Ricci signs with Harp Gear Harmonica Amplifiers!
As many of you know I have been offered many different 'Boutique' amp
endorsements over the past five years. Without mentioning any names I can
say all of those amps were beautiful, well made virtual works of art, both
visually stunning and great sounding in their own right. However, even
though all these wonderful amps were offered to me for free or next to no
charge, I just couldn't get behind any of them (fine as they are) as none
seemed to suit my particular needs the way my old Fender Bassman I nick
named the 'Egyptian' did. I tried many times with many different models to
get that 'Tone' I had with that old Fender. Fender did not consider me a
worthy endorsement decision and would not offer me even the slightest
discount on their amps or repair service despite the fact that I was
obviously and inadvertently selling many Fender Bassmans for them each year.
I really wanted to get behind a small 'Boutique' company and back the little
guy but no matter how hard I tried I just couldn't find an amp I liked by
anyone that sounded better than that old Fender, until now...
My friend Brian Purdy has been making small 'Boutique' harmonica amps for
years now under the name 'HarpGear'. I loved all those little amps and so
did hundreds of other players although due to their small size, the volume
of our band, and my dependence on that one tone from the 'Egyptian' I just
couldn't find a practical use for a HarpGear amp outside the recording
studio and smaller gigs. The Popularity of Brian Purdy's smaller amps took
off and players pro and am alike could be seen everywhere with those little
monsters. Eventually almost all the other 'Boutique' amp builders took
notice and followed suit in an attempt to sell a smaller HarpGear style
amp. After that move Brian Purdy came back with the HG 50. A 4x10" 50 watt
harmonica beast the size of a Fender Bassman but very different. I had been
hesitant to try any Bassman style 'Boutique' amp as I had tried many in the
past only to be disappointed and return to the real thing (which was
actually not made as well but sounded better), but Brian assured me this was
not another point to point wired Bassman mimic. Additionally, I was also
worried about our friendship should I not like this amp as he told me the
amp was built with me in mind. He brought the amp to a gig in Florida and
before I plugged in I told him; 'No matter how good it sounds I'm not using
it on the gig.' I plugged in and after two or three minutes of knob tweaking
I was wondering not if it was 'as good' as my Fender but exactly how much
BETTER it was. I played the next two nights on the HG 50 and then gladly
signed an endorsement deal with HarpGear! I have never been happier with my
sound, the HG 50 has everything my old beloved Fender had with a more
balanced, clear, natural, and fuller sound! The HG 50 amp has quickly
become an extension of me and I feel as close to in love with an inanimate
object as a person can be. Stay tuned for our new you tube video coming out
soon advertising the HG 50! Thank you Brian Purdy and HarpGear for doing
the impossible and making THE BEST sounding and BEST looking and BEST ever
HANDMADE harmonica amp ever!!!"
"I've accumulated quite a collection of vintage amps through the years--a tweed Bassman and tweed Deluxe from the mid-1950s, a Premiere from the late 50s, a Kay from the early '60s, and a Mouse from the late 80s--and there's no doubt about it: Brian Purdy's little hand-wired Champ-type-thing is an astonishing achievement. It has bright, warm highs, the perfect degree of "sag" when cranked up, twice as much volume as you'd expect, and three times as much bass. I've learned to cringe when I plug my Shure dynamic mike into "reissue" type tweed amps; none of them deliver what I need. Brian's amp delivered EVERYTHING I need, effortlessly."
-Adam Gussow of "Satan and Adam"
love all over again!"
"I feel like a kid at Christmas"
-Charlie Musselwhite on his HG30
"I own many vintage amps and one big custom harp amp. This custom Champ-amp packs a big punch, and doesn't get it's tone from the distortion like similar sized amps, but rather it gives you a warm full sound, and the tone gets enhanced from the overdrive you get. A BIG sound in a small package....can't wait to try Brian's other amps."
I just received my Harp Gear 50 (4x10) and thought I would report to everyone. First, Brian Purdy is absolutely fantastic to deal with. His customer service is top notch. I also own a Harp Gear Double Trouble 2x8 (my small to mid sized room amp) and couldn't wait to get my hands on the HG50. The amp came packed soundly. The amp was double boxed with styrofoam peanuts separating the 2 boxes to protect the amp. When I opened the box, the amp looked beautiful. The craftmanship on this amp is outstanding - a true custom piece. Then I plugged it in....Wow! This amp sound fantastic. It has huge bottom end, punchy mids, and it really sings - And it's loud too. When I grabbed an A harp and pulled on the 2 draw, the bass response was incredible - it filled the room. When I tongue slapped the 6 blow, the amp barked. This amp can do it all. I own a lot of amps, vintage and boutique, and my two Harp Gear amps are my favorite. Normally I mic my other 4x10's for bigger show! s, but didn't need to this past Saturday. The HG50 had plenty of volume to keep up with my full band. I can't say enough good things about Brian and his amps. If you haven't checked them out, do so at www.harpgear.com - you won't be dissappointed. Bryan Lyburn Frederick, MD Founder Harmonica Players Organization of Frederick
Brian Lyburn from Maryland
"Hello Brian!!! I would like to thank to you, everything is very well. I have had many amps, but HG50 is really the best harp amp. I owe you a lot . Greeting from the blues. andyharp"
Andy Harp from Germany
Read David Garcia's independent comparison of the HarpGear 2 and the Marble Max amplifier. Scroll to the bottom for the english version.
|"This is the best sounding custom rig I have ever heard." -Jason Ricci|
|Read Larry "The Iceman" Eisenberg's Review of The Standard 5F1 from Harp-L|
I got the amp (5F1 Standard) last night just before my gig so I baptized it in the fire so to speak. I had my Bassman as usual but decided to leave it in the truck as the first set is always mellow and tends to be ultra quiet. I started out the night with your little guy and it was awesome! I never bothered to take the Bassman out of the truck. I was very pleased with your product and will happily consider it my main rig for the smaller-mid size rooms we play. My bassist loved it too and didn't notice until the end of the night that I didn't have my Bassman. My only regret is that I didn't purchased one of your amps sooner.Take care.
The Harp Gear 30 arrived on my doorstep on Thursday the 2nd August very well packed I might add, we had those little foam shell things everywhere and the kids enjoyed exploding the little plastic airbags!The amp is a 'bloody beauty' which is ok language here in Oz. I am a Design and Technology teacher maybe the guys in US are still called Shop teachers but what the hey I know quality craftmanship and your cabinet and tolex work is excellent.The weight of the amp makes me smile after heaving a Fender Super Reverb around for the passed 15 years! The amp arrived the day before some weekend gigs Friday night in a bar and Sunday at a Yacht Club on our
All the best Dave
My first impressions, I opened the super well packed box ( don't think I have ever seen so many polystyrene peanuts!!). The amp looked great. I peeled off the bubble wrap and admired the beautiful lacquered tweed, my eyes were drawn to the details of the build which is of exceptional quality. So then I swapped the plug over like you told me I would have to (had to go on the web to check the USA wiring colours, no big deal though!) Then I double checked the plug wiring just to be sure.
So finally the moment had arrived. I plugged in the amp and switched it on to see that gorgeous glowing red light. Then I reached for one of my hottest mics (JT30 shell with a black label Shure CR element inside). Due to being in my flat (apartment) I only put the volume up to 3 and then gently blew into a Hohner Marine Band Deluxe harp in A.
Man I wasn't prepared for the sound that greeted me.
It was Fat, Ripped and had that Brown sound we all love!!!! I pushed it a bit harder and tested the dynamic response with a rendition of Walter Hortons "Easy". The amp gave me everything I wanted and like Adam Gussow said 3 times as much bass as I expected. Wow!!!!!
Easily louder than my Pro Jr and far more tone without me even really trying!!
I am gonna blow it at a higher volume tomorrow as I have the day off work and then on Saturday I am gigging with a local band and am gonna use it for that. I will tell you how it goes. I think that it's gonna become my favourite amp from what I have heard so far!!!.
This amp is a great product that is built to extremely high standards and that in my opinion should be used by every harp player. I have lost count of the amount of times that I have seen harp players turn up to small / medium gigs with a Fender Bassman, yet for the life of me I can't figure out why. I always used a Fender Pro Jr.
Well not anymore. From now on it's a HarpGear amp for me and if anyone asks me I am gonna say "Do yourself a favour and get over to Mister Purdy at HarpGear and get one of those amps of his!!!!!!!!"
I am gonna do some recordings with it soon and will post them on my website.
|On a recent trek to "Blues City" Memphis,
Tn., I was lucky enough to see my favorite contemporary harp player
Billy Gibson. If you have not hear of him, he's got the goods, check
him out. A master of the diatonic and chromatic harmonica. He walked in
the club carrying a little Tweed Fender Pro Junior. Stock all the way
since about 10 years ago. He said the speaker is just starting to sound
good.Needless to say he was just totally awesome. There is no one out
there playing like he does. Check him out "Live at the Rum Boogie Cafe"
as well as other great blues recordings. http://www.billygibson.com/ Got me thinking, I play small clubs , but
never got that out of a small amp.. surely not a Pro Junior. Like the
rest of you, I have tried them all. From Fender's, to SJ's. Some ok,
great like SJ's, but not small. Heard about the HarpGear amps. Checked
their web site and was impressed, Then I heard two great player's, Adam
Gussow and Dennis Gruenling take the Standard 5F1 through the ropes.
Impressed again for sure. Just so happens Brian Purdy who builds these
wonderful small amps lives about a hour and a half from me. How often
do we get to hear a amp before we purchase. Not often. We connected via
phone ( he was at the mall shopping with his wife and returned my call)
Is that good or what? We set a date and connected. He came to work
early to meet with me. I brought a few mics, first my current favorite,
Shure 545SD. Cranked the amp to 5-6 got my mic close to it, no
feedback. Good start. Blew a few notes and was extremely pleased. Now
that's the sound I wanted, loud, punchy with a nice bark. I walked out
with it. great tweed, awesome chassis. Brian is really proud of these
and he wanted to take the back cover off to show me every detail. All I
cared about was how it made me sound. This guy is picky and he makes
sure everything is right. Walking out the door he adjusted the feet on
the amp to make sure it sat level. He should be building houses. A
great person to be deal with...with a great small amp going. It will
blow you away. So bottom line, I play small clubs. This amp with the
line out is all you will every need. No, I am not getting paid to say
this. Just a happy camper. So happy I have two, one for the house and
one for the studio.
Brian just to let you know we played a thousand seat house "The
Carpenter's Performing Arts Center" in Long Beach. My amp worked
like...well like a champ! Sounded great through their nice PA just like
it does through the amp, and was a nice extra monitor. No
feedback...ever. I'm using it with the new Carl Martin Red Repeat delay
pedal and it is a great combo.
Johnny the Bossman
you like a small amp with tone to it and don't want to lug heavy amps
around, the Champ by Brian Purdy with harp gear is available and is the
Perfect Small Amp. I couldn't practice around the house for years until
I got his amp. It now goes out on gigs. If you have access to an open
channel, plug it in and you don't have to worry about volume. You get a
multifaceted amp but the tone stays the same. Best buy on the market,
don't believe the Crate V508 hype. The amp is awful. I owned one long
enough to get it home and play for an hour with it. It went back that
fast. Go to the website and check the amp out. Brian is a class guy
that has the small amp requirements nailed to the wall for you. I play
swamp blues, delta, Chicago, West Coast Swing, West Coast Jump, just
according to what band I am playing with. If that is anything like what
you are doing, this is the amp. Brian, I am copying you in this off
list reply because I want to let you know that I am a satisfied
customer of yours.
this amp is blowing me away!!! For the last 15yrs I've been
playing thru Peavey guitar amps, pignoses, an old tempermental Gibson
Maestro, PA's, commanders, blues drivers and so on and have never, ever
got the consistent heavy duty sound that I can get just by turning your
amp on and plugging in direct.Heck, even my Taylor acoustic is a whole
new instrument. I'm playing my first gig with it this weekend at an
amphitheater. The acoustics at this place are to die for. I can't
wait to get my Purdy Amp cranked up there. ROCK ON!!!
know it's been awhile since I talked with you, but last night was my
first night using your new harpgear 2 amp. My band Midnight Shift
played as a trio in Cherry Hill, NJ at the Red Hot and Blue. I usually
use my Gibson GA-20 in this situation, but since I just bought your amp
I wanted to use it. I gotta tell you what a great sound you have. The
tone and bass response were awesome!! I felt like I had this fire
behind me the whole night. The harp instrumentals were so easy to play.
Juke and Off The Wall just had that great Little Walter sound that I
need. I can't wait to use it again. You have really made a great amp. I
love the simplicity also because I hate to fool around with a lot of
knobs. I only had the amp on about 5 and it carried a great loud sound.
At home I was amazed I could turn it up over 8 and still have no
feedback. Practicing at home I knew the amp sounded good, but there is
nothing like playing it at a club. Thank you for making a fantastic
little harp amp.
check us out http://www.mnightshift.com