In the mid 1960s, a young, small-town entrepreneur named Bud Ross battled the odds to combine America's love of music with its passion for high speed hot rods. Imagining the future wrapped in sparkling car upholstery, Ross experimented with covering speaker cabinets with the same colorful Naugahyde material. Musicians responded with an enthusiastic "outta sight!" and an icon of the modern music industry was born.
As with all great ideas, the timing for Kustom was perfect. What began in Ross' garage quickly expanded to a full-blown facility in Chanute, Kansas, with products flying out the doors to feed the dreams of musicians all across the USA. Kustom responded to the burgeoning demand by developing a full-range of amplification products, from guitar and bass amps to P.A. systems, organs, guitars, and even the first Talk Box (The Bag), as used by Stevie Wonder and Jeff Beck.
Artists using Kustom products in the 1960s and ‘70s spanned a wide stylistic range from Rock (Creedence Clearwater Revival, Leon Russell, The MC5) to Country (Johnny Cash) to Pop (The Jackson 5, the Carpenters) to R&B (James Jamerson) and Jazz (Herbie Hancock). There are many reasons for this wide acceptance: higher power levels than the competition, product reliability, the visual flair and innovative features that other companies simply didn’t offer.
Today, Kustom honors its trend-setting past by building award-winning amplifiers and P.A. systems with features and tones that inspire a whole new generation of players.