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Every single top guitarist in the world will tell you this. The slightly uncomfortable truth is that the very best tone comes from inside you, and it’s a complicated mash-up of physical and mental factors – your gear is but the collective conduit.
The best advice we’ve ever had – given to us by everyone from Seasick Steve to Robben Ford to Peter Green to Steve Vai and more – is to spend your practice time practising, but when it comes to the gig or the recording, put all that to the back of your mind and commit yourself only to the music and the moment.
The previous 49 steps will help you discover what works and what doesn’t along the way, and if you explore all of them, we absolutely guarantee you will sound better.
For a lucky few, it will transcend exploration. The learning and experience becomes second nature and instinct, and at that point you have no option but to sound like yourself. If and when that comes, it’ll be the best tone you’ve ever known. Not just better, but best.