The wah-wah pedal is to electric guitar what salt is to food. What popcorn is to the movies. What sex is for life. It’s hard to imagine the instrument without it, and while these days with all the new fangled techno gadgets these kids have are all well and good, a good old wah-wah riff can still melt the face off anyone withing the line of red hot fire.
Our love of the wah pedal recently re-ignited by Harts and Subaru’s W-WAH-X team up (where they created a WRX and wah pedal hybrid where the wah effect is controlled by the accellerator), we thought why not look back over the Our 10 Favourite Face Melthing Wah Wah Tracks… in no particular order
Jimi Hendrix – Voodoo Child
Jimi Hendrix pretty much introduced the world to the wah-wah, and this acid drecnhed track is one of the finest examples of the utter magic what he could weave with one.
Dire Straits – Money For Nothing
Mark Knoplfer is another master of the wah, although this amazing track will always be better remembered for it’s then cutting edge digital graphics laden video.
Rage Against The Machine – Bulls On Parade
Tom Morello knows how to make something simple sound absolutely enormous, with this tracks electrifying wah laden riff proof of that.
Black Sabbath – N.I.B
Wah isn’t just for guitar though, as Geezer Butler proved on this classic Black Sabbath track which opens with some rich wah washed bass noodling from Geezer.
Pearl Jam – Even Flow
Funkadelic – Maggot Brain
Some say the wah pedal helped let musicians make the guitar cry, well Eddie Hazel made his break down and weep on this track, famously inspired by producer and band leader George Clinton‘s instruction to play like he’d just been told his mother died but then found out it wasn’t true.
Prince – Cream
Prince has mastered about every art under the sun, and the wah pedal is very much in his repertoire. Behold.
Issac Hayes – Shaft
This had to be in the list, as it’s probably the most well recognised and famous wah riff ever recorded… and just so damn sexy.
Guns N’ Roses – Sweet Child Of Mine
The textbook wah wah solo, Slash‘s guns a-blazing wah drenched fretwork sums up everything that was rock’n’roll in the 80s. So glorious, just like his hair.
Steve Vai – Bad Horsie
If Jimi Hendrix first showed people what you could do with a wah pedal, Steve Vai pretty much took it to it’s limits with this track making his guitar whinny and neigh like a horse while he twirls it around his body and between his legs. Sheer wah madness it’s no wonder Zappa hired him on to play the “impossible guitar parts” on his later albums.