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The Looping Thang Again

Discussion in 'Ask Steve Lawson & Michael Manring' started by Warlock, Apr 6, 2005.


  1. Michael/Steve,

    Looping - yes, sorry that again. Two guitarists (poor chaps :crying: ) and myself got talking recently about looping. We all use the Boss loop station. Having seen both of yourselves and the man Lester several times, we really want to know (especially me) how you manage to loop several phrases over each other and then take them off one by one.

    Clearly you are using systems beyond the Boss, but just knowing makes me feel a whole lot better.

    Kindest Regards,
     
  2. Steve Lawson

    Steve Lawson Solo Bass Exploration! Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2000
    Birmingham, UK
    Hi Dave,

    there are few ways to acheive that - within one unit, I do that with the undo function in the Gibson Echoplex - that just allows you to take off what you've recorded one layer at a time. I believe the new version of the RC-20 allows this as well.

    the other way that I do it is to use more than one looper, and layer things up on separate loops, sometimes in sync sometimes out of sync. Then can then be either stopped, faded, or I can turn the feedback control down and gradually replace what's there with something new.

    There are a few tunes on 'Grace And Gratitude' that use the feedback control to fade things, and lots that use multiple loops...

    Lots of ideas there... :)

    Steve
    www.stevelawson.net
     
  3. Thanks for this Steve - it certainly is a musical science or appears to be. Hummm...must start saving then :meh:
     
  4. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut

    Just for anyone's info, I have the newer Boss RC-20XL, and you can only take off the last layer you've played, meaning if you make five loops, you can only take it back to four. Holding down the "Undo" function again acts as a "Redo" function instead, so you can put that fifth loop back on if you want.

    That's the one big drawback about the RC-20XL for me, and why I've considered getting an Echoplex.

    Steve, the Echoplex allows you to take off all of the loops you've made one by one, correct?
     
  5. Steve Lawson

    Steve Lawson Solo Bass Exploration! Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2000
    Birmingham, UK
    Teh echoplex allows you to undo everything you've done, in order, so long as the total record time of all the layers added together end to end is less than the total loop time available in the unit (or in that loop, if you're using the 'more loops' function) - after that, it starts to destructively stack loops on top of each other...

    Steve
    www.stevelawson.net
     
  6. LeonD

    LeonD Supporting Member

    Do you undo the loops in the reverse order they were recorded? Or can you undo them in any order?

    Also, is there a redo feature? Or once they're undone, they're gone?

    Thanks,
    LeonD


     
  7. Steve Lawson

    Steve Lawson Solo Bass Exploration! Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2000
    Birmingham, UK
    They undo in the order they went down in. If you want to be able to undo them in any order, you need lots of Echoplexes. :)

    Steve
    www.stevelawson.net
     
  8. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    Sorry to bump an old thread, but I forgot to mention something in my original post. Since the RC 20 (and RC 20XL) can record and save in nine different patches, you can take away several loops if they're recorded in order on several patches to form one song.

    For example, say I want to make a piece with five bass tracks, and be able to take all of them one after another as the song ends. You can record the first bass track onto patch 1, and then copy that patch to patch 2, 3, and 4 (you do this by pressing the "write" button when the looper is not playing, and when the "write" button is flashing waiting for you to confirm the write, turn the patch selection dial to patch 2 and confirm the write. You now have an exact copy of the music on patch 1 on patch 2. Switch to patch 2, and then play and record your track. Then record patch 2 onto patch 3. Do the same thing, recording 3 onto 4. Now, the one issue with this is unless you're really quick, it may not work well trying to do this live; it's more of a setting-up before the gig thing. But hey, if you're quick, you can probably pull it off live.

    When you're playing the 4th patch, you can overdub a fifth bass track, and can remove this track when you want to by holding down the "Undo" pedal for three seconds. Then, if you're using a FS-6 dual footswitch, you can switch down (and up if you choose) between the patches, effectively taking off one track at a time until you get back to the first patch.

    Hope that helps.
     
  9. Michael Manring

    Michael Manring TalkBass Pro Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    The way I manage multiple loops is to use two Lexicon JamMans locked in MIDI-sync. It works nicely, but I think the Echoplex is probably a more elegant and flexible way of doing things.
     
  10. Hey guys - thanks for this and this does really give me miles more options with the RC20.

    :hyper:
     
  11. fretlessrock

    fretlessrock Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2002
    Corrupticut
    I've been through a lot of loopers and I'm currently using the original RC-20 and a DD-20. I've used them with an A/B switch to work between them, and in series. With the A/B I can work between the two setting up independent loops, or looping the RC-20 and using the DD-20 for the "lead" side.

    In series I have been running the DD-20 after the RC-20, so I can add delay/reverb or I can sample a section from the RC-20 loop. It makes for some sick subdivisions, but it takes a good foot! I've got it to work well but haven't been reliable enough with it to use it live. Small timing errors make it unmusical in a hurry. That is where link, sync, and qualtize would come in handy :bassist:
     
  12. TaySte_2000

    TaySte_2000

    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
  13. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    Steve, have you ever tried the Electrix Repeater rackmount? It's beng re-introduced (apparently with some upgrades) this summer for $500.
     
  14. Steve Lawson

    Steve Lawson Solo Bass Exploration! Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2000
    Birmingham, UK
    I've not tried the Repeater - I have seen it, and followed the extensive discussions about it on Loopers Delight. It remains to be seen if the updates have sorted the couple of big problems that it seemed to have (the most obvious was not being able to go from recording your first loop straight into overdub, so it was impossible to have a seemless overlap for an ambient piece...!)

    Steve
    www.stevelawson.net
     
  15. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    That seems like a VERY big problem- it'd be useless for live looping unless they fix that issue with the new one.

    Too many loopers seem to be focused on you pre-recording your loops rather than the ability to record, remove, and alter your loops in a live, hands-free environment. I'd really like to be able to to take a loop, overdub several more loops onto it, and then be able to take them off one by one. Basically build a song then tear it apart live, without having to use my hands. Is the Echoplex the only (non PC) one that does this?
     
  16. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Although I would love to get an Echoplex (I saw one in action at my teacher's house once during an upright lesson, it's a brilliant piece of machinery,) what would you reccomend for something a bit cheaper, without a *LOT* of record time?
    I don't need 20 minutes or anything, but a decent amount for both practice and live use. Practice wise, maybe things like setting down a walking bassline, chord comps, and soloing to practice jazz stuff (looping the chords and solo first, and practicing walking, then practicing comping, etc. -- you know.) The loop would only really need to be about one chorus long, and for a 32 bar chorus -- even a ballad -- that's not too much recording time. Live, it'd be a number of REALLY short loops, maybe 8 or 12 bar grooves. What would you reccomned, given your experience in such a variety of loopers?

    PS: I just started work at a fast food place, and I've got an upright and a new electric to save up for, so budget is a concern -- I'm thinking $400 CAD and down (approx. $320 USD.)