Christian Nesmith: Producer, Guitarist, Line 6 Evangelist
Christian Nesmith, son of Monkee Mike Nesmith, has a very full plate these days. He’s always involved as a guitarist in numerous bands, most recently the Cindy Alexander Band, but lately he has been heavily involved in producing singer/songwriter Circe. In his spare time, which is in very short supply, Christian starred in a DVD for Vetta II and Variax, available soon at www.line6.com. Whether he’s playing live or in the studio, Christian relies on Line 6 for his sound. He is currently in possession of Variax 700 & 500, Pod 2.0 & XT, Vetta I with Vetta II software, 412 Straight Cab, Spider II112, Mod Pro, and Variax Acoustic 700. Whew! We recently sat down with Christian to chat about his obsession.
Where did you first hear about Line 6?
I first was aware of Line 6 via Guitar Center ads for the POD. At first I was skeptical, but then Ty Tabor of King's X told me he was using it for the album they were recording at the time. He played me some tracks and I was truly blown away.
What Line 6 gear are you using and how are you using it?
I have a POD 2.0 and XT. I have the Vetta I with the Vetta II software running through a Line 6 straight 412 cab in stereo. I have a Spider II 112, which is invaluable for club work. I have a Mod Pro and finally I have a Variax 500 and 700. The PODs are primarily for studio work and the Vetta and Spider II are for live although the Vetta has been recorded both direct and miked with great results. Also, since getting my Variax, I haven't used another electric guitar live or in the studio. Really.
How have our products changed the way you work?
It has completely freed me from compromise. Too often do we musicians have a sound in our head, and because we don't have the exact guitar and amp in our arsenal to get that sound, we try and force one guitar or amp to sound like another, usually with less than satisfactory results. Now, between the Variax and the Vetta, if I want a 335 through a Boogie MkII or a Ricky 12 through an AC30 or just a good ol' Les Paul or Strat through a Marshall all I have to do is dial it up. The possibilities are nearly infinite.
What are your favorite settings on the gear you use and why?
Again, because of the flexibility of my Line 6 gear, there is no need to settle for just one or two tones anymore. Though I will say that I'm particularly pleased with the Marshall Jubilee model in conjunction with the Line 6 "Big Bottom" for crushing rock and the Blackface Deluxe is always a standard go to for clean bright spanky tones that cut. The Variax's Ricky 6 and 12, the Gretch Silverjet, and the Tele in the bridge pickup are particularly stellar. And I love to see the look on friends and colleagues faces when I break out the Coral electric sitar model. That sound alone is worth the price of the guitar.
Any final comments?
Line 6 to me equals freedom. Whatever I can think up (and a few things I can't) are right at the tips of my fingers. There is no situation, live or studio, that I don't walk into with complete confidence because I know my gear can deliver anything I or the artist or client I'm working for wants. Line 6 gear is an incredible demonstration of intelligence, dedication and love of music and the equipment professionals need to make that music.