Acey's Guitar Clinic #1 - 29.10.2003 A while back we asked you to send in your guitar-related questions for Acey of The Murderdolls. An online guitar clinic of sorts, if you will. Acey kindly took some time out to answer a whole bunch of your questions, and here is part 1 of Acey's Guitar Clinic.

1. I wanna start learning guitar but my mum says to start with the acoustic rather than electric which one is easier? - Char

Char- Your mom is DEAD......wrong. It's easier to learn on an electric, plus do you want to play electric guitar or learn Coldplay songs? Parents do this to discourage you and frustrate you. Tell her to give in and get you an electric.

2. I wanna know whether you can use Guitar Pedals for a Bass, cos I use my mates ancient 80's Marshel Overdrive on my bass all the time. Would this be a good idea? - Vamp Bassist

Sure! But the best one to get is either a Big Muff or a Sans Amp Bass DI. they can be kind of expensive, like 100-200 US Dollars, but that's what most people use. But try a few things and see what works. Maybe you like the sound of the Guitar pedal better!

3. What was the first song you ever learned on guitar? - Becky

Wow....I think it was Whole Lotta Love by Led Zeppelin. I don't really like Led Zeppelin, but it was pretty easy.

4. I don't have a clue about pickups...I hear all the different types of pickup like humbucker and stuff but I don't know what they mean?? I would like the sound of Machine Head/Ill Nino etc...I like the sound they get from their guitars it's cool... if it helps I have a 38 watt fender frontman amp, a boss MD-2 mega distortion pedal, and a jim dunlop cry baby. Could you please suggest a good pickup that could give me this sound?

OK a single coil pick up is kind of like the ones found in a Fender Strat. They have one coil in them. This can give you a Jimi Hendrix to Kurt Cobain type of tone. A Humbucker has 2 coils in it. What happens is that you get a 'hum' with one coil. When you have 2 they cancel eachother out. Hence the name 'Humbucker'. Those kind of look like 2 single coils put together. NOW....for Metal their are two ways you can go. Active and Passive. Active pickups run of of a 9 volt battery that is stashed someplace in the body of the guitar. The Battery powers an onboard pre-amp. It's all tiny and you cant see any of it. Guys who use Active pick ups are Zakk Wylde, Dino from Fear Factory, lot's of Metal guys sware by them. That's all Joey uses...there is a good chance that the guys in Machine Head and Ill Nino use them as well. EMG makes the best Active pick up for Metal. Passive pick ups are normaly a little more smooth sounding. Slash, Dimebag and Dave Navaro uses them and so do I. I love Seymour Duncans and also stock Gibson pick ups. For metal I would suggest the Duncan Distortion, Invader, Dimebucker or even the JB model. I use the JB and so does Wayne Static and Slash. check out it's a great site. SOOOO.... what should you use? I like passive, but when I record I try to double everything with an Active Pick up Guitar just for different textures. Check out the Duncan site and see if any of your favorite players are on there. I'll bet they are.

Acey's Guitar Clinic #2 - 07.11.2003 A while back we asked you to send in your guitar-related questions for Acey of The Murderdolls. An online guitar clinic of sorts, if you will. Acey kindly took some time out to answer a whole bunch of your questions, and here is part TWO of Acey's Guitar Clinic.

5. First off I just wanted to say they every time I've seen you live you guys have ruled. But my question was: when I listen to alot of bands like Killswitch Engage and Shadows Fall they all use this kind of 'waah' sound in their songs. Its not at all like the sound of a wah pedal, just writing it like 'waah' is the best way I can describe it. They use it alot at the end of a riff or in a solo. It's really high up the neck as well, close to the 12th and 15th frets. It sort of sounds like it's harmonics but you can hear them bend it sometimes so I doubt that it is. If you can help me great, if you haven't understood any of what I've just said I don't blame you, and thanks alot for your time. - Richard

Richard- That is most likely a Whammy Pedal made by Digi Tech. The best example of this is Broken by Pantera.... I think it's in that song....Tom Morello uses them alot too... anyfuck even if that isn't the specific sound your talking about - that pedal is awesome! The other thing it could be is a forced or fake harmonic. Just listen to anything with Zakk Wylde and that's the sound. This is done by hitting a string with your pick but letting it hit the side of your thumb a little bit. With some practice if you get them down you can jazz up any old lick.

6. What are the best type of strings to use? I play some pretty heavy stuff on my guitar but my strings always snap, I need to use a different type but I dont know what ones. - Stewart

Well you could use heavier strings or it could be that the saddles on your bridge are not smooth enough. When you change strings next time take a look at the groove in the saddle - the part on the bridge that has a 'v' type notch. It it looks rather sharp have a guy at a shop file it down. Don't do this yourself as if you file it down too much, you could fuck up the bridge completely. Otherwise, I use Dean Markley strings. For me they NEVER break and stay in tune very well. And lets face it... I'm not very nice to my strings....

7. I've got a Les Paul standard guitar, and I'm really happy with the guitar, but I want to get a distorsion peddle, I've tried a few but im really confused about which one I should go for. I love the Murderdolls live sound, and I wondered if you could recommend a good one thats not too expensive. Thanks very much, Joanna

Digi-Tech makes some awesome pedals. But Joey and I both use the overdrive of the Amp! This means turning the gain ALL THE WAY up. Sometimes you can't get enough on a smaller amp so yea, a pedal is the way to go.

Acey's Guitar Clinic #3 - 20.11.2003 A while back we asked you to send in your guitar-related questions for Acey of The Murderdolls. An online guitar clinic of sorts, if you will. Acey kindly took some time out to answer a whole bunch of your questions, and here is part THREE of Acey's Guitar Clinic.

8. I need some help finger tapping and I was wondering if you have any pointers on how to? - Brian

Brian, You know what...I'm not a big finger tap guy. So I would be the wrong person to ask. I would suggest going to a music store that sells music video tapes, the instuctional kind and look for one in the style of Eddie Van Halen.

9. My name is Eva. I heard about this from the Murderdolls website and thought it would be pretty cool, mostly because I live in Tennessee and my parents probably wouldn't dream of taking me to the U.K. I actually wanted a little bit of help on the song "White Wedding." When I play it, it sounds out of tune and too high pitched. I looked online at like, 50 different tab sites but no one says anything about tuning. So I'll ask someone who know's best, do you do some tuning down or something special (other than distortion)? I've tried retuning over and over so I know my guitar is in tune. If you could help me out, it would be cool. Thanks so much, you rock! ~your friend~Eva

Eva, The stuff on our albums is tuned to E. So if your tuned to E you should be cool. The 'effect' on the album is a Electro Harmonics 'Micro Synth' and this an sure change the sound a ton! Joey loves those things.... but they can be kind of expensive. Try a Auto Wha or a flanger and that should do it. If that doesn't do it, you should have the intonation on the guitar checked. This can make your guitar sound out of tune even tough your tunner says you are.

10. Could you tell me how to get the action as low as possible on my guitar please? - Billy

Billy, Is this Billy Idol? Ask Steve Stevens... if not.... I would say again, to take it to a repair shop. There can be many things you could dot that would, in the long run, fuck your guitar up. It's not as easy as just doing one thing. It depends on the kind of bridge you have on your guitar, your string gauge, ect. ect.

11. Whats your main guitar rig consist of - pedals, rackmounted effects, amp settings etc...? - Guy

Guy, I use mostly Gibson Les Pauls. I also play BC Rich and mabe Gretsch guitars with a Sure Wireless system. This is important as I have used a TON of wireless systems and the Sure ones just agree with me the most. I run that and on the front end of the amp I have my Dunlop Wha...I believe it's the 550 with the different settings on the side. Out of my effects loop I run a DigiTech Auto Wha and Flanger a Electro Harmonics Micro Synth and Poly Chorus. One they all go into a Huges and Kettner Tri Amp head (sometimes 2....) though either 2 4x10" or 4 depending how big the gig is. I like to have 30 watt speakers in one and 75 watt in the other so this way my sound guy gets a DI out of the head and 2 different mic'ed signals. My settings on the head are normaly Bass at around 2 O'clock, Mid at 3 or 4 and highs about the same. It depends on the stage. I try to sound check everyday to accomodate the room. I put my gain all the way up and believe it or not, I don't like to be louder than I have to be. But remember, the Ghoul-our drummer is the LOUDEST human on the it's always damn loud. I used to keep the presence low but as I get more confidence in my playing, the more I increase it and the tighter it sounds. NOW-keep in mind that we are a 2 guitar player band. Joey has active pickups in his guitar I have passive, he has more of the 'scoop' metal sound. That means very little mids, so we try to compliment each other.... you know... if he wears white I wear red... if he wears black I wear black. Ha,ha... just kidding....

Acey's Guitar Clinic #4 - 20.01.2004 Murderdoll Acey Slade was taking time out before Christmas to answer your guitar related questions! You've read #1-3, and now it is time for the final installment, #4.

12. What effects are used for the intro for White Wedding, can I play it with my trusty guitar digitech metal master and a big amp, no wah no phaser no added stuff? - Matt

Sure, but it won't sound exactly the same. When I did my clinics I did my best to do it clean so that everyone could 'hear' the notes more.

13. How did you learn the guitar, and do you think it's hard to teach yourself, because I am doing that. - Crazydawg

Crazydawg, well....I think having a teacher will help you get where you want to go more quickly. Do you have to...nope. I had a teacher who wanted to teach me all kinds of dumb shit, so I learned the basics from him untill I got an ear and could figure stuff out on my own. That's what I did. But the good thing about having a teacher is that it's someone to bust your balls and keep you on track.

14. My name is Steve, I'm 16, and from Western Australia and I am one of your biggest fans and can't wait to get my claws on your re-released album. I am a guitarist deeply inspired by Murderdolls and I would be fucking grateful if I could get some genuine advice from you. My metal band is going all right, we have written several songs with a few awesome riffs. The thing we need help with is solos - how do you write a good solo to go with your song? I loved the solos in songs such as "Love At First Fright" and "Dressed To Depress" and if I could get some tips to help me write a solo half as good as those I'll be happy. Hope to hear from ya. From a huge aussie doll fan, Steve

Steve! We can't wait to come back to Oz! Well for solo's never forget that simplicity is not something to over look. I'd rather see a guy that can strangle one fuckin' note than a guy that can play a billion notes and I can't remember one of them. Remember - and you hit the nail on the head of the babie.... YOUR RIFFS - that is the first and most important part. THEN make your kick ass solo.

15. In the White Wedding chorus what's the extra tab in the chorus and when it's the drum and bass after the solo? - Steph

It's just bending some notes on the high E string with a micro synth. Joey and I kinda bend at different times so it's kind of spooky. It's basically that 'key board' type sound. It's faint but it's there....good eye!

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