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Kurt Danielson's Tad Setup?

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Eternal_Idiot, Dec 15, 2006.

  1. Eternal_Idiot


    Jan 6, 2006
    Anyone know what gear Kurt Danielson uses for Tad?Particuarly on Infrared Riding Hood?I love the tone and sound he has on that album and cant find any info on what he uses...so yeah anyone know?
  2. Hello,

    To directly answer your question, on Infra Red Riding Hood I used, for songs tuned to E, a '62 Fender P Bass (with active EMG pickups) through 2 Mesa Boogie 400 watt tube heads, 2 8 x 10" Mesa Boogie speaker cabs, 2 1x15" speaker cabs, and a Marshall Gov'ner distortion box. For songs tuned to D, I used the same amp/speaker cab set-up but with a d-tuned Jazz Bass ('90's vintage) with active EMG's. And for songs tuned to C, I again used the same set up but with a P bass (90's vintage) w/ active EMG pickups; it was tuned CGCG. I used an active SansAmp preamp throughout.

    For comparison/contrast, check out what I used on the other TAD records:

    On Inhaler, I used the '62 P bass for the E and the D songs and a 90's vintage P bass for the C songs (the latter bass being again tuned CGCG). For this record, on one channel I used an Ampeg SVT II and an old and mildewy Ampeg 8 x 10" cab from which the dust covers had been removed from the speakers (they had actually started to fall off of their own accord during tracking, making an annoying flapping noise, so I just took them off); this happily lent the speakers a tinny or metallic tone that was very muscular and pleasing; on a second channel, I put the bass through an ancient Fender guitar amp to get the distortion, and I blended these 2 channels to get the final tone. I used a SansAmp preamp throughout here too. J Mascis suggested the use of the old Fender amp for the distorted channel.

    For Salem, I used my trusty Fender '62 P bass through an SVT II and a Sunn 4x12" guitar cab with blown speakers that gave me a very fine distorted tone. Note: the 4x 12" cab was only 8 amps, so that overdrove the amp and this also added to the distorted tone. No fuzz box was necessary. I think I had the SansAmp preamp by this time.

    For 8 Way Santa, I used the '62 Fender P bass and a Galien-Krueger RB 800 w/ a 2x 15" cab (Paradise was the brand name, I think); I used a Ratt pedal for some of the songs. On 3-D Witchhunt, I recorded a second bass track using the high octave. That was Butch Vig's idea.

    On Salt Lick, I used the '62 Fender P bass through a 50 watt Traner solid state head with a built-in 15" speaker. It was Steve Albini's amp.

    For God's Balls, I used the '62 Fender P bass through the G-K RB 800 w/ an 18" Energy Cab (w/ Macauley speaker) and a 10" Energy Cab (also with a Macauley speaker); all of it went through a Ratt pedal.

    And, finally, on the yet to be released FINAL RECORDINGS (to be released some time in 2008 either electronically or through an indy label), I used the ever trusty '62 Fender P bass through 2 Mesa Boogie 400 watt tube heads, each one pumping through a single single 15" cab in order to achieve maximum overdrive; although this nearly blew both heads, I got the best sound EVER this way, and the distortion, though radical, was totally natural (produced via natural overdrive as well as via slightly worn preamp tubes in the amps themselves). This set up helped me achieve the most balanced tone I've ever gotten: I got the distortion and the metallic edge that I like but I also got an extremely fat and warm tone: the best of both worlds, which is always a challenge when you're recording bass in the studio.

    Btw, I always use a pick. Because I play VERY hard, I use a big fat Clayton (.80 mm); the big pick minimizes thumb damage. I found that if I used a standard sized pick on tour especially my thumb would split down the middle like a pickle. For years, before I discovered these wide picks, I used to use Liquid Bandage to hold my thumb together and to prevent infection. And I use the fattest gauge strings, usually stainless steel, that I can find: Roto Sounds or GHS. I change strings as often as I can afford to.

    I hope you find this info useful.


    Kurt d.

    PS: I eschew the use of 5 string basses; they simply are not necessary.
    FedericoC.uy likes this.
  3. RedemptionBass


    Dec 12, 2007
    Crystal Lake, IL
    Head (and only) Honcho at Redemption Bass
    Well you can't get a better answer than that, that's for sure. Nice to see folks bringing up Tad. It's been too long, time to pull those albums out of the ol' collection again.
  4. four2oh


    Mar 29, 2006
    Seattle, WA
    love for TAD!!!
  5. I can't believe Kurt actually posted on here! Awesome! (revived of course :))
  6. Carlcoops


    Mar 24, 2019
    It would be great if more great bassists could give a run down of set ups or even a little advice. Especially for people new to bass playing like myself.
  7. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Too many of them get run off by the bedroom players on here who think they know everything.

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