Vox at the British Musical Instrument Industries Trade Fair, 1968
18th - 22nd August
The advert for the Fair.
August 1968 was the first outing for the new company "Vox Sound Equipment Limited", which had been brought into being only a few months earlier by Reg Clark and Cyril Windiate following the formal end of "Jennings Musical Industries" in late April 1968. VSEL took over a large proportion of JMI's unsold stock - certainly where amplifiers, speaker cabinets, and organs were concerned - and sold off (in September 1968) lines that were surplus to requirements.
VSEL had six rooms in the Russell Hotel: the Oak Room (main display on the ground floor), and rooms 134a, 135, 140, 142 and 143 on the second floor, these last for special promotions and demonstrations. See the rough-print picture of the organ room below. A plan showing the room numbers, which remained the same from year to year, can be found on this page.
As the pieces below note, VSEL continued to "push" the solid state range. New were the boosters produced by JEN Elettronica in Pescara; the reconfigured guitars (made for the company in Japan); and the redesigned string packages. Some of these new things may have been set in train by JMI however before it folded. All are listed in the VSEL pricelist of 1969.
Likely to have been present (no note of those attending seems to have been printed) are: Cyril Windiate, Reg Clark, Geoff Harris, Eddie Haynes, Colin Barratt and Dave Roberts.
Most trade and professional music magazines in the UK and Europe carried a handsome double-page spread:
A short account of the display published in the music trade press, August 1968.
Below the page advertising the presence of the new company, "Vox Sound Equipment Limited", published twice in Melody Maker Magazine: 27th July and 17th August.
Page from 27th July.
Full page from the Melody Maker "Trade Fair Special", 17th August, 1968. Selected for illustration, the Supreme and Continental organ. It should be said that Melody Maker was really the primary vehicle for Selmer adverts in the mid sixties. Selmer has a two-page spread in the "Trade Fair Special". Vox advertised in the magazine only sporadically.
The blurb from the main page.
Photographs of the stand are relatively few and far between in the music trade press, the shots below being the only ones that have come to light so far.
The organ room - 134a (?) - on the first floor. In view, a Riviera and Super Continental organ, and two Gyrotone IIIs, one with an AC30 Super Twin amplifier section on top.
The new range of Japanese-made guitars; at right the newly packaged guitar strings.
Below, snippets from Gary Hurst's account of the Fair from "Beat Instrumental", October 1968.
Dave Roberts of Vox demonstrating a Supreme for Ray Davies of the Kinks. Note on top of the amp, "The Guv'nor" advert, published earlier both in "Beat Instrumental" and "Melody Maker".
Main trade fair index page on the Vox AC100 website.