMEN SERIES : Brock Betz / Electric Revolution

1.Tell us your name and the band you play for

Currently, I have two projects going on, Electric Revolution consisting of Dave Lawson (vocals), Billie Pulera (Drums), and Leon Royal (bass). The second of the two is my instrumental project called The Brock Betz Band. Max Geleche (drums), Adam Garside (bass).

2.Who made you want to pick up the guitar


Well interestingly enough picking up the guitar came from many bands from the 70s and 80s. However it was Rush that was the most inspirational to start. My dad and my uncle Erik Pries (a great guitar player in his own right) had a heavy hand in actually getting me going with it.

3.Are you self taught or did you take lessons?
Most of my music lessons were on other instruments throughout grade school and middle school most notably violin, and percussion. Guitar however was self taught.

4. Can you read music, Can you read tab?

I can read music, but it takes an awful long time for me. Tabs seem to be an easier way for the layman musician.

5.Do you feel like you have your own sound / tone ?

Yeah in a way I do. I think it’s a gigantic compilation of all the geat guitar players I’ve come to enjoy.  For example on the Electric Revolution track “Surrender” I played in the styles of rush, The Edge from U2, but the solo section in it was really unique and a challenge. That had a true “Brock Betz” sound.

6.Tell us about your guitar ( brand ,model . year , color )

My favorite guitar is my red Ibanez Js 1200. It was made in 2012 I believe, it’s a really great guitar for what I do. It definitely takes heavy abuse and I’m impressed with how well it’s held up over the course of almost 7 years now.

7.What about pickups? Passive or active ? Tell us about them

The pickups are the stock original PAF Joe humbuckers. And they are passive. One of my favorite things about them is the ability to be coil tapped, it gives them a single coil style tone; and also with the high pass filter on, the guitar can really shimmer.

8.Lets get into amplification, Same drill brand , model , speakers etc

For my amps over the years I’ve used blackstar, Hughes and Kettner, and the Boss Katana which the entirety of the “Burn it Down” record was done with.  At the moment I’m using a Blackstar 100 watt amp with a 4x12 fitted with celestions. G-12 70s I think. They are older and not quite as bright sounding compared to a classic 30.

9.Do you have a pedal board? Tell us about that badboy

Well I’ve kept it simple. My reverb and delay comes out of the effect loop on the amp and that’s a boss Ms-3 I’ll run some chorus from time to time with that. On the front end, a wah pedal and that’s about it. Generally for channel switching I use the crunch channel on the Blackstar. I use the volume nob on my guitar to achieve my tones. I’ll kick it into the red channel for my instrumental band which is heavier music. A good song to check out for that is Underwater Banana and it can be found on reverbnation.

10..Now tell us your Dream Rig in detail…..

My dream rig... oh gosh, the inner Alex Lifeson starts coming out with questions like that! Definitely a stereo rig, with midi switching, and probably an axe effects for the loop work and effects processing. I’d like to try out a ton of amps, however there is a new amp manufacturer called synergy they’ve gone and recreated lots of different classic and modern tube pre-amps and you can swap the circuit cards in and out of the amp.

11.What guitarist can you not stand?

A colleague, wonderfully superb guitarist, and good friend of mine, Bill House of the Milwaukee based recording act Conniption share a common belief that, at its fundamental core, guitar should be a celebrated thing to be cherished. However there are certain people that you’ll come across, be it on a tour or in your home city that, in effect turn me one off due to their attitude towards other musicians and fans alike.

I12. Is tone more important or is technique?

Tone is a quality that sits within the ear of the listener, whereas technique is an undeniable thing that anyone can see happening, the real magic begins when you have both, excellent technique with a mastery of tonality. So to answer I think they are both important!

13. Name your top 5 guitarist
Joe Satriani
Steve Vai
John Petrucci
Paul Gilbert
Eric Johnson

14.Who is the most overrated guitarist


For a long time when I was young, that was Synyater Gates however I think he’s gotta be one of the best holy smokes!
My opinion, most professional guitar players who earn a living doing this would surprise you if you sat down behind closed doors. A better question would be, who is the most underrated? For me that’s Mike Campbell from Tom Petty and the heartbreakers.

15.Who would you like a one hour private sit down lessons with anyone dead or alive?
Joe Satriani.


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