Gear Rundown: Creed’s 2001 Dallas Cowboys Half-Time Show

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Gear Rundown: Creed’s 2001 Dallas Cowboys Half-Time Show

Words by Lewis Noke Edwards

The performed in the middle of the field, cheerleaders surrounding them, a handful of men swinging about the stadium in ribbons.

Creed are a Floridian rock band who had huge success in the late 90s, their smash-hit “With Arms Wide Open”, followed closely by “Higher” and “My Sacrifice”. They’re having a bit of a moment in 2023, which has led videos of famously extravagant performance at a half-time show at a Dallas Cowboys match in 2001 to resurface.

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Creed Half-Time Show 2001

Acrobats on ribbons were accompanied by a choir, other dancers adding to the spectacle. Frontman Scott Stapp sports a Dallas Cowboys jersey with his own name emblazoned on the back, and guitarist Mark Tremonti is playing one of the most 2001-esque rigs we’ve ever come across. What exactly is he and the band using? Let’s dive in.

Mark Tremonti

Mark Tremonti has gone on to perform solo, as well as with Alter Bridge. He has a growing list of signature model equipment, from guitars to amps to wah pedals, and has been using PRS for decades, as you can see in this video.

PRS Tremonti 2001

Tremonti is playing his own signature PRS here, possibly the first year of production, 2001. The 2001 PRS Tremonti had dual humbuckers, the neck position pickup being covered vs. the uncovered humbucker in the bridge. This offers a little more output from the bridge, the thin sheet of metal covering the neck pickup and warming it up a bit. The cover also rounds off some of the attack for a fatter tone overall. Eagled-eyed readers (myself included) will notice he’s switched to the bridge position mostly!

The 2001 has a ‘Mark Tremonti’ inlay on the 12th fret that covers almost all the space between the 11th and 12th fret. Other frets were marked by PRS’s classic ‘Birds’ inlays. It’s a hard-tail design, with the wraparound-style bridge and adjustable saddles for intonation. 

Line 6 POD Pro

This is where things get very 2001. Tremonti is playing a pair of amplifier stacks: Fender combos on top of Mesa 412 cabinets. Beside them is a rack system containing a Line 6 POD Pro, recognizable because of its bright red exterior. A Mesa Rectifier (either Dual or triple) sits on top of the rack cases.

The Line 6 POD Pro was the ‘Pro’ version of the famous Line 6 “kidney”, and one of the first commercially available amp modellers. It featured 16 amp models ranging from ‘Modern Class A’, ‘Black Panel’ and ‘Tweed Blues’ to ‘Fuzz Box’ and the now infamous ‘Line 6 Insane’ mode. From here, it had a gain and EQ section, followed by onboard effects. The Effects selection doubled as a ‘cabinet’ selection, allowing you to send signal direct from the unit via XLR to front of house or a recording rig.

Mesa Boogie & Fender

Presumably, the (possibly stereo) Fender rig would have been the clean side of things, while the Mesa Rectifier and POD Pro handled the gain and effects.

Mesa rectifiers were very famous during the 90s and 2000s, and while still used extensively, they’ve cooled off a little. Mesa Rectifiers (available in either Dual or Triple configurations) are a multi-channel amp with multiple voicing and power options. They’re known for their cutting mid range, bitey attack and controlled low end.

Brian Marshall

Ernie Ball Music Man 5-String StingRay

Creed’s music, while generally defined as rock, moves through multiple genres. Because of this, Creed’s bassist relies on a five-string bass to give him extra flexibility for either sub-low notes or more standard four-string rock. He was using one in 2001 and still uses one in Creed today!

The StingRay features a humbucking pickup in the bridge position. It has a three-way toggle for switching the coils into series or parallel, as well as engaging a filter in the middle position.

Brian Marshall

Ampeg 810 “Fridge”

Marshall is amplified by an Ampeg rig, his subby tones powering out of two Ampeg 810 cabinets, colloquially known as the “Fridge”. The size of the cabinet needed to contain the eight 10” speakers makes the cabinet about head height, Marshall having one set vertically and another horizontally on the stage.

Scott Stapp

“Stapp” Cowboys Jersey #11

As iconic as any other piece of gear on the stage, Stapp’s own Dallas Cowboys jersey really takes the cake. Emblazoned with his own name and the number “11”. It’s important to note there was no number 11 on the Cowboys’ roster in 2001!

Scott Stapp

Keep reading about half time shows here.