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Luthier Spotlight: Hans-Peter Wilfer of Warwick



We are very honored to bring you Hans-Peter Wilfer of Warwick, who is celebrating its 35th anniversary on September 13th, 2017, and 70th anniversary with Framus!

Photos courtesy of Framus & Warwick Music USA, Inc. Opening photo, Hans-Peter Wilfer with Hölderlin 1978.

Office in Pretzfeld

How did you learn about building instruments? 

I am self-taught. I started at the age of 9 or 10 years old, working in the factory of my father’s company. It was more playing than anything since I was a kid working in production. I never had the chance to make an adjunction through the bankruptcy of my father’s company in 1974. I first started working as a sales rep at the age of 18 years (1976) during the day and at night I was working in the workshop of my father’s interim company. At 24 years, I finally founded my own small workshop on the 13th of September 1982.  I was a complete entrepreneur in the field and learned what I know all by my own experiences.

When did you build your first bass and how did you come up with the design?  

My first Basses in early 1982 were a copy of a Fender Bass, but I stopped building those soon after; only a few pieces were made. My second Bass was the TV Bass.

Warwick TV Bass

I made a few more pieces but my real first own Bass Model was the Warwick Nobby Meidel Bass.

Warwick Nobby Meidel Bass

Here you can find pictures on our website from it. The Nobby Meidel Bass was the start of my company in the Bass world.

How do you select the woods you choose to build with?

In the 80’s the market was influenced by company’s like Steinberger, Status, Modulus and the Bass world was asking for this kind of sound. After thinking about it I thought, I didn`t have a clue how to make Graphite composed products. So, I was thinking about how I could get over this lack of knowledge and what I could. I found my luck, by accident, in Wenge wood.

Wenge is extremely hard, still flexible and for me it was the perfect wood to exchange traditional woods like Maple or Mahagony for necks. Wenge was going in the direction of Graphite with its hardness and stability but it still sounded like wood.

In the same moment, our TRADEMARK SLOGAN, “THE SOUND OF WOOD,” which I invented as well, was born.

Besides Wenge, I discovered Bubinga Wood and made it popular for Instruments alongside other woods like Ovangkol and Zebrano Wood, which nobody was using at all in the instrumental business.

So, after a short while Warwick got know for these kinds of extreme hard woods and it came to be our Trademark and still standing today for the Company.

Many other companies are following me today by using Bubinga, Zebrano or Wenge for Fingerboards. Ovangkol is an unestablished wood. But in the 80’s, I was the pioneer to make this wood known.

Who were some of the first well-known musicians who started playing your basses? 

My first big 4 Artists were: Jack Bruce, Jon Entwistle, Stuart Zender and Francis Buchholz.

Jack Bruce

Mario Cipollina and John Entwhistle

Francis Buchholz

With those 4 Artists, my small workshop became known and respected outside of Germany. I have to also name Steve Bailey, Mike Inez, P-Nut, Alphonso Johnson, Brandino, Dave Roe, T.M.Stevens, Hand Ford Rowe, Jon B Williams, Wolfgang Schmidt and Jäcki Reznicek, which are all players from the early days. I am still very close with all of them and have stayed in contact even after 30 years.

Alphonso Johnson

T.M. Stevens

Jäcki Reznicek

Endorsee Dinner

How do you develop a signature or custom bass for an artist?

Well, this is a very long process for us. I’ve never signed an Artist and immediately started on making them a signature model for the market. Sometimes we are working together for 5 to 10 years before taking such a step, at least 1 or 2 years to start. I like the Artists to know how we work and what makes us tick. If the human component and relationship is working out and the Artist understands 100% of how we operate and what we stand for… then we start to consider it. The signature model, from our side, represents homage and recognition for the Artist.

It is never a sales point for us as we never sell many of any Signature model. It mostly is a “thanks” from our side to a very special relationship.

What are a few things that you are proud about your instruments and that you would consider unique in your instruments?

Hans-Peter Wilfer Standing on a Bass Neck

We invented the hidden-neck construction and established Wenge Wood and Bubinga Wood in the industry. Warwick stands on its own, I never followed. We always make our own designs, and for this, I am proud. As well as the details like our “Just A Nut” design, the Electronic Compartment we developed, the Warwick Bridge, our own Security strap locks and the I.F.T. (invisible fret technology). Finally, I was the first company that made a natural beeswax surface and after establishing Satin Surfaces in the 90’s in the Electric Bass market.

Warwick stills stands for many innovations in the Bass Market today. We have many young consumers that might not know this.

Which one of the basses that you build is your favorite one? 

I love all our models.

The Buzzard Bass, the Dolphin design, the Corvette design, the Thumb Bass design or even the Infinity or the Vampyre model. I reworked the Triumph Upright Bass which my father made in the 60’s the first time. Still, this Bass was the idea for all other companies today, which do upright Basses.

Buzzard Bass with Andere BG

What is biggest success for you and for your company?

The biggest success for me as a small German custom shop Bass maker is that we have fans all over the world. For this I am so thankful, very honored and I am blessed for it and that we are independent family owned company. This after being in this business for 35 years by ourselves.

Can you give information on Warwick as the first “Green” company in the industry?

Here is a link to our website that helps to explain this.

This gives you all the background information, and yes, we were the first company in the world. Well, today it is normal for many other companies, but it was from the first day for me important to make ssustainable products with a long-term value for my customers.

My plan was never to pump up the production. If you see used value prices for our instruments they increase steadily. The basses from the 80’s are worth much more today than the original cost.

How do you plan on celebrating the 35thAnniversary of Warwick?

Well, we do our Reeveland Festival, we invite fans to the Bass Camp Reunion and we have a special VIP evening with many of our Artists from around the world.

Once per year we do our Camp in September. It is more and more becoming a “get together” celebration with Artists from around the world. For me, it is very important that our Warwick Artists come together once a year in Markneukirchen (where Warwick HQ is located in Germany). We even invite Bass Players, who are not Warwick Players. It is the get together and exchange once a year, without media pressure, easy to cut down and have a good time for a few days.

Are you preparing something new, some new model or new design?

We do not have many plans for new models. We work on the current range to make them better step-by-step,  creating new ideas and to be a step ahead of other makers with quality and unique ideas.

What are your future plans? Expansion?

Our future plans are small. We are not a big “multi” company. We are a small, family owned workshop.

Warwick Employees in the 80’s

Some months we only do 10 Instruments in our workshop. Other months 50 or 60 instruments. No matter the numbers everything that we do has to be sustainable. I do not have big business plans for expansions. However yes, if some ideas are workable we do it.

Currently we are building up our own Distribution Center in Nashville. This is a huge project for us and I am proud to be in the position to build up a Distribution Network in the USA. This is a 5 to 10 year plan as well and I hope in the long run we can implement some of our ideas in the US market too (let’s hope that we are successful with it). This will help to give better customer service to our consumers and our future dealers.

Woody Wahlen, Hans-Peter and Toni Armetta

Is there anything else you would like to share that we have not included?

We are trying to build up our Framus Guitar Line as well in the long run under the same aspects and conditions. We also have our new Product Line RockBoard by Warwick, this is a lot of fun too.

Last but not least… I am happy to have achieved during my entire life, the support of my wife, Florence. She is in charge of our Export business. I also have two great kids, who are already working in the company. My daughter, Estelle, who is in charge of Graphics and Marketing and my son, Nicolas, who is in education as a Guitar builder and he wants to take over the company in the future.

All over I have to say, “thanks” again to our US fans and consumers. I am very proud and happy to achieve them and as a foreign company with so much support and love.  For this I am blessed.

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Gear News

Gear News: Positive Grid Launches Spark 2



Gear News: Positive Grid Launches Spark 2

Positive Grid launches Spark 2, the next evolution of their cutting-edge smart guitar practice amplifiers and Bluetooth® speakers.

Engineered for acoustic, electric guitar, and bass, Spark 2 delivers an immersive practice and playing experience. Enjoy detailed sound and an all-new upgraded speaker design powered by Positive Grid’s exclusive Sonic IQ Computational Audio technology. With an onboard creative looper, optional battery power, and intuitive AI features for tone exploration and practice, Spark 2 is the gateway to a musical experience that goes beyond expectations. 

Proprietary Audio and Advanced Technology
Spark 2 represents a leap forward in amplifier design. It integrates a new DSP amp modeling engine with double the processing power, and at 50 Watts, it packs 25% more volume than the original. Positive Grid’s proprietary Sonic IQ Computational Audio delivers incredibly detailed and dynamic sound. New HD amp models, enhanced by multi-band dynamic range compression and virtual bass augmentation, redefine the sonic landscape.

Equipped with two premium FRFR speakers and reflex ports, Spark 2 offers wide stereo imaging and broader frequency response, ensuring refined bass and clear, immersive sound.

Built-In Creative Looper
Spark 2’s built-in Groove Looper features hundreds of hyper-realistic drum tracks. From basic loops to multi-layered soundscapes or the ultimate jam session, this intuitive tool inspires endless creativity. Onboard amp controls provide quick, on-the-go looping functionality.

AI-Powered Tone and Smart Jam
Spark AI revolutionizes tone exploration. Describe any desired tone in the Spark app – from practical to outlandish – and Spark AI will suggest tones to audition or download. The more it’s used, the smarter it gets, delivering the perfect sound.

Additional smart features make it easy to practice, learn new songs and improve playing skills. Smart Jam listens to the user’s playing style and generates accompanying bass and drum parts, while Auto Chords analyzes any song streamed and displays the guitar chords in real time, to make learning and practicing new songs easier than ever.

Enhanced Hardware Design and Portability
Spark 2 allows for storing up to eight customizable presets directly on the amp for quick access to favorite sounds. Perfect the tone with large, visible onboard controls for looper, EQ, gain, reverb, and more.

Designed for convenience, an optional rechargeable battery provides up to 12 hours of playtime for on-the-go sessions. The new double-thick strap and durable build ensure easy and secure transport. Spark 2 is also Bluetooth® ready, allowing for music streaming and jamming along with favorite tracks anytime, anywhere.

Multiple Outputs and Advanced Features
Spark 2 offers versatile connectivity with a headphone out for private practice, stereo line outs for external audio sources, and a USB-C port which enables it to function as an audio interface. WiFi-enabled, Spark 2 allows convenient over-the-air firmware updates, keeping the amp up to date with the latest features and improvements.

“I’ve used a ton of practice amps while touring the world for over 38 years and it was always just a technical, bland exercise,” says guitar virtuoso, singer-songwriter and producer Nuno Bettencourt. “Spark 2 is like taking Madison Square Garden wherever you go – epic and versatile.”

Color Options
Available in Pearl or Black finish with a dark weave grille and premium finish.

Special Event, Upgrade Pricing & Availability
Join the special live premiere event featuring Nuno Bettencourt and surprise guests on August 1, 2024, at 8:00 am PT/11:00 am ET. Visit for more details and to sign up for a reminder.

Regularly USD $299, Spark 2 will be available at special early bird pricing during the pre-order period. Registered Spark 40 owners can also receive exclusive upgrade pricing.

For more information and to sign up for pre-order alerts, visit

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Gear Reviews

Gear Review: Exploring the Joyo Gloam – Sub Octave Fuzz Pedal for Bass



Gear Review: Exploring the Joyo Gloam - Sub Octave Fuzz Pedal for Bass

A review of the Joyo Gloam – Sub Octave Fuzz Pedal for Bass

Disclaimer: This pedal was kindly provided by Joyo for the purpose of this review. However, this does not influence our opinions or the content of our reviews. We strive to provide honest, unbiased, and accurate assessments to ensure that our readers receive truthful and helpful information.

Introduction: The Joyo Gloam is a sub-octave fuzz pedal specifically designed for bass players, combining modern sub-octave effects with rich fuzz tones. With two independently controlled circuits, the Gloam aims to provide a versatile range of sounds, from deep, aggressive fuzz to Moog-like synth effects. This review will explore the Gloam’s specifications, controls, and overall performance, highlighting both its strengths and areas for improvement.


  • Dimensions: 130 * 110 * 50 mm
  • Weight: 403g
  • Working Voltage: DC 9V
  • Controls: The Joyo Gloam features a comprehensive control set designed to provide bassists with a wide range of tonal options:
  • Dry Tone: Adjusts the tone of the clean signal.
  • Dry Volume: Controls the volume of the clean signal.
  • Sub Octave Volume: Adjusts the volume of the sub octave signal.
  • Gain: Controls the amount of gain in the fuzz circuit.
  • Fuzz: Adjusts the intensity of the fuzz effect.
  • Bass: Controls the bass frequencies in the fuzz circuit.
  • Treble: Adjusts the treble frequencies in the fuzz circuit.
  • Fuzz Mode Switch: Switches between two different fuzz modes.
  • Dry Tone Frequency Switch: Selects between two different frequency points for the dry tone.

Performance: The Joyo Gloam excels in its dual-circuit design, offering both a sub octave and a fuzz channel that can be controlled individually. However, it’s important to note that the octaver cannot be used without the fuzz circuit activated; the only way to solo the octaver is by turning down the fuzz while both channels are engaged.

Fuzz Circuit: The fuzz circuit includes standard controls such as gain, volume, bass, and treble, along with a fuzz mode switch that toggles between two distinct fuzz modes. While one of the fuzz modes is highly usable and delivers a rich, aggressive tone, the other mode falls short and is less practical for most applications.

Octaver Circuit: The octaver circuit features controls for sub octave volume, clean volume, and clean tone, along with a dry tone frequency switch that provides two different frequency options. This allows for significant tonal versatility, enabling bassists to fine-tune their sound to match their preferences. Despite its limitation of being tied to the fuzz circuit, the octaver produces a deep, balanced sound that stands out.

Combined Effect: When used together, the fuzz and octaver circuits create a wide range of sounds, from classic, aggressive fuzz to synth-like tones reminiscent of a Moog synthesizer. This combination makes the Gloam a powerful tool for bassists seeking to experiment with their sound and achieve unique, textured tones.


  • Versatile Controls: Extensive control options for both fuzz and octaver circuits.
  • Rich Tones: Delivers deep, aggressive fuzz and balanced octaver sounds.
  • Sturdy Construction: Durable build quality ensures reliability.
  • Wide Range of Sounds: Capable of producing everything from classic fuzz to synth-like effects.


  • Unusable Fuzz Mode: One of the fuzz modes is less practical.
  • Dependent Octaver: Octaver cannot be used independently of the fuzz circuit.

Conclusion: In conclusion, the Joyo Gloam sub-octave fuzz pedal offers a versatile and powerful option for bassists looking to expand their tonal palette. Despite some flaws, the Gloam delivers impressive sounds and flexibility. Its combination of rich fuzz and deep octaver tones, coupled with a sturdy construction, makes it a valuable addition to any bassist’s pedalboard. For those seeking a modern bass distortion with the added depth of sub-octave effects, the Joyo Gloam is a compelling choice for a very compelling price.

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July 22 Edition – This Week’s Top 10 Basses on Instagram



TOP 10 Basses of the week

Check out our top 10 favorite basses on Instagram this week…

Click to follow Bass Musician on Instagram @bassmusicianmag

FEATURED @jermsbass @ramabass.ok @adamovicbasses @mgbassguitars @marleaux_bassguitars @overwaterbasses @mauriziouberbasses @elrickbasses @zemaitisguitars @sandbergguitars

View More Bass Gear News

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Gear News

Behind the Strings: D’Addario’s Story Comes to Life in “Jim’s Corner” YouTube Series



Behind the Strings: D'Addario's Story Comes to Life in "Jim's Corner" YouTube Series

Behind the Strings – Jim’s Corner…

D’Addario & Co. proudly announces the launch of “Jim’s Corner,” a captivating new YouTube series telling the 400-year-old story of the D’Addario family creating the world’s largest music accessories company. This series features Jim D’Addario, Founder and Director of Innovation at D’Addario and Co., sharing his family’s remarkable journey from 17th century Italy to a 21st century global enterprise. 

In the first four episodes now available, Jim D’Addario takes viewers back to the beginning, making strings from animal guts and knotting ukulele wire as a family around the television. Countless generations carried the passion forward until the 1970s when the company made it official and never looked back. Jim recounts the creation of strings that inspired legendary riffs, including one by The Who, the launch of Darco strings, the merger with Martin Guitars and the company’s humble beginnings with his wife, Janet and brother, John. Jim D’Addario’s firsthand accounts provide an intimate and personal perspective on the milestones and challenges that shaped D’Addario into the revered brand it is today.

Episode Highlights:

  • Episode 1: The Early Days in Italy and the Move to America
  • Episode 2: Inspiring Iconic Riffs and Legendary Partnerships
  • Episode 3: Launching Darco Strings and Merging with Martin Guitars
  • Episode 4: Building the D’Addario and Co. Legacy

Watch & Subscribe Now:

Join us in celebrating this incredible legacy by watching the first four episodes of “Jim’s Corner” on YouTube. New episodes will drop every month so please subscribe to our channel to ensure you don’t miss any future episodes and exclusive content from D’Addario & Co.:

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Gear News

Gear News: Aguilar Amplification Unveils Limited Edition NYC Gold Skyline Tone Hammer Preamp



Gear News: Aguilar Amplification Unveils Limited Edition NYC Gold Skyline Tone Hammer Preamp

Aguilar Amplification announces the release of the Limited Edition NYC Gold Skyline Tone Hammer Preamp pedal. Hand serialized 1-100, this exclusive edition celebrates Aguilar’s deep roots in New York City with a tribute to its iconic landmarks and vibrant spirit.

Born in the heart of NYC and raised on the road, the Tone Hammer Preamp DI has been an indispensable tool for bassists seeking inspiring tone and versatility. The new Limited Edition Gold NYC builds on this legacy with striking custom graphics encapsulating the essence of New York City. Featuring iconic landmarks from the Statue of Liberty to the Empire State Building, this pedal is not just a tool, but a piece of art embodying the soul of the city. Each unit features a sharp platinum silkscreen over a stunning matte gold sparkle finish, that is as visually captivating as it is sonically powerful.

The Tone Hammer is an essential preamp/direct box for every bassist’s toolbox. The Tone Hammer features fully sweepable midrange frequencies in addition to bass and treble controls. With the Tone Hammer’s pristine D.I. players are set for either studio or stage. To give this tone shaping unit the ultimate flexibility we introduce our proprietary Adaptive Gain Shaping circuitry (AGS). AGS allows the player to kick in an additional gain structure and EQ with the “stomp” of a button. You can go from modern slap sounds to vintage or overdriven. 18-volt operation gives the Tone Hammer plenty of headroom to reproduce the most dynamic playing styles. Separate gain and master controls allow players to dial in just the right gain structure for any instrument.

Aguilar Amplification’s Jordan Cortese adds, “With only 100 hand-numbered units available, this third iteration of our NYC edition Tone Hammer is a collector’s dream. “It’s a homage to our city’s monumental influence on music and culture and celebrates the craftsmanship and the story of Aguilar”. 

Street price: $299.99 For more information, please visit

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