This week I completed my New FX board and took it to church for a first outing on Sunday morning. The most exciting pedal is the Digitech EX-7. One setting allows me to fade in a slow swell of violin sounding stuff. This gave me the opportunity to do the “Pad-Thing” that the keyboard player usually does. Accidentally, I found myself playing these background chord things in one verse, and then switching to more traditional guitar style for a chorus. Suddenly I’m playing a lot less, and contributing to the arrangement, not just adding a guitar part from beginning to end. It’s quite a dramatic trick because when I switch from pad-style to jangly picking style (or crunch’n’punch -style) it’s a double change, because one instrument is “dropping out” as well as another instrument “dropping-in”. We all need to play less! It’s wrong to generalise, but when did anyone last need to tell you that you’re not playing enough?! A nice thing about this technique is that it kept me busy, but at the same time made me play less. Now, maybe you do not have a Digitech EX=7 with it’s “Space Station™ Synth Swell™” but you can fake a similar effect by using some chorus, delay, and “violining” with the volume knob. (i.e. strike with the volume pot pre-set low, and immediately (but slowly) fade up”. I think this could be the start of something very productive.