Aerosmith is one of those bands that seems to get better with age. If you go back and listen to some of their earlier tracks, they were always fairly unique and came from an interesting place that never seems dated. “Walk This Way” from their Toys In The Attic album has been a hit several times, so it’s very cool indeed to be able to listen inside the mix to Joe Perry’s isolated guitar track. Here’s what to listen for:
1. As far as the guitar sound, it’s not what you think. According to Perry on Gibson.com, “For “Walk This Way,” I used a late-’50s Stratocaster Tobacco Sunburst with a stand-alone Ampeg V4 amp on top with a Marshall 4-by-12 speaker cabinet on the bottom. I also used a Gibson Maestro Fuzz-Tone to give the notes a little distortion.”
2. The verse guitar is doubled fairly closely, but is still loose enough rhythmically to give it some feel. The one on the right is a little straighter and less active. What’s cool is that it sounds like two separate guitars most of the time, but the few times when the guitars play identically it sounds like its one guitar up the middle.
3. During the chorus you can hear a third guitar in the center playing the high answer chord.
4. The first solo has the long reverb that’s probably on most of the other tracks. The outro solo has a very short room effect that turns out to be from the hallway behind the Record Plant’s Studio C.
5. There’s a flub on the left guitar during the 3rd verse at around 1:38. Ever hear it in the final mix? Me neither. The right guitar also changes it up a little at 1:44, also missed in the mix. Also, the turnaround to the 4rth chorus at 2:20 seems a little uncertain, like it caught him by surprise.
It’s really a treat to hear isolated guitar tracks from some of the songs that you’ve heard for years. Listening inside the mix just never gets old.
(Photo: Harmony Gerber via Wikipedia)