Saturday, October 6, 2012

Review and Demo : Rogue AE-3 Lap Steel Basics

For $99 from Musicians Friend you can't really complain about this little wonder! The Rogue AE-3 Lap Steel is a great buy for experimenting with the lap steel / pedal steel sound.

Below are two songs I recorded using the Rogue, see what you think. The Lap Steel was routed through an effects rack to a Fender Pro Jr amp, mic'd with an SM57. From there the mic was run into a Universal Audio 2-610 pre-amp, then to a Emperical Labs Distressor and finally an Apogee Rosetta 800 / RME 9652. My recording program of choice is Sonar, now into version X2. I'm still very happy with version X1 and this recording was most likely done in version 6. 

I'll post tracking and mixing screen shots of the sessions soon. If I have time I'll also print these projects as stems for anyone who wants to dig deeper into them and hear the tracks in isolation. 

You'll note that I've tuned the Lap Steel to Open G, which allows for the strumming of a few major chords across all strings when using a slide. Referring to my favorite chords/scale website Guitar Chords Magic you can see that the Dmaj chord below is comprised of the notes D, F# and A which are all played while barred with the slide across the 7th fret. I can play the Cmaj chord while playing the 5th fret, and I can play the Gmaj chord on the 12th fret.

The minor chords in the scale of Gmaj require moving the slide down one fret on the note that is the third in the chord. I don't know that people really strum a pedal steel, so this is good starting place to practice small moves between the major and minor chords.

You can see how to play more chords in Open G tuning here at 

Using my other favorite website, Bob Craypoe's Dr. Psychotic, here's what chords in the key of Gmaj look like in Standard Tuning, say on my Telecaster (pictured above). 

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