Eric Addington

The Never Ending Quest

As an acoustic musician, I'm on a never ending quest for new gear.  It's silly really...I have gear that works fine, but there is something about needing to tweak stuff that keeps me always looking at "what if I tried this?"

A few gigs back, I was having trouble with both my guitars...a horrible jarring sound would come out of the speakers at random times.  I brought my guitar into Paul Hvidsten who does amazing work and has always done all my guitar maintenance and repair, and he said there wasn't anything obvious he could find.  I read up on other guitar players experiences with the same pick-up and preamp configuration that I use, and a lot of folks mentioned that the pick up I use doesn't play well with the preamp I use.  So, at the Nights of Christmas gig we did in December, I tried using a standard direct box rather than a preamp, and it sounded great and there were no horrible unpredictable jarring noises.  Victory!  So, I bought a new direct box to replace my old preamp. 

Now...it's got me thinking...what if I got a new board to run the PA?  Or, what if I got some new powered speakers...or maybe I should change the pickup configuration in my guitar, because at the gig with Josh Harty last week I really liked the way his rig sounded....STOP!

When does it stop?  Never...I've been having this conversation inside my own head since I bought my first piece of gear when I was 16 years old.  It doesn't help that my partner Bill is the same way...we're constantly talking about what we should change up and how we should configure our sound system.  In a way, it's kind of fun...looking in the gear catalogs and on craigslist...imagining the possibilities limited only by disposable income and a spouse who is actually rational about money.  

Well, I'm off to the music shop to check on PA boards.  If I get a new one, I think our system will be perfect...almost.