Welcome to the new Chetboard!


Postby Steve Sanders » Mon Feb 06, 2017 1:24 pm

I was just wondering about the Prismatone pickups that were being make by Sam Kennedy. It appears he no longer makes them or is no longer interested in making them. Does anybody have a point of contact for him? It's kind'a a shame that there seems to be quite a following and interest / demand for these great pickups. Maybe the right person willing to invest in their resurrection could get them back into production. Just a thought. They are too important to us pickers, especially Chet/Jerry pickers to just let these iconic pickups go by the wayside. If you have any info on how to contact Sam I would appreciate it. Thanks, Steve
Steve Sanders
Posts: 157
Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2010 2:42 pm


Postby rkk2786 » Tue Feb 07, 2017 12:15 pm

Sam is a great friend of the Yandell family. So to help put every thing to bed about the pickups I reached out to Sam and asked him to explain why he isn't making the pickups right now!

Sam and his family are awesome people who I have a lot of respect for, I hope this is helpful for everyone who has been wondering. See below,

Best regards,

When I started researching the Prismatone, with my training, I knew that I could bring it back and with the help of great individuals like Phil , Eddie, Craig and of course Paul, I did it. At that time my three kids were small and I could put them to bed and return to my shop for an all nighter, now they are 8, 11 and 16  now it's off to sports every day and homework all night . Somewhere maybe a year after starting the project, my mother developed Alzheimer's, man, I don't wish this even on my enemies , worst five years of my life. My mother finally lost her battle to this evil disease. In the process of all of this I ending up in the cardiac unit at Memorial hospital. The doctors and my wife told me, you haven't slept in months your heart is racing at 200 bpm, you have to throttle back or else. I did just what they told me, unfortunately, Prismatones were the first thing to suffer as I have a demanding career that feeds my family. Pickups were never meant to be a big business it was more of a hobby and passion, I really did it to give the average income player the chance to have that great prismatone sound. I also supplied many stars with pickups and I'm still in contact with all of them.
The first question that everyone has, will I make them again? the answer is yes when I get few more things in order so that I can free up some time, I don't have a timeline though. At this moment my focus is my family and three kids, this is very important to me. The other question is, why don't I sell it all to someone, it's not out of the question but if I did it would have to be a serious guitar company, I will not discuss this with individuals dreaming of building pickups, there is a lot more to this process than meets the eye and you have no idea how much it cost to setup the tooling to produce the units, it was a lot of money. I was approached by Gretsch about this but after Paul's death, it never materialized, i'm willing to talk to them again as I believe they are the perfect fit to re-release the Dorado.
Posts: 108
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:48 am


Postby DagerRande » Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:07 pm

Thanks, Micah. That makes sense. I also had my question answered about selling the business to somebody so the Prismatones could continue to be produced. At least there seems to be hope!
Rande Dager

We are all capable of doing more than we think we can!
Posts: 956
Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 2:53 pm
Location: Battle Creek, MI


Postby jay » Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:59 pm

Thanks, Micah for being a go-between for the board and Sam. I can tell you that for the few "conversations" I had with Sam, I came away with:
1. How much time and effort the prismatone process takes for one guy to pull off; and
2. That, above all, Sam is a family man and a father...and that early on, he knew there was only so much time in a most of us dads can attest to.
It is a cool pickup, with an awesome history. It's good to hear that Sam says there are more to come...
jay kantor
Posts: 185
Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2010 8:19 am


Postby Eddie Estes » Fri Jul 07, 2017 11:40 am

I can’t blame Sam or complain. I have one of his pickups and preamps.

I know where he’s coming from regarding kids and stuff.
If he ever decides to make them again I will buy one from him.

Sam if you see this email me. I’d jut like to see how you are doing.
Take care and hope to hear from you.

Eddie Estes
Posts: 471
Joined: Mon Aug 16, 2010 9:13 pm

Return to Announcement and News

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest