ACO Floored by UA Woodrow Pedal
Producer, Paul Beard, introduced ACO’s Richard Tognetti to his vintage Fender Deluxe Tweed and started a beautiful relationship.
Paul Beard’s job as musical director of some of the biggest acts in the last 20 years (James Blunt, Robbie Williams and more) has taken him around the globe many times over but when he was browsing in a pawn shop in Arkansas (while on tour with Bryan Ferry) the world seemed to stand still. He spotted an original 1955 Fender Deluxe Tweed and knew the encounter was destiny.
The amp was in good nick, and even better condition after he had it serviced in L.A. by the Rolling Stones’ favoured guitar tech (“do you want to sell this?”, a question Paul’s heard many times since).
Paul Beard now works out of his Aviator Studios in Glebe, Sydney, and the Fender amp continues to turn heads.
Recently, Richard Tognetti (a name synonymous with the Australian Chamber Orchestra) was caught in the amp’s thrall. Paul encouraged Richard to stick his violin through it and he was instantly captivated. But when he rehearsed with the amp, the other strings players were less thrilled by sharing the same acoustic space with the Fender monster.
While on another project, Paul heard a guitarist named Ollie Thorpe rave about UA’s Woodrow, saying he couldn’t tell the difference between the pedal’s output and this muso’s prized ’55 Deluxe Tweed clone.
Paul put two and two together and phoned Richard Tognetti with the good news: ‘you can have the tone of the magic amp without the stage noise’.
Richard Tognetti and his wife, violinist, Satu Vänskä, lead the ACO but also take the ensemble in more avant garde peregrinations via the ACO’s Underground sessions, which are live and more experimental — combining ACO musicians with drums, guitars and other sonic flavours.
The UA Woodrow pedal has now become a key part of Richard’s toolbox.
Paul Beard, has been working with Richard and Satu on recording some of their original work, with the aim to release an album under the moniker of ‘Satu in the Beyond’.
In the meantime, Paul has assisted with the live Underground sessions. A UA Apollo has also become an important component in the rig, running UA plug-ins along with the Console app helping to create monitor mixes, previously fine-tuned in the studio. “UAD plugins literally changed my life — amazing.”