It's the fifth episode of Pedalpocalypse, and the first one to feature a bass player. Welcome Fabrizio Grossi, MD of the Supersonic Blues Machine, and a man who's added low-end to everyone from Steve Vai to Neal Schon, Robben Ford to Slash, Walter Trout to Leslie West.
Produced in LA by British guitar and bass player Robin Davey (and his company Growvision) and inspired by the bad-old-days of lockdown, in each episode we ask: “If you could only take three pedals with you into a future lockdown or unlikely pedal-related apocalypse, which ones would they be?”
Amazingly, people have let us into their houses and rehearsal rooms to show us, including Fabrizio, who is a bass pedal fiend. "I always use bass pedals," he says. "It's part of my sound, I think. Why leave all the fun to guitar players, you know?"
First up, the MXR Bass Envelope Filter. "This particular pedal has a nice story," says Fabrizio, "because it was a present from the Reverend Billy F Gibbons. And when he showed up, he told me, 'Ah, I made a couple of tweaks.' I never really knew how, but Billy's the gear king, and these things sounds like no other envelope filter I've ever tried.
"Automatically, you're back in San Francisco in 1968, you know: like Larry Graham or Sly and the Family Stone or my old boss George Clinton."
Second is the Mark Bass Compressore. "I think by far the best compressor I've ever tried in my life period," he says. "I mean, I would challenge anyone to know that I'm using a compressor. It's fantastic because it doesn't change the sound. It just keeps it very, very consistent. And it gives me the extra tools to keep everything under control."
And finally? The Mark Bass Super Synth. "I love Mark Bass so much because it's music creation at its very best. This Super Synth pedal works both as a synth bass pedal or as an octave. Tracking is really good, but it just gives me a great sustain and it's still very dynamic."
Watch the video above to hear him demonstrate.
For all the latest news on Fabrizzio Grossi's projects, visit his website.
Previously on Pedalpocalypse:
Episode 1: Blues-country-jazzmaster and all-round tone wizard Josh Smith
Episode 2: British blues guitarist Scott McKeon
Episode 3: Legendary virtuoso Steve Vai
Episode 4: Blues wizard Kirk Fletcher