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Martinsville Man Changes The Sounds Of Music

Last updated on Saturday, September 7, 2013

(MARTINSVILLE) - In his workshop, Brian Wampler is sorting out what looks like a wiry mess.

But he's no electrician. He's a musician. And those wires helped change the sounds of music we all hear today.

It all started in Brian's Martinsville garage about 15 years ago. A guitar enthusiast searching for a different kind of sound, he used guitar pedals to help him do it.

"Every pedal has its own little niche," he said.

Problem was, he couldn't find the right sound. So he decided he'd make his own.

"I always pull everything apart just to see how it works. So I kind of did the same thing with the pedals," he said. "I would come home from work, eat dinner with my family, they'd go to bed, and I'd stay up all night just taking things apart and trying to figure out how it worked."

The obsession paid off. Months later came the first Wampler Pedal. Friends asked if he could make them one. He sold a few here and there on E-Bay. And eventually that gave him an even bigger idea.

He made a guitar pedal for Brad Paisley and took it with him to a concert.

"I've always been a huge Paisley fan," he said. "I literally got as close to the stage as I could and threw it on stage."

Much to his surprise, Wampler got a call from Paisley's people. They've been together ever since.

"Brad will come up with something and decide 'I want to try this or that and Brian will give him two or three choices and they'll work on it together until he gets it right," said Dave Rouze, Paisley'sAudio technician.

Other big names now use Wampler pedals, too. He doesn't make the pedals out of his garage anymore.

Today, it's a full-time business.They're produced from a friend's shop in Kentucky.

Wampler has an administrative staff. They operate out of an office building, but it's still in Martinsville. He says there's no need to move to the big city because he can help make music from home.

"I like to think that we're giving the best artists in the world the tools they need to make even better music and inspire them to do new things and reach more people."

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