Interview with a Spamp Man

Q             Tell us about yourself

A             I am based in Liverpool, England, in the quarter where the Beatles grew up.  I dropped out of high school and spent a few years in the merchant marine.  I later went to college and majored in electronic engineering.  I worked as an analog EE for about 10 years before being seduced by the dark side of $ales.  I wound up working for a company in Torrance CA and almost moved there full time in 2012.  Before I could get there, the company was taken over and the new management wanted me to stay in the UK.  I still have a soft spot for Southern California. 

I like music, especially guitar-led rock, scotch whisky and the Great Outdoors.  And football – the English kind. 

Q             What inspired you to create the Spamp?

A             Music, beer and Spam!  I’d been to see a local guitarist and when I got home, I was hungry so I made a Spam & egg feast.  In that rapturous moment of satisfied hunger, I had my eureka moment and The Spamp was conceived.  I made a prototype and used it for a while.  I still have it. 

Q             When was that? 

A             Back in the early 2000’s.  I didn’t develop it further because I was too busy with my day job.  I got to travel all over the World so I didn’t have much time to develop my Spamp Man alter ego. 

Q             So how did you develop the Spamp we know today?

A             I wanted to get back in touch with my inner nerd and return to engineering.  After years of being a sales guy, people used to see a sales guy.  I designed today’s Spamp to demonstrate that I could still do it and it worked!  I am now an EE audio specialist for a UK company.  During the day I work on industrial electronics and by night I am the Spamp Man!  My friend, Woody the Stringman, told me it was as good as a pro amp and I should sell it.  So, I did and I do. 

Q             Tell us about the Spamp.

A             Technical:
It’s a cascaded JFET amplifier that gives a warm, clean tone (but yes, I call it chilled!).  If you are using it as a preamp, you can turn it up and overdrive your amp.  The distortion engine is a soft clipping diode limiter, switchable between half wave (fried) and full wave (grilled).
Whoa! That’s too technical:
It’s a low noise preamp that sounds great with a nice distortion effect.  It is an environmentally friendly way to upcycle an empty Spam tin. 

Q             Do you make the Spamps yourself?

A             Yes.  I assemble the circuit boards and do all the mechanicals.  Every Spamp was built and tested by the Spamp Man!

Q             Are there any other flavours of Spamp? 

A             As well as the original Spamp there is The Spamp+, a Spamp with a speaker;  The Spampeko, a Spamp with a reverb/echo effect and The SpamPhaser, a Spamp with a phaser effect. 

Q             What are you working on right now?

A             The Spampressor – yes a Spamp with a compressor – and a Tuna.  Need a clue? 

Q             And do you eat all the Spam yourself? 

A             No!  Well I do eat quite a lot because it is the best foodstuff that ever came in a tin.  I have a network of SpamPals who save their empties for me.  If I have to buy it, I give the product to friends and family and I donate it to a charity for the homeless.  None of it goes to waste. 

Q             What is your favourite Spam recipe?  

A             I firmly believe that a pizza Hawaii must be made with Spam but Spam eggs benedict is truly awesome. 

Q             Do you play guitar?

A             Not as well as I would like.  Instead of making my fingers bleed, I learned how to do stuff with transistors. 

Q             Where is your favourite place on Earth? 

A             A three-way split between Southern California, Portugal and England’s Lake District. 

Q             Favourite band?

A             Queen

Q             Favourite movie?

A             Highlander

Q             Any inspirational words?

A             If you don’t like what you are doing, do something else!