Here is a pic of me with "the man" himself - Jim Marshall.  This was quite an honor for me to get my picture taken with him!!

randyjim s2


A true legend among legends, Ted McCarty graciously posed for this picture with me in the Paul Reed Smith booth at the 2000 Nashville NAMM show.    He also took the time to speak with me at length about the music business.



Back in 1978, when I graduated high school, I wrote a letter to Seth Lover (inventor of the humbucking pickup, among other things) asking about increasing pickup output, getting a schematic for my Fender Bassman amp, and his thoughts on putting a master volume control in it.  He wrote back this letter, which is now one of my most prized memorabilia items.



In addition to electronics,  guitars, and amps, I was big into space stuff when I was a kid, so, of course, I bothered NASA constantly for pictures and info. Here is a scan of the autographed picture I got from Neil Armstrong in 1971.



This is me hamming it up at a small airport in SC after a fun day of flying around in a cool little Grumman AA-1.



 You Might Be a Tubeneck if...

1.   You can remember the pinouts for 150 tubes but forget your anniversary.
2.   Your wife tells you to turn up the heater and you ask her how many volts?
3.   You make your son keep his solid state amp at his friends house.
4.   You've ever been thrown out of the local land fill for pillaging old stereo chassis.
5.   Your kids think "Plexi Palace" is the castle at Disneyworld.
6.   You have more amps than guitars.
7.   You've ever used a tube for a guitar slide.
8.   There's a set of EL34s' on the mantle next to the family portrait.
9.   None of your tube amps are in their cases.
10. You cry when your kids get you a matched pair of KT88s' for fathers day.
11. The inside of your Dual-Showman is cleaner than the inside of your Monte Carlo.
12. You keep an AC30 chassis upside down on top of the TV.
13. Your little girl asks you for an orange and you say "vintage or reissue?"
14. There are a couple 12AX7s dangling on a string from your rear-view mirror.
15. You have a pin straightener in your pocket.
16. You can set the bias on your amp but not the clock on the VCR.
17. You send your boy to his room for using the "transistor word" in front of guests.
18. You build a tube-type CD player.
19. You can tell the difference between an original Mullard box and a fake.
20. You know what a Mullard is.
21. Your TV doesn't have a remote control because it was made in 1952.
22. Your baby's first word is "Pentode".
23. VintageAmps.com is your homepage.
24. You look at your amp more than you play it.
25. You have a Fender name-plate on your key ring.
26. All your amps are facing the wall, so you can see the tubes.
27. You hear someone say "marshall" on a late-night western, and you wake up.
28. You fantasize about being a lawman of the old west, named "Marshall Vox".
29. You wonder why they don't pose girls in bikinis with amps instead of stupid old sports cars.
30. You read "Tube-Amp Digest" at the nude beach.
31. You have "Plexi's Rule" tattooed somewhere on your body.
32. A tear comes to your eye when you look at the pictures of Victor's workshop.
33. You refuse to listen to a band that uses "solid state" amps.
34. There's a portrait of "Jim Marshall" over your fireplace.
35. Your tube collection is insured with "Lloyds of London".
36. There's a 5U4GB wired in place of the blown power rectifier in your computer.
37. You and the family spend your 2 week vacation touring the "Marshall factory".
38. You have pictures of your amps in your wallet.
39. You have a "Tubes I need" list in your wallet.
40. You can remember the plate dissipation wattage of a 6L6GC, but forget to bring home a gallon of milk.
41. You keep a copy of "The Tube Amp Book" in the bathroom.
42. You know who "Aspen Pittman" is.
43. You think 6550s look kinda' sexy.
44. You want to be buried in a SUNN 6x12 cab when you die.
45. You own a $2,500 amplifier and drive a $300 car.
46. Your wife says "is that a tube in your pocket, or are you just glad to see me?" and it's a tube.
47. You know what year your Magnatone was made, but you can't remember how old your kids are.
48. You have Altec-Lansing end tables.
49. You think your 1964 Philco phonograph sounds better than your neighbors $8,000 Pioneer.
50. You dream of winning the lottery and buying out Ampeg.

- Ray Gilliam, Phd BS -

"You Might Be a Tubeneck If..."

Copyright © 1999,  Ray Gilliam.  May not be reproduced in any form without written approval from the author.

 Originally appeared on the vintageamps.com website, posted here with permission from Ray Gilliam.