Uses This

Interview

What do people use to get the job done?

Rose Laguaña

Rose Laguaña

Musician

Who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Rose Laguaña and I'm a working musician.

What hardware do you use?

My main guitar is a PRS custom 24 Dave Navarro signature series, a PRS custom 24 Standard Satin, a Fender Standard Telecaster, a Gibson SG with EMG pickups, a Seagull acoustic/electric, a Martin acoustic, and a Lanikai ukulele (koa wood/concert series). I use GHS Boomer strings - .010's.

I have two amps: 1.) a Morgan 30/800 head, 2x12 open-back cab loaded with vintage Celestion G12H30s built by Joe Morgan of Morgan Amplification based out of Huntington Beach, CA and 2.) a Fender 2x12 "Hot Rod" Deville with two 12" Celestion G12P-80 speakers running two 6l6 (power tubes) Groove Tubes and three 12AX7 (pre amp tubes), also Groove Tubes. The Fender is my personal preference for a classic, clean tone. It also handles stacking drives and effects really well. But in all fairness, it really just depends on the tone you're aiming for honestly.

The Morgan, on the other hand, is like having two legendary amps in one. As Joe Morgan says, it's the "bastard love child" of a classic Vox AC30 and a Marshall JCM800. Which means I can get jangly Brit rock tones all the way up to the big arena rock tone.

Since I travel with gear, I need my board to be minimal but also versatile enough to keep things interesting for me as a player, performer, and collaborator. Tone is such a sensitive topic for a lot of musicians - gear heads can get really rabid about this! So I want to stress here that these are just my personal preferences for the sound I'm going for and like but also what is of interest to me.

I currently have three different drives from two pedals: one is a JHS Sweet Tea, which is a 2-in-1 pedal, and a Walrus Audio Mayflower. The left side of the Sweet Tea has the circuitry of a JCM800 tone, which is nice to have if I don't have my Morgan with me. The right side gets me the classic TS808 Tubescreamer Overdrive tone. So, I can use either side alone or both simultaneously. The other nice thing about this pedal is that it has a toggle that allows you to choose what circuit comes first in the chain. The Mayflower is a mid-range pedal that's the sweet spot of the three drives that I use, quite often. It sits in between the low gain of the TS808 and the rich high gain of the JCM 800. None of which are bad, just my preference for a happy medium/mid-range gain. I sometimes choose to stack these drives in different ways depending on the project, venue, gig, my mood (haha).

For compression, I use Walrus Audio's Deep Six Compressor. What I like about this pedal is that it has a blend knob that allows me to mix my compressed signal with my original uncompressed signal, which is helpful and nice for retaining the natural sound of my tone as I'm tweaking the level, sustain, and attack settings.

Effects: Reverb and Delay - discussing these two can go on for days... My musical tastes fall heavily in the ambient, electronic, soundscape, and soundtrack scoring department. I use Strymon's blueSky reverberator and the El Capistan dTape Echo delay. These pedals are highly versatile on every level, and that's just a small percentage of their product line. Not to mention they both have their versions of a big sister/brother model to them, if you will - the BigSky (MIDI controlled reverb amongst other features) that also has a Speaker Cabinet Emulator for direct-to-PA gigs or recording applications, and the Timeline (MIDI controlled delay & other features), so the possibilities with these are endless.

That is NOT to say that the blueSky and El Capistan are of lesser value, whatsoever. They are all really GREAT pedals that can do plenty of amazing things. They can go from pretty straightforward go-to settings for the average show, all the way to intense experimenting for a larger 3 and 1/2 hr long production. The Strymon engineering team really nailed it with their lineup of pedals, and I think it's safe to say that there are many artists/musicians out there that share the same sentiment. Definitely no glass ceiling when it comes to what these pedals have to offer.

The blueSky is a modern, true-bypass, stereo reverb that uses a powerful SHARC DSP chip to simulate Plate, Spring, and Room reverbs. It offers three different modes to experiment with: Normal, Modulation, and Shimmer. It also has a pre-delay feature that really allows any of the reverb types to flourish and open up nicely and steadily.

The El Capistan emulates Tape Echo machines. This pedal gives you three different types of tape machines all lumped into one unit. It has five tape adjustment and tone shaping knobs - Time, Mix, Tape Age, Repeats, Wow & Flutter (which controls pitch fluctuations caused by mechanical imperfections), much like one of their secondary functions. And on to those (hidden) secondary functions, which makes this pedal more like a ten knob pedal instead of five. Three of my favorite features of the secondary functions are the Spring Reverb, the +/- 3db boost/cut, and the Tape Crinkle (controls the sound quality of the tape) which means you can age the tape sound by rolling back (newer crisp sound) or forward (older, worn, stressed sound) with one knob. It's like time traveling with sound!

And of course a chromatic tuner - the Pitchblack by Korg - and a Visual Sounds volume pedal. The cool thing about the volume pedal is that it has the option of being passive or active.

Instrument cables are Mogami cables w/ copper connectors. Pedaltrain board, Voodoo power supply, Planet Waves, George L cables. Remote practice rig is an iPad 2, Apogee JAM guitar interface, Sensaphonics 2MAX in-ear monitors or whatever earphones/headphones I have in my bag.

Recording hardware: 15" MacBook Pro, Apogee Duet 2 (interface), Sony headphones, Mogami cables.

And what software?

Pretty straightforward - Pro Tools and/or GarageBand. I also use Garageband on my iPad with JamUp Pro XT and Audiobus. What I appreciate most about my iPad setup is that I can comfortably make as much noise as I want through my headphones and not have to deal with angry neighbors. But of course you can only do so much using headphones. It's great for laying down ideas and continuing to hone your craft, especially when you're on the go.

What would be your dream setup?

I think right now I have it for the most part BUT, since there's always a constant change in taste when it comes to the process of growing and learning I'll give it a go on the wish list...

I'd like to add to my Dream Setup an NyStrum Guitar, a TMG guitar, and a Music Man Albert Lee Signature guitar. An Omega MK II Satellite Amp, anything from the Strymon family, an Emerson Custom EM Drive, a JetterGear Gold Standard drive, any Timmy Drive Pedal, any Lovepedal. And the list goes on but you get the idea =)

Basically a subscription to all things music related. All of them (haha).

We can all dream, right...?