In April of 2012 I left my band to fully give all of my musical gifts to my church’s Worship Team. Playing in a pop rock band, and being in the spotlight in the Portland, OR area led me to make some really poor choices, which almost ruined my relationship with my then-fiancee-now-wife, and most importantly, with God.
I love playing live. Perhaps more than any other activity I have ever experienced. However, I love God and my family more, so the choice had to be made.
Fast forward a couple of months – Up until then, I had been using a Fender USA Hot Rod DeVille 2×12 and an Egnater Rebel 20 with my friend and then-bandmate Ryan’s VOX 2×12 cab loaded with Wharfdale speakers. I took an honest look at my setup and felt unhappy. Sure, it was great for venues, but a bit impractical for a congregational setting. It was then that God took me through the following journey in search of the right amp:
* VHT Special 6 (Can’t stress how awesome this amp was, I am just partial to combos for practical and tone reasons. This would be a great practice amp for someone looking for a hi-gain sound)
* Fender Hot Rod Deluxe 1×12 (In essence, this still had too much shear, deafening volume for my uses. Awesome cleans. Glassy, bell-like bluesy tone).
* Fender Excelsior 1×15 (Ok… this amp was just…. interesting)
* VOX AC4C1-BL (A step in the right direction… had it not been a faulty unit)
* Laney VC30 2×10 (No low end. Period).
* Peavey Classic 50 4×10 (I always wanted a Tweed 4×10, until I realized how much of a nightmare it is to carry it, even in a road case with wheels. Plus, 50 watts was just serious overkill for me)
* Fender Tweed Blues Junior NOS (Now, here was what I had been looking for! Cool looks, cooler tone. A set of JJ’s from http://www.eurotubes.com (including a JJ 5751 in the preamp) and some elbow grease, and this amp has been a main staple for me since).
* VOX AC15C1 (One of my favorite amps to play. It is just a bundle of tone rolled into more tone. the Celestion Greenback is my favorite speaker to this day. Sweet, smoky, and inefficient, but 100% awesome).
* VOX AC4TV modded (When I first go this, it was begging me to tinker with it. I replaced the speaker with a GWS Vet 10 and a JJ ECC83 preamp, and an EL84 in the power section. Much better now!)
Finally, my pride and joy….