Staff Picks: Alex Chadwick

Chadwick's Picks

Gretsch Broadkaster & Carstens Black Flag, ohh my! CME General Manager, Alex "100 Riffs" Chadwick, talks about a few of his favorite things in this installment of CME Staff Picks!

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ZVEX DOUBLE ROCK

Why? The OG Box Of Rock is my favorite distortion pedal, and the Double Rock is just two of them together at last! You can set either switch to function as a boost or a distortion which is tremendously useful, but more than that it just sounds really damn good.

None of that "transparent", "buttery", "low-fat" nonsense, this is some full-fat Greek yogurt right here. This box will set your hair on edge and your amp on fire, its a ballsy rawk machine that doesn't get anywhere near the kudos it deserves (that goes for the original BofR as well).

CHICKEN PICKS BADAZZ 2.0MM

Why, just why? Everyone starts naturally with a guitar, then an amp, pedals, pickups, strings, straps, leather pants, band managers, lighting rigs, etc., and somewhere twelve or thirteen more steps down the ladder you'll find "picks". Its often overlooked but the choice of pick is crucial to the tonality of your instrument; I would say at least as important as your choice of string but possibly as important as the pickups themselves.

Once I discovered this magical pick by chance at a certain trade show in Anaheim, CA (thanks California Cannabis Conference) it has been the only thing I use, and I've never looked back. Similar to how a bone nut (and bone saddle on an acoustic) will make a guitar sound and feel more "solid" and have more ring and sustain these picks will give your strike a more solid attack, making each note feel bigger and more powerful.

It brings out harmonics I could never achieve with other brands, and even though 2mm is pretty thick the striking edge is perfectly beveled for just the right attack. Worth every penny! (endorsement please!)

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GRETSCH 6609TG BROADKASTER

Why? Sexy tortoise pickguard, beefy Fulltron pickups, flawlessly stable tune-o-matic bridge, silky Bigsby trem... the list goes on for days.

This thing bridges my gap between Strat and Les Paul perfectly, with just the right amount of controllable feedback when I need it. Plus for a slightly heavier guy having a bigger guitar is always a good look; its the guitar equivalent of wearing a heavy coat. Thanks Gretsch!

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CARSTENS BLACK FLAG

Why? It fucking rules! That and my 1971 Marshall 1959 are my two main amps, but the Black Flag gets all the love these days and not just because its smaller and I'm older (and lazier). It sounds massive, the tone is punchy and complex with plenty of bite when you need it, and it breaks up at just the right time. It doesn't hurt that Brian Carstens is a lovely human being and the amp is 100% handmade by the man himself. Let that long hair fly, baby!

UNIVERSAL AUDIO APOLLO TWIN

Why? Because getting this interface completely changed my approach to music. The Unison preamps are legit world-class pre's; you can absolutely make a "real" recording with this box that costs less than $1k, and you can do it at home in your underwear (or no underwear if that's your thing, no judgement). UA's software suite is unparalleled and they give you a "greatest hits" bundled with the Twin, which is the perfect place to start your recording journey.

For us guitar-bound David Gilmour wannabe's the greatest thing about the Twin is the ability to go direct into the guitar input and run the Unison preamp into their insanely accurate recreations of classic amps (Marshall, Fender, Ampeg, and even more modern offerings like Friedman) and they all sound amazing.

I grew up in the 90's when modelers were just coming out and each new release was a buzz of excitement followed immediately by crushing disappointment (looking at you Fender Cyber Twin and every Line 6 amp from my childhood), so I tried this thing with let's say "healthy skepticism", and I'll be damned if it didn't blow my mind how incredibly accurate it sounds. The Plexi in particular is astonishingly good, I use it all the time for recording and just to play through at home because why not? The Twin is also expandable through ADAT for 8 more inputs so you can do full band recording if you want to, its a fantastic unit all around and is the center of my home rig. 

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SHOP ALEX CHADWICK'S PICKS

Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition w/ DUO Processing Interface
Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition w/ DUO Processing Interface
Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition w/ DUO Processing Interface
Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition w/ DUO Processing Interface

Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition w/ DUO Processing Interface

$999.00
Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition has all the benefits of the acclaimed Apollo Twin MkII, including next-generation Apollo A/D and D/A conversion, DUO Core realtime UAD plug-in processing, Unison-enabled mic preamps, and full LUNA Recording System integration. And it goes a step further, with a software suite of 5 award-winning UAD plug-in titles, featuring Collections from Teletronix, Pultec, and UA. 
 
A Special Edition featuring Iconic UAD Analog Collections Onboard
A hallmark feature of Apollo is its Realtime UAD Processing, letting you run the full library of UAD plug-ins at near-zero latency. Taking you a step further, Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition gives you 5 premium plug-in titles worth over $1,300 — including the full suite of UA's Teletronix and 1176 compressors, all Pultec EQs, UA 610 Unison mic preamps, and Pure Plate Reverb. 

These premium Heritage Edition titles are in addition to Apollo Twin MkII's included "Realtime Analog Classics" bundle, giving you the most accurate library of classic analog emulations included with any professional audio interface. 

Two Unison Preamps: The Sound of Neve, Helios, API, Avalon & More
Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition features two Unison-enabled mic preamps, letting you track through exacting mic preamp emulations from Neve, API, Manley, SSL, Avalon, Helios, and Universal Audio.* A Universal Audio exclusive, Unison is a proprietary hardware-software integration that nails the tone of these sought-after tube and solid-state mic pres — including their input impedance, gain stage “sweet spots,” and component-level circuit behaviors. 

Unison technology is also found on Apollo Twin MkII's front-panel Hi-Z instrument input, providing dead-on impedance and gain matching for guitar and bass amp models from Fender, Marshall, Ampeg, and more. 

LUNA Recording System — Deep Apollo Integration with a Fast, Natural Workflow
Apollo Twin MkII works with all major DAWs, including Logic Pro, Ableton Live, Pro Tools, and more. But it becomes a fully integrated recording system with LUNA, a powerful recording application for Mac from Universal Audio. Bolstered by Accelerated Realtime Monitoring,™ LUNA lets you track and mix in an intuitive single-window workflow with unlimited track counts, with full AU support and access to exclusive LUNA Instruments and Extensions.

Built to Record: Improved Monitoring and Workflow
Apollo Twin MkII Heritage Edition offers greatly improved monitor functionality versus previous Apollo Twin models, with added Mute, DIM, Mono, and ALT speaker switching. It also includes monitor remote controls and a built-in talkback mic for easy communication with talent or recording slate cues. These enhanced features make it the new standard for professional desktop recording.

Professional Performance and Scalability with Console 
Users of Apollo Twin MkII can combine up to four Thunderbolt Apollos and six total UAD-2 devices — adding I/O and DSP as your studio grows. Once you expand your studio with additional Apollo rackmount units, you can use Apollo Twin MkII as a desktop monitor control while still tapping its additional I/O and DSP power.
 
Key Features:
  • A special edition of UA's acclaimed Apollo Twin MkII interface — with a premium suite of 5 award-winning plug-in titles from Teletronix, Pultec, and UA — a $1,300 value
  • Next-generation Apollo A/D and D/A conversion 
  • 2 Unison mic preamps offer stunning models of classic tube and transformer-based mic preamps and guitar amps
  • UAD DUO Core Processing for tracking through vintage compressors, EQs, tape machines, mic preamps, and guitar amp plug-ins with near-zero latency
  • Produce with LUNA Recording System — a fully-integrated recording application made for Apollo (Mac only) 
  • Runs UAD Powered Plug-Ins via VST, AU, and AAX 64 formats in all major DAWs
  • Compatible with Logic Pro, Pro Tools, Cubase, Ableton Live, and more
  • Front-panel Unison-enabled Hi-Z instrument input and headphone out
  • Built-in Talkback mic for communication with studio talent and recording slate cues
  • Dedicated monitor functionality including monitor remote functions and Mono, Mute, DIM, and ALT monitor controls 
  • Up to 8 channels of additional digital input via optical ADAT/SPDIF input
  • Also includes “Realtime Analog Classics” UAD plug-in bundle featuring UA 610-B Tube Preamp Legacy Pultec EQ, LA-2A and 1176 compressors, Marshall Plexi Classic, Ampeg SVT-VR Classic, and more
  • Uncompromising analog design, superior components, and premium build quality
  • Free, industry-leading technical support — on the phone and online — from knowledgeable audio engineers 
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ChickenPicks Badazz III 2.0mm Pick 1-Pack
ChickenPicks Badazz III 2.0mm Pick 1-Pack

ChickenPicks Badazz III 2.0mm Pick 1-Pack

$7.95
ChickenPicks Badazz III 2.0mm Pick 1-Pack

As part of the Tritone III Series, the BADAZZ III is our Jazz type shaped guitar pick consisting of 3 useable tips.

Available in 2 gauges: 2.0mm and 2.5mm.

It has 1 extreme sharp tip and 2 less pointy tips.

View details

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