Join us on a tour through Marshall Amps Museum and Factory!
Published on 24 November 2023
100th Anniversary of the Lord of Loud
29th July 2023 marked what would have been the 100th birthday of Jim Marshall - dubbed the Father (or Lord) of Loud. It’s a righteous title, if you ask me, as the man pioneered equipment that changed the sound of guitar music forever. Since the company’s birth in the 1960s, Marshall amps have been used by some of the biggest names in rock, with modern musicians swearing by their magic. The Marshall name has long-since risen to iconic status.
One of the perks of working at guitarguitar is visiting the factories and headquarters of the brands we stock. So I am only thrilled to tell you all about our recent trip to Marshall Amplification in Milton Keynes, where we witnessed it all behind the scenes.
So buckle up and let me take you on a visual journey through the historic rock & roll soundscape - let’s turn this up to 11!
This is the control room in the studio space with the state-of-the-art Neve desk. The studio is used for the Marshall Records artists as well as testing out any new high-end amps. George Michael has recorded here, Thin Lizzy's Black Rose album was recorded here too, to name a few.
The Spirit of Rock & Roll - Marshall Amplification Museum
It is not everyday that you get to immerse yourself in the spirit of rock & roll (unless you work at guitarguitar). As you walk through the Marshall HQ door, the instant urge to rock out just hits you right in the face! There’s everything from the first amp Jim Marshall ever made through some rare unreleased models to vintage designs and artist’s signatures.
Apparently Milton Keynes is a town obsessed with cows...some local trivia for you!
They’ve got some exciting memorabilia (including the actual 4 x 15 stack used by Lemmy Kilmister and not available to the public, plus cabs made exclusively for Slash!), the legendary Spinal Tap movie JMP head (yup, it’s real and it DOES go to 11!), limited editions, Marshall design store examples of wildest looking grills & tolex and more. It really is quite overwhelming when you try to take it all in. But instead of just telling you all about it, I’ve got some superb photos to show you - feast your eyes.
One of two of the last Marshall Lemmy stacks ever made. He had the other. The size of this in person is insane!
Signed Dave Mustaine Rust In Peace Flying V and signature JVM.
Spinal Tap rig!
Random - or not - built in collaboration with Mini Cooper, a car with a DSL and black and gold leather. One of 60 ever built for the brand's 60th Anniversary! You can pause and play with accelerator and brake.
An amp with a telly in it...
The Sound of Rock & Roll is born - Marshall Amplification Factory
So, what do YOU do for a living? Imagine saying “I build Marshall amps” as an answer. A dream job for many, and not an easy one either! Let’s be honest, if you haven’t made it as a rockstar, the best next thing would be to work in a field that’s closely related. After all, rockstars wouldn’t really go far without the genius work behind their sound - be it guitar manufacturers or amp builders, right? There you go.
When I entered the Marshall factory floor it suddenly just hit me: the laborious skilset, passion and dedication that goes into creating the world’s most iconic sounding amps is quite frankly on another level.
A view from factory floor perspective.
I’d struggle to put it into words, since working with electrical wires and valves exceeds my comprehension, but luckily I have some superb photos to show you! These may give you an idea on how that little black box with a golden logo is born before you get to plug it in and shred your heart out.
Marshall conveyor belt.
No Tolex or paint - a stripped back look at the JCM900.
One of 30 limited edition 1962 Bluesbreakers made in collaboration with Jaguar, covered in leather with a gold chassis.
Examples of Marshall's custom grill cloth.
Marshall - the Legend Lives On
To me, Marshall amps ARE the heart and soul of rock & roll. Almost all of my guitar heroes play Marshall (Slash, Nita Strauss, Angus Young, Lzzy Hale etc) so I’ve always associated the sound I love with Marshall.
I’ve been playing Marshall JCM for many years now and it’s my forever go-to crunch tone. I cannot imagine how rock music would sound without them!
Do you play Marshall? Try one today at your nearest guitarguitar or browse through our selection online!