Upgraded Blues Jr. Holds its Own

Hi folks,

I know many of you have been following the
"Upgraded Blues Jr." posts on this list with some
interest over the last month or so. As you may
recall I upgraded my Fender Blues Jr. with a new
set of JJ tubes and a 12A100 straight-cone AlNiCo
speaker from Weber VST and I've written that the
swap helped improve the amp's tone -- alot.

Well, I need to brag some more! :-)

Last night I attended an open mic blues jam at the
Lakewood Grill here in town and the host guitar
player (Harry Mitchell) pulled out an original 50's
vintage Fender Tweed Deluxe. He also had a '63
Fender Reverb tank hooked up to it. His guitar
sounded amazing.

Okay, after the first song on my second set, Harry
(who wasn't playing on this set), offered to let me
play through his Deluxe. 'Course I jumped at the
chance! I plugged in my vintage Sure 520SL bullet
and had at it. What a sound! 

Funny thing, though... and maybe I'm nuts... but
after listening to myself through that Holy Grail
rig and then again through my souped-up BJ, I had
to admit that the Blues Jr. with AlNiCo speaker
upgrade really managed to hold its own! Honest to

I mean, the Deluxe sounded a bit smoother than my
BJ, but what got me was that the differences really
weren't all that huge. Both exhibited that lovely
bell-like chime, buttery smooth breakup (the BJ
actually broke up earlier than the Deluxe), both
had plenty of fat blatt-power and raunchy honk when
called upon, and both sounded great to my ears.
Other harp players in the audience agreed that my
BJ had never sounded better.

I was totally amazed and VERY pleased at just how
good the BJ sounded next to the Deluxe. This came
as a total surprise to me.

I just had to share. Good amp tone doesn't always
have to come from a vintage classic, or an
expensive boutique amp. I doubt I'll ever stop
drooling over those sweet amps going up for bid on
Ebay, but now I know that my current rig ain't
missing the mark by very much at all.

Harpin' in Colorado,
- --Ken M.

I may be contributing to the Harp-L disk that
Scorcher is putting together. If so, I'll be
submitting a recording or two of me playing through
my upgraded BJ. Then ya'll can judge for yourselves
how it sounds. 

"When you speak of Walter Horton, the first thing you think of is his tone, that big, fat tone."
- ---Li'l Ronnie Owens

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