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Topic: whole lotta country

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  1. #1

    whole lotta country

    Hi folks, I am in the process of making a country album and I need a sampled pedal steel guitar, I have bought a few things but they don't sound wright. The only samples I have heard that sound wright is Whole Lotta Country from Sampleheads but they have gone out of business. Do any of you know where to get this product (even second hand)? Any help would me appriciated.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: whole lotta country

    I have access to a couple of very fine, national-credit type steel players. Both are extremely good. I do not have a whole lot of open time, but can always at least check it out and see if something could work out.

    I can't imagine a sampled pedal steel. That would be a tough one.

  3. #3
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    Re: whole lotta country

    I agree. Among a bunch of other things, I also play pedal steel.

    I've tried since the inception of midi and samples to find a workable solution. Even something close enough to fool people who don't know the sound that well. Never did find anything that isn't mostly embarrassing. So I just drag out the steel and play it myself when I need that instrument.

    I'll have to find "Whole Lotta Country" someday somewhere to see what it was...but I can't imagine how anything very useable could've been in there.

    Steel is such a mechanically busy instrument. Solo notes are a comparative breeze if you think like a steel player when you input them on the keyboard triggering an appropriate patch/sample......but when you start playing chords and try to imagine using samples/keyboards to bring in the random pitch up/down of SOME chord notes ...as one would via 1-5 floor pedals and 4 knee levers..and a volume pedal....it just doesn't happen in sampleland. At least any time I've tried over the past 20 years or so.

    The little brother of the ancient Chroma (can't remember what that keyboard was), had a latch note setting where you could play chords and then bend some notes but not others...but even that was bogus sounding for pedal steel effect.

  4. #4
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    Re: whole lotta country

    Yeah, pedal steel's a funny one for me. I've been playing it now since 1973 and I absolutely h-a-t-e country music. I don't like the old stuff from the 50's-60's and I don't like the new stuff. Songs that is. But I LOVE the pedal steel. It's so much fun to play and I have done sporadic session work with it over the years simply because I can certainly play it after all this time.

    In fact, the only reason I ever bought one way back then was that I was at a Yes concert during their second tour of the US and "damn...what the hell is Steve Howe playing up there". It was a lap steell on 4 tall legs so he could play standing up. The thing was run through an echoplex and it was just the coolest sound when he played it. Two tours later, he had graduated to a full pedal steel on four tall legs. The band played a song called "To Be Over" and Howe was working the floor pedals for that song..while standing up no less. It killed me. It was so great. I bought my own pedal steel the next week and learned every single Yes steel thing I could. So much fun.

    But after that....what can you play? There wasn't anything left at the time except to experiment with all the pedals and knee levers....which meant there was nothing to try copping but country music licks. Which I did. Somewhere in that time frame, I saw a band that had two steel players and they were doing an ingenious thing of taking all kinds of pop songs and twisting them into arrangements with double steels, banjos, guitars etc. Which I thought was also cool, so I started practicing based on that kind of style.

    Anyway I'm glad I learned, it's lots more fun to play steel than my mellotron.

    Hey there's a good one....I play country pedal steel guitar because my biggest influence was Yes.

  5. #5

    Re: whole lotta country

    As far as WLC goes, have you checked with distributors? It might still be in stock. I know it shows up periodically on Ebay.

    Ernie

  6. #6

    Re: whole lotta country

    I have WLC (not for sale or "borrowing") and it does indeed have some pedal steel patches. One of the patches is bends/up and another is bends/down in addition to some chord patches (no bends) and single note patches.

    But like others have said, I think you'd have a very hard time making a decent performance. I'd hire a real player.

    What I do find most useful with WLC are the loops of various instruments, including pedal steel. Trouble is, there aren't a "whole lotta" them, so you have to kinda "write" your track to what's there. And that track can't be very long.

    - Mike Greene

  7. #7
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
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    Re: whole lotta country

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Greene
    What I do find most useful with WLC are the loops of various instruments, including pedal steel. Trouble is, there aren't a "whole lotta" them, so you have to kinda "write" your track to what's there. And that track can't be very long.

    - Mike Greene
    Not to mention, you have all your ruthless smartass friends saying, "Uh, nice loop, man. Never heard that before..."

    Country as a genre still puts a lot of emphasis on capturing performances. It's one thing to sell a sampled piano as a piano performance, because the skillset is directly analogous. Steel is far removed.

  8. #8

    Re: whole lotta country

    American Heartland has some nice steel samples, and looped bends and such. If you're making a country album, and you're using samples, you will find American Heartland indispensable. Yes, steel is a hard instrument to emulate. Some of us enjoy trying, though.

  9. #9

    Re: whole lotta country

    Until you get a "real" player, though, you may also want to check out the Acidized loops collection called "Nashville Wire" (again, GOOGLING will help you find it).

    There is also a soundfont out there that you can find by GOOGLING for "pedalsteel.exe".

    Jerry

  10. #10

    Re: whole lotta country

    Im a professional steel player and my advice is forget it. The only thing I have heard come close and your not going to believe this was a keyboard player named Jim cox, I think that was his name had a demo record in keyboard mag years ago,he played shennadoah using a prophet five it wasnt bad but I dont know if it is available as a back issue of if he is still around if you are doing a country album you are not going to get anywhere close because you are going to want the steel out front a lot. I could probably get ten tracks overdubed for you for around $200 I just dont think you are going to get anything usable other than the real thing


    Jeff

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