Thursday, February 27, 2020

THE AXEMEN GUITAR INTERVIEW : Michael Brandon / Big Ugly.

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

My name is Michael Brandon, and I play guitar for Big Ugly.

2.Who made you want to pick up the guitar

Kirk Hammett and James Hetfield. Also Angus Young.

3.Are you self taught or did you take lessons?

I took lessons for 4 months when I started. I have been self taught since then.

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

I can read tabs. I cannot read sheet music, even though I was in concert band for 8 years hahaha.

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

I feel I have established sort of my own sound. Mostly with how I write, though. I do loads, so I have had to really learn when to add a lead and what kind of lead is needed. 

6.Tell us about your guitar ( brand ,model . year , color )
I use three different guitars regularly. One is an Ibanez 6 string ex series I got cheap and nodded with goth tuners and emg 81 and 85 pups. I actually recorded a lot of my parts on The Forgotten with that one. The other six string is an Epiphone LP set neck that was a Sobe promotional guitar. I had the electrics, tuners and pups upgraded. It has a Seymour Duncan jazz and a Nazgul in it now. The sound is killer. And my third axe is an Ibanez Komrad Brian Head Welch signature 7 string. Dmarzio pups. Sounds killer. I used that one to track our drop A songs on The Forgotten. 

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

I have used EMG almost exclusively for a long time. I have, however, been using passives recently. My 7 string uses passive Dmarzios, and my Epiphone has passive Seymour Duncans. I’m starting to lean more with passives, but I do like EMGs for use on some guitars I have. 

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

Peavey 6505+ 1x12, Sheffield speaker (want to swap for a Celestion v30).

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

My pedalboard consists of a Zakk Wylde chorus, a TC electronics prophet delay, BOSS tuner, Spark clean boost, and my Line 6 wireless unit. I’m adding a noise gate soon. Hopefully my BOSS noise Supressor. 

10..Now tell us your Dream Rig in detail…..basically, a 6505 120 watt head, Mesa 4x12 with V30s, same Line 6 wireless unit.

11.What guitarist can you not stand?

There isn’t one name I can think of, more the type. The type I cant stand are the arrogant douche canoes. The type that are either really talented and think they are better than anyone else. Or the type that aren’t that great but think their expensive gear makes them better. Basically, arrogant players. 

12. Is tone more important or is technique?

Tone certainly is important. But without proper technique, you will always be limited.

13. Name your top 5 guitarist?

Hard to pick just 5, but if I have to, currently I would say Tosin Abasi. Herman Li, Kirk Hammett, Joe Satriani, and Steve Vai.

14.Who is the most overrated guitarist
I don’t really have any I have that feeling about. I think everyone has a style that suits their bands sound. And that may not always suit everyone’s taste or idea of what is needed to be a great guitarist. To me, it’s all about fitting you sound with the bands. If a guitarist can do that successfully, it’s hard for me to say they are overrated. 

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

Joe Satriani, no doubt about it. The man is a legend, and a wealth of knowledge on different techniques, I’m sure.

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