Robben Ford

For some reason, I regularly go through phases where I obsess over the tone of one particular guitarist. I am just out of a Robben Ford phase, what a ride!  Mr Ford, who has just released a new album entitled “Bringing It Back Home”, has probably one of the most sought after tones. Legions of guitarists have tried to emulate it over the year, there are even overdrive pedals more or less built to (try to) sound like him.

I have found a few great videos of Robben showing his amazing tone whether using a humbucker equipped guitar or a good old Telecaster. And before we try to pile up gear in a quest to reproduce his tone, the last video on this page shows Guthrie Govan explaining why you’ll never sound like Robben Ford. Newsflash: it’s not in the Dumble, the effects, or the guitar…

Anyway the first video of the series is from the “Blue Line” period in the early 90s. The general sound quality of this video is not great but I think Robben Ford’s amazing tone transpires:

Presumably shot in the early 90s as well, here is a video of the man himself explaining what amp and effects he’s going through. His staple at the time consisted in a Dumble amp, a TC Electronic 2290 delay and a Lexicon reverb (all very high end and very expensive). The amount of effects he uses was greatly reduced over the years to the point that he was more recently seen playing using just an overdrive pedal (A Hermida Zendrive) though rental Fender Twins.  He is reportedly getting back into using effects though, that will prove to be interesting.


And now a fine example of Robben Ford’s more recent Telecaster tone going through very little effects:

Finally, Guthrie Govan explains why it’s so hard to sound like Robben Ford, classic:

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