Find out how to get Tom Misch guitar tones and take a closer look at the guitars, amps, and pedals used by the jazz-inspired South London native
Tom Misch boasts a growing portfolio of music that takes influence from a wide-variety of places. Whether it’s the J Dilla-inflected beats of his earlier productions or the soul-infused pop present on 2018 release ‘Geography’, one thing remains consistent - a totally unique approach to the guitar that has seen him garner attention from across the industry (and even from Barack Obama!).
Keep reading to learn more about the music and find out exactly how to get Tom Misch guitar tones from your rig..
What Guitar Does Tom Misch Use?
Tom tends to keep things simple when it comes to his axe, opting for tried-and-trusted models that are guaranteed to give him the tones he needs. Taking influence from a range of different players across jazz, soul, and R’n’B, he’s a big fan of guitarists such as Erick Walls and Isaiah Sharkey - as well as a whole host of new guitarists who are making waves on social media and YouTube.
Here, we take a look at some of the best guitars for neo-soul, nu-jazz, and that smooth, Misch-flavoured tone..
The guitar you’re most likely to find Tom Misch performing with on-stage and in the studio is a Fender Stratocaster. The iconic Strat is perfect for the choppy, funky lead lines and jazzy chords that Tom likes to use, allowing for ultra-expressive playing that highlights the intricate nature of the guitar work.
Check out a full range of Stratocaster guitars here:
John Mayer Signature Models
One of Tom’s guitar heroes is John Mayer - another purveyor of the Stratocaster who now plays his own take on the guitar built by PRS.
The Silver Sky range (and the accompanying SE selection) gives you access to some of the most soulful and sophisticated tones available, essentially supercharging everything that is great about the Strat and refining it for the modern player.
Take a look at the Silver Sky and SE Silver Sky guitars here:
If you’re not a big Strat fan but still want to get the Tom Misch tone then you could opt for an Ibanez Artcore. Tom used one of these guitars when studying on a jazz guitar course at college, and they’re a solid option for that warm, eloquent clean sound you can hear across his music.
Find our range of Artcore guitars here:
What Amp Does Tom Misch Use?
This is another very important part of the Tom Misch guitar rig, and you should look to opt for amplifiers that grant excellent clean tones as a base to build your sound. In the recording studio Tom is known to use plug-ins and amp simulators to get his tone, as well as experimenting with Kemper units when performing live.
His favourite amplifiers though are all from Fender, and in particular a Deluxe Reverb model that gives his tone the sparkle and clarity for which it’s become known.
Most Fender amps will land your sound in the right sort of area when chasing the Tom Misch guitar tone - see our full range below, and check out this Tonemaster Deluxe Reverb for our favourite pick of the bunch.
What Guitar Pedals Does Tom Misch Use?
We spent some time inspecting a range of Tom Misch pedalboards from over the years and compiled a list of the most essential stompboxes and effects units for nailing his tone.
Tom keeps things pretty straightforward once again here, but this range of pedals will allow you to get as close as possible to the more niche sounds in his music - as well as tidying-up and refining your clean sound with reverbs, compressors, filters and more..
Strymon BigSky Multidimensional Reverb Pedal
The Strymon BigSky is one of our favourite pedals for studio-grade reverb sounds, and Tom Misch also squeezes one onto his pedalboard when playing live.
Despite the staggering range of different reverb sounds available from this unit it’s still super-easy to use, with extensive MIDI support and the ability to connect an expression pedal.
Stereo inputs and outputs mean that regardless of your rig it’s easy to integrate and get the most out of, and with 8 control dials you can easily shape the sound to fit your tone.
Electro-Harmonix Nano POG
A pocket-sized version of the iconic Polyphonic Octave Generator from Electro-Harmonix, the Nano POG gives you access to a full range of Octave Up and Octave Down sounds.
Boasting excellent tracking capabilities no matter how complex your chords are, this stompbox was part of Tom’s rig during his 2018 US Tour.
It’s a great option for livening up riffs and playing some chunky rhythm parts, with blend settings that allow you to mix the wet and dry signals for added nuance as you play.
Fender The Bends Compressor
A compressor pedal is an exceptionally useful tool when you’re playing in the style of Tom Misch, and the stompbox of choice on his live rig seems to be Fender’s ‘The Bends’ pedal.
It’s great for pushing forwards the subtle touches in jazz-influenced guitar work, allowing the dynamic range to remain constant when utilising different picking patterns. It’s also a cool option to switch on as a precise boost for lead sections, especially when teamed up with a nice, clean amplifier.
Ibanez Tubescreamer Mini
For a dedicated boost effect Tom opts for another classic tone in the form of the Ibanez Tubescreamer Mini.
This pedal retains all the beautiful grit of the famous green overdrive unit but reduces the footprint significantly - so it’s a no-brainer if pedalboard space is at a premium.
Aguilar Filter Twin Dual Envelope Filter Pedal
This pedal is great for when things get a little bit funky. Aguilar has employed two identical filters on this unit, each sweeping in opposite directions - one up in frequency, and one down in frequency.
This gives you access to those 70's-inspired sounds that can be found all over Tom’s records, and the use of dual filters also allows you to dial-in sounds that have a more organic quality that is expressive and vocal-like in nature.
It’s an intuitive stompbox that you can plug-in and get to grips with almost immediately - and as it’s technically a bass pedal, it sounds great with the POG unit that Tom uses, too.
BOSS NS-2 Noise Suppressor Pedal
Using a noise gate of some sort can really clean up your tone when playing in a funky staccato style, and the BOSS NS-2 Noise Suppressor is an industry-standard that has been spotted on Tom’s pedalboard at rehearsals.
When used properly these pedals can tighten up your attack and decay, making your parts sound tight and focused. They’re also great to leave on for the duration of your live sets, diminishing any feedback or unwanted hum whilst between songs.
BOSS Digital Delays
Tom also seemingly relies on BOSS for his delay needs, having posted videos on his social media accounts in which he jams using a DD-7 pedal.
Any BOSS delay unit will do when it comes to channelling the Tom Misch guitar sound, and these versatile pedals are great for pretty much any other genre - they’re true workhorses that should find a home on all pedalboards.
What Gear Does Tom Misch Use in the Studio and on Stage?
Known almost just as well for his stellar productions as he is for his guitar work, here we take a closer look at some of the other bits of kit that Tom has been known to use in the studio and on stage.
AKG C214 for Recording Vocals
Tom has previously stated during a Twitter Q&A that his go-to vocal recording microphone is the AKG C214.
A cost-effective alternative to the beloved C414, this large diaphragm condenser microphone is awesome for recording vocal tracks with clarity and warmth.
Sennheiser E945 for Live Vocals
In a live setting, Tom opts for the Sennheiser E945. This premium-grade dynamic vocal mic utilises a supercardioid pattern and delivers bucketloads of character and presence even in the most dense mixes.
It’s rugged and highly-consistent - both key features for any mic you’ll be taking on tour with you.
Novation Bass Station II
Pictures of Tom’s bedroom studio prior to the release of his first album show that he uses a Novation Bass Station II Synthesizer.
This powerful machine features two filters, two oscillators, and a third sub-oscillator, combined with a fully-analogue effects section, step sequencer, and arpeggiator. It also has full-sized keys that are individually-sprung for a responsive feel, whilst the powerful modulation capabilities mean it’s a superb option for all of your low-end needs.
Native Instruments Traktor DJ
When Tom isn’t playing his own music he also delivers an awesome DJ set. He’s been pictured in the past using the popular Native Instruments Traktor controllers - check out the entire selection here: