[interview] Funky Munk: Greg Clark

Here's FXDB's interview with Greg Clark of Funky Munk:

How did Funky Munk start?

About 5 years ago I had gotten some gear repaired and always being a hands on type of guy I decided that I'd learn as much as I could about the components and general construction methods that are used in building sound equipment. I was a general contractor at the time and had winters off. With all that time on my hands I decided to invest in all the supplies necessary to start building effects pedals and amps. I started tweaking my friends gear until I started to build my own on a regular basis.

It's really been a one man show for me. Inspiration came from what gear all my guitar heroes used over the years as well as a few pedal and amp building forums.

Where does the name come from?

Well, it was just an idea that if a Munk played and loved guitar tone as much as I do it would be in the league of Perfectionists (like me). Just merely a standard I like to set for myself.

What sets Funky Munk apart from other builders?

The fact that I'm on a private one client a time basis. We sometimes use NOS parts in some of our pedals and amps as well as some components custom made to our specifications. We cater to the individual and tweak the sound where that deems necessary. We're really a custom by order company and that really sets us apart.

How do you start on a new pedal?

Inspiration usually comes from the customer, once the customer wants something special it can be streamlined into a product. I try to take all the ideas and put them into one basic feature set. Usually it takes about 2-3 months from start to finish with R&D on a completely new designed pedal platform.

How do you name your pedals?

The Delica Fuzz comes from the word Psychedelic, the meaning coming from the late 6o's music scene.

Can you tell us something about the production process?

It's all a one man show here.

The pedals are all hand assembled using the finest Military spec'd parts. I use hand made through hole construction PCB's in the pedals, and G10 Garolite using eyelets in the amps. Our enclosures are sprayed to what the customer wants. We use metal face plates unlike some other companies, even on our pedals.

How important is the look of your pedals?

Very. The visual aspect of Funky Munk is held to a standard just as high as the internal wiring and parts choice.

Is parts selection important?

Yes parts are very, very important to what the pedal will sound like. Every pedal builder has there own concoction of parts choice. That's what makes everybody's designs so individual. I use mil spec aircraft shielded cable and Dale metal film resistors, sometimes NOS (New Old Stock) transistors from the EU (made in the 60's). It's what makes us special in our own ways.

Which of your pedals makes you most proud?

The Delica Fuzz is our most popular. I've spent years repairing , making clones of the various Fuzz circuits. The idea with the Delica Fuzz is to put all the best and most musical features into one pedal and let the users expression shine on through. The Delica Fuzz (NOS) is an amalgamation of various fuzz pedals that really put you in the direction of early Jimi Hendrix and Eric Johnson. The fuzz feeds back and blooms like no other fuzz pedal out there. It's truly an instrument in itself.

Which of your pedals was your toughest build?

It was a custom one off pedal/amp switcher in a rack case. It's been made in to a product since then but it was a hassle getting everything just right. Regardless it is of the best in its class with gold contact relays and a power supply to run all your pedals off of built right in.

Who uses your pedals and for which genres?

No discrimination here, I builds pedals and amps for whomever wants them, no genre in particular, although the metal guys don't really catch interest in the products I make.

What does the future of Funky Munk look like?

I've gotten more into getting components custom made for certain applications. I build on a private basis so my company isn't commercialized in any way. It gives me a chance to work individually with the player and get them exactly what they need.

Are you working on any new products?

Yes, new pedal ideas are coming as well as a new website in Spring 2012. New inspiration is flowing to cater even more to the individual player looking for something to set him/her apart from today's music scene.

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