Delay TonePrint by Steve Morse

Steve has a unique and very cool way of using his delay. He basically uses two stacks, one for his dry sounds and one for his delay sounds and he sets the mix between them using a volume pedal on the delay stack. Because of this, he kept things pretty straightforward for his TonePrint. There's no tap-tempo, just one delay time, a tiny bit of modulation and all knobs can be set at 12 o'clock for Steve's standard delay sound. With the Delay Time knob all the way down, the delay is so short it actually functions as a chorus too, which is exactly how Steve uses his second Flashback Delay pedal.


Sound examples by Soren Andersen

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Steve Morse creating TonePrints for Flashback Delay & Loooper

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TC: Who inspired you over the years when you were creating your own personal guitar tone? Steve: All the guitar Gods, like Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Hendrix, Clapton, Jim McCarty. I felt like I needed a single coil sound and a humbucking sound, for different things. As a result, my guitars always have both types of pickups.

TC: What are the main ingredients in your tone in terms of effects (e.g. chorus, flanger, delay, etc.)? Steve: Actually, the main ingredient is the shortest path to the amplifier from the guitar. All my effects are fed from the preamp out, or the effects send, and never return to the original amp.

TC: Have you ever been so inspired by a tone you created that you ended up writing a tune based on that specific tone? Steve: Yes, many times. For example, the tune I wrote called "Modoc" was written after hearing the beauty of that open tuning with some reverb. The tone I get from my ENGL amp with Deep Purple inspires better rhythm playing than a very thick sound from another amp. The sound of some combinations of my pickups makes me want to play in a certain style, such as my 2nd position (single and humbucking together) brings out chicken picking style right away.

TC: Do you work on developing your tone continuously, or do you feel that you have found a fundamental tone that will last throughout your career? Steve: I always like to try promising new things, but basically have a very usable tone that is versatile. For me, usable versatility is worth a lot more than one killer sound.

TC: What inspired you when you created your TonePrints? Steve: That was me trying to recreate the very best Lexicon delay I ever had, with the added bonus of being able to make it better, by virtue of having more control over the modulation and rolloff.

TC: You had access to a lot of tweakable parameters. Did any new ideas for future tones pop up in the process? Steve: I have asked them to make a delay pedal with some features that I can't find anywhere else, so, yes!

TC: Normally, do you prefer having access to many parameters, or do you like simple pedals with just a few knobs better? Steve: That depends: To experiment with, I like access to everything. To jump onstage and play, I want durable, reliable, easy to access the sounds I like. That could be presets or easy to read knobs.

TC: How come you signed up for creating your own personal TonePrints? Steve: I did it because it was the only way I could get a delay pedal that sounded this way. I have a box of pedals I have bought, and none of them will do exactly like my delay sound.

TC: In your opinion, what is the single coolest thing about TonePrints? Steve: For me, being able to change so many parameters, then have such a small, simple box for live gigs.

TC: Did a specific song or album inspire this specific TonePrint? Steve: No, I've always wanted this, and had a lower fidelity version with an obsolete, old piece of gear.

TC: Does this TonePrint fit into your current sound and gear set-up? Steve: Yes, and that's why I want these pedals in all my live setups, solo, Steve Morse Band, Dregs, Deep Purple..

TC: How did you go about creating this specific TonePrint? Steve: We literally sat in front of a computer, while I played the guitar, listening how each change affected the tone. We had dozens of parameters to change, versus only a few on a typical pedal.

TC: How long did it take before you were satisfied with the result? Steve: About a half hour at the most, and much of that time was me playing the sound to be sure it would work at different delay times.

TC: What type of sound did you set out to achieve with your TonePrint, and did you succeed? Steve: My goal was to have a beautiful, natural, smoothly modulated delay that would add air to anything. In addition, they had already designed a way to configure it easily to 100% wet output, which is the way that I normally use delays, since they are brought up in a separate wet amp.

Read more about Steve Morse

Flashback Triple Delay