JOHN PETRUCCI: What’s in My Pedalboard?

John Petrucci

Dream Theater guitarist John Petrucci recently sat down with Total Guitar where he talked about his guitar rig for 2017, and he also provided some information on pedals that make his pedalboard when on tour with Dream Theater.

Find more below.

Jim Dunlop JP95 Cry Baby Wah [in rack]

Jim Dunlop JP95 Cry Baby Wah

I’m not being a salesman – my wah is fuckin’ badass! The sound comes from the rack wah, which we had made into a pedal.

When I went to develop it, they had sent me all the other signature ones… I tried them all and took notes about the things I’d liked about each one. In the end, I realized the rack wah sound was my favorite.

It’s a throaty, aggressive wah that sounds like a monster!

TC Electronic Dreamscape

TC Electronic Dreamscape

My pedals tend to change a bit over the years. Right now, it’s primarily TC stuff – and this is signature Dreamscape modulation pedal, which does chorus, flanger and vibrato. If I ever need to switch, we go old-school and do it all by hand on the fly.

TC Electronic Helix Phaser

TC Electronic Helix Phaser

I love the Phase 90 too, I like the Boss phaser and the MXR one – but I’m a big fan of TC Electronic stuff. They’re really consistent, true bypass.

The Helix phaser will come on for a short lead in The Bigger Picture and I might use it a little on ‘Take the Time.’ There are little clean guitar breaks here and there, rather than the long, arpeggiated song intros, which have a more of a chorus thing going on.

Strymon Sunset

Strymon Sunset

This is my newest pedal, I got it pretty recently. It has six different modes for all these different overdrives, which you can mix together at the same time. The overdrives probably change the most in my rig.

Sometimes there’ll be a Keeley Red Dirt here or a modded Tubescreamer or a Boogie model. With all the features of my Boogie, I don’t really need an overdrive pedal.

The Majesties also have a 20dB boost on the volume control! So we really don’t need these, but in the spirit of fun, we thought we’d include a little something extra.

TC Electronic Hyper Gravity 14

TC Electronic Hyper Gravity 14

This is a compressor used for just my clean sounds, like on ‘Take the Time.’

I’m a big fan of that big compressed sound, where you can hear the strings ringing out with a bell-like quality and with sustain. It helps tame those peaks, but you can do without it – the clean sound of the Boogie is so beautiful, you don’t need much compression.

TC Electronic Corona Chorus+

TC Electronic Corona Chorus+

Here’s a limited edition version of a similar pedal called the Corona Chorus+, it’s just like the original TC SCF pedal. I can have this covering most chorus modulation if I want and use the Dreamscape as a flanger.

TC Electronic Vicious Vibe

TC Electronic Vicious Vibe

This is TC’s answer to a ‘Uni-Vibe’ kind of sound. The TonePrint ability is awesome, you can just beam things off your phone.

Usually, I’ll be in the mood to get a David Gilmour or trippy Robin Trower vibe, or old-school Rush. It’s mainly used for clean parts – it will get used on ‘Hell’s Kitchen.’ It almost sounds like a phaser but more distinct.