Michael Pedulla Announces Retirement

Michael PedullaOne of the giants of bass building has announced his retirement. Michael Pedulla of Pedulla Guitars, who has been building basses for over four decades, posted the news on his website.

“After nearly 45 years of designing, building, and servicing instruments, I am retiring,” he wrote. “New bass orders and service orders are no longer being accepted. My sincere thanks to all of you who have provided your business and support throughout the years. I wish you all the best.”

Pedulla added that if you still want a Pedulla bass to check the “Available basses” section of his website and that strings, parts, and accessories will be sold while supplies last.

Pedulla began college as an engineering major before switching to music education for his sophomore year. It was during senior year that he became interested in the banjo and decided to build one. “I had a blast – the combination of music, craft, and design all fit with my original engineering plans,” he told us in a 2012 Custom Shop interview. “One thing led to another and upon graduation, I simply decided I wanted to make and repair string instruments. I was young and grew up in times and an environment that encouraged chasing dreams. So I did.”

Two years after starting his company, he met bassists Mark Egan and Tim Landers, who helped to field-test his first bass. His models grew to include the MVP, the Buzz, the Thunderbass and Thunderbolt, the Nuance, the Rapture, and more.

His business grew to great heights and reached a pinnacle in the mid-90s where he put out close to 750 basses per year. This forced the luthier to focus on running the company more than actually building basses, which led him to scale things back in later years once again to a one-man shop. It was the focus on his craft that brought the joy back to his life.

“I can honestly say I have never been happier,” he said of building every instrument himself. “I still often work seven days a week, but it’s all about the basses. I start a bass, choose each piece of wood, execute every part of the build, apply finish, assemble and even pack them. I love that each bass is representative of my best work to date.”

Congratulations and thank you to Mike Pedulla for all you’ve done for the bass community!

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Share your thoughts

  1. mark hughes

    Congrats on a life well lived! Great great Basses!

  2. Lenny Mo

    Congrats Mike and thanks for great basses. I still gig my 27 year old Series II 5 string .

  3. Mike is the best! Huge shout out to him for his remarkable career. His axes and vision helped to inspire so many, including myself. All the best!!!

  4. Kris M

    Super nice guy and great instruments. At one time i owned buzz and rapture. Mike and his product were the whole package.

  5. Ronald

    Sad, sad, sad.
    Rest well, Mike.

  6. Jake Kurdsjuk

    I still remember the day in the summer of 1987 when you welcomed me into your shop for a brief tour and conversation. I’d purchased a Buzz 18 months prior and before I left you pointed me to a local shop that had just gotten a sparkle blue MVP that was retired from the road as a salesman’s piece. I still have and play them both.

    Enjoy your retirement. I hope it provides you all the joy that your instruments have brought us.

  7. I have loved having a 1999 Pedulla ThunderBolt 5. See Video on my website https://vimeo.com/showcase/4502045/video/210388431

    Have a Nice Life, Michael.

  8. joezonguitars


    I’ve always respected and admired your craftsmanship and finishes. You were one of the best. After interacting at so many NAMM shows over the years, it feels odd that time has caught up to us where I’m now wishing you a happy retirement.

    Best wishes my friend on the new chapter in your life!

    Joe Zon, ZON Guitars.

  9. Scotty

    I have a 1986 MVP pedulla Buzz and just ran across one of your old series 2 v string that may be a little cheaper than the fuzz face but the sound is awesome thank you

  10. Tim Collins

    I am sad that Pedulla no longer makes basses. I”ve had mine since 2002. I feel priveliged I own a pentabuzz. One of the sweetest basses I’ve ever laid hands on.Such a beauty a such a heavenly tone.Thank you Mark Eagan.
    I”ve just retired now myself, and still have THIS Pedulla to occupy my time……..
    God Bless U

  11. Wen

    Best of luck to you Mike in your retirement! Will you be playing your acoustic guitar again for something to do for fun?? Your career seems to have been awesome! Good job Mike!!

  12. Bob McGrath

    Congratulations Mike! Still playing and loving my early Pedulla # 0221. Never considered anything else for the last 36 years!

  13. Michael M Roddy

    I have multiple Pedulla basses, and I am convinced that it was is and always will be tha finest quality construction and playability that exists. Sorry to see you go, Mike. Best of luck and take care!

  14. Sad but nothing lasts for ever. Love my MVP 5 which I purchased from Corner Music in Nashville in 1991. Wishing Michael all the best in retirement. You really did make an amazing bass. Regards, Marlon Holden

  15. Jeff K

    Congratulations Mike! Have a long and happy retirement. I’ve gotten many compliments over the look and sound of my 95 Thunderbuzz. You said you would make me a great instrument and you did. It still looks and plays like the day you made it. Thank you and good luck!

  16. Timothy A Goss

    I had serial #429 bought back around ’81. Nicest bass I ever owned.

  17. Kenneth Hamilton

    Started playing bass in 1967, have played just about all types but have not seen or herd of your bass. I am 70 now only physically able to play in our church praise group. Hopefully some day I’ll come across one of your basses. They look awesome. Enjoy retirement, I am. Great to see american pride still exists. I am happy for you and your time in retirement. I’m sure all you clients are have to have one of your hands on work of art. Pray you have a great retirement.

  18. My 1988 custom MVP has been through hell. Stolen and found 3 years later, headstock broken off. And it hangs on my wall, beautiful as ever. I was 15 when I borrowed $1800 from the bank to get that bass. It thrills me all these 32 years later. Thanks, Michael.

  19. Massimiliano

    I’m half sad and half happy for him. Thank you for your masterpieces: I have a 6 string Thunderbolt imported from Chicago to Milano, Italy, and a 5 string fretless series II bought from France, a clear statement about the quality of what you built, that was and is appreciated worldwide. Enjoy your new life!

  20. Len Perry

    I am the proud owner of one of the first Pedulla guitars custom made for me. I believe it was the second electric guitar he made. The first one was a demo, followed by a bass and then he made mine. I asked if he could make the pickguard out of rosewood and instead of the backplate being a plastic cover if he could cut the wood on the back and screw it back on as the cover and he said yes. The head, neck and center of the body is carved out of one piece and has never warped in 50 years. Thank you Mike for making such a beautiful custom guitar that changed my musical life and that I still play out. I loved it then and love and appreciate it even more now! Len Perry

  21. Amalia Mcdonald

    Love my five string Thunderbass, have had it since mid 90s. Thank you for such a beautiful instrument that I cherish. Molly McDonald

  22. Thomas Haase

    I am now 73 years old and still have my MVP5 Flaming Amber Bass. I love that bass, would near sell, trade or discard that bass. I am currently sick about it. Last week the battery connection (black/ground wire) broke off. I have sent endless hours online looking for the information to tell me were to solder it back on with zero results. There are NO schematics out there in space to show me what I need to know. I know this is a simple fix and I did solder to the most obvious post on the switchcraft output jack…didn’t work. It did however drain the power from a new 9 volt battery in a very short time. IF anyone can help me with a photo or info on this problem PLEASE forward photo or copy of schematics to me, PLEASE I would deeply appreciate it. I still play gigs and have other guitars to use, but without my Pedulla…feels like my right arm is cut off.
    As for Mike P., enjoy your retirement. When I retired it opened up more time for my music and playing pubs. Hope you have a great hobby Mike…you have to remain active to remain mobile. .

  23. Kenny

    Mike & Chris,
    Thank you from the depth of my heart. From the build, to the great customer service & support. You guys rock! Happt trails!!!

    ~ Kenny

  24. Ryo

    Yeah he refused to swap the defective pickup that on my rapture bass. Shitty attitude to have

  25. Carmine J Fazzi

    Im looking to have a 70 pedulla overhauled that I purchased at Wurlitzers
    In boston….any ideas