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LLoyd Spiegel

Lloyd-Spiegel

Tell us about the two new Cole Clark signature guitars (FL2-LS1/FL2-LS2) that you perform with and are now in production?
The idea came about because Cole Clark have always been about hard-working musicians. They wanted to do a signature model, but slapping a rock star’s name on a scratch plate isn’t their style. At the same time, I had added a second output to my stage guitar and it was getting a lot of attention from fans. An acoustic and electric output in the same guitar isn’t a new idea, but to have it come as factory standard seemed a great idea and because I represent those hard working musicians that Cole Clark are making guitars for it all fell together.”

You’ve long had a relationship with the Cole Clark crew. What’s the process like of creating a signature model?
At first I started brainstorming all kinds of things. I was like a kid in a candy shop. But ultimately I wanted to design a guitar for real musicians and that meant keeping it affordable, too. First I decided on a timber combination that best represented the sound I wanted and then thought about how it should look. Luckily, my stage guitar was already visually different to other Cole Clarks. That was just because I have a long standing relationship with the company and wanted something a little special.
The pickups were decided long ago. The Cole Clark 3-way pickup is the best in the world in my opinion and I had been using the misi-duo sound hole magnetic for a while for the dirty amp sound. It was just a matter of putting them through.

What things do you look for in a guitar that you make sure are featured in your signature models?
Plugged in sound is the most important thing to me. I rarely play unplugged and on stage I want a guitar that will respond to emotion. That sounds odd, but when I attack it I want it to scream and when I play softly I want it to sing. It’s about having as close to a natural sound through a PA as possible. That’s why the timber combo and the pickup are so important to me and those two things were the focus of these guitars.

How’s the Cole Clark crew six weeks on from that dreadful fire?
The factory is being fixed as we speak and will be better than ever but the crew are still on leave. However most of them have come in asking if they can help with the clean up, which was great to see. They’re keen to get working again and it’ll be business as usual before you know it. It’s been hard to see all the damage after being with the company for 10 years but Cole Clark is a world wide brand that Australia can be proud of and the fire, while devastating, won’t stop them.

You’re performing again with WA percussionist, Arun. What do you feel he brings to your music?
Arun’s work on the Tangled Brew CD and with me on the road for those two years makes his influence a central part of my music whether he is there or not. He helped create my sound and continues to do so. He’s an absolute gentleman of the business and has his heart firmly placed in making music. It’s rare to perform with him now but such a great joy. Also, his mother is the best cook I have ever met… that helps.

What are your plans looking into 2014?
I’m headed to America, Europe and Japan in 2014. I’m also planning a new duo CD with drummer Tim Burnham and a solo live double album later in the year. That sounds busy, but I am actually slowing down. I’m keen on playing quality gigs instead of working myself to the bone in the hope it makes time for writing. The follow up to Tangled Brew has taken three years already because I was touring too hard to think.

_ BOB GORDON

 

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