It’s fair to say that Kirk Hammett is known for his prodigious wah pedal usage, so much so that the Metallica man has had two signature Cry Baby pedals. However, he recently revealed that, when it comes to studio use, his signature model is not his go-to – that honor belongs to the DB01B Dimebag Cry Baby From Hell wah.
In his recent interview with Rick Beato, Hammett explains that he has a wah collection in the region of 200 units, but is asked if there is one ‘magic’ box that he returns to.
“There is one and I only have one of them and I break it out every single time and go into the studio and it's the Dimebag wah,” explains Hammett.
It’s clear from the interview footage (around 1.19.32) that the unit has special significance for Hammett, who alongside the rest of Metallica, had a friendship with the Pantera man dating back to 1985.
“I love Dimebag. I loved him as a guy, I loved him as a person. I loved him as a player. To do this day, I have a lot of emotions towards him and his brother,” says Hammett.
“But he made a wah that has this pickup selector and you can toggle through all these things. It’s the greatest idea and on top of that, there’s a boost. When I was looking at this wah, I thought that ‘this is the wah I should have made.’
“When Dunlop said, ‘Let’s put out your version of the wah, I really wanted to just copy it, but I didn’t – just out of respect for Dimebag. But that’s the wah for me. It’s the Dimebag wah. It’s the greatest wah that’s ever been fucking made.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Hammett addresses criticism from some guitarists for a perceived over-dependence on the wah, but he remains unapologetic.
“I can't get away from it. I love the wah,” laughs Hammett. “It shapes the notes, like my voice… It’s an easy thing for people to tease me for, but whatever: I fucking love it, I get great results and I think it sounds great.”
Back in June, Hammett recalled his last encounter with Dimebag Darrell, during a fraught festival appearance.