Pete has long been an embellisher of stories, and what actually transpired probably wasn’t exactly like that.
But there’s no doubt the Marshall stack would come to dominate the sound of rock and roll, beginning with that fateful day.
I know this all too well because I was once in this category.
For years I wanted a certain tone and I think where I failed first is I tended to put too much emphasis on the amplifier head of choice with little regard to the cabinet/speakers, type of guitar and pickup, etc.
But back to the first question regarding what kind of Marshall to get…
That isn’t such an easy question to answer because the various Marshalls over the years have been really each optimized for particular types of tones and guitar types and have changed both due to the tastes and demands of musicians as well as for cost or manufacturing reasons.
At the time, Marshall says that most felt the Fender Bassman was the amplifier to beat – but it wasn’t perfect.
“Players like Pete Townshend, Ritchie Blackmore and ‘Big’ Jim Sullivan (one of the busiest session guitarists in England) pointed out to me, that although they used the Fender, it didn’t produce the sound they wanted.
Their guitarists spoke to me about what guitars they wanted and the qualities they were looking for in a guitar amplifier.Many tube amplifiers will have a tube chart within the amp itself.This may also be helpful when dating a vintage tube guitar amplifier.Other sources to date your amp may include serial numbers and overall look and visual components on the amp as well.
For example, the logo on the amp or materials used during a certain time period of production.
And he found the man willing to supply it – Jim Marshall.