Recreating The Edge's amazing sounds. - U2 Feedback

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Old 06-13-2000, 02:09 AM   #1
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Recreating The Edge's amazing sounds.

let's have it, kids...
what do you use?
let's move this thread into specifics, too!!!!

i'm talking delay times, effects settings, modified guitars and amps...

i don't know where to begin myself!

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Old 06-15-2000, 03:56 PM   #2
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To begin with, you'll need a Stratocaster, and echo-unit (duh), and a herco #40 guitar pick, it's grey with "dimples" on the top.I tend to hold the pick sideways, so that the dimples hit the strings in such a way as to make the notes "chime" as edge does. Depending on which echo device you are using, edge's "sweet spot" tends to be at about 1 o'clock on the delay time dial (This is an approximation based on my Digitech 2 second digi delay, you would want to see marius's u2 sound site for exact times in MS (milleseconds).Edge is very fond of arpeggiating chords (playing each note in the chord from bottom to top, or top to bottom) with the echo producing the "bounce". The stratocaster's five position switch should be set to 4 (1 being up towards you as you look down at the guitar) for clean sounds-"bad" and the like.
Amps should be set "clean" for the sounds I just mentioned-fenders and marshalls can get real close, but of course a VOX ac-30 with a "bright" switch is ideal. Funny thing about all of this is that, at least in my opinion, a LOT of edge's sound comes from his HANDS-try playing the strat unplugged with the herco 40 pick and you will see what I mean.
asta la vista-Mark
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Old 06-15-2000, 04:21 PM   #3
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Just wanted to add that if you can't find Herco #40 grey "stubbys" at local music shops, a medium to heavy gauge Jim Dunlop with the "stubbys" will also work. If you DO find the Herco's, make sure to buy enough to last awhile-i've been running on two purchases for nearly 10 years-don't be shy about buying 15-20 at a time. With the advent of the internet, it's possibly a lot easier that it was in the 80's!.
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Old 06-30-2000, 08:55 PM   #4
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i used to have one of edge's pics. and god will strike me down because i lost it a good 3 years ago. anyway i did find another pick that gives me better results than the jim dunlop ones. Its a George Dennis - 1.20mm. the grip is really grippy if that's a word and it really chimes the string. breaks strings really well too. as for my setup. list goes as follows.... fender 79 strat all black.. black pickguard.. large headstock.. hard tail(no tremelo) great sounding instrument.
for effects i've got a digitech 2101, ibanez dm1100 delay (rackmount... good delay times and delay modulation which can be wacky)
next is the digitech xp100 or whatever for whammy.
crybaby wah
dod fuz
boss dd3
and a little shite peavy amp.
am looking at a vox ac30 hopefully in the next few months

I use the 2101 for some of the distortions but it doesn't cut it for really dirty sounds. the ibanez delay is great.
alot of edges delay settings are in and around 450 ms ie. wowy, the fly, onetreehill,. shorter for wtshnn and even shorter for electric co.
long post must stop.

anyone recomend distortion pedals? boss od2 or big muff?

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Old 07-06-2000, 07:23 PM   #5
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thanks for all the helpful info.
i had been using a strat plus deluxe with lace sensors since '93, but those pickups are not very conducive for getting the Edge's classic tones.

i was looking into getting a 70s strat, but they weigh a ton and i hate the idea of a 3-bolt neck joint. i just happened to see a 1969 fender custom shop strat in a local store the other day and put myself into a major debt to get it. i can tell you that i don't care if i don't go out for the rest of the year, it will still be a pleasure to pay off the credit card bill. this guitar is amazing and sounds just right for the U2 stuff.

i have noticed, though, that a huge part of the sound comes from Edge's pick technique. i get a decent sound by holding my trusty green dunlops sideways, but it isn't exactly right. i don't know where i can find the picks that Edge uses, and would be sincerely appreciative if you guys can tell me where to get them (online or in New York.)

i'd also kill to get my hands on an AC-30. oh well!

i hope we can keep this thread active. i doubt any one person besides The Edge himself could cover enough ground on this topic!

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Old 07-08-2000, 02:55 AM   #6
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Not only haven't I been able to recreate Edge's sound. When I pick up my guitar it strikes me I can't play like Edge. And I have been practising !!!

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Old 07-15-2000, 05:24 PM   #7
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don't ever give up, whatever you do!
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Old 07-16-2000, 06:02 AM   #8
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Hi Guys, it seems you all know everything,although I don't play guitar but I was just curious what does mixing,echo and other stuff that the band is doing now days mean.Like I heard Lillywhite is there to hel them mix,etc.
And can you tell me how they write a song,likw what steps they take in composing a song and how they nail it.
Lastly what exactly is the role of the producer,Like what does he exactly do.
Please site examples I won't be able to catch much without it.
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Old 07-17-2000, 03:50 PM   #9
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a producer is kind of like the director in a movie. he listens to the band play a song and then provides them with ideas on how to make it better. for example, put a bridge in between the second verse and second chorus; add a little echo on the vocals here; try more intensive drumming there. stuff like that.

i don't know if that's helpful to you at all.
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Old 07-18-2000, 05:57 AM   #10
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Wormwood thanx, Cretainly it was very helpful,Now I'm clear what the producer does in that studio,I never knew that he had such an important role.
By the way I'm still not clear how does U2 approach song writing like how they compose a song, and what is mixing???
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Old 07-18-2000, 08:21 AM   #11
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ish,
you have opened up a HUGE can of worms here!
it's really hard to explain this type of stuff succinctly, but i will try!

song ideas can come from ANYWHERE. a song can start in your head, with a guitar riff, a drum beat, bass line, sample, from jamming on another song, or a number of other places.

for example, the edge came to the joshua tree sessions with a demo of "where the streets have no name" the basic guitar intro was there and so was one other chunk of the song. however, there was a REALLY odd timing drum part that Edge did with a drum machine. the band voted that out and worked on the rest of the song together with brian eno & daniel lanois. they spent about half the recording time of The Joshua Tree writing and recording that one song!
"Pride," on the other hand, developed instantaneously during a soundcheck jam before a concert. Bono has said that the actual length of that song was the amount of time it took to write. "One" was another tune that developed super-quickly, although it happened in the studio during the Achtung sessions.

as far as mixing goes, that's a WHOLE other process. when a song is recorded, a band can record upwards of 50 tracks of various instruments, sounds, and vocals for it.
mixing is the art of bringing everything together into a rich stereo picture that helps convey the emotion(s) the song deals with. many parts are used sparingly or altoegether left out. whoever mixes the album can make or break it, especially with a band as great as U2, because they are so dynamic lyrically, musically, and emotionally.

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Old 07-18-2000, 08:38 AM   #12
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the smashing pumpkins had over 100 guitar tracks on some of the songs for "melancholy and the infinite sadness." mixing is the process that decides what you as the listener hear in the final product.
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Old 07-20-2000, 11:03 AM   #13
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I sincerely thank all you guys,especially Van Edge for sharing these information,it has cleared a huge chunk of doubt in my mind.
Once again thanx guys.
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Old 07-21-2000, 03:50 AM   #14
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i seem to get a pretty edge-like sound out of my fender strat plus and my marshall amp and my little echo machine. love bullet/rtss/wtshnn & pride especially.
about the sound coming from edges hands... bono has said he takes edges guitar, edges amps, sets everything up the same way and CANT GET THE SAME SOUND. just goes to show ya!
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Old 07-25-2000, 02:09 AM   #15
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oh, totally! the bottom line is the fingers.
there's something about the feel created by a particular player.
the really special ones sound like themselves regardless of what gear they are using. (eddie van halen, edge, stevie ray vaughn, joe satriani, jimmy page, jeff beck)

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Old 07-25-2000, 12:27 PM   #16
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I LOVE THE GUITAR!
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Old 07-31-2000, 08:40 AM   #17
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how could you not???

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Old 08-13-2000, 04:58 PM   #18
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One thing to remember is that you will never sound just like the edge...a good thing tho! Take some of his techniques and improve on them...make them into your own...then make your own U2 covers that's what I love doing

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Old 01-19-2003, 04:12 PM   #19
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Good day to you!

I found in my collection of picks a Pickboy Nylon 66 pick. This has grip nodules on each face, not on each edge, which I use to hit the strings. This gives a great Edge 'twang' to the notes as the nodules scrape across the string.

Where The Streets Have No Name sounds fantastic - set a little distortion, not too much or it will sound muddy - a 370ms delay for Elevation tour versions or 350ms for Zoo TV versions, echoing 3 or 4 times with the first echo almost as loud as the picked note. Awesome!

I only have one of these picks so it is one of my most valued possessions, if I lose it, i'm shafted as I can't buy them anywhere in England. There is however, a Pickboy distributor in New York who has a shitload.Contact:

Brooklyn Gear, 20 Jay Street, Suite 1002, Brooklyn, NY 11201.

Hope this helps, they are good picks.

Peace:->
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Old 01-20-2003, 11:35 AM   #20
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All the Edge technical stuff you need to know

can be found at groups.yahoo.com/group/U2_recording/ and groups.yahoo.com/group/U2Sound. Search the archives in these two groups and you will probably find any Edge gear-related and technical questions that you may have. The knowledge found in those groups is amazing.

Also, on the picks. The actual picks that the Edge uses are Herdim picks (the blue hard ones with "Made in West Germany" stamped on them). If you live in the US or don't mind paying for overseas shipping, you can find them here:

stoneyend.com/MNprice.html

They are the under Accessories about 4/5 way down the page.

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