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Fripp's guitars and amps

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Fripp's guitars and amps

Postby Gilesfan on Thu Sep 23, 2004 10:50 am

So far as I know, Rober Fripp is not a "collector" of guitars like Steve Howe. But what do I know? :roll:

From what I have seen, Fripp mainly played the Black Gibson Les Paul in from 1969-1974 almost exclusively, along with Hiwatt and (perhaps) Marshall amps. What about acoustic guitars?

And in the 80's, he was playing a Roland guitar with Roland amps if I recall correctly.

Now it seems he is playing "Fernandes" guitars and I am not sure what kind of amps.

Any info on Fripp's guitars and amps?
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Postby vrooom on Thu Sep 23, 2004 11:33 am

There is an old entry in Guitar Geek for RF:

This needs to be updated slightly because since this time he also uses a Roland VG-88 guitar modeller and a Roland GR-33 guitar synth in his setup. ... 2D88+v%2E2 ... odid=GR-33

In terms of amplification, I think he tends to patch his stuff straight into the mixing desk. That's the beauty of guitar modelling, it does away with amps because it can synthesise them.

Of course, this setup could all change if RF falls in love with Native Instruments Guitar Rig:

This piece of software does away with the need for any effect pedals and lets you take your guitar signal and process it using a PC or a Mac (or a laptop if you are a mobile, intelligent unit). I tried the demo and while I was impressed, it doesn't model 12-strings or acoustics like my trusty VG-88 does.

And don't forget that he uses Fernandes Sustainer guitars:

Hope this helps,

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Postby Absinthe on Thu Sep 23, 2004 2:39 pm

It's funny that you brought this up, Gilesfan. Darren was just telling me yesterday that RF is a lefty, a fact which someone surpassed me along the way.

That Guitar Geek is fun! :oops:

Postby Gilesfan on Thu Sep 23, 2004 9:51 pm

Thanks Darren. :D

Fripp being left-handed would make him a little more dexterous with his left hand, whereas right-handed players need a little more time in developing the left hand. Steve Morse and also Rik Emmett are also left-handed. I think it was Steve Morse who recommended that left-handed guitarists play righthanded style because of the already developed left hand.

Isn't John Wetton also left-handed?
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Postby jtmack on Fri Sep 24, 2004 12:11 am

Darren, What do you suggest for my first guitar synth.

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Postby Whiskey Vengeance on Mon Nov 29, 2004 5:00 am

Here's an excerpt from an interview in Guitar Player from May '74 which holds many answers:

"What type of guitar did you start using with King Crimson?

The Les Paul which I bought in 1968. Until that time I used a Gibson Stereo which is still one of the finest guitars I ever played, though I don't use it very much because it's not sufficiently strong. I started using the Les Paul because I'd been told it was a good guitar by virtually everybody. It was the trendy thing to do then, and I thought, "Alright, I'll give it a try." Its serial number is 53, one of the early ones from the Fifties. The Stereo is about a 1963. I've got two Stratocasters, about 1963 and 1966. I have a J-45 acoustic, and one of the more expensive Yamaha acoustics. I also have a Milner pre-war acoustic guitar and a Gibson tenor guitar, also pre-war. I disliked Fender for a long time, but I bought a couple two or three years ago in order to get into them, and partly as an investment. I started working with the Stratocaster this year. I liked it. It's a far better chordal guitar than the Les Paul, although I think the Les Paul is probably better for single-string work."
(there's tons of more info in this interview... check it out here

Here are some more details on Fripp's guitars from my personal observations and independent research. His Paul is a black, three-pickup 1959 Les Paul Custom with no humbucker plates, exposing the "zebra" pattern humbucking pickups.
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Postby bongo on Tue Nov 30, 2004 2:47 am

as for me. i play guitar and i love tube amps. vintage all the way! i have a u-45B univox practice amp. i love it. it needs work. i changed over all of the tubes. it took me a year to find them, because it takes the 7-pin tubes, which are obsolete. i had to find "new old stock". i want to make some kind of pre-amp out jack so i can use it to drive my bigger amps!

i also have a '72 fender bassman 50 head, which i use to push 2 12" peavey scorpions. i like the sound of them, pretty meaty. but, i want to replace every amp cab i have with jensen special design speakers. it is the ultimate sounding vintage speaker, and from what i read, it is due to alnico magnets!

i have a silvertone twin twelve amp. it needs the speakers re-coned. the reason for reconing and not replacing is, they are jensen special designs! after i get this amp working, i want to do some sort of stereo sound with the bassman 50 on one side of the stage, and the silvertone on the other. maybe a stereo chorus running out to both of them.

i also use a mesa-boogie twin twelve tube preamp floor unit to drive my amps with real tube overdrive coming from two 12ax7's.

for guitars, i have a dannelectro. it has 3 lipstick pickups, and is different from the cheaper models. it has gotah tuners and a fully adjustible bridge. it also has a metal nut, which gives it a very bright tone!

i have a peavey impact firenza electric. it has 2 single coils and a bridge humbucker. i never use the humbucker, because i think they suck. i love single coils. it has a tremolo too. but i dont like it, because it bends down and not up. and, hey! after seeing adrien belew with king crimson in ashville, i need a tremolo that will bend up too! (experiences like this tend to change a person!)
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Postby vrooom on Tue Nov 30, 2004 3:10 am

I do my best to play guitar. I am not much of a gear head in the traditional sense, I have gone the way of the electronic guitarist.

On all of my recordings, I have played an all-black 1997 Fender "Fat" Strat, which I custom fitted an internal Roland GK-2A MIDI pickup. This is connected to a Roland US-20 switch that routes the signal between a Roland VG-88 virtual guitar system and a Roland GR-33 guitar synth. Before this, I owned the VG-8 and GR-1, but these were sold on when I upgraded.

In terms of bass, I recently upgraded my old Yamaha RBX350 to a red 2000 edition Fender Precision Special Deluxe. This too has been customised by me to take an internal Roland GK-2B bass MIDI pickup. This is fed into my Roland V-Bass system.

Recently, I purchased a rather nice Epiphone Les Paul "Black Beauty" Custom, which (again) I customised with an internal GK-2A MIDI pickup and it is this guitar which I am using at the moment.

In terms of pedals, I use a Boss DD-20 and RX-20XL for looping/soundscaping/general treatments.

I also own an Ashbory Rubber Bass, which I bought on my 30th birthday while in Los Angeles. (Which has to be the coolest birthday yet...and I'll tell ya a story about it one day).

Oh...and while we were in Los Angeles in August/September 2004, I found a very cheap second-hand Fender Stratacoustic, which the Missus treated me to.

I like pedals. Don't really have the space for amps... :-(
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Postby Crimsoid on Sun Dec 12, 2004 5:56 pm

Isn't John Wetton also left-handed?

he is left-handed.
i'm sure.

Postby Radius on Tue Jan 04, 2005 2:06 pm

I never see RF using an a GR33, he are still using a GR1 and a GR30...ok probably he use two GSynths because of he can utilize more sounds...but i have another question about his rig: why recently he use a VG8 and a VG88 (as you can see on TPTB Tour)?


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