Did JHS Uncover the World's First Pedal Demo? On Vinyl?!

As most effects heads are well aware, the first fuzz circuit ever created in pedal form was the Maestro Fuzz-Tone (which you can read more about in Dave Hunter's "First Effects" history). With its release back in the 1960s, it expanded the previous sonic limitations of electric guitarists forever and helped inspire the massive effects market we live in today.

When we think about effects now, we can't help but conjure up friendly faces of our favorite pedal demoers—guys like Reverb's Andy Martin and Joe Shadid, who we rely on to showcase the sounds of a brand-new circuit and help us decide if it's the one for us. But how did brands showcase these early effects before the ubiquity of YouTube? Today, JHS posted a video titled "First Guitar Demo Ever Made" to its YouTube channel that answers that question.

As you'll see in the video above, JHS' Josh Scott finally managed to track down—thanks to the folks at Mills Record Company in Kansas City, Missouri—what he believes is the first actual guitar pedal demo ever recorded.

The demo is a brand advertisement from Maestro, recorded onto a 45 rpm record. As the demo plays, you can hear a voice describing the otherworldly and groundbreaking fuzz effect. And, because it was all brand-new, everything from what the components are to how they connect to your guitar and amplifier were described in loving detail.

Josh explains how Maestro's marketing was focused on the how the fuzz could be used to emulate other instruments. The guitarist on the record explains how, combined with guitar or bass, the pedal could create "organ-like tones, mellow woodwinds and whispering reeds, booming brass and bell-clear horns, plus many, many more." He then runs through a variety of such sounds. Our favorite's the "tuba."

Be sure to check out the full video above to hear for yourself this piece of effects history.

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