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Hello Sailor Guitar Effects

Updated: Apr 29

Amazing Guitar Effects Hand Built in Small Batches in the UK with Vintage and NOS Components, a Sprinkling of Angel Dust, and a tonne of Mojo.

Fuzz Face
Hello Sailor Abbey Road Fuzz

Hello Sailor Effects is a one-man operation in the shape of Joe Halliday, who it's fair to say has spent a lot of time honing his craft while serving at sea in the Royal Navy.

The name and images which Joe uses start to make a lot of sense once we understand his past in the Royal Navy and the fact that he named "Hello Sailor Effects"as such because of a tattoo he got on his shoulder whilst drunk. In fact, if you take a look at many of his pedals, which often have sailors' tattoos on them, I think we can assume that a lot of those sailors were probably drunk too!

The one in the picture above is my personal Abby Road Fuzz, a Fuzz Face style pedal which I love. You can hear it in action in the video further on.

I think the finish is just beautiful and the image of a tattooed, pissed off looking Alice is just wonderful. There's something pretty satirical going on there, which really gels with me.

In fact, I also have a FreeRange pedal of his, which is his Kossoff Drive and a Rangemaster circuit in one enclosure, and that is stunning too!

Check it out:

Guitar Overdrive Effect Pedal

Right, let's get into it - here's a list of the pedals Joe generally makes. I say 'generally' as he does throw a curve ball every now and then.

1 - Abbey Road Fuzz

His take on a fuzz face, as mentioned above. These usually have vintage or NOS transistors and come in a variety of guises, from big box versions like 'Alice' above, to much smaller, pedalboard-friendly ones. They can have two knobs or three, they can be battery only or work with 9v DC, they can be covered in leather, paisley, have wooden enclosures, metal, have tattoo decals, flip-paint, the list is nearly endless.

So what you basically get is a one-off. A unique pedal which just screams quality and sounds amazing.

Here is a video of my 'Alice':

2 - Monmouth Octave Fuzz

This one is is an Abbey Road Fuzz with an Octave Up added in a Push Me Pull You circuit, a Tim Escobedo design. You can learn a little more about that here if you are interested.

Again, lots of vintage and NOS stuff going into these for some amazing mojo.

3 - The Rangemaster

The classic rangemaster! Amazing, and pretty much Joe's signature circuit - he loves these.

Again, he makes them in lots of variations. This one in the picture I loved so much I personally bought it and gifted it to my brother. I just had to share the love.

Guitar Overdrive Effect Pedal

This one has a micro switch that swaps between different voicings. Great when changing to a different guitar, and all sound incredible. It's not just the sound though, it's the feel and the clean up on these. In fact, on all of Joe's pedals. You can watch the videos and listen to the clips, but you have to play one to understand the beauty of these.

Oh, and he even makes a dual-rangemaster if the standard one doesn't have enough drive for you!

4 - The Kossoff Drive

Guitar Overdrive Effect Pedal

A beautiful, custom voiced overdrive designed around Paul Kossoff's tone in 'Free: Live BBC Manchester' with a Les Paul.

Here's a link to a live Free gig in Manchester in 1970 for you to enjoy to get an idea of Kossoff's tone in this period:

The Kossoff Drive which makes up a side of the FreeRange I have is a light to mid drive, and it sounds wonderful with both my Strat and LP style guitars. Quite open feeling, nice and dynamic, and it pushes an already overdrive tube amp really nicely.

You can hear it in action in the video of below with both my single coil and humbucker guitars.

5 - The FreeRange

So, have you ever run a treble boost style pedal and an overdrive together? Tonal bliss!

And that's what we have here. We've already looked at the Kossoff drive, so stack that with a Rangemaster for some serious tone.

Check this out:

6 - The Anchor Drive

Guitar Overdrive Effect Pedal

This one I haven't had the pleasure to try yet. However, it's Joe's 'do-it-all' drive pedal. It can be used as a transparent boost all the way up to broken speaker distortion. It has preamp, power amp and volume knobbies, and the pre and power amp sections work via transistor bias according to Joe. Very cool:)

7 - The ShipWreck

Guitar Overdrive Effect Pedal

Joe's highest gain pedal, this one emulates the Train Wreck style amps. Beautifully compressed when cranked, but incredibly dynamic and responsive to the guitar volume, these amps are highly desired for good reason. Now you can get one for your pedalboard:) What more do you need?

Oh, how about hand-wired? What about with different clipping options via a mini toggle switch?

No, problem, Joe's already thought of that!

Stunning sounds through the JFET gain stages, this is another one I am desperate to try!

Wild and Wonderful

As well as these pedals, Joe sometimes comes out with something completely wild and wonderful like his dual delay pedals. They look like a nightmare to wire up, but again, are stunning.

Keep your eyes on his Instagram to catch some of these rarer beasts. Here's a link for you: HELLO SAILOR OFFICIAL

Final Thoughts on Hello Sailor Effects

I haven't tried all of Joe's pedals , but the ones I have are stellar, as good as anything else out there.

They are all hand-wired in the UK by one man who is on a tone mission, and they feature vintage, NOS components and ooze MOJO.

Some of the decals may not be to everyone's taste, but Joe creates such a range of finishes, all incredible, that you will be able to find one that you just love. And if you don't, get in touch with him directly and he is the kind of wonderful human who will bend over backwards to get you what you want.

Check out the Hello Sailor Effects website: HERE

Have you tried Joe's pedals? What have you got and how much do you love it? Comment below:)

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