Monday, November 20, 2023

Is This The Earliest Big Muff Ad?

There has been quite a bit of debate over the years about when exactly the Big Muff was released...

I first started collecting back in the early 2000s and most people thought then, based on Triangle Muff pot codes, that 1968 was the definitive answer to this question. But as collectors and other fellow nerds dug into it a bit more, 1969 seemed much closer to the actual year. 

But now with the endless amount of archived print media that exists there has yet to be a single ad or mention of the Big Muff before May of 1970 that anyone has been able to find; making that 1969 guess seem kinda wrong. And it's not just that the Big Muff didn't appear until that date, but that there are plenty of earlier EHX ads that show their full offering, minus the Muff.

Well, a few months ago I started buying up old copies of Crawdaddy, which was a bi-weekly Rock n' Roll newspaper out of New York that started in 1966 and ran through to 1979. And right there, on page 39, issue number 6, was the earliest ad I had seen showing a Big Muff! 

Big Muff ad 1970

Being bi-weekly this issue either came out in the middle of March or beginning of April 1970, depending on when they started that year. But there are a few good clues, like ads for the upcoming releases of the "Isaac Hayes Movement" album and Booker T & the M.G.'s "McLemore Avenue" album, which were both released on Stax in April of 1970. 

But as cool as this is, in terms of Big Muff history, it does still leave the question unanswered as to when the legendary fuzz actually came out. I'm hoping to some day find an even earlier ad proclaiming the wonders of the "NEW BIG MUFF!!!", or something equally obvious. 

Until then I'm going to keep digging through old magazines, newspapers, and pdf's...

Crawdaddy Vol. IV no. 6 1970

Thanks for reading! And if you happen to be sitting on potentially earlier Big Muff history, please reach out via email or an Instagram message.

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