The sometimes fuzzy, sometimes gritty sound of distortion is commonplace in modern music. But, its discovery was an accident – the result of a faulty connection on a mixing board.
Slate and Atlantic Monthly contributor William Weir explains the unlikely genesis and current ubiquity of the sound of fuzz. And Mike Matthews, founder of the company Electro-Harmonix, tells us about the fuzz boxes he’s been building since 1969, including the ever-popular Big Muff.
Check out the video below of Pink Floyd's David Gilmour putting the Big Muff to good use in a performance of "Comfortably Numb."