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Stefan Lessard's Tone

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by i like tictacs, May 31, 2004.


  1. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    DC
    Ah the memories of musictoday. I worked there two summers ago.

    I'm pretty sure he recorded that song with a Warwick Dolphin Pro possibly strung with TI Jazz Flats. I think you'll have a hard time getting that tone with a Fender type instrument.

    FWIW, I like his tone from when he used Warwicks a lot more than the tone he gets with the Modulus Flea Basses he uses now.
     
  2. I've got a Warwick myself, I also like that tone better. Most of his songs sound somewhat like that tone - are there any specific settings that I should be aware of, cause I've fiddled with it for awhile.
     
  3. goat1234

    goat1234

    Mar 17, 2004
    Virgnia
    take into consideration that hes rich as hell, and that he also can afford many rack effectts, compressors, procesors etc that wil lhelp shape his tone. Also, if its a studio recording, people often use different basses than they may live, and dont endorse them.
     
  4. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF
    Stefan plays Warwick and Modulus basses, and as was said before, you're probably not going to be able to cop his tone with a Fenfer-type instrument. I know he uses his Eventide Ultra-Harmonizer for a lot of things, not just weird-out effects, so that definitely plays a part of it. A lot is his hands too. Stefan is one of those players who can make himself sound like him on any given setup. He's unreal in live situations. To be like Stefan, just get some DMB DVD's. :) That's what I do!
     
  5. modflea

    modflea

    Apr 26, 2004
    Lafayette, LA
    I agree with the post above. A Stefan fan myself, I went through the trouble of creating his touring rig from the previous tour in my rack, with the exception of the Meyer Sound EQ ($2,500 used yikes!) and the Meyer Sound Cabinets ( waaay to expensive) and I was actually able to get very close to his tone. But after that I really believe it does come down to the player and the hands to get those final pieces of the sound. Now he's gone back to Ampeg all the way, with SVT 2s and 4s along with 810 and 215 cabs.

    If I remember correctly, he used the Warwick through and SVT setup to record most of BTCS. For Everyday he mostly used the Modulus Flea 4 and 5 directly into the board. Pro Tools was used for eq etc. on that CD.
     
  6. psst: If you check out the 'Bassists' forum, as opposed to the 'Amps' forum, Lessards setup and tone has been discussed numerous times.

    ditto to what everybody else said re: he's got $$$ and can fabricate his tone from thin air if he wants to. Lillywhite is a genius at making bass sing from speakers.
     
  7. monkfill

    monkfill

    Jan 1, 2003
    Kansas City
    I have to wonder how much of the Ampeg tone actually makes it through to what you hear on live recordings and what you hear in the venue. Obviously his 810 and 215 cabs aren't miked on stage. He has way too much top end in his sound, and you aren't going to get it without a horn in your cab.

    Its pretty much impossible to get a studio sound on a live stage. Stefan live in an amphitheater does not sound like Stefan on a studio album, and then his recorded tone on the live albums doesn't sound like the studio or the venue.
     
  8. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF
    Yeah, I've never seen him mic'd before live except on his older stuff when he was playing with the powered Meyers rig. I think he runs like 3 or 4 direct lines to the board for live stuff. His Ampeg cabs are just for monitor purposes.
     
  9. monkfill

    monkfill

    Jan 1, 2003
    Kansas City
    I notice he uses (2) SVT-2 and (1) SVT-4. He has three amps and he uses three basses, so I'm wondering if he's just going one amp per bass.

    But yeah, I don't think I've personally seen him miked, since 99 which was the first time I was close enough to see. I think he was using the Meyer cabs at that time, with SWR Grand Prix preamps.
     
  10. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF
    Yeah, he was at that time. It's what he was using on the "Listener Supported" DVD.

    He probably does. Dude has a huge rack setup. Like, insane amounts of gear. Almost as much as Dirk had! He's definitely an audiophile/tone junkie, which makes him cool in my book. :cool: More crap the better!
     
  11. Yeah but it makes it a bitch for us wanna be's to get that tone. I've come considerably close. I think I'm satisfied with it.
     
  12. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF

    :D :p I just try and cop his feel and lines over the actual tone, as I play exclusively Mesa. :) He's definitely calmed down a lot more (which isn't necessarily a good thing at all) when playing, when you compare the Central Park DVD to the Listener Supported one. He friggin' wails on that Modulus Q5 all night. Awesome stuff.
     
  13. monkfill

    monkfill

    Jan 1, 2003
    Kansas City
    His sound really is in his fingers. . . Compare all the band's releases. His tone really varies quite a bit. Each studio albums sounds different, and most of the live albums sound different, but it always sounds like Stefan.

    Everyday and the Lillywhite Sessions are definitely Modulus, probably the most apparent on Lillywhite Sessions. He was probably using the Q5 and the Flea 4 through an SWR SM-900 on the Lillywhites, probably the Mods straight into the board on Everyday. Then listen to Busted Stuff. Warmer tone overall, but its definitely not Warwick. Probably the Mods through some other amp, maybe even that Ampeg B15-R that he's plugged into in the video for Where Are You Going. . .

    It's all in the fingers. Well, most of it anyway.
     
  14. marc40a

    marc40a

    Mar 20, 2002
    Boston MA
    Bartolini 9 J's w/ an active onboard preamp nail that sound.

    I
     
  15. fortress1w

    fortress1w Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2003
    Burlington, VT
    According to an interview with Bass Player, Lessard strings his bass with fresh DR LoRiders before every show. Perhaps he does the same for the studio.

    -wish I could do that
     
  16. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF

    True. I do remember reading that. Definitely a bit part of having a full and punchy sound each and every night!


    Well, when ya get sponsored by DR, it's just that simple! :D
     
  17. modflea

    modflea

    Apr 26, 2004
    Lafayette, LA
    As a fellow Stefan tone searcher myself, the Low Riders do make a difference in nailing down the sound. I was using Boomers until I switched and immediately noticed a difference.

    As for equipment, his recording rig is almost completely different for each album. As I can recall:

    Busted Stuff - not sure but probably similar to Everyday.

    Everyday- Flea 4 and 5 directly into Pro Tools. Flea 5 for 10 songs except "Angel", which was the Flea 4. One song "Mother Father" was an Paul Jerwoski Wood Bass 5 made of 200 year old wood recovered from Lake Michigan.

    UTTAD, Crash- Warwick Dolphin Pro 4 (gotta be another 5 in there somewhere)

    BTCS- Thumb Bass 6 and an SVT rig

    Also on the Meyer live rig each SWR Grand Prix was assigned to a particular Flea Bass. Then to the Eventide Ultra Harmonizer, Aphex 661 compressor, Meyer CP-10 EQ, Crest Audio 7001 amp, Ultrasound controller, then to the Meyer Speakers.

    But now he's gone to SVT 3, 4, and 5s with the SVTAV 810 and the 215 Classic cabs.

    Go figure....

    Oh and the folks at Modulus told me that Stefan's Fleas all have the Basslines pickups. His 4s have 2 band EQs and his 5s have 3band EQs, all Bartolini.
     
  18. T. Alan Smith

    T. Alan Smith

    Sep 9, 2001
    Tone is in your touch and your soul.

    That is all.