David Gilmour’s Leslie Guitar on YouTube.
Hi, welcome to an episode of “Thinking Inside the Box” on Noah’s Ark. In the video, we’re going to talk about how to recreate an effect I call “Leslie Guitar”. The effect can be heard on many songs but my favorite example of it is on the Led Zeppelin outtake “Baby Come On Home”, appearing as a bonus track on the last postumous 1982 album Coda.
The Leslie speaker suprisingly fits the electric guitar signal flow quite nicely since many of the vintage stompbox effects tried to replicate this kind of effect. Originally conceived as a rotating speaker for the organ, its characteristic horn produces an effect familiar to all of us called the Doppler Effect.
You most likely heard this effect today as we speak, as police cars in the streets exhibit this effect on a daily basis. It describes the phenomenon in which pitch tends to rise as the car approaches us and fall when it distances itself from us. This natural effect is related to the fact that the wavelength of the sound wave is modified due to the movement of the sound source and therefore the pitch varies.
A similar phenomenon occurs when the Leslie horns are spinning and this rapid succession of pitch changes produces a natural vibrato effect.
To find out more about David Gilmour’s leslie guitar sound, you can watch the video above or on YouTube here.