Brian Wampler founded Wampler Pedals, Inc. in 2007 as a guitar effects pedal company. Wampler started out by modding existing pedals before making his own designs. Wampler was active in the online DIY pedal-building community and self-published a series of books on guitar pedal design that helped launch the careers of other boutique guitar pedal builders. The very earliest Wampler pedals were made in Brian's garage, before production was moved to a factory in Kentucky and circa 2019 Wampler effects were made and distributed by Boutique Amps Distribution in California.

Source: Wampler pedals website (17 October 2019)

TV Jones

TV Jones was founded by Thomas Vincent Jones in 1993 as a custom guitar and repair shop. Tom had previously learnt his craft in the late 1980s to early 1990s working at The World of Strings in Long Beach, California, where he became known as a go-to guitar tech for many players in the area and around the world. Tom’s interest in the Filter’Tron pickup arose from his association with guitarist Brian Setzer, whose guitars Tom has worked on since 1993. In 1998, Setzer chose Tom’s Hot Rod pickup design in a blind test of many different pickups for the new Gretsch Hot Rod guitar line. That moment launched TV Jones, Inc. into a lively relationship with Fender and Gretsch Guitars. Several months later, Tom became an independent consultant for the Gretsch Guitar Company designing pickups, guitars and more.


Catalinbread Effects was founded in 2003 by Nicholas Harris in Portland, Oregon and has since become well known for its range of pedals including the Echorec and Belle Epoch delays the Dirty Little Secret overdrive. Nicholas Harris was killed in 2016 at the age of 37 when a tree fell on his car.

Source: Catalinbread website (16 October 2019)

Source: Reverb news (2016)

Paracho Elite

Paracho Elite is a brand of LDP Music a distributor based in Madison Heights, MI. The brand is named after the Village of Paracho in the high Sierra Madre Mountains of Mexico. The Paracho Elite range includes handmade stringed instruments for Mariachi and Latin Music.

Source: LDP Music website (16 October 2019)



Kepma was founded in 2009 by Jack Peng & Kevin Liu. Jack and Kevin invested in high tech machinery including an array of CNC machines to cut, mill and fabricate consistent components of their first guitar design, the A1. By 2015, Kepma was the number one acoustic guitar brand in all of China. Kepma also make acoustic guitar pickups, preamps and effects

Source: Kepma website (16 October 2019)

EarthQuaker Devices

EarthQuaker Devices was founded in 2004 by Jamie Stillman in Kent, Ohio. Stillman was a musician who began designing effects pedals after repairing his broken overdrive pedal. The first EarthQuaker production model was the Hoof Fuzz, released in 2007. Up to that point EarthQuaker was a one-man enterprise but the success of the Hoof meant Stillman was able to hire employees and concentrate more on designing new effects. At this point Stillman was operating a 9-person effects factory from his basement in West Akron, Ohio - the range included the Hoof, Grand Orbiter, Disaster Transport, Hummingbird, and Ghost Echo pedals. They moved out of the basement in 2011 and then again in 2015 into a two story factory employing 53 people making over 40 effects products.

Source: EarthQuaker Devices website (13 October 2019)

J. King

Josh King is the creator of J. King guitars out of Orange County, California. Also known as Sound Vessel . Made to order boutique guitar manufacturer


Soulman Guitars was founded by Ron Lamoureux to provide affordable, well-made, custom guitars. All guitars are designed in Canada, hand made in China, and sent to the company’s headquarters in Winnipeg where they are inspected and set up ready for shipping. Soulman only build 6 guitars of one design style at a time. 

See the company website here https://www.soulmanguitars.com/

Source Audio

Source Audio was founded in 2005 by former executives of Analog Devices, Inc., Thomas H, Lee Partners, and Kurzweil,  Their mission was to bring innovation to the audio effects world through the application of cutting edge sensor, networking and signal processing technology. In 2006, Source Audio released its flagship product, the Hot Hand Motion-Sensing Ring. Since that time, Source Audio's delay, reverb, distortion, filter, modulation, equalization, and Hot Hand products have found their way onto the stages and recordings of David Gilmour, U2, David Bowie, John Mayer, Aerosmith, Phish, King Crimson, My Morning Jacket, The Cure, and Victor Wooten to name a few.

Source: Source Audio website (10 October 2019)


JOHN HORNBY SKEWES & Company Limited is a UK musical instrument distributor. It was founded in the 1960s by John Hornby Skewes in Garforth, Leeds, England. Skewes had learned the musical instrument distribution business as a sales rep with Hohner, and British guitar company Fenton-Weill. As the business began to take off Skewes aquired various local storage premises including the old Garforth cinema and car park, the old Victorian Police Station and two Methodist chapels.

JHS was one of the first companies to appreciate the profitability of manufacturing in the Far East. Imported merchandise forms the bulk of the JHS catalogue, with the Far East and the USA playing a prominent role in providing JHS with instruments.


Abasi Concepts was founded in 2017 by Animals as Leaders guitarist Tosin Abasi. Abasi offers the Larada series of ergonomic electric guitars - including 8 string models as well as the Pathos distortion pedal. Tosin Abasi designs the guitars which are made in  luthier Frank Falbo's workshop in Ventura, California.

Source: Abasi website (10 October 2019)


Steven Fryette founded VHT Amplification in Studio City, Los Angeles, California in 1989. Steven Fryette had started out in 1976 as a technician at Valley Arts in California doing repairs and custom work. The company name was changed from VHT to  Steven Fryette Design, Inc in 2009 and began using the Fryette Amplifcation brand name for its products. The VHT brand name is still in use by a different company. Fryette Amplification manufacture hand built electric guitar amplifiers, speaker cabinets, power amplifiers, sound effects pedals and pedalboard accessories.

Source: Fryette Amplification website (8 October 2019)


Jeff and Catherine Genzler started Genzler Amplification in a garage in Phoenix, Arizona. Genzler Amps has since expanded into a community initiative - giving a percentage of each product sold to support local music projects Genzler make bass & acoustic guitar amplifiers and cabinets.

Source: Genzler Amplification website (8 October 2019)

H. Jimenez

Hohner partnered with Mr. Hilario “Layo” Jimenez to bring to the market the H. Jimenez brand of bajo quintos and guitars.  Mr. Jimenez is known worldwide for his handcrafted bajos which he started making in 1975. The Hohner H. Jimenez instruments evolved from their collaboration, and they have design elements from Hilario Jimenez. The H. Jimenez Latin family of instruments includes a vihuela, a guitarron, 3 guitars and 8 bajo quintos.

Source: H. Jimenez website (8 October 2019)

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