The Boss BCB6 Pedalboard

April 17, 2020

As a companion to my Ask Zac episode on my 1992 Boss BCB6 pedalboard, here is some history on the unit.

Released in 1983, it was the first carrying case and pedalboard commercially, that along with the PSM-5, could provide power via a daisy chain for up to 7 pedals. It quickly became an industry standard, and was seen on stages and television all over the world.

A page from the 1984 Roland/Boss Catalog

Although you were limited to Boss size or smaller pedals, you could carefully remove some plastic and fit Ibanez or other pedals. Here is my board, and you can see how I enlarged a spot to fit larger pedals.

Below are some examples of how various players used this board.

Duke Levine in the early 2000s with a BCB6. Note the TU-2 tuner, CS-2 compressor, gold Klon, DD-2 delay, Demeter Tremulator, DM-2 delay, VB-2 vibrato, and what looks to be a Diaz trem not plugged in. Also an Ernie Ball volume pedal at the beginning of the chain.

Larry Campbell onstage with Dylan. BCB6 to the side with a PSM5, BD-2, TS9, TR-2 trem, Boss DD delay, and Boss Reverb

Joe Walsh used one during the 80s and 90s. If you watch the Eagles performance at the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame, you can see that Walsh is using one, as he also used one for his performances with the first Ringo Starr's All Star Band, and performances on Night Music.

Eagles pedalboards. The middle one is the late Glenn Frey's BCB6 with a PSM5, DS-1 Distortion, (2) DD-3 delays, and a CH-1 Super Chorus.

Gary Moore's early 80's unit, with PSM5, BF-2 Flanger, OC-2 Octave, DM-2 delay, and CE-3 Chorus. DS-1 off to the side.

Here is Gary Moore, demonstrating the above pedalboard on the BBC series, Rock School, from 1983/84. The amount of hiss is incredible! He must have the amps on stun.

Former Hall & Oats guitarist, Pat Buchanan with a BCB6. PSM5, and presumably a DD-5 utilizing the tap tempo pedal.

Les Paul's BCB6 with GE7, DD2/3, PN-2 Trem/Pan, Boss DD2/3, CH-1 Super Chorus, and TU-2 tuner.

The worlds most visible BCB6. Sid McGinnis used this board on Letterman for decades. Boss Noise Suppressor, PSM5, TS9, DS-1 with AM mod, BF-2 flanger, DD-3 Delay, and Demeter Tremulator. Photo comes from Analog Man's old site.

John Jorgenson's BCB6. TU-2, TS5, TS808, DC-2 Dimension, DD-2 delay, RV-2 reverb. He has used this same setup since the Hellecaster days. In the early days of the DRB, he used a BCB6 with a GE-7(for mandolin), VB-2, DC-2, and (2) DD-2 delays one set for "Price I Pay" with a dotted eighth note repeat.

Hiram Bullock's BCB6 with PSM5, OC-2, CS-3, BD-2, and PS-5 Super Shifter

Robert Smith's Cure board with lots of friends nearby.

Hellecaster, Will Ray's BCB6. CS-3 comp, PS-2 Pitch Shifter, VB-2 Vibrato, Maxon OD9, Sparkle Drive, and DD-2 delay

I have included this as I remembered seeing this on TV in 1988. Although a bit fuzzy, here is a screenshot of Dan Dugmore's pedal board that he used for guitar on the oft seen "James Taylor Live" concert that was used during PBS fund drives for many years. Dugmore stated in Dan Forte's 1984 GP article that he used a TS-808, Boss CE-2, and Boss DM-2.