terça-feira, 26 de maio de 2015

Kramer Classic vs Special

How's that Classic compare to the Special? Better or worse?

Well, the only thing left original on the Classic is the neck, body and tuners…
They don't really compare, the old one sounds better, but the Classic is
decen't after all the upgrades.
I also much prefer the Special's neck, the Classic have more s
houlders, more "D" shaped, while the Special have a rounder "C" shape.
Also the Classic have a 43mm nut width, the Special is more like 41mm, it's neck is pretty similar to the old EBMM EVH neck really.
 I love the look of the Classic, but I can't get an honest review of if it's a bad guitar (Squire anything), okay guitar (think MIM Strat), a good guitar (Focus 6k / etc), or a great guitar (Gibson Les Paul, Charvel Model 6, etc). Everyone heaps praise upon it, but they say it's "good". Is it "good" or "good for $200"
 I wouldn't call it great, it came with crappy pots and wiring, questionable pickups and some soft-metal floyd, but after throwing lots of money at it it became a nice player. I would put it in the "okay" category.

segunda-feira, 25 de maio de 2015

João Cardoso - Blend Of Scenes

Written and composed some time ago
Somewhat recorded, mixed and mastered between June and October 2014, in the "Lab", somewhere in
Sintra, Portugal
released 2 January 2015

All instruments,
vst´s , arrangements, producing, Mixing , Mastering and Graphic Design by: Me Myself and I
released 02 January 2015

Something seen by a viewer; a view or 
prospect.To combine or mix so that the constituent parts are indistinguishable from one another:
The place where an action or event occurs. in which the action of a play, movie, novel, or other narrative occurs; a setting to combine (varieties or grades) to obtain a mixture of a particular character, quality, or consistency

A subdivision of an act in a dramatic presentation in which the setting is fixed and the time continuous to form a uniform mixture, become merged into one; unite, and create a harmonious effect or result
A shot or series of shots in a movie constituting a unit of continuous related action, a real or fictitious episode, especially when described.
Something, such as an effect or a product, that is created by blending

Life´s a theater stage
The act of blending

domingo, 17 de maio de 2015

Crazy Jam 02/08/2014

Um ensaio/jam feito em 02/08/2014

João Cardoso - Guitarra
Thierry Rodrigues - Bateria
Gonçalo Nunes - Baixo

Chords For Scales

Chords For Scales


 In this lesson we're going to take a look at how we match chords to scales, to give you an instant boost when writing songs or solos, and help you pick out musical sounding progressions.

One question that surfaces a lot is something along the lines of "I am using a scale of D Major, how do I know what chords I can use with that?". Before we delve into that, its worth reading my lesson on degrees of the scale
here, as we will be using concepts from that lesson.

So, what chords can I use?

If you are after a quick fix, then here you go ... for our example above, D Major, the standard musical theory answer might be:

D, Em7 F#m7, Gmaj7, A7, Bmin, C#dim

For the key of C, you would use:

C, Dm7, Em7, Fmaj7, G7, Am, Bdim

If you want a general rule based on degrees of the scale, it is as follows:

I, IIm7, IIIm7, IVmaj7, V7, VIm, VIIdim

Easy huh? But why is it that way? This is where the interesting stuff starts

Why Those Chords?

Glad you asked ... what at first might seem an arbitrary and mysterious list of chords that work with a particular key, is in fact very simply understood when you couple an understanding of the notes in a scale with a few basic chord construction rules.

What we are doing, is building a series of chords out of notes taken only from the scale that we are interested in. When you think about it that makes a lot of sense, it means that not only are we selecting all of our melody notes from the scale, but the notes making up the chords are also selected from that same scale. Now, since we need a root note for each chord, we can make one chord for each note in the scale. A standard major scale for instance as we showed above has 7 distinct notes in it, hence we can find 7 chords that match that scale.

So, our basic rule is that we take each root note in turn and figure out what chords we can make from it. From here on we'll stick with the scale of C for illustration purposes, but nothing I say is specific to that key unless I name notes. If you think about the function of each of the notes in the context of the scale you are using you can use the same rules to construct chords for any scale you can think of.

Chords For a C Major Scale

OK, so the scale of C major has the following notes:


What chords can we make from that? What is a chord anyway? Well lets start simply and talk about triads. You can learn about triads in my lesson
here. A triad is composed of 3 notes, most often a root, 3rd and 5th. The relationship of the intervals controls whether the triad is major, minor, augmented or diminished.

Lets take a moment to review the degrees of the scale that make various different types of chord:

Major : 1,3,5
Minor : 1,b3,5
Diminished : 1,b3,dim5
Augmented : 1,3,aug5
Minor 7th : 1,b3,5,b7
Major 7th : 1,3,5,7
Dominant 7th : 1,3,5,b7
Sixth : 1,3,5,6
Minor 9 : 1,b3,5,b7,9
Minor 11 : 1,b3,5,b7,9,11
Minor 13 : 1,b3,5,b7,9,11,13

Back to the Scale

To make our triads, we will start at the root note for the chord we are looking at, skip a note, take a note, skip a note, and take a note. That means we will be building a triad based on the root 3rd and 5th, starting from whatever your root note was. The interesting thing here is that as you move up the scale in selecting your root notes, the intervals between the notes shift, according to the formula for the scale (T T S T T T S for a major scale), this has the effect of changing the type of the triads we construct as the relationships between the notes shift slightly. Lets look at the complete list for the key of C:

Starting with C:


Picking our 3 notes, we get C,E and G. The interval between C and E is a Major 3rd, C to G is a Perfect 5th. Our triad training tells us that a triad with a major 3rd and a perfect 5th is a major triad. Since our root note is C, our first chord is C major.

Next, D:


Our 3 notes from the scale would be D, F and A. D to F is a minor 3rd, D to A is a major 5th. Minor 3rd + Major 5th = a Minor triad, so D minor is our second chord.

The story is the same with E - E,G and B - Minor 3rd, Perfect 5th, so the chord is Em.


F and G are both Major 3rd + Perfect 5th, hence are major.



A is back to a minor 3rd and perfect 5th, so we get A minor.


Finally B. Our notes are B, D and F. B to D is a minor 3rd, and B to F is a a diminished 5th - that relationship of notes makes our triad D diminished.


So, in triad terms, our chords for the scale of C are:


Easy huh?

But That's Not Right!

You said that the 2nd chord was Dm7 not Dm, and all of the other chords are wrong too what's going on? ... well spotted! This is where it gets really interesting. What we have described above is the simplest view of chords we can use to match a particular major scale. A triad is a simple as chords generally get (ignoring power chords), and from the basis above, we can add notes to the basic triads to get more complex chords. The only rule is that we must pick notes from the scale we are using, and when we realize this, the possibilities are literally endless!

Lets revisit that first list I gave you:

C, Dm7, Em7, Fmaj7, G7, Am, Bdim

This selection of chords is quite commonly given as the list of chords for the C major scale - but its not the list, its just a list, we've already seen another slightly different list above. One important thing to note is that although the chords are different, their basic triad families will always remain the same - the 2nd will always be minor, the 7th will always be diminished, the 4th will always be major and so on - that comes out of our basic triad construction, but the flavour of the chords can be altered by adding notes.

Now, what we have done in the list above is add notes to a few of the chords, to get more complex and flavorful chords. In the examples above, we have added a 7th to D, E, F and G. To add a 7th, we just skip an extra note above the 5th and add the next note.

So for D:


We add a minor 7th, to get the chord Dm7.

For E:


Again we add a minor 7th to get the chord Em7

For F:


We are adding a major 7th, to get the chord FMaj7

Finally for G:


We are adding a minor 7th, which when combined with our major 3rd gives us a a dominant 7th chord.

Now we're just getting started - how about instead of a C major we use a C major 7th? Or a C6? Instead of a D Minor we can use a Dmin9, or even a Dmin11 or Dmin13 - they all fit our scale and stick to our rules! Using this technique we can fit hundreds of different chords to our scale - but equally we can keep it simple and stick with the basic triads.

Minor Scales

Ok, how about minor scales? Well not surprisingly, the rules are exactly the same - stick to the notes in the scale, and move through the scale to generate your root notes.

Lets look at a scale of A minor - I picked that for a reason, we'll see why in a minute.

Our notes for the scale of A natural minor are:


Lets kick off with A:


A minor ...

Now B:


B diminished ...

This is starting to look a little familiar ... well yes, I picked Am because it is the relative minor of C, meaning it shares the same notes.
This means that among other things, we will end up with exactly the same list of chords, just offset in order. If you work it through, you will find that the order of chords would be:

Im, IIdim, III, IVm7, Vm7, VImaj7, VII7

The order of chord types is the same, we just start at the 6th in the list and work through - why is this?

Scales Chords and Modes

(You can skip this if you are unsure about modes)

The answer lies in modes! The relative minor of a major key is actually the Aeolian mode - which is mode 6. So although we are using exactly the same notes, we offset the root note by 6 degrees, going from C to A. This also has the effect of offsetting the characteristic chords for each degree by 6 steps as we have seen. Modes also relate to the concept of chords for a scale in that the characteristic chords we have seen for each degree of the scale can also be regarded as characteristic chords for the modes for that degree.

For example, you may have read that the characteristic chord of Dorian mode is the Minor 7th. Using the scale of C, we move up 1 degree to get D Dorian. Also, using the scale of C and stepping up to the chord we identified as being the chord of the second degree, we see it is Dm7 - it matches the chord type for Dorian! This of course is no coincidence, it just reflects the fact that when we are constructing chords for a scale in the way we described, since we have offset the root note we are actually in each case constructing a chord for the specific mode that is the degree of the scale we are working with. Another couple of examples:

The characteristic chord for Mixolydian is a dominant 7th. Mixolydian is the 5th mode. Checking our list we find that the 5th chord is indeed a dominant 7th.

The characteristic chord for Locrian is diminished. Locrian is the 7th mode, and checking the list we find that the 7th chord is diminished, so we can now say that we understand why each mode has its own characteristic chord type!

Other Scales

We can apply the same rules to any scale - depending on the scale it can become harder to figure out valid chords but it is possible. Lets look at the harmonic minor as another example. The harmonic minor scale is characterized by the following intervals:


Or in formula terms:

T S T T S T+1/2 S

We'll work in A, so the notes would be:


Now that tone and a half step between the 6th and 7th degrees is going to change the chords we are able to use against this scale - lets see how it works out. The first 2 chords will be identical to the natural minor scale, Am and Bdim. When we hit the 3rd root note, C, we are faced with these notes:

A B C D E F G# A B C D E F G# A

A major 3rd and an augmented 5th is an augmented chord.

Looking at D:

A B C D E F G# A B C D E F G# A

A minor 3rd and a perfect 5th gives is a regular minor chord.

Moving to E:

A B C D E F G# A B C D E F G# A

A major 3rd and a perfect 5th making a major chord.

Next, F:

A B C D E F G# A B C D E F G# A

Another major 3rd and perfect 5th making a major.

And finally G#:

A B C D E F G# A B C D E F G# A

A minor 3rd and a diminished 5th making, as we know, a diminished chord.

So our sequence for A harmonic minor is:

Am, Bdim, Caug, Dmin, E, F,G#dim

Or in generic terms for the harmonic minor scale:

Im, IIdim, IIIaug, IVmin, V, VI, VIIdim

By now I hope you see where we are going with this, and the next time you encounter a strange scale, with a little work you should be able to come up with a list of chords to fit it!


Now that we have the chords for the scale, what shall we do with them? Lets build some progressions! Progressions are the building blocks of western music. There are very many combinations, but a few are so effective that they crop up time and again. I'll list a few here for you to try out, it is also possible to buy books that list endless chord progressions as an aid to songwriting.

A lot of progressions start on the root or I, and involve the 5th or often the 4th, as in:


The 12 bar blues puts this together in a standard combination to get:


A lot of "doo wop" groups in the 50s added the 6th to get the standard sequence:

I, VIm, IIm, V


I, VIm, IV, V

Various pop songs use a I, IIIm, IV, V progression such as "True Love Ways" to mention Buddy Holly again, and "Take my Breath Away" by Berlin.

Im, III, IV is used to good effect by Dire Straits in "Money for Nothing"

A few notable songs like "Peggy Sue" by Buddy Holly and "It won't be long" by the Beatles use a flattened 6th as in:

bVI, I, bVI, I.

But the flat 6th isn't in the major scale, so what is going on here? I'm glad you asked, because we've just uncovered a very important point related to song writing.

Scales for Chords - An Alternative View

Although the techniques we have discussed above are a very powerful way of picking chords to match a scale, a word of caution ...
I tend to think that the initial question "what chords can I use for a scale?" actually misses the point slightly. If everyone who ever wrote a song asked the same question, some of the greatest songs in history would never have been written. The reason for this is that many songs don't stick to a specific scale, even between subsequent chords. Imagine a chord sequence that goes C, Ab, C, Ab - (using the flattened 6th as mentioned above) - a very powerful sounding riff, but those chords do not fit well into any usual scale. If you play the first chord, C, then say, "OK, I'm in the key of C major, what can I use next?" - Ab definitely wouldn't figure. So I am a fan of picking the chords first, then figuring out scales that work over them. In the case I gave, you would probably change scales from C major to Ab major and back, using the appropriate scale for each chord. With a little thought, you might be able to find a couple of scales and modes that would minimize the changes, but the point is that whilst fitting chords to a scale is a useful thing to know how to do, I would suggest that you think more in terms of what chords sound good together when writing riffs and solos.

sábado, 16 de maio de 2015

VST Type Controller Cubase

Estou usando um vst no cubase, neste caso um para o baixo syth, mas ja aconteceu com muitos outros e cada vez que começo de novo a musica do principio, todos os settings que eu tinha desapareceram.

Voce esta pegando um midi pronto que vc exportou
 Ele lê os
settings que estão no midi, não os que você configurou no VST, por isso se vc mudar algo, ele volta pro padrão assim que ele le a primeira nota midi
Provavelmente tem comandos
midi escritos no início do arquivo, e quando você reinicia eles são lidos pelo programa, e dependendo da informação podem mudar algum configuração manual que você fez no vst.

checar isso, abra o editor em lista ,midi/open list editor/ Vá no início do arquivo e veja os comandos que tem escritos por lá. Se for o caso vc pode apagar o que achar necessário. É naquela barra pequena no intevalo vermelha ou azul

Só não dá se a pista estiver "trancada". Nesse caso o programa não permite que se mude nada (para evitar alterar por engano). Para conferir se está trancada basta olhar no inspector da pista (ou nas bordas dos
clips da própria pista). Se o símbolo de cadeado estiver fechado e ativo, a traca está em uso. Aí é só clicar nele para liberar a edição.

Maior poupança de CPU com o Cubase

Maior poupança de CPU (no Cubase/Nuendo) é seleccionar a pista onde está o som a processar, click com o botão direito, escolher a opção "plugins", escolher o plugin desejado, carregar em "Preview" e ajustar os parâmetros conforme pretendido e no fim, carregar em "Process".

Assim o efeito fica aplicado na própria onda sem usar recursos de processador ou memória e é sempre reversível.

Para reverter ou alterar o efeito assim aplicado basta:
. seleccionar a pista ou "
wave" pretendida
. clicar com o botão direito do rato
. seleccionar a opção "
. seleccionar a opção "
Offline Process History" e escolher alterar ou remover os efeitos assim aplicados.
Podem ser aplicados vários efeitos sobre a onda e podem ser alterados ou removidos por qualquer ordem.

Também tem a vantagem de que numa mesma pista que contenha vários fragmentos de 
audio se podem aplicar efeitos só em determinados fragmentos ou mesmo só em pequenas secções.
Por exemplo, comprimir uma única sílaba muito forte numa gravação de voz.

Tudo isto sem usar qualquer recurso de CPU ou RAM.

João Cardoso - Even If Nobody Hears

"Every passing day there is a new band or artist promoting themselves online. We are bombarded with songs that we do not even listen to the end, due to so much available supply. With technologies nowadays anyone can self consider a musician, there are more musicians than listeners.
Since the download became a common thing, there is no more value for the artistic creativity of each one. So for those who play is another one in the middle of millions, who see it as a stumbling block.

Make music you have fun making, that you like to listen to and most importantly makes you think " yeah! I'm awesome" Who cares what other people think, I don't know, but I don't think you picked up a guitar for the first time and got into the hobby for them.
It’s freedom to express facts or situations that happened or not or even only makes part of the imaginary.
Anyway… music is for me or to the listener? I Don’t care if you listen, someone will identify with it"

This is like the second part of the first album which as been written almost at the same time.
Written and composed between 2010 to 2013.
Recorded, mixed and Mastered between August and December 2013, in my
homestudio, somewhere in Sintra, Portugal
released 21 January 2014

João Cardoso - all instruments, vst´s , arrangements, producing, Mixing , Mastering and Graphic Design

George Lynch - A-Z Of Great Riffs

sexta-feira, 15 de maio de 2015

Playing Guitar Instrumentals: Worth it?

It depends. Most people love the sound of classical or flamenco guitar. Things like Steve Vai or Satch or that kind of instrumental stuff most people just hear as one long guitar solo, which is boring.

Do you play guitar because you like it or because you want other people to like it?

You have to ask yourself who you're writing your music for. If you are writing complex instrumental guitar pieces in order to receive recognition and praise from a wide audience, it would seem you've already found the disappointment that expectation leads to.

Musicians in general have two inherent traits: an ego, and a lack of confidence in their work. The ego may be strong and apparent, to hide the lack of confidence, but the lack of confidence leads to a desperate need of approval to feed the ego. It always goes back to the ego.

So, musicians will rarely care about your long, complicated guitar instrumentals because they tend to be more concerned with their own long, complicated guitar instrumentals. And everyone else who isn't an active musician, doesn't care about your long, complicated guitar instrumentals, because they want to hear lyrics, vocals, a clear and defined melody, a chorus, repetition, and familiarity.

You're working in a very specific area, with a very specific crowd. But I can tell you this: no matter what you write, no matter what you play, someone somewhere is going to be a fan of it.

Also it has taken me a while to come to the realisation that the primary motivator should be that you are doing it for yourself, never expect anything from it. Some people are just difficult for any number of reasons (the critics). Really being a muso is just creating sounds in an organised way that means something to the composer. There is no right or wrong only the limitations of culture. you could write and record something and people now could call it drivel until someone hears it down the line and they call it a work of genius. both are neither rigt or wrong.

I've been a (somewhat) dedicated guitar player for 20 years and even I don't want to listen to 'guitar music' You'll always be able to get guitar players to critique your playing and composition, if you want to appeal to a wider audience you're gonna have to give 'em something more musical, that they can relate to.

Music is mostly about relatability (and I mean, feeling you can relate to the actual music, I'm not talking lyrics here) and most people just can't relate to four minutes of guitar playing, because as far as they're concerned, that's just four minutes of some bloke playing the guitar, it's more likely than not that they can't even relate to the voice of the instrument at all, as it just seems to them to be a singular element.

Many times I've been practicing and different people have basically said "I don't know anything about guitar so I don't know if that's good or not" With stuff like Vai-style guitar music, asking your everyday person to listen to it, is like asking them to watch classical russian drama, and then asking them how they felt about all the sub-context.

Make music you have fun making, that you like to listen to and most importantly makes you think "Hell yeah! I'm awesome" Who cares what other people think, I don't know, but I don't think you picked up a guitar for the first time and got into the hobby for them.

The problem with a lot of instrumental music is that the average listener identifies with the sound of a voice leading the melody. That's a start. The other problem is that most instrumental music at the amateur level is just a reason to wank off over a chord progression, with no regard to melody or structure.
Yeah, this is why no one should try to copy other people's styles. What's the point of listening to your music if it's just a poor man's version of someone else's music/style. You don't even necessarily need to be as good as Satriani or Vai or whatever if your music is interesting in other ways.

Guitar instrumentals in general often seem to be too much about playing leads and everything else is more or less half assed. Even if you happen to be a guitarist, make everything in the song good. Don't just make a backing track and a guitar solo. Put equal effort into the drums, bass, piano, overall song structure, etc

the truth is nobody cares how fast you can sweep, how many fingers you use when you tap, how fast you can play that tricky legato lick. even with the more melodic players in that style of music, its very hard and boring to listen to it with the constant wanking and show off (think of michael angelo batio using a 4 neck guitar).

There's one thing I always noticed before becoming a musician/guitarist myself. Example. Typically, guitar solos in general - especially really fast ones...they sound bland to the average listener, like a cluster of random notes. There's too many notes, too much going on to pick up and too fast to really comprehend the music. You can have some amazing melody in there but what good is it if people can't hear it?
I noticed when starting to transcribe pieces, one of the first ones I did was some 140bpm metal song (which isn't even that fast right). There was this double lead part accompanied by orchestra and synth. The whole part was in 16ths for a good 32 bars and on top of this there was screaming vocals. Not until slowing it down to about 40bpm could I hear how beautiful the melodies were and how everything worked together. I couldn't help but think that the melody was "wasted" by being played too fast.
My point here is that complex instrumentals often times can't be appreciated by non-musicians. You might have been in a situation where you had a friend listen to one of your favorite songs and they just said "This is just noise...even I could play this". Obviously they have no idea what they're talking about but they do have a valid point that to them - it really is just noise - and this is true for a ton of complex compositions. You want to write music that everyone can appreciate, it has to be on an appropriate level.

If there is no distinction in what the melody is or what the "solo" parts are in an instrumental piece, no one will want to listen to it. That's why guys like Satriani, Vai, and Gilbert are well-known and admired. In their instrumental works, they have a distinctive meoldy (think Surfin' With the Alien) as well as a seperate and distinctive guitar solo. Being able to have that seperation allows the casual listener to actually enjoy the song. For example, my one neighbor isn't a musician, and he admires Joe Satriani's guitar work and how he's able to have a melodic line along with a solo.

Shred makes me laugh because a) its not technically virtuosic and b) has little composition interest. In other words it sucks because fails at what its purports to showcase.

I don't recall a shredder with decent technique for a long while. Granted, most can alternate pick and sweep but that's it but they don't usually have anything else to their technique. I doubt 99.9% could fingerpick, do a jazz chord solo, or a flamenco.

I have to admit, rather embarrassingly that I was a "shredder" some years ago. It always made me unhappy because I never was where I wanted to be. However I finally realised I needed to unlearn shred, and its taken me a while to unlearn my shredding, and slowly start afresh. Thankfully I am much happier now playing music.

Honestly when it comes down to it, for any kind of art.. be it music, or anything else... you should be doing what you do for you. Do what you love, and love what you do... and if nobody else gets it... then screw them. That doesn't mean you shouldn't want others to like it.. of course everybody wants to be heard and appreciated by others... but ultimately you're art is an expression of what is inside of you... not necessarily what others want to hear. The people who do like what you do will appreciate it... you can't worry about everybody else.


quinta-feira, 14 de maio de 2015

Crazy Jam 03/11/2014

Um ensaio/jam feito em 03/11/2014

Paul Dias - Voz & Guitarra
João Cardoso - Guitarra
Thierry Rodrigues - Bateria
Pedro Duarte - Baixo

quarta-feira, 13 de maio de 2015

Basswood body on guitar , sucks?

First of all,the type of wood affects the tone of a guitar or bass,along with many other factors,like bridge,pickups,amp etc.Scotty Groove may say it doesn't,but ask any professional luthier and he/she will tell you otherwise.If the material wouldn't affect the tone,they could just slap some pickups on a plastic board and make a guitar/bass out of it and trust me,it's not that they didn't tried it over the last decades.The only company I know, that makes good sounding guitars,with a synthetic material is Aristides guitars,from The Netherlands.They use a material called ''Arium'' which is a super expensive mix of carbon,glas-fibres and other stuff.I've tried out one of their 6,000 euros superstrats and it sounded like my modded with S.Duncans,old Yamaha Pacifica,that I got for 200 Euros.That's why the big manufacturers stick with wood,maybe in the future,somebody will invent a cheap,good sounding,synthetic material that can replace tonewood.
Second,saying that basswood ''sucks'' it's like saying alder,mahagony,ash,koa or any other tonewood ''sucks''.Some musicians prefer it,like the ones I mentioned,some others don't.Like I said,I like mahagony more,put that's just personal preference.I hardly doubt,on the other hand, that guys like Satriani,EVH or even Guthrie Govan(his new Charvel sign. model has a basswood body) are ''tonedeaf''.Also John Suhr,likes basswood and makes some super expensive boutique guitars out of it,but hey what the hell does he know,right?It's more cheap then other tonewoods,because the damn tree,grows everywhere unlike mahagony,swamp ash or koa,who are tropical trees.There are also different quality grades of basswood,just like with the other woods.I highly doubt though that this one here is made out of the low grade quality basswood,they use on the cheapo chinese guitars.

Eddie used basswood for as he puts it for "tone with a maple cap to give it bite " This configuration was used with Peavey "
Joe Satriani is using guitars with basswood bodies for nearly 30 years,John Petrucci's MusicMan JP & Majesty models are also made of basswood,because it's extremely light weight and has a ''neutral'' tone in between mahagony & alder..

 I remember an interview with Angel Vivaldi,he also uses basswood guitars,where he explainend why he likes that particular tonewood.He said,it has a ''neutral'' tone,unlike the ''bright'' tone of Alder, which is great when you play with lots of gain & various effects.Personally,I prefer mahagony guitars,because I like their ''chunky'' tone but if even somebody like Petrucci has basswood in his super high-tech MusicMan guitars,it can't be that bad.