My main axe for a number of years has been my 1994 Gibson ES-175. Although I haven’t used it exclusively it’s a guitar I like to play as it has a certain acoustic quality or bigness that I just can’t get from a solid body especially if I’m playing solo and smaller settings. Chords just sound richer and fuller on these kinds of semi acoustic guitars. Of course the way the guitar is set up has a lot to do with tone also. Although I used flat wound gauge 13 string for a long time I’ve recently started to use 12 round wounds with a wound 3rd string.
Recently I’ve been using either a Fender US Telecaster strung with regular 10s. I replaced the neck pick up with a Seymour Duncan Vintage Stack. Which sounds a little like a single coil but without the hum, or at least not as much. I also have a Fender Tele Custom Shop NOS ’67 which is a real beauty. The neck is huge but it sounds so good that I’ve just had to get used to it and actually I find it really comfortable to play even though I don’t have especially big hands.
Another interesting guitar that I have been using a lot is a Godin Montreal Premiere which is a small single cut away hollow body. It’s a very straight forward guitar that sounds great.
A lot of the time I just plug straight into the amp and maybe use a bit of reverb from whichever amp I happen to be using. I’ve been trying a number of different set ups on the road with Curtis Stigers. My main priority really is to keep it as simple as possible but at the same time have enough of a pallet to draw upon when the need arises.
I usually start with a volumn pedal that I don’t have on the pedalboard. Either an Ernie Ball junior or a Boss FV50 which is nice and light and works perfectly well. From there I use the tuner out to go either to a Boss tu-12 as seen on the pedalboard or a TC Electronics Polytune mini which I like a lot for size and function although the only drawback is that you can’t calibrate it so it’s only reference is 440hz which I found to be a problem when touring Germany as most of the pianos are tuned to 441, 442 and sometimes 443 which definitely means you need a tuner you can calibrate hence the boss which I’ve had for years and years and still seems to work fine even though I’ve dropped it many times.
Next from the output of the vol pedal to a Boss Blues Driver BD2, that has a Robert Keeley mod. This is nice for a bit of overdrive for solos. It also can be used just as a booster.
Then to a Xotic RC Booster which is a great pedal. I use it to slightly color the clean sound and make it a little more middy. I like to use the booster and the Boss together especially for solos.
Then comes a Lovepedal tremolo. Nice and small, very straight forward. One setting.
The Eventide Timefactor is a great pedal even though I haven’t really explored it’s full potential. I’ve been using it on a few songs just to add a bit of space or dimension to my sound
The Wampler Faux Spring Reverb is there just in case the reverb on my amp isn’t working. It gives a great rendition of a spring reverb which I tend to like more that the digital reverbs.
This is all powered by a Cioks DC-8 which works great and is relatively compact. Plus when I was looking a power supply I sent an email directly through the Cioks web page and got an answer right back from Poal Cioks explaining which model would be best for my set up and where I could get one very quickly as I was leaving on tour a few days later. Highly recommended. Oh and plus you can switch the voltage so if you travel it’s a very helpful feature.
Plus all this fits nicely on a pedaltrain junior pedalboard.
(ps I’m not endorsed by anybody, all the gear I use is bought and mostly paid for)