Blues Traveler’s John Popper recently upgraded his traveling rig from the Eventide H3000 to the new H8000A Ultra-Harmonizer® effects processor. The H8000A delivers processing power and expanded analog I/O, ideal for the road warrior conditions of heavy touring acts like Blues Traveler.
Few bands log as many miles year-in and year-out as Blues Traveler. The rigorous tour schedule is as demanding on the gear as it is on the band and crew. So when Popper asked stage manager and tech Fisher Essenfeld to update his rig and make it more reliable for shows without compromising any of his decades-old signature settings, Essenfeld turned to Eventide.
“John had been using an Eventide H3000 for years as a staple of his rig,” said Essenfeld. “It was so trusted, he used it as his go-to patch; old number nine was his default. The rig was piled together over the years and he wanted to rework it and make it more intuitive and seaworthy for live shows. That’s when I looked at ways to upgrade the gear but still maintain the basics of his sounds. John doesn’t necessarily know how it’s all patched together, but he sure knows how to use it. Now he has a greater sense of control and the sound is better than ever.”
The Ultra-Harmonizer processor was so successful on a recent string of overseas dates that Essenfeld plans to build a second touring rack with another H8000A as the centerpiece. “The level of control is truly amazing,” he said. “When John pulls off the mic, he is able to create completely new tones, adding to the already overwhelming soundscape. John is very happy with the outcome so far, and we are just scratching the surface of possibilities.”