This week’s featured piece of gear is the Dunlop Cry Baby! It is one of the world’s most popular wah-wah pedals. It is commonly used when a guitarist is soloing, or to create a “wacka-wacka” funk styled rhythm. The “wah-wah” effect was originally intended to imitate the supposed crying tone that a muted trumpet produced, but has become an expressive tool in its own way. The original pedals were popularized by guitarists such as Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, and David Gilmour, though many artists have developed signature sounds with them since.
The name Cry Baby was from the original pedal from which it was copied, the Vox Cry Baby wah-wah, first manufactured in 1966. Vox failed to register the name as a trademark, leaving it open for Dunlop. More recently, Dunlop manufactured the Vox pedals under licence, although this is no longer the case.
Other famous users of the Cry Baby include Buddy Guy, Dimebag Darrell, Zakk Wylde, Slash, Eddie Van Halen, Kirk Hammett, Jerry Cantrell, John Petrucci, and Joe Bonamassa.
Check out this video for a demo on a few different versions of the Cry Baby!
What’s your go-to wah pedal, and how do you feel about Cry Baby wahs? We’re currently offering online video conference lessons if you’re looking to chat gear with a professional!
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