Marshall Amp Originator Jim Marshall Dead at 88


Story by Anne Erickson

Jim Marshall leaves behind legacy of Marshall Amplification

The man who created of one of rock and roll’s most essential pieces of gear has died. Jim Marshall, designer of the Marshall amplifier, has passed away at age 88. A message posted on Marshall Amps’ official website and a Facebook memorial page announced the sad news.

“It is with profound sorrow that we announce the passing of our beloved founder and leader for the past 50 years, Jim Marshall…, “ the statement reads. “While the entire Marshall Amplification family mourns Jim’s passing and will miss him tremendously, we all feel richer for having known him and are happy in the knowledge that he is now in a much better place which has just got a whole lot louder!”

Marshall grew up in the music business, working as a singer and drummer. Eventually, he scored a day job as an electrical engineer, and that position set the stage for Marshall to design a transportable amplifier to use at his live shows. Speaking with great musicians such as the Who’s Pete Townshend and Deep Purple’s Richie Blackmore, Marshall got an even clearer picture of the perfect amplifier, and he founded Marshall Amplification in 1962.

The Marshall amp truly changed the way music was communicated to the masses, and for that, Marshall has long been recognized as one of the innovators of rock’s greatest tools. There has been no official announcement as to Marshall’s cause of death or exactly when he died, but his Facebook memorial page was launched on March 29.