Rotosound Sound Celebrating 60 Years of Making Strings in 2018

British string manufacturer Rotosound is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year and has reached the landmark while undergoing a significant period of expansion to its distribution business.

Formed in 1958 by James How as a U.K.-based, family-owned and operated company, the firm has become an icon of the British music industry and continues to manufacture its high-quality range of strings in the U.K.

The brand was championed early on by music icons like Jimi Hendrix, John Entwistle of The Who, and Rush’s Geddy Lee and Rotosound strings are synonymous with the British Tone. Rotosound is the home of well-known products such as Swing Bass 66 strings, created in collaboration with Entwistle.

Now run by James’ son Jason, the brand is sold in more than 80 countries across the globe, and used by some of the top artists in the business including Duff McKagan (Guns n’ Roses/Velvet Revolver), Billy Sheehan (Mr Big), Noel Redding (Jimi Hendrix), Guthrie Govan, Steve Harris (Iron Maiden) and Roger Waters (Pink Floyd). Rotosound is also the choice of strings for many of the world’s most successful contemporary bands such as Oasis, Franz Ferdinand and Nothing But Thieves.

Rotosound is appearing at this year’s NAMM show on booth number 4602 and will be hosting appearances by bass legends Billy Sheehan and Doug Wimbish at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. respectively on Saturday, Jan. 27th of the show.

“I’m so proud that the company my dad started way back in 1958 is not only still recognised and loved by musicians all over the world, and still manufacturing and innovating in the UK to his same exacting standards, but is also entering an exciting new chapter which will see us grow the business in new directions, finding yet more ways to excite musicians everywhere,” says Jason How.

As well as success as a manufacturer, Rotosound has greatly expanded its distribution business over the last 12 months, taking on UK distribution for Dutch music distribution giant, The Music Alliance (TMA), with access to its full range of instruments and accessories, totalling more than 17,000 products.

Central to the offering is the online Parts Doctor which is a dealer-friendly way to order multiple parts for electric, bass, acoustic and classical guitars. Users click on the area of the guitar they want the part for and the site will generate a list of thousands of Boston brand guitar accessories to select from.

Rotosound is distributed in Canada by Yorkville Sound.

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Michael Raine is the Editor-in-Chief at Canadian Musician, Canadian Music Trade, Professional Sound, and Professional Lighting & Production magazines. He also hosts the Canadian Musician Podcast.
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