Duane Eddy's House of Twang

How to get that Duane Eddy Sound

1

Are there any recommendations as to how to get that distinctive sound. I already have a Gretsch guitar but would welcome help as to type of amp and settings such as echo, reverb, bass, gain etc. etc. Thanks for your help.

2

Neck (single coil) pickup, clean amp with reverb, listen to the records to set the tremolo speed, and on the Jamie records there's a little slap echo added in the recording.

Listen to Duane Eddy a couple of hours a day, and analyse what he's doing, listen, listen again, and then listen some more. He has a very distinct left hand technique, not quite 100% a hammer-on, but he'll roll from one note into the next in a very specific way.

3

I think Duane slides into notes where another player may play it as a hammer-on.

Walter’s right, the LH technique adds a lot, but pay close attention also to your right hand technique. Personally I get closer to Duane’s tone by moving away from the bridge towards the neck. The tone rounds out nicely and sounds ‘deeper’.

4

Also what strings does Duane Eddy use? Gauge and type? I thought flatwounds but I also read elsewhere he used rounds. Could it be during different eras he switched from one to another?

5

Also what strings does Duane Eddy use? Gauge and type? I thought flatwounds but I also read elsewhere he used rounds. Could it be during different eras he switched from one to another?

– ThePolecats

I'm guess, like Chet, he experimented... at least behind the scenes...

6

I’ve had a go a few times over the years. I did this about 10 or 12 years ago:

Detour

7

IIRC Duane uses 10-46 but with a wound third string. The most important thing to have -- and this is crucial -- is a Duane Eddy handle on your Bigsby.

8

Duane’s sound is one of the hardest to recreate IMO. The basic effects will get you in the ballpark, but so much of Duane’s sound is in his attitude and approach. There’s a definite surety and confidence in his playing that’s devilishly hard to recreate.

Is easy to say play it like you mean it, but that’s not enough; you’ve gotta mean it.

9

Oh yeah, and don’t overdo the whistles and bells. The Bigsby dips, reverb, tremolo are all essential components, but if you overdo them you’ll just be a Lame Eddy. Get the technique down first then add the frosting.

10

This is how Duane explained it to me, starting with a Gretsch branded pedal board.

12

Yes it is. Great use of effects and multi-tracking and capturing those slides into notes.

13

To me, it sounds like big strings, a big speaker, and an amplifier with scooped mid range, like a blackface Fender. But I’m no expert

15

To me, it sounds like big strings, a big speaker, and an amplifier with scooped mid range, like a blackface Fender. But I’m no expert

– JBGretschGuy

Josh, I seem to recall a conversation I had with Duane at either NAMM or Deke Dickerson's Guitar Geek one year where he was telling me that a 15" speaker was a big part of it.

16

Oh yeah, and don’t overdo the whistles and bells. The Bigsby dips, reverb, tremolo are all essential components, but if you overdo them you’ll just be a Lame Eddy. Get the technique down first then add the frosting.

– Deke Martin

absolutely

17

Deed Eddy posting the string gauge some years ago. All I remember was E1 was 10.5

18

"I seem to recall a conversation I had with Duane at either NAMM or Deke Dickerson's Guitar Geek one year where he was telling me that a 15" speaker was a big part of it. "

2010 in Anaheim, Two Fender Showman amps with 15" speaker cabs......and the essential MXR stereo tremolo pedal.

19

Duane uses GHS Boomers/plain steel - .0095, .011, .020 (wound), .034, .044, .054

20

Thanks Hoot Owl and Yavapai, glad you liked it.

21

Honestly most of us could go play Duane's gear and not sound like him. I get trying to master a tone, but in reality, no one but Duane sounds like Duane.

Big single coils on a hollow body, neck pickup, pick toward the bridge, big pile of reverb, and you're close enough for most people to recognize it if they know who DE is.

22

Definitely in the fingers. Some guys can pull it off and the gear does help but you are talking about a legend here.

23

I need to pull down the mid-range a tad.... not quite so 'crisp' Duane on this one...

(Duane's version...)

24

One thing that isn't mentioned is pick gauge. I feel like he uses a fairly thick pick, no?

25

Oddly enough, despite enjoying those great tones, even after all those years, I still enjoy the finger picked tunes on the "Songs of our Heritage" album......some of which I still play today.


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