Time to put the mics up and my first choice is a Shure SM 57. This mic has been used over and over, not just by me, but many others with good to excellent results. The placement of this mic varies depending on the session, volume, player, etc but on this cut, I placed it close to the grill cloth and near the center of the 12 inch speaker cone, pointed in a downward, off axis pattern. Some engineers place the mic at the rim of the speakercone, others place it in the center and then point the mic towards the outside of the cone. Something to remember - throughout the years, electric guitars have been recorded many different ways and I would encourage experimentation. Bottom line - do what sounds good to your ear and works for you.
Tip: Most people know this, but for those who don’t - To find the position of the speaker, run your hand across the grill of the speaker cabinet till you can feel the edge of the speaker baffle then you can move the mic anywhere from the outside of the cone to the inside of the circular cutout to find what works for you.
So with the 57 in place, I put up a second mic. For guitar cabs, I prefer to use a ribbon mic as my second and for this job I chose a Cascade Fathead 2. The placement was about 2 feet from the center of the cone, pointing downward at approx 20°. Ribbons are good for picking up the character of the amp since they give you a very detailed sound. I find the combination of the 57 with a ribbon works best for me most of the time.
used a Chandler/EMI TG2 mic preamp for both microphones. It has a vintage sound and I thought this to be a good match for the Epi seeing that it also has a classic vintage sound. Darin Favorite, a well known musician around the Nashville area who has played with many country and pop artists (Shania Twain, Pam Tillis and Tracy Lawrence) was the guitarist on the session. The part played was a rhythm guitar part.
In the coming weeks I’ll be talking about mixing, eq, reverbs, delay and other recording techniques.
Here is an audio clip using the SM 57: Epi Valve Jr with SM57 mic
Here is an audio clip using the Ribbon: Epi Valve Jr with Ribbon mic