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Ernie Ball

Roland Sherwood "Ernie" Ball ran one of the United States' first 'guitar only' music stores. During the 1960s, with renewed interest in guitar-based rock, Ball started to notice that students had trouble playing the most popular brand of medium gauge strings at the time. Specifically, they struggled to fret and bend the wound, .028"-gauge third (G) string, so Ball approached the brand and suggested they make lighter gauge strings.

Unfortunately, the idea didn't find any traction. Not to be disheartened, Ball contacted a string manufacturer directly and had them produce an unwound .024" gauge third string which he could sell in his store. He then ordered separate strings in various gauges so guitarists could 'pick & mix' their own tone. Word of these designer strings got out, and guitarists were soon flocking to Ball's Californian store. Ernie Ball "Slinky" strings were born.

These days, the company produces a wide range guitar accessories including tuners, cables, effects pedals, straps, picks, slides, and instrument polish. True to Ball's original 'guitar only' music store, every product is designed to inject joy and convenience into the pursuit of the guitar, just as it should be!

Packet of Ernie Ball Slinky strings on-top of an amp, next to a bass.
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