These little guitar amplifier
s were introduced in 1970
. They quickly became the hottest thing on the market for professional guitarist
s. We were tired of hauling around stacks of Marshall
amps and those Fender Twin Reverb
s. The Mesa Boogie
was about the size of a 30-pack of beer and could kick some serious ass. Of course, if you were playing to a big room, you had to mic
it and run it through the PA system
. But that is usually a good idea with any amp.
Carlos Santana's comment was, "Man, that little thing really Boogies!" That's where the name came from. The original of which he spoke was the Princeton Boogie, over two hundred of which were built between 1967 and 1970. They had a JBL 12" speaker. Eventually, Fender got suspicious of why so many transformers were being sold to some place in Northern California and cut off the supply. This is when the first mainline Boogies came out. The first model was called the Mark I.
Everything was built by hand.
There have been a few new versions since then, and I haven't really kept up. But a friend in Chicago has Model Number 0079 of the Mark I (18" speaker) and I don't think he'd take 50 Grand for it.