Boss RC3 looper and hotel California

OK I have a boss RC 3 looper for years dusty , I hardly use it . It seems it needs a creative mind and that is what I probably do not have it that much.

Now I am trying to record Hotel California but am stuck the first part is OK but when it comes to

“Welcome to the hotel California such a lovely …”
I need complete a new round of chords ,

This guy is doing it

but he seems he is not using RC3 :frowning:

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An RC3 looper allows you to record, play and overdub one loop. You almost certainly need a looper that allows you to build multiple loops so you can have different loops for each part of the song which can then stop and play when needed. Look at some of the bigger boss loop stations.

He is using an RC300.

Wow, that is not correct. You can do this. I found it

No it IS correct. The RC3 is a single loop station ( not multi loop like the RC300). What that guy is showing you is how to use memory slots to save different chord progressions from the single loop… then you can use an external switch to move between them. That is great in a home environment ( which may be all you want) but not in a live one. Not dissimilar to saving parts and building a song in something like a Trio Plus.

You can still also only have that one loop playing whereas on the bigger boss loopers you can trigger any of them for some nice complex songs.


To clarify (hopefully) if you want to use prebuilt backing tracks or segments of backing tracks for a song, and then switch between them for a performance, you can do this with the RC-3.

If you want to do a full looper performance with multiple parts and record them on the fly and then seamlessly switch between them, you can’t do this on an RC-3 (or any other single track looper, like the Ditto, etc.).

This is where multi-track loopers like the RC-300, RC-10R, RC-500, etc. come in.



Just now I ordered an external switch but do you guys mean that I won’t be able to record my song ? this way?

I would say no you are not going to be able to do exactly the same BUT you might get close.

If you watch his video you’ll see he puts his first three parts ( percussion and some rythmn) on three loops ( watch how his foot presses a different pedal each time). He then plays the verses and records this on a separate loop before I think arpegiating over it as he sings. When he goes into the chorus he turns this loop off and then plays the chorus. Not sure if he records the chorus on another loop as we don’t see his feet.

So if you use the “memory slots” as per that video you’ll need to build one for the verse including percussion etc ( unless you use built in drums if the RC3 has them) and then another for your chorus. You can use overdubs on each one to build the parts. Then use the foot switch to switch between them. It will need to be simpler than the guy is demonstrating. You can have a go already without waiting for the foot switch. Just use it as described in the video. I can potentially see syncing issues if you try and build percussion on the two loops. Give it a go.

You won’t be able to record the song in a seamless way as in the original video. You will have to keep stopping and saving each section, then clicking to move onto the next one.

Each time you move from one memory slot to the next, you will lose the previous recording unless you write it to the memory. This involves stopping the looper, pressing the write button, and waiting for it to finish writing before advancing to the next memory slot.

So, if you had three sections to the song: intro, verse and chorus, you would have to do the following (I’m assuming you are using memory slots 1, 2 and 3 for these, but it could be any adjacent memory slots):

  • In memory slot 1, record the intro loop with any overdubs. Then stop the playback (so silence) press the write button, wait for it to save (a second or two) then click the arrow button to move to memory slot 2

  • In memory slot 2, record the verse loop with any overdubs. Then stop the playback (so silence) press the write button, wait for it to save (a second or two) then click the arrow button to move to memory slot 2

  • In memory slot 3, record the chorus loop with any overdubs. Then stop the playback (so silence) press the write button, wait for it to save (a second or two) then click the arrow button to move back to memory slot 1.

You can then start your performance starting with memory slot 1 and clicking the arrow button to move between the three memory slots. In this case, the footswitch will help as you can use the footswitch to move between memory slots.

What you cannot do is to build the loops on the fly as part of a continuous performance. You have to pre-record them in advance of your performance. This could be done several days or weeks in advance (as once recorded into a memory slot it will stay there until erased) or you could build the section loops immediately before your performance.

But, either way, the building of these loops cannot be a part of a continuous performance like it is in the video you posted. It will be a stop-start affair whilst you build each section, save it, and move onto the next slot.

If you want a continuous performance where you build each part as part of a continuous performance (no stopping the music to write each section), then you need a multi-track looper like the RC-300.



Wow thanks for your time for all those details. OK I buy a new looper , Will you recommend RC-300 or 500 ? I was thinking of RC 500

It depends how many guitar parts you want to build, and what other features you want.

I believe the RC-500 has two tracks which you either use in parallel or in serial (one after another).

The RC-300 has 3 tracks so would be a more versatile unit.



Thanks it seems I do not need those extra device support RC-300 give so I just placed my order for RC-500 thanks a lot . Now I have a RC-3 that I have had for years but almost never used it . Will that come in handy or do people use that along with other loopers or should I sell it ?

I received an email from the supplier telling me that they did not have RC-500 in stock so they just canceled my order :slight_smile: So now perhaps I need to think it over and see what I want :slight_smile:

another option to think about is the RC 10R.