These are some things that I have come to believe over the past 40+ years of building and servicing amps and playing music. The list continues to evolve, but it has served as a pretty good guideline for my business operations. Although these assertions were developed over a long period of time, they were first ‘officially’ captured in February of 2015 as a part of an online article for the Tone Movement series by Mojotone, and most recently edited in January, 2020.
I reserve the right to change my mind at any time.
Assertions (in no particular order):
- Never stop learning.
- I never learn more than when I am wrong. ¹
- The rig is a system. The system includes the player, the context, and subjective preference as well as every bit of gear.
- Trust your ears, but be aware that they can fool you.
- Take a position of curiosity, rather than defensiveness.
- A person with an experience is never at the mercy of a person with an argument.
- A sample size of 1 is not necessarily representative.
- Listening is a skill. Ears can be educated.
- Don’t oversimplify the issue.
- Don’t overcomplicate the issue.
- Understand why, not just how.
- Be thorough. Half measures will come back to bite you.
- The buck stops here.
- Guitar amps and Hi-Fi amps serve different purposes.
- There is no “Best.”
- In matters of taste, there can be no argument.
- The three-legged stool: Safe, Reliable, Sounds Great.
- There is no reliable bellwether for tech competence.
- Ultimately, it’s about the music.
¹ Thanks, and a tip of the hat to Rob Siegel, The Hack Mechanic.