iRig AND THE Gorilla

iRig UA and the Gorilla Amplifier

Gorilla GG-20
Years ago I used to do a little guitar playing. I played with a couple of friends in high school, after graduation I played with some different friends, did a short stint as a bass player, and somehow never became famous. After a while I got into having a real life, and being a musician became less of a priority. For a long time I completely stopped playing. After dragging my equipment around for years I finally decided to start getting rid of some of my old stuff. I got rid of a couple of amps, and an effects rack, but I could never bring myself to get rid of the guitars. I just kept them around so that I could look at them and feel guilty for not playing. Then, one day it happened. I started to get the bug to play again. I'd pick up a guitar, play a little bit, but it wasn't all that satisfying. Although it's technically possible to play an electric guitar without an amp, it's just not all that fun.

Time to buy an amp

Rock Box
As I mentioned, most of the gear I'd gotten rid of over the years were my amps. I'm rusty, like 20 years rusty, so it's kind of hard to justify spending much money on an amp. Plus, I'm playing alone, so I don't really need something that projects sound. If I could find a little something that would push to headphones or a portable speaker, I'd be all set. I remembered a little device called a Rock Box from way back when. It was a battery powered effects box that could be used to run into an amp, headphones, whatever. This would be perfect for my needs, but as far as I could tell, the Rock Box was something that had long since gone out of production. However, while searching I came across the iRig by IK Multimedia - IK Multimedia iRig UA universal guitar effects processor and interface for Android devices Get Yours Here! There was a problem. The version they had at the time was only
Kramer Ripley
compatible with iPhone, and I'm an Android user. There's a whole thing about support for sound processing on Android, and devices like this often won't work. Luckily, they soon followed up with the iRig UA that essentially took the original version of the iRig and added an external sound card for general Android support. I was excited because I now had a portable effects box that could output to my headphones or a small portable speaker, and I could jam. The additional features that I hadn't expected blew my mind. I thought I was in for distortion, reverb, and maybe chorus. I didn't expect several amps, different mic options, and several more effects pedals along with presets to help me get started in crafting a sound. Crazy cool. Add to that the multi-track recorder, and I've got a little recording studio in my pocket. It brought new life into the guitar that had been sitting in its case 
Epiphone Les Paul Tribute Plus
mocking me for years. After a while of just playing directly into the headphones I remembered that my parents still had my very first amplifier buried somewhere in their basement, so next time my family was visiting on vacation I went digging. I found it. A Gorilla GG-20. A little terrible sounding beginner practice amp. It's showing it's age with dust in the controls, but with a little cleaning I've gotten the amp functional. Being driven by the iRig UA, it actually sounds pretty damn good. That got me motivated to play more, actually learn some new skills, and add a new guitar to the collection. I'm pretty sure I'm still not going to realize the rock star dream, but all of the toys makes for a really fun little hobby.


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