Micah Ortega

I’m a sound nerd. I’m not a gear head though. I just like things to sound good. I also play guitar in the band Five Iron Frenzy.

9 Comments

  1. Hey Micah! I would love to know your setup , (what kind of pickups you use, pedals gear). I have an ltd viper that i play through a crate v33 amphead with an air norton pickup in the neck and an alternate eight in the bridge so i can get some crazy tone when i down tune to drop b or c. Next time i wont use 2 pickups with such strong magnets, cause it does some weird stuff sometimes. my rig isnt the greatest but it gets the job done for me, but im always looking to expand my knowledge of sound. Love your tone!

    Reply
    1
    • Wow. Didn’t realize our website had a place to contact us directly. So 3 years ago I was playing an Epiphany SG with these pickups http://www.seymourduncan.com/pickup/slash-set. I was going into an Eleven rack with a custom tone that I came up with after many trials. Basically it was a emulation of a marshall JCM800 being fed by a tube screamer pedal. These days I’m playing a Jackson Dinky with stock pickups. I’m going into a Sansamp GT2 with Boss noise suppressor. I’m into low output pickups these days. The reason being is that the hotter the pickup is the sooner the signal/sound of the guitar will break up in the signal chain. If I like the sound of the guitar I want to preserve that sound for as long as possible in the signal chain. Bottom line is there are so many gain stages that happen in a guitars signal chain that there are plenty of places for distortion to be added. It seems like, to my ear, the later you can put the distortion in the chain the better/clearer it will sound from a tone stand point. The last bit that I”m doing that I think is critical is rolling off the tone knob on the guitar. Start with the tone knob all the way down. Then bring it back up slightly, as much as you need to to get the attack you want. Problem with guitar is it’s usually so attacky with the tone knob all the way up you end up spending all your time trying to smooth it out with distortion and effects. If you can smooth it out on the guitar with the tone knob and then add your clarity with the treble knobs on your pedals or amps it seems like it sits in the mix much better. The best thing you can do is put your amp up with a microphone in front of it going through a PA. Then listen to what the microphone is picking up in the PA and roll off the tone knob on your guitar. It will start sounding warmer and less harsh on the ears which means you can crank it up louder in the mix with out just sounding annoying. Think of that tone knob as an attack knob when it’s all the way up, and a tone knob when it’s all the way down. For a good tone you need a good combination of both tone and attack. Hope that helps.

      Reply
      1
      • Correction: Epiphany = Epiphone

        Reply
        1
  2. Hey Micah! I would love to know your setup , (what kind of pickups you use, pedals gear). I have an ltd viper that i play through a crate v33 amphead with an air norton pickup in the neck and an alternate eight in the bridge so i can get some crazy tone when i down tune to drop b or c. Next time i wont use 2 pickups with such strong magnets, cause it does some weird stuff sometimes. my rig isnt the greatest but it gets the job done for me, but im always looking to expand my knowledge of sound. Love your tone!

    Reply
    2
  3. When my son’s mother and I were trying to work out the name of our eldest child we were working through many, many names. I started listing some crazy names and then went through the members of my ultimate all time favourite band. Rushing through them all they all received a negative response. At the end of the list though I returned to one name and said that I really, really liked it.

    Micah was born in 2002. Doesn’t play guitar. Yet.

    Reply
    3
    • That’s awesome. Thanks so much for that honor!

      Reply
      3
  4. When my son’s mother and I were trying to work out the name of our eldest child we were working through many, many names. I started listing some crazy names and then went through the members of my ultimate all time favourite band. Rushing through them all they all received a negative response. At the end of the list though I returned to one name and said that I really, really liked it.

    Micah was born in 2002. Doesn’t play guitar. Yet.

    Reply
    4
  5. Hey Micah, it’s me, Micah! I came to a Five Iron show in 2014, but sadly you were not there. I did however get to meet the rest of the band! Just wanted to let you know that I was named after you/the minor prophet. I can’t wait to come to another show!

    Reply
    5
  6. Your writing for guitar is very unique. Using single note and octave harmony to create a canvas that the horns can shine over has inspired me. Not only did you clean up the mud, but you made two new melodies. What inspired you?

    Reply
    6

Leave a Reply

Pin It on Pinterest