BACK IN THE RACK:
THE RETURN OF
LEE JACKSON’S GP-1000
Yes, and I’m really excited about the new
GP-1000, it will be everything the original
one was, and it will have a couple of new features that will make it have a wider appeal.
I’m going to make it in a pedal form. It can
also be used in a rack, or on a tabletop. It
isn’t going to be small because it has all the
original circuitry plus more. I added a clean
channel now, so you can switch between
clean and distorted. Also on the hot channel,
the overdrive is footswitchable, and I have
made the Master outputs footswitchable,
so you can select multiple amps. Like the
early Metaltronix stuff, this pedal looks awesome—there is a custom heat sink that goes
along the top of the pedal for tube cooling.
The GP-1000II uses three 12AX7s running
at 400 volts. This pedal is on fire, and will
make everyone that has been looking for a
GP-1000 very happy. The prototype pieces
have been showing up all this month, and I
will have production ready units soon. Check
my website for updates on release times.
What are your thoughts about the very
persistent misperceptions that Metaltronix
gear and GP-1000 preamps are high-gain
The Metaltronix storefront in Reseda, CA.
Photo courtesy of Lee Jackson.
I know with the name like Metaltronix, you’d
think we are only good for metal. Well, we
are a full-spectrum company. The ‘80s were
famous for metal, so the name was a great fit. I
designed and built gear for every playing style
and band from Kenny Loggins to Megadeth.
One thing I have discovered is if you design
a great piece of gear, it can be used for any
style. I give you an example: Buzzy Feiten was
playing for Kenny Loggins and Saturday night
TV shows, and he wanted me to build him a
couple of custom Fender combos. So I got them
all done and they were in our test area where
we made every player test their new amps out
before they took them. I played on them had
them all tweaked in, and I thought they had an
awesome sound. Buzzy shows up with his guitar,
plugs in, plays for a couple minutes re-tweaks all
the knobs, sets them in a way I wouldn’t have,
plays a little more… I’m starting to get nervous
because it’s sounding weird to me, he stops,
looks up at me and says, “These are the most
awesome amps I have ever played.” The bottom
line is if your design is versatile enough to cover
every playing style, you can’t put a label on it.
What are your thoughts about new popularity of the GP-1000?
The GP-1000 has been strangely popular
through out the years. Allan Holdsworth and
Scott Henderson kept it alive during the heavy,
over-the-top grunge period, using it for its
purity of tone, which is obvious when you hear
them playing them. Then you have great players like Alexi Laiho, who has been using the
GP-1000 as a distortion pedal, plugging it into
the front end of his amps and getting a great
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