Want to Get Sound Like the Rolling Stones?
The Rolling Stones is one of the most iconic bands of all time. Their swagger, level of fame, talent and influence may have been a reason that made you want to become a musician. With so many hits like "Satisfaction" and "Paint It Black," it's no surprise they're so well-known for their unique sound.
A Unique, Distinct Sound
The mystique of the Rolling Stones is that all of their music is unique. No two tracks sound the same. Some musicians and bands can get to a place where all of their music sounds familiar, but not the Rolling Stones.
We'll take a look at some equipment you can use to replicate the sound from some of the Stones' most famous tracks and albums.
Probably their most famous song, "Satisfaction," has an incredibly unique guitar tone that is so distinctive, you can tell what song it is only a moment or two after it starts playing. "Satisfaction" was the Rolling Stones' first #1 hit in the U.S. and helped propel them into international fame.
The easily recognizable guitar riff's sound is courtesy of a fuzz pedal. Keith Richards gets the sound from a Gibson Maestro Fuzz-Tone pedal. Originally, the effect was supposed to resemble what a brass horn section would sound like, but the band liked the version that we all know so much that they didn't alter it any further.
When you want to mimic the guitar effect from "Satisfaction," let your fuzz pedal do the talking through a clean channel on your amp.
If you're looking for a good fuzz pedal, we've got a wide selection in a variety of price points.
Keith Richards' guitar solo on "Sympathy for the Devil" is in-your-face but still maintains excellent musicality.
To mimic the guitar's sound on this track, use a boost pedal. Richards probably played the solo with a treble booster — the boost pedal can help you recreate the sound without going too far. An overdrive pedal wouldn't give you the same effect because it would increase mid- and low-range sounds instead of just making the sound cleaner and increase the signal.
Check out some of these boost pedals to help you nail the "Sympathy for the Devil" guitar solo.
The funky edge of the intro to "Gimme Shelter" is the perfect setup for the track before the guitar fades more into the background. This is a great moment in the Stones' music and may have inspired you to want to learn it.
Richards uses the tremolo that was built into his amplifier to get this effect, but there's no need to go out and buy a brand-new amp. Use a tremolo pedal to mimic the vibrato of the guitar at the beginning of this track.
The tremolo pedal mimics what a tremolo bar that's built into a guitar would do. It affects the volume of the signal instead of the pitch of your guitar.
To really nail the effect in "Gimme Shelter," use a bit of an overdrive effect, too. Pretty soon, you'll be inspired to add the whining sound of the tremolo to the other music you're playing.
Whatever you'd like to spend on this piece of equipment, we've got different types of tremolo pedals that will let you mimic this vibe and experiment with it in other music, too.
Unlike our previous styles that have only popped up in one song or even a piece of one song, "Exile on Main Street" has a unique style throughout the entire album. This record is considered one of the Stones' most popular records — it's representative of what they are as a band as a whole. To truly get the sound of the Rolling Stones, you have to be able to replicate the sound of "Exile on Main Street."
The piece of equipment you need to get the style of this album is a drive pedal. This type of effects pedal can be used in a couple different ways — to give your guitar a more saturated sound on your dirty channel or a more clean yet distorted effect on your clean channel. To help mimic the sound of the record, you can also add a delay pedal.
Browse through our selections of overdrive pedals and delay pedals to find the right ones to help you recreate the sounds of "Exile on Main Street." Take a look for yourself online or visit us at one of our two convenient locations in the San Francisco Bay Area.