New guy introduction, take 2

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    Joshua Paxton

    Hmmm, I posted this earlier, and then apparently managed to delete it while editing a typo. So I’ll try again…

    I just joined the forum and thought I’d introduce myself and say hello. I’m a keyboardist from New Orleans, been playing professionally for over 20 years, but only got serious about the melodica within the past year. I decided I wanted to incorporate it into a funk/rock band I play with, so I sprang for the Hammond 44 and built a whole “melodica rig” around it:

    My rig

    Besides the Hammond, the rig includes a Zoom G1Xon multi-effects pedal and a Line6 Relay G10 wireless system (and the handy case, which I customized myself, and may be the part of the rig I’m most excited about).

    I use a strap and play it “keytar style” with the long tube, which lets me play another board with my left hand at the same time. Then with the wireless I can wander freely around the stage and step up to join the horn section when appropriate. The G10 is a great little no-fuss unit with a *tiny* transmitter – barely bigger than a USB stick. And the Zoom pedal is great for anything from subtle enhancements to crazy sound effects. I’ve used it for distorted leads, wah and phaser effects, and a two-octave pitch shifter with a lowpass filter to get the low, drone-y synth tones for “Tom Sawyer.” Here’s a shot from a show at Tipitina’s a couple weeks ago:

    gig pic

    I’m still tweaking and adjusting things to get it smoothly incorporated into the band setting. For instance, to hold the mouthpiece in place when I’m not playing, I retrofitted it with a “custom magnetic adhesion system” consisting of a small magnet and a piece of Gorilla tape. That holds it to the edge of the instrument, which is fine for some cases. But other times I have to switch back and forth quickly between playing it and singing, and sticking it to the melodica takes too long for that. So for the next gig I’m gonna try wearing a steel washer around my neck, and attaching the mouthpiece to that during the singing parts. (Bonus: since I threaded the washer onto a leather cord I got from a bead shop, it looks like an intentional piece of jewelry.)

    By the way, this forum has already been highly helpful to me. Among other things, I’ve got some corrugated tubing on the way from Amazon to further customize things thanks to a post on here. Looking forward to more!

    Shannon M

    Not sure which of the three posts to reply to, but welcome aboard, Joshua. 8^) Nice rig-I am going to have to check out that effects pedal. Nice case as well. What kind was it before your modifications?

    Looking forward to hearing some of your music.



    Hello Joshua, nice set up, hope you don’t mind a few questions about your set up. What amp are you running with this set up or are you running it through the house system. Also what is the range on the G10, is there any loss of frequency response with the transmitter, I can’t seam to find one I like, so I am still tied to the old Mogami.

    Monsters of Melodica

    Joshua Paxton

    The case is this SKB case:

    The foam inserts are made from those interlocking gym floor tiles; I got a pack of them and cut and glued them together. It was really just dumb luck that everything fit together as perfectly as it did.

    I run my entire rig through a small mixer, then either direct to the house, or else through a SpaceStation amp, depending on the venue.

    The range on the G10 is supposed to be 50 feet, but I don’t think I’ve pushed it past about 20 feet. But it’s been reliable and given me no problems, and I haven’t noticed any signal loss with it.

    My next mod will be to make the hose a couple inches longer, and fit a ring-shaped magnet around it just below the mouthpiece rather than having one stuck on with tape. Sadly I don’t think I’ll get that done in time for this weekend, which is the opening of the New Orleans Jazz Fest, but hopefully I’ll have it done for the second weekend.


    Hi Joshua,

    Very innovative. Welcome to the forum.



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