(The LEGEND himself, pictured above, RIP)
(well, it's ONE louder!)
Seriously, it's the word that everyone knows when you think of rock n' roll amplifiers! Even if you have never had a guitar in your hands, you likely know that white cursive writing that elegantly adorns stage around the world- and has for decades.
It's Jim Marshall, and his namesake revolutionary amplifiers that directly and indirectly caused musical and stylistic tidal waves in trends that still resonate to this day. Hard to believe, one man, in a simple quest to provide a voice for the electric signal produced by a series of metal strings and magnets attached to a piece of wood, could start such a revolution of tone.
At first, amp pickings were slim, but now in 2014, dammit I mean 2015, amplifier variety is worse than standing in the peanut butter aisle in your local grocery store. Every size, shape, variety, and flavor are thrown at you, claiming to be the one trick pony, the solution to your tonal woes, or the magical sauce needed for your musical style.
So with all the new shit out there right now, why would you want to go with a Marshall? Well, the pros all still use them, and despite the fact that legendary innovator/inventor/engineer/amp designer Jim Marshall has passed away, his products continue to keep sounds alive both old school and new! In fact, if there's a musical album or recorded guitar track you've heard and obsess over, even by an artist that might endorse another brand, the likelihood is very high your song was tracked on a Marshall, if not only as a layer! The amps are simply a historic ingredient in a tasty recipe, if not just a mere sprinkle of rock goodness.
These amps continue to be offered in new incarnations, to fit the bill for dozens of different player's styles. With a million overdrives, tube amps, cabinets, etc, out there that are constantly thrown in guitarist's faces, how do we have a sound that sounds like us? Besides the biggest piece of tone control- your hands; the ability to combine unique gear is the next step to branch out and do your own thing as an artist.
(What is this sorcery?!?!)
Marshall, along countless other brands offer a huge variety of tube and solid state heads in the never ending battle of what head does what best. Then you can combine said head with a wooden enclosure of speakers that further shapes your tone. And on and on it goes until you end up in pedalboard therapy.... but I digress....
So again, we all know the "wall of Marshalls" look which has made an appearance on almost every rock stage since the 60s, every teenage boy's dreamscape, and even in music videos!
I mean, only The Darkness can take walls of amplifiers to such amazing levels of hilarity!
All joking aside, no roadies were hurt during the filming of this video, and if you want to own the Marshall sound and not look like an aging rock cliche of black tolex and piping, how the hell can you spruce yourself up!? I mean, I'm not even going to entertain the idea of hiding your amps on stage behind some cheap PVC piping and stage scrim banners.... What are you, an amateur?!
Let's go pro and show off that sexy amp rig that you built. We're all gear heads and we all LOVE gear porn!
We've seen custom guitar rigs built for the pros, and yes, they are always drool worthy, After you see so many black or white or sometimes purple amps, seeing one decked out in a band's album artwork or other designs just looks killer, and with stage lights and everything else, comes across as pure rock heroism!
I mean just look at John Petrucci's Dream Theater custom Mesa/Boogie rig!!!!
(that's right, I just put a Mesa/Boogie picture in an article all about Marshall!)
Petrucci rules, and so does his custom rig.
Am I right, or am I right?!
So Marshall has decided to step up their game, and offer this same customization, only wow, make sure you're sitting down.
You can do ANYTHING to your amp's appearance, and you don't have to be a pro touring musician!!!
Marshall is offering the same services that high end German automobile makers offer their clients- options of changing look, texture, feel, and much more, to make sure your amp and rig are quintessentially YOU. And really, if you're dropping the dough on a new rig that you want to show off your art, why not have something that reflects both who you are and how you sound?
So, Marshall is giving players the option to take a classic Marshall amplifier, and make it THEIR OWN! Check it out:
Everyone has a unique sound. So why not have a unique amp. That’s what Design Store is all about.
Whatever image you want for your band, get an amp that goes with it. Choose the colours, graphics, vinyls and frets you want. We can do pretty much anything.
Want to create your own full-on custom amp? You’ve come to the right place. If you can imagine it, we can probably build it.
You’ve got all the Factory Fitted options at your disposal, plus the added difference of changing the amp’s spec to fit the way you play. Customise the switches, dials, speakers and front panels. Just tell us what you want and we’ll see if we can make it happen.
Want an all-white amp – no problem. Or how about a snake-skin finish with a basket weave fret. Pick from our sample palette of coverings, grille cloth, logo, piping and beadings –and we’ll do the rest.
Yes, Marshall, I want all of those things!!!
I think my favorite line here, is "Customise the switches, dials, speakers and front panels. Just tell us
what you want and we’ll see if we can make it happen". I mean, that is some serious generosity and faith in a customer base- the fact that Marshall is willing to open their doors and do their best to give you exactly what you want. I mean, we all know this isn't going to be cheap, but really things of this caliber never are. DW drums has been doing custom drums that are handmade for years now, and that is why they have risen to the top. You may have to refinance your house to buy them, but you get what you pay for. Marshall is taking their classic and now-legendary sound and making it modern and yours- which should easily make it worth the extra $$. So granted, this totally custom, modded and pimped out chop shop for Marshall is not for everyone; not for your nephew and his strat pack, nor for that friend who noodles around playing "Wonderwall" at the frat house. But for those gigging players who take their look and sound seriously, and LOVE the art of guitar, well, this is exactly what you have been waiting for!!
Where do I sign up?!?!
Seriously, go explore!
And if you end up making a custom amp and getting it built, email your designs to GUITARS@FRET12.com so we can all drool together!