Therefore, I proudly present an Interview with Josh Scott, the founder and head of JHS Pedals.
1) How did you get interested in music and would you tell us something about your way of becoming an effect pedal designer?
Josh Scott: I got interested in music as a teenager when I heard Pearl Jam Ten on my brother’s cassette player. I got a guitar, hacked around on it for a while, started some bands, and slowly started doing music for a living as a songwriter, session guitarist and touring guitarist. I got into effects building when I figured out how to fix a broken pedal. Around 2007 I jumped down the rabbit hole of wanting to understand how everything I was using worked. I ended up modifying popular effects pedals like Boss and Ibanez. In 2008 I eventually started creating some of my own effects.
2) So many famous musicians are using your pedals- is there someone whom you wish he/she would play one of your pedals?
Josh Scott: I have been really fortunate and amazed over the years that almost all of my guitar heroes have used or own my pedals. It’s the same with all of the people who caused me to love guitar the way that I do. I would love to see Jonny Greenwood of Radiohead using them. Ed does use them, and that is amazing. Jonny may have some and I don’t know it. It would be cool to know that someone like Eric Clapton or Tom Morello is using them. But for all I know, they already are. Maybe it’s a good thing not to know – it keeps some of the excitement and mystery.
Oh yeah. Pearl Jam. That would be epic.
3) Let’s talk about the JB-2 Angry Driver. It took 40 years until Boss agreed to design a pedal with another manufacturer. How did that happen?
Josh Scott: That happened out of my friendship with the president of Boss, Yoshi Ikegami. We met several times. It was obvious to him that I love Boss and that I am a huge pedal nerd and I think he enjoyed my interest in the history of Boss/Roland, and Japanese effects. After a few years it just naturally happened and for their 40th anniversary he wanted to collaborate – and we did! I am super excited about the pedal. It still sells really well. It’s on a lot of pedal boards and I love that I get to have a tiny piece of Boss history with my name on it. It’s an amazing experience.
4) Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?
Josh Scott: This is one of those time travel questions….I never know how to answer them because I have definitely made bad decisions or misjudged certain circumstances when it comes to running a business and creating a good product. But at the end of the day I don’t think I would change anything. Even when things have gone really wrong I have learned valuable lessons and in my opinion, that is what life is all about.
5) If you would have to choose one single pedal, you will have to use for the rest of your life, which pedal would you choose?
Josh Scott: Man…that’s a very tough question. Can it be a multi-effects unit? Hahaha. I’m going to need to think about that for a few years….
Under pressure I would grab a Line 6 Helix, ha!
6) Is there a pedal of another manufacturer of which you wish, you would have invented it?
Josh Scott: There are always products and companies that I see that are so amazing and have such great ideas that I find myself thinking “Wow, I wish that I would have thought of that.” I like that feeling because it always inspires me to do something of my own that pushes the boundaries and challenges myself. With that said, I think that Boss invented the perfect pedal format in 1977 with the compact series that we all know today. That is definitely something that would have been amazing to invent. Other than that, I think pedals like the Tone Bender (1965), the Memory Man in the mid 70’s, and so many others would have been awesome to be a part of.
7) Which of your pedals is the one you are most proud of?
Josh Scott: I think it would be the Colour Box. It was an idea that came from me really wanting to do something that had never been done. In the pedal industry it can be very hard to do something original that people might actually find useful. When I first had the idea it felt pretty crazy and even members of my team questioned it, just like I did. But at the end of it all, it has been wildly successful. It brought a fresh perspective to how a preamp/overdrive/fuzz can be used in your guitar rig or in your studio on any instrument you want to use through it.
Many thanks at this point again to Josh Scott who was so kind to answer 7 questions of the DelayDude.