Wah users needn’t settle for stock tonal options like those heard on the “Theme From Shaft” or “Voodoo Child (Slight Return).” That’s because Jim Dunlop offers recreations of the classic Cry Baby with additional tone-shaping options, boost features, and improvements to potentiometers, all to help you replicate the wicked sounds you hear in your brain, not just on the radio. In fact, Dunlop’s signature series might just be the ticket to waka-waka enlightenment.
Buddy Guy, of course, is a bona fide legend of the classic blues era, and his Cry Baby BG95 signature wah is truly badass. With its polka-dot cosmetics and short rocker throw, this pedal’s coolest feature is its side switch offering two modes: BG Mode and Deep Mode. The BG95 is true-bypass and includes a recreation of the red Fasel inductor used in the original Cry Baby.
Deep Mode is ballsy and mean – just what you need to distinguish yourself in a gloomy stage mix. Harmonics pop with beautiful overtones. BG Mode is sweeter sounding, delivering vintage flavors and cleanliness. It plays well with dirt boxes and is an all-around great pedal for any style of music. The side button, LEDs, and quiet operation, make the BG95 a real asset to your musical arsenal.
Edward Van Halen’s favorite wah had some unique qualities he wanted reproduced, namely a wider sweep and a more vocal High Q inductor. EVH lives in a very particular area of midrange, more defined with a clearer bottom and sweep, so Dunlop cloned the pot from his worn-in original and added an adjustable rocker torque that can be accessed beneath the treadle with a hex wrench.
Sporting iconic graphics, the EVH95 is true-bypass and comes with a pair of blue LEDs. It sits on the rawk side of the aisle, adding a smidgen of volume and seductive clarity. It’s perfect for the in-your-face wah disciple who likes additional oomph. The midrange is tight, the lows don’t go boomy, and the top end is smooth. The longer throw of the rocker makes it easier to locate Schenker-esque sweet spots.
These signature Cry Babies are but two examples of the nuances that can fulfill the needs of the performing guitarist. The BG95 and EVH95 are both solid tools with performance-friendly appointments that will inspire.
This article originally appeared in VG July 2017 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.