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July 8, 2020
The Winter NAMM Awards: Futures PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 29 January 2009 13:55
By Jim Basara - GJD
At GJD, we love bringing you information about things you probably haven’t heard about yet.   This year, there were some folks at NAMM who had prototypes of ideas and were looking for strategic partners to help bring their dreams to reality.  Two of those inventions really caught our attention as ideas that have a real chance of “making it”.

Glasstones – Inventor/entrepreneur Mark Payung was playing slide guitar one day and began thinking about the pure sound his glass slide made on the strings.  If that sounds great, what would it sound like if the strings were attached to glass?  These kinds of questions are how innovation happens.

So Mark went out and got himself a patent on making a guitar sound platform (nut, bridge, fretboard, and frets) made out of glass.  The result is a very unique tone with a clarity and sustain I have not heard before.  While the “feel” of glass under your fingers is different than wood, it has such a distinct sound that I believe there will be a considerable number of players who would use this instrument as a utility guitar, if not a main axe.

We’re going to do a more in-depth interview with Mark and take a closer look at his technology in an upcoming article, but it is definitely worth tracking.

Shred-O-Meter – Quite frequently at NAMM, they have “World’s Fastest Drummer” competitions where they have devices that measure the speed of a drummer as the sticks make contact with the drummer.  I’ve watched them several times and always thought it would be cool if they could do that with guitars.  Tobias Hurwitz asked himself a similar question, and then did something about it.  Tobias created a device called the Shred-O-Meter that actually monitors the speed of notes being played on a guitar.  It’s really quite amazing and has tons of potential for everything from a highly technical practice tool to the beginning of an interface for a REAL guitar game. 

The picture below shows Tobias and his partner Jay with a prototype of the Shred-O-Meter that they were showing off at NAMM.  Many of the big pedal manufacturers were drooling over its potential, so I’m very confident that we’ll one day see Tobias’ invention come to fruition.


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