Perfect Musical Pairings - Matches Made In Tone Heaven


We take a look at some of the most iconic musical pairings so you can make that “perfect match” made in tone heaven.

musical pairings

There are many musical pairings that have gone on to become iconic – Jimmy page has his Gibson Les Paul guitars, Angus Young his Gibson SG, The Edge had his Stratocaster and Electro Harmonix Memory Man – the list goes on and on. But it’s not just the coupling of artist and instrument that makes the pair work so well, it’s the combination of instruments too!

There’s nothing quite like the sound of a Fender Stratocaster through a Marshall stack or Ibanez bass through an Orange Amp, they’re simply musical pairings made in tone heaven! So today, we thought we’d put together a list of our best sounding musical pairings that will allow you to make the ultimate tone combination!

Pair 1: Fender Stratocaster + Fuzz Face

fender 2102 Stratocaster

Well, we have to start with one of the most iconic musical pairings of all time – the Fender Stratocaster and Jim Dunlop Fuzz Face pedal!

The Fender Stratocaster is obviously an icon in its own right, as is the Fuzz Face pedal, however it wasn’t until the late Jimi Hendrix decided to combine the two and create some of the most amazing music the world had ever (and has ever) heard, that these two would become synonymous.

Dunlop FFM2 Fuzz Face Mini Germanium Guitar Pedal

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

The single coil pickups within the Fender Stratocaster are renowned for cutting through the mix and providing players with a no-nonsense, lush, clean sound at all times. When you couple that with some distortion, it becomes a fat yet articulate sound. However, when you throw fuzz at it, especially with a Jim Dunlop Fuzz Face you get an entirely new beast altogether that completely takes on a life of its own.

This combination was utilised by Jimi Hendrix throughout his career, especially at live shows, but perhaps most notably on the likes of ‘Foxy Lady’. The clear and articulate sound of a single coil Stratocaster works best with Fuzz as there’s no muddying of the signal, offering a clear, thick sound.

Want that iconic sound? We recommend a Fender Stratocaster and the signature Jimi Hendrix Fuzz Face to get that iconic musical pairing.

Pair 2: Gibson Les Paul + Marshall JCM800 2203

Gibson 2016 Les Paul Standard Traditional Heritage Cherry Sunburst Gibson 2016 Les Paul Standard Traditional Heritage Cherry Sunburst

One of the most beautiful musical pairings you could ever hope to hear is the sound of a Gibson Les Paul plugged in to a Marshall JCM800 and cranked to high gain for warm tube saturation. A sound coveted and made famous by hard rock legends such as Slash and Zakk Wylde, this combination of Les paul and Marshall Tube amp is perhaps better suited to those who really want to rock and rock hard. However, don't be put off if you're a blues or country player as even the likes of Eric Clapton and many more blues orientated players have loved to turn to this perfect musical pairing.

Marshall JCM800 2203 Vintage Series Guitar Tube Amp Head

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

The combination of the Marshall JCM800’s all valve construction with a no-fuss control panel, single channel operation and lack of reverb or built in effects has allowed the team at Marshall to concentrate on one thing – amazing sound! This thing is begging to be cranked and when you combine it with the Gibson Les Paul humbuckers, resonant mahogany body and cool looks – you’re in rock star heaven.

Pair 3: Martin LX1E Electro Acoustic Guitar + BOSS RC-30 Loop Station

Martin LX1E Electro Acoustic Guitar in Natural

Two words: Ed Sheeran. Thanks to Ed Sheeran’s use of these two products, the intricate world of looping has become a major talking point in music and opened up the world of song writing to a whole new generation of musicians.

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

The small, highly portable construction and high-quality sound of the Martin LX1E Electro Acoustic Guitar makes it an ideal option for travelling musicians who don’t want to carry around a full-size guitar all the time. The BOSS RC-30 Loop Station allows you to build complete tracks from scratch including drums, vocals and guitar, giving you the power to create entire songs on your own. So it makes sense that these two work so well together.

Boss RC30 Loop Station Pedal

Since Ed headlined Glastonbury on his own armed with nothing but his signature Martin guitar modelled on the Martin LX1E and a loop pedal, people have been inspired to start creating music thanks to the fact they can do it without the input of others, anywhere anytime. For this, we salute the man!

Want to know more about Eds gear? Check out our Ed Sheeran Gear Guide.

Check out Ed building a track with his Martin and BOSS RC-30:

Pair 4: Ashdown Geezer Butler Head Of Doom Signature Bass Amp + Fender Precision Bass

Ashdown Geezer Butler Head Of Doom Signature Bass Amp

When it comes to bass guitar and amp combinations, the Fender Precision Bass coupled with pretty much any Ashdown amplifier will make one of the most beautiful musical pairings you could ever hope to hear.

In addition, one of the most famous Fender Precision bass players has to be Black Sabbath’s Geezer Butler, renowned for his thick and heavy sound and punchy articulation that has inspired generations of musicians. Ashdown have recently announced the all-new Ashdown Geezer Butler Head Of Doom Signature Bass Amp which set tongues wagging as this is essentially Geezers sound in a bass head!

Throwing a fender P Bass together with this geezer Butler Signature Ashdown head just makes sense!

Fender American Original ‘50s Precision Bass

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

Famed for playing a P bass in the early days of Sabbath, Geezer Butler inspired us all with his huge riffs and flying fingers, so when coupled with his signature amplifier, you’re unstoppable! The Fender Standard Split Coil pickups are extremely clear, punchy and powerful – exactly what you need for those riffs and bass runs to stand out, whilst the Maple neck with “C” shape profile allows you to traverse the neck at speed, easily.

The “Doom” settings within the Ashdown Geezer Butler Head Of Doom Signature Bass Amp allow you to turn up the distortion and really get those bone crunching riffs flying whilst the sub octave switch allows you to add a lower octave to your sound – when coupled with the punch and sweet articulation of the Fender P Bass, you achieve a thick and warm resonance that never muddies and provides a huge sound at all levels whether you’re going heavy or playing intricate runs.

Pair 5: Pioneer DJM-900NXS2 4-channel Mixer + Pioneer CDJ-2000NXS2

Pioneer DJM-900NXS2 4-channel Mixer Pioneer DJM-900NXS2 4-channel Mixer

When it comes to perfect musical pairings, the Pioneer DJM-900NXS2 and Pioneer CDJ-2000NXS2 are a match made in heaven.

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

Pioneer CDJ-2000NXS2 Pioneer CDJ-2000NXS2

Both the Pioneer CDJ-2000NXS2 and Pioneer DJM-900NXS2 have been designed to work with each other and bring out the best performance possible, offering DJs nuanced manipulation of sounds and reliability on stage and in the home studio. The 96 kHz/64-bit digital signal processor within the DJM-900NXS2 ensures your music is played to the highest quality and offers a more accurate, warm and natural sounding performance.

When coupled with the Pioneer CDJ-2000NXS2 your live gigs will be unstoppable as this gives you the option to play songs via USB, CD and SD card with support for FLAC, Apple Lossless Audio (ALAC), as well as MP3, WAV, AAC, and AIFF at high-resolution quality.

A 7-inch, full-colour touch screen on the Pioneer CDJ-2000NXS2 provides you with all the info you need so you can see where you are at all times and the ability to quantize snaps, cues and loops to the Rekordbox beat grid is invaluable.

Pair 6: Washburn WIN 14 Idol Series Electric Guitar + BOSS MT-2 Metal Zone Pedal

Washburn WIN 14 Idol Series Electric Guitar

The Washburn WIN 14 Idol Series guitar is a model that’s begging for high gain amplifiers and effects. And guitarists know that there’s one particular pedal that anyone worth their salt would always recommend when you need bone crushing distortion, great sustain and the ability to traverse a wide array of metal and rock genres – the BOSS MT-2 Metal Zone!

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

The combination of any Washburn Electric guitar and the BOSS metal Zone will put anyone in high gain, tonal rock heaven instantly, but we think the Washburn WIN 14 Idol Series is a great way to get that sound you’re looking for on a budget. The combination of humbucking pickups and the Metal Zone distortion is simply meant to be.

boss metal zone

The Washburn WIN14 is an extremely affordable guitar, yet boasts impressive appointments that guitarists of all levels will enjoy including rosewood fretboard, maple bolt-on neck, Dual Washburn humbuckers and basswood body – everything you need for a lush, resonant and articulate sound.

When coupled with the BOSS Metal Zone, you’re likely to blow people’s minds with the amount of distortion and power on offer. You have the ability to sculpt your sound thanks to the onboard EQ which provides control over the distortion level, volume and high/low frequencies. This means you can enjoy treble saturated Pantera-esque tones or go for super thick Sabbath-infused riffage at the turn of a dial.

A guitar designed for heavy metal with a pedal responsible for some of the heaviest sounds ever recorded – a music pairing that you’ll instantly fall in love with!

Pair 7: Universal Audio Arrow Thunderbolt Audio Interface + Aston Spirit Multi-Pattern Condenser Microphone

Universal Audio Arrow Thunderbolt Audio Interface

Whether you’re looking for a high quality portable studio or in need something to help you record studio quality tracks anywhere, anytime the combination of the Universal Audio Arrow and Aston spirit Microphone is one of the ultimate musical pairings.

Aston Spirit Multi-Pattern Condenser Microphone

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

Essentially, each item has been designed to withstand the rigours of a life on the road and deliver high quality sounds for a lifetime. You can rely on these day after day, year after year.

The Universal Audio Arrow audio interface is from the award-winning line of powerful and highly portable audio interfaces from the team at Universal Audio. These interfaces have quickly become the go-to option for both professional and intermediate home recording enthusiasts thanks to their inclusion of coveted UAD plugins, Unison mic preamplifiers and compact, portable design – the sound you can achieve with these things is unreal!

The Universal Audio Arrow in particular takes portability to a new level without ever scrimping on quality or sound processing ability. You have plenty of connections and its powered by the more sleek thunderbolt connection. The inclusion of Unison mic preamp technology allows you to record at studio quality at all times.

With that in mind, you need a high-quality microphone to go on the road with you!

The Aston spirit microphone is quickly becoming the new industry standard in microphones thanks to it’s superior quality sound and construction. This multi-award winning microphone is actually a multi pattern condenser mic, allowing you to record in either Omni, Cardioid or Figure-of-Eight pattern – it’s essentially 3 mics in 1. In addition, the microphone itself has been designed for serious use, able to withstand hits and drops thanks to its nigh on indestructible build. The built in pop shield actually acts as a shock absorber protecting the capsule from anything you care to throw it and can be moulded back into place should you warp it by dropping something on it.

This is used by industry professionals all over the world including Noel Gallagher thanks to its superior sound and is the first microphone you can just throw in your backpack and not have to worry about damaging it!

Pair 8: QSC K8.2 Active PA Loudspeaker + QSC K-Sub 1000w Active Subwoofer

QSC K8.2 Active PA Loudspeaker

The 2nd generation K.2 speakers have garnered praise thanks to their 2000-watt power module within, that easily delivers twice the power of their predecessors and provides users with high performance sound whether you’re using them for front of house or stage monitoring. The QSC K8.2 Active PA Loudspeaker is perfectly designed for travelling DJ’s and those with a smaller amount of venue space, whilst the huge sound of the QSC K-Sub 1000w Active Subwoofer ensures all your bottom end is completely intact!

QSC K-Sub 1000w Active Subwoofer QSC K-Sub 1000w Active Subwoofer

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

Naturally, QSC products are designed to work in conjunction with each other (as well as with other products), so it makes sense to pair the K.2 speakers together with the K-Sub. However, it makes so much sense tonally due to the professional and high-quality sound you achieve when you combine these.

The combination of the QSC K8.2 Active PA Loudspeaker’s 2000 watt class-D power, recallable factory presets designed for commonly-used applications such as Stage Monitor, Dance Music, Musical Instrument Amplification, Hand-held Microphone use and more with the 1000 watt Class D power modules of the QSC K-Sub 1000w Active Subwoofer ensures you’re ready for any live music situation.

Tour-grade 18-gauge steel grilles on the K-Sub and its lightweight construction also make it a great option for touring rigs. Essentially, when you combine these two options, you’re creating a perfect sonic partnership that can supply lush sound to everything from parties to festivals and everything in between!

Pair 9: Fender 68 Custom Twin Reverb + Fender Jazzmaster

Fender 68 Custom Twin Reverb

The perfect musical pairing of the Fender 68 Custom Twin Reverb and Fender Jazzmaster has been utilised by a wide variety of guitarists, most notably Noel Gallagher.

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

The sparkling clean tones of the ’68 Custom Twin Reverb Amp and all valve construction sound immense when utilised with the single coil Jazzmaster pickups. Add a little distortion and you’re in tone heaven.

Fender American Original ‘60s Jazzmaster Fender American Original ‘60s Jazzmaster

Both options are particular versatile, allowing you to traverse a wide range of musical genres. The Twin Reverb can go from glass like cleans to cranked valve distortion easily and the Single coil construction of the guitar with its pickup switching and tremolo system allow for a dynamic playing experience whether you prefer Jazz, Country, Rock or Grunge – both items can handle anything you throw at them.

Pair 10: Roland TR-08 Boutique Drum Machine + Roland TR-09 Boutique Rhythm Composer

TR-08 Rhythm Composer Roland TR-08 Boutique Drum Machine

When two of the most iconic rhythm and drum machines were re-released, it sent the musical world into meltdown! The TR-808 and TR-909 units have appeared on countless hits from the 80s onwards, effectively sculpting the music we hear on the radio today. So, when Roland re-issued these units as the Roland TR-08 and Roland TR-09 we couldn’t wait to get our hands on them.


Roland TR-09 New Roland Boutique TR-09: keeping the vibes of the original, with a modern twist!

Why is this one of the best musical pairings?

Not only are the Roland TR-08 and Roland TR-09 units perfect on their own, but they have also been designed to fit into your existing MIDI and USB workflow and work alongside each other to produce iconic sounds whilst allowing you to create your own unique tracks. Enjoy an array of iconic kick and snare sounds from the TR-09 and utilise the TR-08 sequencer which has 16 sub-steps per step, allowing you to create detailed snare fills and intricate rolling hi-hats.

Both of these units are small and highly portable, battery or USB powered and can be hooked up together whilst the built-in powered mini-speaker ensures you can create music anywhere, anytime.

Shop a full range of musical instruments over at PMT Online today or call in to your local PMT store today to try any of these items out for yourself.

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