Welcome to the Feedback Pedals blog. Petr and I share many things, but one of the things we don’t share is a mother tongue, so, just as the site will be set up very soon in the same way, our blog will be in both Czech for the local CZ crowd, and English for…basically…anyone who understands! We will be posting on a regular basis to keep you up to date on the goings on around FP land. With Feedback Pedals just in its infancy, there is going to be a lot to write about!
With that out of the way, I can maybe get into the guts of what I wanted to look at today and that is – Why does Feedback Pedals actually exist? Well, let me break it down for you!
Why did we start Feedbackpedals.com?
So why in the hell do we exist? What makes us want to open up an eshop and start selling boutique pedals? This is a question that can be answered very easily and in very few words…but then, I don’t want to do that, now do i?
Well, first, Petr and I are musicians….we both play guitar. I’ll be honest – neither of us are amazing musicians. We are not able to give clinics, not top selling artists to any stretch of the imagination, and we are not in a position to put our life on hold to break open the music scene in Prague, Czech Rep., Europe, or whatever, to make it as musicians. Despite that, we love our guitars, and we love finding the best, most unique sounds to make the music we love when recording and/or gigging with our band. This takes a special combination of creativity and having the right equipment – i.e. the right pedals!
Because of this, we don’t normally look for your standard stompbox made by some machine in that manufacturing capital of the world country (you know which one!). We prefer boutique pedals. It is an industry that has exploded in the last 20 years as an answer to the cost-cutting, low quality pedals that were being hashed out in the mid-80s to late 90s.
We have a special affinity for boutique pedals for a few reasons:
They are fully handmade by people that care about the sound they produce and the craftsmanship that goes into creating that sound.
They are created in small batches. This means that, if you don’t want to sound the same as the opening band that just came off stage, or every other band around town, boutique pedals give you the possibility to create a truly unique tone that people identify as YOU.
The creativity that goes into designing and building these boutique pedals provide sonic possibilities, you won’t find anywhere else, but in that pedal.
We really prefer to support small businesses and truly innovative designers that base their livelihood on their creations and those that are more worried about the product than the marketing campaign.
And where were we able to find these boutique pedals around the Czech Republic? Well, simply put – nowhere! We would have to order them online, hope that they are willing to ship directly to Central/Eastern Europe (the categorization of CZ keeps changing!), then wait sometimes up to 2 months for it to arrive in Prague. After that, we would have to deal with customs, etc. We were always looking forward to it like a second Christmas, but it was a pain in the ass!
So…we decided this pain in the ass doesn’t need to exist. We decided this pain in the ass needs to be put to rest. We started Feedbackpedals.com to bring these boutique, high end, handmade pedals directly to you…no pain, only gain! Sweet ravaging gain!
What did we want to accomplish?
Even your average beginner guitarist knows about iconic pedals like Electro-harmonix Big Muff, Line-6 DL4, Ibanez Tubescreamer, Dunlop Cry Baby, and Boss Blues Driver. All amazing pedals and all have been used for some of the most famous recordings ever created! We are also not saying these should not be in your arsenal. I have a Cry Baby and Tubescreamer on my board. Petr has a Big Muff. We both have Boss pedals. They were some of the first pedals we bought and we still use them up to today.
However, the day that I decided I needed to add a fuzz, I knew that I didn’t want a Muff…and I didn’t want a Fuzzface, I didn’t want anything that I would see on the boards of every one of our fellow guitarists. I wanted a pedal that would create havoc, a pedal that was a chainsaw cutting through all of sound and making me sound like no other. I found Devi Ever’s Truly Beautiful Disaster. It took me weeks…definitely a few months to get it! But ever since I got it, EVERY guitarist I meet at our shows asks me “What is that thing??!!” because the sounds you can create with it are nothing you can find on any other pedal! Devi Ever has since changed her business model, but at that time, she was creating the pedals herself in her workshop and did not have any type of distribution model in place, even though she was (and still is) considered the Goddess of Fuzz! If only pedals like that could be found in an easier way when you are searching your standard Muziker and Kytary.cz sites. It would be easier for the us to get them, and easier for the boutique producer because it creates a greater and easier market to gain access to.
We were just thinking – imagine if we could get these brands that we love… like Earthquaker Devices, Fairfield Circuitry, Death By Audio …but have no decent access to – the whole music community in Prague would be better off! Our focus at Feedback Pedals is to find those brands that are well known in the guitarist/musicians community but don’t have the reach to be sold in Central and Eastern Europe through the “giants”. This is precisely what we wanted to accomplish – and these brands are just the start. We will have accomplished our goal when we know that you know where to go to get what nobody else has. THAT pedal!
What can you look forward to?
Feedback Pedals has been put on this earth for one reason – to connect musicians in Czech Republic and Central and Eastern Europe to small producers of some of the finest musical tools you can find anywhere in the world. Make no mistake, we are at the beginning and are nowhere near the size, depth and breadth of what our final product line will look like. We have many award winning brands already in stock. There are brands that come from my home country – like Fairfield Circuitry and Dr. Scientist (comes from my birthplace!) and other brands based in the US like Xotic Effects, Daredevil and Old Blood Noise Endeavors. There are some brands that you will see on the boards of the most famous bands in the world like Earthquaker Devices and Death By Audio – we are talking Radiohead, The Black Keys, St. Vincent, Nine Inch Nails, Flaming Lips, Broken Social Scene, The War on Drugs…and other producers that do not have the star spectacle connections yet but, with the quality they churn out, it won’t take long!
The industry is absolutely packed with new and exciting pedal makers, as well as very well established brands that remain, to this day, small and true to their origins. At the same time, an industry that has approximately 5 new additions per week is sometimes hard to navigate and weed out the real players vs the pretenders. We relish the idea of doing all that searching and weeding out and are always looking at new brands to find the right fit for Feedback Pedals. We already have a long list of future potential partner – a list much bigger than our budget! So let’s see where it goes and let’s start making beautiful sounds!