We are so excited to announce that we have a new artist in the Analog Alien Galaxy – none other than Mr. Emmett Chapman – the inventor of the Chapman Stick!
As many of you know, I am a big fan of the Chapman Stick. I first heard this unique instrument in 1983 in NYC, during a music instrument show held at the “Felt Forum” in Madison Square Garden. Don’t look for it now……just like the Electric Banana, it’s gone – a little Spinal Tap humor for you. It was there that I also met Emmett Chapman for the first time.
Recently, I have been emailing Emmett about the Chapman stick and he has been both very helpful and informative. During one of the emails Emmett mentioned that he noticed a few Stick players were using our pedals and that he’d like to try one out for himself. Emmett told me he was looking for what he called, a “Bad” lead melody voice. But I’ll let him describe it:
“I feel it’s always important to have a “bad” lead melody voice. By itself, without expression, sax is a “bad” sound, so is rock guitar lead. Add the artist behind the instrument and “bad” turns into “gravitas”. Those are the avant-garde lead instruments of jazz and rock and I’d like to have a “bad” lead voice for The Stick (not just a fuzzy, buzzy noise).”
So with that, a Rumble Seat left our shop heading for California and Stick Enterprises. After playing through the Rumble Seat for a few weeks, Emmett emailed me to tell me some exciting news. This really made my day:
“Hello Jack: Yes your orange rock distortion box, with its three integrated effects, now has an established place on my pedalboard. With a bit of fast slapback and some hot reverb I’m enjoying a “heavier” lead voice on The Stick’s melody output.”
“I have all the settings to just one configuration that lends The Stick a certain ’70s rock and roll lead guitar sensation – fuzz, slapback and a springy reverb.”
“I wired your unit into the effects loop of my own created ‘Patch of Shades’ floor unit with its pressure pad, so when I lean my weight onto the pad, my lead sound crossfades from full frequency natural strings to a built in wah plus your Rumble Seat.”
“Having it both ways. All the Best, Emmett.”
Welcome to our Galaxy, Mr. Chapman. It is truly an honor to have you as an Analog Alien Artist.
Analog Alien guitar pedals are not only for electric guitar players. Many musicians, from acoustic guitar players to upright bass players, have incorporated our pedals into both their studio and live performances. Even keyboard players such as the legendary Stevie Wonder use our pedals in ways that they weren’t originally intended to be used.
The Chapman Stick is without a doubt one of the most interesting and innovative designs in musical instrument history. At first you would think that playing this instrument would require it to be strummed, similar to playing a guitar. But in order to produce a sound from the Stick, it has to be tapped, not strummed. When playing the Stick, you have to take more of a piano playing approach, rather than a guitar playing approach.
I have been infatuated with the Chapman Stick ever since I first had the opportunity to play one back in 1981. So when Stick player extraordinaire Jim Meyer walked into the Analog Alien booth at the 2017 Winter NAMM show this year, I was thrilled, impressed, and downright excited, to say the least. Stick players are not shy about incorporating guitar pedals and other effects into their signal chain. Jim was drawn to our pedals right away. When I demoed them for Jim at the NAMM show he became an Analog Alien artist right on the spot, and we were only too happy to have him on board. Currently, Jim uses two of our pedals in his lineup: the Alien Bass Station and the Rumble Seat. He has told us that they have become an integral part of his sound, both on stage and in the studio. Here’s what Jim has to say about our pedals…
“With separate Bass and Melody outputs, the Chapman Stick has unique effects requirements – a challenge in terms of sound quality and pedal board real estate. The guys from Analog Alien Guitar Pedals have really helped out here. The Alien Bass Station, with it’s compressor, amp modeller and fuzz effect, is now the bulk of my bass tone – in one pedal! On the melody side, the overdrive, delay and reverb of the Rumble Seat sound great in any combination, and the delay and reverb play very nicely with my other effects. These two pedals make for a great compact setup!” … Jim Meyer
Click on the links below to find out more about Jim Meyer and the Chapman Stick
The Stick Enterprises feature on Jim Meyer in 2015:
Jim’s “Free Hands Friday” interview for the “Free Hands Academy” in 2014:
Jason Brock has actively pursued his career as an emerging “stick player”. Presently, he has been performing in his home town of North Bay, Ontario, where he was born and raised. Jason has attended and performed at 5 international Chapman Stick seminars. He has been taught and recognized by some of the world’s best known Chapman Stick players. Jason has been playing music professionally including countless weddings, concerts, restaurants, clubs, galleries, parties, as well as performances for hospitals, community social programs and fundraisers. Jason also graduated from Canadore College May 2004 with a diploma as a Social Services Worker.
In the official review of the Historic 2002 Mid-West Stick Seminar (Michigan) taught by veteran Stick players Greg Howard and Bob Culberson, Jason was named as one of two outstanding students of over thirty participants.
His first CD Medicine Stick (independent home recording) has 21 original compositions ranging across several genres (Celtic, contemporary, light jazz, progressive, and folk) and a playing time of 1 hour 15 minutes. It has sold very well at his live performances and has resulted in very positive feedback.
In 2006, Jason was recognized by Emmett Chapman as one of two outstanding performances in Emmett’s official review of the “First National Stick Festival” concert in Ann Arbor Michigan.
“I am REALLY appreciating The Analog Alien “Alien-Bass-Station!” It has become the foundation of my bass tone (in a very short time). I finally got to jam/rehearse with the other half of my duo and was again, pleasantly surprised! We were playing through 1000 watt QSC’s and the difference was immediate. I was not used to having that much bass available. Everything was shaking. I had to bring my usual settings down and my project partner rushed to turned off the snare drum back in the corner.
I had already dialed in the perfect matching/complimenting tone for my older pieces where the lead and bass side of the Chapman Stick were almost indistinguishable (but with a much clearer bass tone than I previously had). Now – I am truly experiencing the benefits of having dedicated bass pedal/tool to shape independently. The tones I am getting are superb and I am still just getting to know the ABS!
So happy I went this direction – The Alien-Bass-Station has surpassed any expectations I had. It’s inspiring me to jump out of my comfort zones and tread new ground!
Thank You Analog Alien – I feel like I am playing a brand new instrument!” … Jason Brock.
Tony Rodriguez is a Chapman Stick artist from New York City. His interest in generating polyphonic chordal music ultimately led him to the Chapman Stick. The Stick allows both hands to work as equal partners on the fretboard with each hand playing independent lines or working in tandem to create musical phrases.
Tony has specialized in the Chapman Stick since 2002, playing in various capacities as both a solo artist and part of various bands. His involvement in the Stick community includes hosting seminars, performing and instructing at such venues around the country. Tony’s collection of Chapman Sticks include 8, 10 and 12-string models that range from dual-bass, bass-guitar, and dual-guitar tunings.
The Stick’s unique dual channel output allows for independent processing of the melody and bass side simultaneously. Analog Alien’s diverse effect pedals bring new sonic possibilities while preserving the Stick’s natural tone. Tony’s AA pedal of choice… all of them.
www.StickNYC.com Tony’s domain address that is currently linked to his facebook fan page.
https://youtu.be/aOVklJ1P8_E Tony playing at Stick Night in Virginia, filmed by Chapman Stick artist, Greg Howard.
http://www.gtrsynth.com/stick/Portal/in22_p.html Interview of Tony for a website in Spain.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCThcG_K_fsksAu5v4Jt1LRA Tony’s Youtube page.