Zakk Wylde Talks ‘Wylde Audio’ Company, Offers Super Bowl Prediction
Legendary axe man Zakk Wylde of Black Label Society made big news at this year's NAMM with the announcement of his own new line of audio gear, Wylde Audio. It's a top to bottom line that will run the gamut from guitars and amps to cords and cables. He won't start taking orders for another couple of months so at this year's show Zakk was set up offsite. Loudwire had a special chance to hang out with Wylde and talk about all of his new gear and we also got a prediction on the upcoming Super Bowl.
Zakk, first up, what inspired you to do something as big and bold as creating your own line of gear?
It was just a natural progression. If I played baseball and then coached for the Yankees and did really well at it, my next logical step would be to be a team owner. That's kind of how it is with me right now. I played with the best, from Marshall to Gibson to lots of other things I've endorsed -- everything that all of my heroes played. So I've played and learned from the best. Being involved with all of those companies really instilled a philosophy in me which is just basically win, win, win. Every single year the Yankees expect to win the World Series. That's my attitude with my new company. I'm in it to win, period. Everything we're designing right now is being created with the attitude that it needs to be bigger and better than what else is out there.
And you’re talking more than just these beautiful guitars and amps that surround us right now.
Oh absolutely. This attitude is gonna trickle down at everything from all of this incredible gear down to preamps and ProTools plug-ins. Anything we see that we can improve, we are gonna do it. And I'm going to be totally hands-on. It's just like if you and me started our own airline. If you said to me, wouldn't it be great if we had DirecTV? I'd say, hell yeah, let's just do it. That's the attitude. Anything we want to do that makes the stuff better, we’re going to do it.
Is it weird at all that you'll now to be competing with the places you've always worked with?
It's all cool. There's lots of room for everyone. Those great brands have spent years educating the public about what quality means and what it costs. We all respect each other and all have each other's backs. We are all going to find our own customers and so I'm not concerned at all. I still love all those companies. I mean, how could you not? The bottom line is, I have a great team that's totally dedicated to making amazing audio gear that people can afford. This is going to be very cool, I promise.
There are not a lot of musicians that have attempted this sort of deep undertaking.
Hey, what are ya gonna do? I've still got a massive bar tab from the early Animal House years of Black Label Society. There is not a dent in that thing yet so we're talking about more than just chipping away the stone. We're chipping away at Mount Everest! (laughs) But for real, this is a really big deal for me and I'm taking it very seriously.
Given what a big football fan you are, any opinion about what's now being called "Deflategate"?
Let me tell you something. Thank God they weren't using regulation balls for the other half or the score would've been 85-7! That didn't make any difference. If Joe Montana used a deflated football, he would still knock your teeth out. The Colts are a good team but they have a ways to go before they are going to take down Brady and his guys.
Any predictions for the Super Bowl?
I think it's going to come down to Seattle's defense. That's why they win. Pete Carroll is great. He knows what they have and what they don't have and understands that to win, his team is going to need lots of trickery and precision. So I think it's going to be a great game, but I'll predict that because of how solid the Seattle defense is, that they will take the game.
Many thanks to Zakk Wylde for the interview, and to keep up with Wylde Audio and their products, sign up for their newsletter here. And check out some of the gear that Wylde tweeted about earlier this week at this location.
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