Jimmy Ruelas: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / SoundCloud
1. Tell me about your current rig.
I try to keep my rig as simple as possible. I’m a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to gear. I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel. This is the stuff I use out on gigs. Gibson Les Paul from the early ’90s. I use a Marshall “Bluesbreaker” reissue from ’92. This amp has been tinkered with. So it’s actually nothing like a “Bluesbreaker.” It’s loud, it’s got that distinct Marshall tone, and I can fit it in my trunk. ……Pedals: A good wah by Fulltone and almost always two fuzz pedals. I switch up which ones I take out frequently. But there’s usually a germanium Tone Bender and a silicon fuzz. The blue one is the Fulltone Octafuzz. I love this pedal for the “Octavia” effect. Distinct. Especially when you run it into the “Sola Sound” Tone Bender. When it comes to pedals, I stay away from digital and stuff that offers a ton different options. I’m not into fiddling with pedals during a show. So a couple knobs and I’m good.
2. What song of yours do you feel is the best portrayal of your particular sound/style/gear?
I am fond of the tone I got on the tune “Saints” from my latest album Charlebois. For that session, I used my ’66 Supro Thunderbolt. When it’s working, it’s the best amp I’ve ever owned. The rhythm is all Les Paul. I had some trouble getting it to feed back for the solo. So I plugged in my trusty op amp Big Muff and used my Rickenbacker 360. That did the trick. I literally shoved the pickups into the grill cloth of the Supro. Only thing that could have made that better is a better guitarist.
3. What’s the one “holy grail” piece of equipment you’d buy if money was no object?
If I could snap my fingers and one instrument would magically become mine…. without question it would be a Gibson Black Beauty Les Paul. A real one. Vintage. Triple pickup. Bigsby. I’ve always been a Les Paul guy.
4. What is your favorite piece of gear and why?
My absolute favorite piece I have is by far my Les Paul. It just fits right. It’s dinged up. Been dropped on the headstock (I think you can see that damage in one of the pics). It’s not a collectors item nor is it of superior quality. But it’s mine. It’s in desperate need of a fret job. But I don’t want to part with it even for a few weeks for it to get fixed.
5. What do you have coming up that we should know about?
On June 2nd, I’m playing with Badabing, Mrs. Henry and Taken By Canadians at The Casbah. Taken By Canadians are releasing their new album on that night. That will be a blast. I’m also playing on June 23rd at The Music Box for The Whiskey Circle‘s EP release.