Since, 1981, Fishman has worked with some of the top names in the music industry. We know that behind every great artist is a great band! Our “Backstage Pass” blog focuses on the players who are using Fishman gear to make not only their instruments sound great but, to make their bosses sound great too!
Jason Fitz is the band leader for Grammy award winning group The Band Perry. Jason handles violin, resophonic guitar, and keyboard duties for the group and took time for us during his busy summer touring schedule to answer some questions about how he’s using Fishman Gear in TBP.
How long have you been using Fishman products?
What Fishman products are you currently using?
V300 Concert Series Violin Pickup, Aura Spectrum DI, Jerry Douglas Signature Series Aura Pedal, Nashville Series Spider Style Resophonic Pickup.
What were the key features/factors in choosing these products?
Everything is ALWAYS about live sound, especially for fiddle players. I play two valuable, aged, amazing sounding instruments that serve me incredibly well in the studio. With my background being so immersed in classical music, I have struggled since I began working as a road fiddle player to find the truest possible tone for my instruments. The Aura Spectrum DI is the first time I've ever felt like my tone was finally locked in. The best part is that we tour with other bands, other musicians, other fiddle players…. non-stop…. and the one constant is that after shows, they always ask me what I'm running through to get such great tones on my array of instruments.
What instruments are you using with you Fishman products?
2 Violins, one is a French instrument, about 100 years old…the other German, about 120 years old. They’re fantastic instruments. To me, no matter what kind of electronics you're installing, you're tone can only be as great as the instrument you're using. I believe strongly in finding amazing sounding violins live and, I prefer that my violins have different tones for the purpose of making sure I can match the right tone for the right song. So, it's imperative that I have electronics that can be as versatile as my instruments. I also play a Beard resophonic guitar using the Jerry Douglas pedal. When I got the dobro from Beard, they were very passionate about making sure I only played through that pedal, and they were beyond right. As a relatively new dobro player, I needed something that could give me the best sound possible out of the gate, and since I started playing it, I've seen several other dobro players that watched us live replicate my electronic set up.
Can you give an example of your immediate impression of the products?
It feels like you're standing on the other side of the glass, listening to yourself play in the studio. Truly, it was the first time I was hearing my violin, instead of hearing tinny fiddle sounds. Adding the V300 pickup to the equation then warmed the sound even more.
Explain your experience with Fishman ?
Everything's been amazing since my first conversation with Corey Congilio in Fishman’s Artist Relations department. We are very lucky to be so busy, and we continue to stay on pace to be on the road between 200 and 300 days a year with The Band Perry. I could never do that without a tremendous amount of support. Honestly, the thing that I'm most proud of is that every time I watch one of our TV appearances, I love how my instruments sound. Also, when other amazing players come to me to find out how I'm getting those sounds live, I realize that I am getting exactly the tone I'm hoping for.
What would you like to see a company like Fishman design?
The only thing I wish is that the Jerry Douglas pedal was also a DI!
The musical career of violinist turned fiddle player Jason Fitz has literally taken him from Carnegie Hall to dance halls around the world. Having made a mark in Nashville as both a classical and improv skilled player, the Juilliard trained musician has appeared on master recordings for acts as varied as Alan Jackson, Matchbox 20 and many more. With a live resume including string arrangements performed by John Williams and the Boston Pops, and both individual and string section work with artists ranging from Josh Groban to Tim McGraw and everything in between, Jason has had the fortune of playing sold out arenas across the world. Additionally, he's been seen on television appearances with David Letterman, The Today Show, The CMA and ACM Awards, Dick Clark's Rockin New Year's Eve, The Grammy Nomination Show, Ellen, The American Music Awards and countless others. Currently touring as the Musical Director / Band Leader for The Band Perry, he's playing violin/fiddle, keys, B3 and Dobro as TBP tours in support of their debut album and mega single, If I Die Young.
During 2012 alone, they will have performed live for literally millions of people around the world and hundreds of millions on television. Being versatile is the key to success in Nashville for every musician, and Jason's work as a live performer, studio professional and string arranger has made him a force in the new generation of talent and variety that makes Music City such a thriving city for creative growth and excellence.
In addition to Jason’s rich musical background, he’s also an avid sports fan and has recently launched his own sports talk webcast, the Jason Fitz Show.
Check out the video for TBP’s new single “Better Dig Two” at thebandperry.com and cmt.com
Find out more about Jason Fitz at jasonfitz.com