In the early ’60s, Eric Clapton needed an amp that would fit in the “boot” of his car. So Jim Marshall made him an amp, a JTM 45 2×12. The rest is history. Now Josh Scott from JHS Pedals has come up with (yet another!) neat video that gives a great overview over this sound and how people have tried to emulate it since. He also answers the age old question, “What Is A Blues Breaker?”
Clapton later went on to record with John Mayall. I remember my father playing me the John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers ‘Beano’ album and telling me to sit, listen and learn. It was pivotal moment in my music education and something I will never forget.
How did Clapton get that sound? He pushed his JTM 45 amp into that ‘break up’ zone, producing an organic guitar sound that went on to become one of guitar music’s defining tones. There are plenty of pedals that try to emulate the Blues Breaker tone, providing players a way of getting the amazing tone Eric coaxed from his guitar in the ’60s.
You can hear many of these boutique pedals in the video below and a couple of Marshall reissue amps as well. The video includes the Marshall 1962 Bluesbreaker 30-watt 2×12 Combo Reissue, Marshall Bluesbreaker Black Box Pedal, Marshall Bluesbreaker II, Analogman King of Tone, JHS Pedals Morning Glory, Wampler Pantheon, Snouse Electric Company Black Box, Robert Keeley 1962, Analogman Prince of Tone, J. Rockett Audio Designs .45 Caliber, ZVex Box of Rock, Lovepedal JTM and a JHS Pedals Charlie Brown
Josh Scott goes on to give a little history and information on them all and I would highly recommend watching the video and hearing for yourself what a Blues Breaker is.