7 January 2012
280 pages, For Musicians Only Publishing (2004)
If you're into guitar effects, you must own this book. Get some history about your favorite topic, read some great interviews and drool over some amazing photos. It's a great document on a subject that you don't see too many books on. This is a book you'll come back to over and over again.
What makes this book unique is its broad perspective - it fills in and rounds out one's knowledge of effects pedal-related information. Musicians usually know the most about the actual effects of their effects - how they sound with their instruments and amps. Engineers and techs are most familiar with the electronic technicalities, but do not always know much about the history of the effects industry or see the stompbox from the musician's viewpoint. Manufacturers see things mostly from the business perspective, and collectors also have their specialized view - value and rarity.
"Analog Man's Guide to Vintage Effects" opens one's eyes to the broad
role these devices play and have played in our music and culture. Here is an industry of peace - one in which technology is applied purely for good, for pleasure and entertainment.
The first four chapters give us the roots - historical, and particularly fascinating to those that have lived through the evolution of electronics from the radio and record player to today's music-oriented computer applications. Individuals and companies that played a role in effects development are discussed, as are landmark products like the Echoplex, Cry Baby, and Fuzz Face. Electro-Harmonix, Mu-Tron, and MXR among others have interesting histories, and whether still in business or not, have loyal and appreciative fans that will enjoy the stories of their favorite music
industry giants and their creations. Musical pioneers like "Jimi Hendrix" and "Frank Zappa" broke new ground with the stompox, and the stompbox evolved with their historic careers.