The Amp, the Guitar and the Studio


A♥ hoards guitars ♥A Soldier 25, DFZ
Jun 26, 2012
deep in the raspberry...
EDIT: This is a contributive story. You are invited to enjoy the story or even add to it. Feel free to add characters and plot twists. Please be careful not to completely derail or end another member's developing story line. Let people have most of the control over characters that they introduce. As a general rule - don't kill off characters you have not introduced, unless of course it is a minor leprechaun someone put in your way. Sergio's head leprechaun will require a team effort to kill. If you have a doubt or suggestion, PM the author handling the character in question at the moment. Make sure you have read the whole story before jumping in. Refer back to posts as an author may have edited his storyline a bit in an important way. Have fun. I'll update the cast of characters as we go along in post #66 - fittingly only one order of magnitude away from 666 and the release of the immortal evil leprechaun in Las Vegas...

Glambin Turkkel stumbled through his studio holding a glass of water. He was looking for the bottle of Advil he remembered seeing somewhere in the amp section earlier in the week. Those late night recording sessions he was doing with the Paul Reed Smith Band were starting to take their toll. It didn't help that the ghost of George Harrison had kept him from really getting any sleep until just about 2 hours ago. Then he was awake again.

Glambin was also a little miffed at Smith. Paul had been complaining about the studio soundproofing again. "I swear that man can hear a mouse fart," he thought to himself not for the first time. The Grainger brothers had known better than to roll their eyes, they knew Paul had the best hearing in the business. Glambin had to agree it was true as well, especially after 'the incident.'

But, he didn't want to think about that now. He only wanted the tiny man in his head banging away on Greg's kit to go away. As he looked between the HX/DA and the Super Dallas, Glambin felt a hot, burning sensation in his left temple. The pain was excruciating. He fell to his knees and was dead before his head hit the floor.

Across town, Bennett put away his Glambin vodoo doll and chuckled to himself. His plans were on track and he could see little to stop him this time.
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Over in Perney, Frank Bello was polishing his Custom 24 before packing it away. He had just gotten in from an all night gig at the Irish pub down the street. "Those Irish sure can drink," he thought to himself. Before hitting the sack, he checked his Ebay listing. Nope. No bites on his now never used wall hangers. He needed to pawn them off on someone, he still owed a few bucks on the humidifier he bought the other day.
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In New Jersey, Bennett Oppraman was something of a legend. He had dedicated his life to solving the problems of the human mind. But a few years earlier, he had become part of a secret cult. At first, he sought entree to the cult because he'd been scientifically curious. However, the longer he studied them, the closer an affinity he felt for the ideals of the cult and their dabbling in magic.

This was the Cult of the Blue Oyster. And their enduring symbol was the cowbell.

In his cultish alter-ego frame of mind, Bennett was no longer Bennett Oppraman, renowned psychologist. He was a Mr. Hyde who would wreak vengeance and havoc on his enemies. And in his mind, he had many enemies.

Each night, his stereo blasting "Don't Fear The Reaper" out of his six stereo speakers at 120 decibels in his basement laboratory, he would become Ned, the Destroyer by ingesting a drug one of the Oysters had developed using clam juice.

And Ned was not a kindly shrink. Ned was a killer.
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Sunday's were always special to Paul Reed Smith. When he was younger it was the day he would start scrambling for materials after having secured a precious guitar order hard won by crashing the backstage of a DC concert on Saturday night. He was keen to impress his customers, much to their delight and much to the detriment of his mother's dresser.

But these days it was special for a different reason. Years of hard work had rewarded him with one of the most unique and successful guitar companies in the world. He loved playing himself and the Paul Reed Smith Band was starting to get noticed. But the sessions at the Turkkel studios had hit some snags. Glambin had an AC feedback loop somewhere and the almost inaudible 60Hz buzz was distracting Paul. Glambin was a good egg and Paul had resolved to help find the problem.

Paul looked down at his guitar. The company was marketing it as 'Paul's Guitar', and that made the usually gregarious Smith a little self-conscious. It was true that it had all the latest innovations on it and the brush stroke birds were finally starting to appeal to him, but there was still something missing.
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What Paul couldn't let on was something he'd overheard in the break room, and inside he seethed.

The general impression was that he was the Paul in Paul's Guitar - after all, it was his company, his name on the headstock. He was known for his never-ending quest for tone, and for his ears. The same ears that could hear a finish fading. It made sense. It was logical.

It was wrong.

That very day, he'd heard some of his employees - people he thought of as "loyal employees" - reveal that Paul's Guitar was, in fact, not named for him, but for the bandmate of one of his longtime endorsers.

Paul's Guitar was really...Paul Rodgers' Guitar. And Rodgers wasn't even a guitarist!
In his own studio, Ell Chefman thought he smelled something, but he wasn't sure. Once a young and vibrant composer and producer, Ell was now getting on in years.

"Maybe I need to have my diaper changed," he thought. "It's so humiliating. I really don't understand why suddenly I'd need one."

He rang for his day nurse.

Back in New Jersey, the moment Ell rang the bell for his day nurse, a certain cowbell rang in Oppraman's office.

"What's that noise?" asked his patient.

"It's nothing," said Oppraman. "I have an alarm clock that sounds like a cowbell." The patient relaxed. But Oppraman's eyes narrowed. He knew Chefman now needed a diaper change and had rung for his nurse. A smile crossed his face. "I put that overbearing suckah in a diaper and a wheel chair," he thought. "Serves him right for giving me a hard time about learning that freaking software."
Hands Mantic was winded. Between the Colorado altitude and the frantic search for his wallet along the hiking trail, it was to be expected. Just a week prior, Mike Three had visited again. Mike was a great guy, but had the annoying habit of cutting holes in Hands' pockets. After every visit, Hands found himself searching for his wallet, keys, comb and favorite guitar picks until his wife could sew up all his pockets again. The pockets in this particular pair of cargo shorts must have gotten overlooked. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that Hands had been wearing this same pair for going on a week and a half.

Mantic spied his wallet under a bush by the side of the trail and picking it up, he saw that the jackalopes had beaten him to it. It was gnawed almost beyond recognition save for the plastic photo holder inside with the pic of his Raven. Hands stuffed the wallet back into his pocket where, two strides later, it fell out again, this time never to be found again.
Paul's Guitar. Paul's Guitar. It rolled over and over in his head. He had to get to the bottom of it. It was a rumour of course, and completely baseless, but it was gaining traction. Though it was Sunday, Paul made the short trip to the factory bearing his name. He let himself in one of the back doors near the loading dock and stood in the cavernous space recently occupied by vendors and ravenous Experience attendees. He had a logical mind and just standing in the space, he though about how this naming thing could have gotten to where it was.

Paul strode off across the floor past the CNC machines and into the business area. He turned right and went down the hall towards the promotions department. He remembered a memo from the sales department that he had dismissed at the time. Something about a 'mole' in the staff. At the time he had chocked it up to another prank by Mike Deeley. Now he was sure it was a valid and dire warning.

In the promotions area he sifted through the ad slicks until he came across the mockups for Paul's Guitar. There were various shots of the guitar, most of them suitable for framing, but some of them candid. There. He saw it. On one of the shots taken in the factory, he saw the unmistakable hand of Paul Rodgers with its "B A D C O" tattoo across the knuckles from thumb to pinkie. Next to it he saw the new hire in the promo department grinning.

Paul took the photo to his office computer and started looking. Sure enough, right there on Rodgers' web page was a pic of a roadie. The same face as the new hire.

Paul was off like a shot back to the wood shop. He selected several pieces of wormy mahogany he was saving for the Official Forum Guitar and walked towards the huge band saw. "Those forum guys are OK, if I make them a special run, I won't pawn off this crap wood on them after all," he thought to himself. Besides, he had new plans for the wood and much to do. With the factory closed for Sunday, he had the place to himself. It was quite a bit different from his parents' garage long ago, but as soon as the big band saw started eating wood, he was rushed back in memories.
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Paul quickly let go of the whole thing about his namesake guitar. After all, he had work to do!

Here is was, working his tail off in the countryside of South America, pulling out old Chocolabuccococcus fence posts for neck blanks, and was all this hard work and effort even appreciated?

He'd gotten nothing but complaints from Oppraman and Woodfan about his choice of nomenclature the last time with the Stinker necks, and here it was, starting all over again.

"Enough with these lunatics," he said to himself. "I'm going to call the guys at Fender and take their offer."
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You are 800 years old, right?