Laney Amps Celebrating 50 Years
By A Mannu Shahi
In the mid-1960s, Lyndon Laney’s passion for music-making developed as a bass player in the vibrant music scene of UK. As a resident of Great Barr in the West Midlands, Lyndon found himself gigging in several bands, the most renowned act being The Band of Joy featuring John Bonham on the drums and Robert Plant on vocals, both respective members of the super group Led Zeppelin. Lyndon’s intense interest in electronics, paired with his lack of funds to purchase a proper amplifier, led him into building what would become the first Laney amplifier in his father’s garage. As the word spread of the tone supplied by Lyndon’s speakers, he was able to supplement his income with the amp sales to many local musicians, most famous in its initial years for belonging to Toni Iommi, guitarist of the band Black Sabbath.
Since the product was good thus many requests showered as soon as the Laney signature tone was heard on Black Sabbath’s seminal debut album in 1970. As awareness of these great-sounding, affordable products spread, Lyndon soon became overwhelmed by demand amongst fellow musicians to make more amps and cabs for guitar, bass and also vocals. A casual hobby quickly became a serious endeavor and the necessity for progression of the company’s manufacturing facilities appeared. Thus, Laney began manufacturing in the Digbeth quarter of Birmangham temporarily, but ultimately settled in Cradley Heath, where they were firm until the recent migration to Halesowen in 2004 for larger facilities.
Though Laney amps are turning 50 this year, however, their history with Nepal has been quite short. Laney speakers were seen in use from quite a while ago, arguably before a decade, but its official endorsement was only handed down to Nepali artists roughly two years back.
The first were two guitar players from different musical backgrounds, Sunny Tuladhar and Deep Bikram Singh, who were officially endorsed by Laney amplifiers as their representatives for Nepal. In a show hosted by the company, the major attraction was guitar player Jack Thammarat, also a member of the Laney family, Tuladhar and Singh were the supportive acts and thus entitled to the endorsement and proud ownership of the large tube racks of the company.
So to celebrate the 50th global anniversary of Laney, Tone Music Store is hosting an event tomorrow at Club 25 hours, Tangalwood. Performing artists are Shadow in Shade, Rage Hybrid and Maximus.
Free passes for the event are available at Tone Music Store (Putalisadak) and Sound Factory (Bhanimandal), and no further charges will be requested at the entrance of the show. Also Tone is providing heavy discount deals on Laney amps on this occasion; one amp will be tagged as the ‘Hero of the day’ from 11 am to 6:30 pm. The price of that particular amp will be enormously discounted, and on the second day, another Laney will follow the same scheme. A month before, the Laney celebration featured master classes from various prominent guitar players from the scene held at Tone Music Store, thus this concert is a follow-up event to those sessions.