I'VE HAD PRETTY BIG FEET EVER since high school. I'm lucky I grew into these size 11-1/2 gunboats, because clown feet are not part of the rock and roll mystique. Even so, I've been busted a few times for tapping my huge and heavy foot while playing nylon-string acoustic in the studio, and I've had to resort to taking my shoes off in those situations.
But the other day, I was able to put these clodhoppers to good use. I was asked by a composer friend of mine to come down to his home studio and put a wah-wah guitar part on the main title of a new sitcom he was writing. Springtime is usually "pilot season," where they put together the new shows for the Fall TV season, and see which ones are going to make the cut. TV producers are always looking to score their shows with the perfect music, so it's important to get it right.
I own a bunch of wah pedals, and I decided to bring five of them. There's a nice Carr Viceroy amplifier at the studio that I always enjoy playing through, and I began by hooking up an ancient CryBaby that I've owned since I was a teenager. We sampled various other wahs, but the composer was looking for something radical--like the sound Jimi gets at the end of "Rainy Day Dream Away." I tried a Vox, a Carl Martin, a Dunlop, and an Ernie Ball, and I got close, but I never quite achieved that intense of a sound. …