by: Bil Jones
Listen closely and you’ll hear the quiet streets of Dallas, North Carolina punctuated with the searing riffs of rock guitar any day of the business week. No, Dokken or Van Halen aren’t rehearsing for their latest tour nor has George Lynch taken up residence in Dallas. The sound you hear will be Scott Splawn test driving one of his latest creations.
Splawn Amplification was born in 1996 from Scott’s desire to have a guitar amplifier that would produce the tones he admired coming from the likes of artist such as George Lynch, Warren DeMartini and Eddie Van Halen. A self-confessed guitar geek from the age of 12, Scott was simply not satisfied with the sounds available from existing gear. He took up the challenge and the first eight years of his business and tonal quest involved modifying amps currently available on the market. As a gigging guitarist, Scott was able to test his mods on the stage and then tweak those sounds to perfection. The natural progression of this quest eventually involved manufacturing an amplifier of his design in-house, beginning in 2004, with locally available materials and suppliers.
Splawn currently offers seven unique models of amplifiers and eight different configurations of speaker cabinets. What sets these amps and cabs apart from the competition, in addition to their signature tone, is the ability of the customer to spec a multitude of custom options. A true custom shop, Splawn has recently introduced a line of Super Strat inspired guitars made right here in Gaston County.
Assisting Scott in his musical endeavor is a staff of like-minded musicians who are equally talented in their own specialties. Brian ‘Tree’ Smith handles all of the raw fabrication duties of the amp chassis, speaker cabinets and guitars. Brian Eisinger meticulously covers the amp head shells and speaker cabinets in a dizzyingly array of custom tolex colors and patterns. Mike Qualls is responsible for assembly of the raw amplifier components and shipping duties of all of the finished products. The crew is rounded out with Dal Haynes who is on the road with artist relation duties.
Splawn Amplifiers can be found on the local scene as well as stages world-wide. One look at the artist page on their website will testify to the fact that some of guitardoms best seek out Splawn’s wares. The amps and cabs are favorites of quite a few national artist including Killswitch Engage’s Adam Dutkiewicz and Joel Stroetzel, Dokken’s Jon Levin, Stryper’s Michael Sweet and even Steve Stevens of Billy Idol fame. This high-profile players list goes on and grows daily as word of Splawn Amplifers quality and dedication to tone spreads.
Scott Splawn is quick to point out that his success has come with the help and support of family, friends, dedicated customers and God above. In this day of out-sourcing and overseas manufacturing, Splawn Amplification stands out as a local music related business who continues to rise above.
For more information about Splawn Amplifiers please visit:
115 South Gaston St.
Dallas, NC 28034