The Philosophy

We want to build products with no compromises. We want to push the limits of technology in music. We want to redefine what is possible with music gear. We want to use exceptionally great components and ridiculously powerful processors. We want to make gear that sounds better than anything you’ve ever heard. We want to make our customers happy. We want you to be inspired to create amazing music.

The History

Damage Control was founded in 2004 with the release of our line of tube-driven effects pedals, which earned critical acclaim and became favorites among guitarists across the globe. In 2009 we began developing products under the Strymon name, and the rest is history!

Pete Celi
DSP Algorithm Genius
Movie Quote Encyclopedia
How do you pronounce your last name?

Sounds like Chelly – it’s Sicilian – arrivederci

Favorite horror flick?

Does Young Frankenstein count?

Actually, the one that freaked me out the most is The Exorcist.

Most random job you’ve ever had?

I worked a temp job for the board-game maker Parker Brothers where I sorted thousands of little plastic game pieces into giant bins labeled GOOD and BAD.

# of times Tammie said to you, “What?”

Due to my tendency to mumble, the answer is in the tens of thousands. Seriously.

Favorite quote from which movie?

“Where is pancakes house?” from the movie Fargo.

Current favorite amp?

Vox hand-wired AC15. Highly recommended.

Your best cocktail drink?

I make a mean Bloody Mary, and get many requests for Margaritas. Cheers!

Gregg Stock
Senior Analog Engineer
Baseball Aficionado
What was your first guitar?

First guitar was a el cheapo steel string acoustic. First electric was a wine colored Les Paul Custom.

Top 3 concerts you’ve been to?

Kiss in the Paramount theater. 1974 Led Zeppelin in the King Dome 1977. Van Halen opening for Black Sabbath in the Arena 1978.

What was your first invention?

When I was about 8, I wanted to make a wrist watch voice recorder with a loop of wire and a hover craft out of a vacuum cleaner. Needless to say, those projects are still on the drawing board.

# of baseball games you’ve attended (estimate)?

I’ve been to about 400 games at every possible level for the 11/12 year old group and at least 1000 from t-ball to college. I still have not seen my oldest play professionally.

How long are you going to wear that USC sweater?

Sweatshirt, real men don’t wear sweaters. As long as it is one piece. An engineer never throws out a fully functional item of clothing – ever. This was the problem that plagued aerospace engineers in the 60’s and 70’s. Their polyester wouldn’t wear out and were forced to wear it for waaaay too long.

Favorite Southpark episode?

Imagination Land

How many subwoofers do you have in your living room entertainment system?

Four 15″ so far.

Favorite all-time flick?

This is Spinal Tap

Dave Fruehling
Firmware Architect Genius
Jeep Repair Expert
What was your first science project?

The classic Volcano project. Baking soda, vinegar and food color. I got in trouble for staining the carpet.

# of countries you’ve visited?

Thirteen that I recall.

Guitar you’re most ashamed of having owned?

An Ibanez RG550. Sounds like nice guitar, right? It was florescent nuclear yellow.

If you could rescue one person from the office during an earthquake, who would it be?

Gregg, he’s the clever one. Possibly Ethan, he’s the talented one. No, definitely Pete; he’s the accountant.

Do you believe in the devil?

Yes, he lives in South Park.

Worst ever movie you’ve seen?

Just saw it recently, Midgets vs Mascots.

# of times you’ve seen CaddyShack?

Let’s just say it’s on par with what I shot the last time I played a round of golf.

Ethan Tufts
VP Marketing / Noisemaking
Music Nerd
Old Car Hoarder
# of guitars you own?

Just a few. I usually stick with my el cheapo Fender Toronado and my Gibson J-30 acoustic.

Your favorite gear that you constantly use?

I use the crap out of Circular Labs looping software on my MacBook.

# of dogs you’ve rescued?

Two doggies from Los Angeles shelters, Edison and Emma.

How old were you when you made your first song?

First song, or first good song? I recorded several hundred terrible vocal and casio keyboard ideas when I was 10. My first not entirely terrible song came about when I was 16.

Who are 3 people / bands who have highly influenced you in music?

Radiohead, especially during the OK Computer era. Fugazi and Drive Like Jehu are also pretty big influences.

What was the first CD you ever bought?

Pretty sure it was either Public Enemy Fear of a Black Planet or Yes 90125.

First record?

Weird Al In 3D.

How much are you willing to pay for an awesome t-shirt?

I like my shirts cheap. Dumpy thrift stores is how I roll.

# of cars you’ve owned?

I must get bored too easily. I’ve owned 29 cars and am actively looking for my 30th!

Jorge Aguila
Sr Manufacturing Engineer
Underground DJ
# of birthday parties you’ve attended in 1 year alone?

I’ve lost count. I would have to approximate two a month on average. That’s not counting all the parties my wife goes to alone.

What’s your dream car?

An Audi R8.

Kobe or Gasol?

“The Black Mamba”

What is your dog’s name?

(and stop blaming your wife Memory!) Munchkin, came with the package.

Musical weapon of choice?

My cheap acoustic guitar I play for the kids.

Aaaaand, what was your first instrument?

The Accordion. Played the accordion from age 9 -12, was forced by parents.

Nicknames you’ve had growing up?

Dad called me Rey (means king in Spanish).

The craziest sneakers you’ve ever owned?

During the breakdancing era, I owned several colored Converse All Stars. Some colors are too embarrassing to mention!

John Brinkman
Code Communicator
Master of Bass
What was the first piece of music electronic gear you built?

It was a bass amplifier cobbled out of the parts of an old stereo and stuffed into a Vans shoe box. Not the most impressive engineering, but it didn’t sound half bad driving a homemade 15” speaker – and it got great FM reception too.

If you could jam with any of your music heros, who would it be?

Bass player Alan Spenner, RIP.

What is the coolest gig you have ever played?

Hard question, so the first thing that comes to mind was a local community theater production of “Spring Awakening.” Amazing music in that show, and the bass book calls for both double and electric bass.

How many robots have you built?

If we count the Lego robots too, lots.

If you could replace your brain with a microchip, would you?

Replace, no, but enhance, absolutely! I would probably leave the higher reasoning à la neo-cortex untouched, but adding a lower-brain “co-processor” would be pretty helpful. Nothing too intrusive, just a little something to augment motor function and suppress all those “oops, those were inside words,” moments. But on second thought, the only function I would really need is “undo.” Say something stupid, blow up your car, or catch your house on fire – no problem, think “undo” and you’re golden.

Teri Spiker
Dealer Relations
Lead Metal Guitarist
What was your first guitar?

SG copy. I traded a pair of moccasin boots.

Current favorite amp?


Do you have a prized guitar?

My 70’s BC Rich acoustic.

What is your main guitar?

It’s a hybrid. Mason Bernard body; custom neck by Fender/BC Rich luthier; Anderson pickups with Floyd.

If you could eat one thing for the rest of your life?

Chicken salad!

How far do you run in one week?

40-70 miles.

Current band?

MX Machine

Charles Etienne
Mechanical Designer
Mad Scientist
Favorite thing about physics?

Tachyon Anti-telephone. Now that would make a really cool pre-delay pedal.

Least favorite?

Spherical Bessel Functions. Oh, and all that other math stuff.

How long until you buy another Triumph Spitfire?

A lot of people may say that the Triumph Spitfire doesn’t have the manliness of the Mazda Miata, but it doesn’t cost as much. Also you can tell people you drive a British sports car.

How much do you love the Maker Bot?

Is it weird that my first kiss was with an open-source 3D printer? It was gentle with me, and didn’t move too fast. I remember one day when my dog ran away, the Maker Bot just held me. It didn’t try to take advantage of me or the moment, it just held me…

Favorite beverage?

Obviously my favorite cocktail to imbibe is the sweet concoction of Strymon’s limitless drive to push music technology forward without compromising.

John Aguila
Warehouse Manager
Super Nice Guy
Favorite pastime?

I like to eat Sushi for lunch and then catch a matinee movie.

Favorite type of food?

Seafood for sure. Crab, oysters are my favorite. Just some salt, a bit of lemon and some habañero hot sauce. And wash it down with a cold Tecate.

Where did you work before Strymon?

I worked for the Grove of Anaheim. I was a Beverage Manager/Catering Manager. Pretty much an Operation Manager. I would run events of up to 5,000 people making sure everyone was eating some good food and had a cold beverage in their hand.

Have you ever worked NAMM before?

Yes, for 7 years. I would work the Food and Beverage side at the Convention. Also we hosted large parties at the Grove of Anaheim. It was insanely busy.

Who is your favorite Brother?

Of course Jorge.

Hugo Merida
Customer Service Mgr
Calm Voice of Reason
First guitar?

A Peavey Predator strat knock-off that I got from a pawn shop when I was 13 after working with my dad for a few weeks that summer. Still have it and still love it (after some upgrades).

Fave artists/bands?

I love music that gets people dancing like Daft Punk, James Brown, !!!, and Chromeo. Passion and soul like Bill Withers, Curtis Mayfield and Sade. In-your-face loudness like Comets on Fire, Death From Above 1979, and The Mars Volta. King Crimson, GnR, LCD Soundsystem, Radiohead…

Speeding tickets with the GTI?

None at this time, thankfully. It’s only been a year though.

First CD?

My first CD I bought myself is actually 2 that I bought at the same time: Nirvana Nevermind and Snoop Doggy Dogg Doggystyle 🙂

Weirdest Job?

Telemarketing job calling people up to take surveys. People can get pretty mad when they get unsolicited calls.

Favorite restaurant in LA?

I loved Electric Lotus in LA for indian food when it was open, but that’s gone now. Los Toros Mexican restaurant in Chatsworth just for the margaritas!

Angela Heine
Social Media Maven
Animal Lover
You really could have tacos every day?

Yep! All I need is a vegetarian taco truck on my island with a lot of jackfruit options.

So you really are allergic to the cold?

I really am. It’s called Cold Urticaria. Even if it’s summer and the A/C is on I can start to get hives. Luckily for me it’s not life threatening (for some it is), and living in Southern California doesn’t hurt either.

Favorite social media platforms?

I can’t get enough of Instagram. A simple interface, and I love posting and viewing photos. Second is Vine. The creativity that exists on Vine is remarkable and can keep me entertained for hours.

Weirdest song you like?

I guess I have to go with Hamburger Lady by Throbbing Gristle. The song travels back and forth in your head with all these David Lynch style images popping up. It’s a bit disturbing.

Los Angeles tip to share?

You can see amazing whales off the coast of Malibu. Go to Point Dume State Beach between the end of February to mid-April and you have a good chance of seeing Gray Whales migrating north from Mexico. Many of them are traveling with babies, so they are going slower and stop at this location to bottom feed. There is a good chance you might catch me there. Here are some of my pictures from past visits.

Jake Lawrence
Accounting Dude
Longboard Aficionado
What instruments do you play?

Very funny.

Sorry about the instruments joke. What are some of your favorite things to do?

Relaxing with some good friends, watching some sports preferably with some beers.

Favorite Strymon lunch destination?

All time fav would have to be Meat Locker in Thousand Oaks. Classic.

Puig or Gonzalez?

Gotta go with the crazy Cuban. Puig is my boy.

Favorite song to do accounts payable to?

White Iverson.

Which movie can you quote best of all?

This list is very long. Since I’m not very funny on my own, I’ve gotten pretty good at quoting funny movies. It’s a close tie between Wedding Crashers and Mean Girls, but I think I could do both movies from start to finish.

Josh Forbes
Circuit Board Guru
Diesel Mercedes Aficionado
Darlene Weege
HR Designer
Telecaster Titan
What is your favorite office safety tip?

Keep it clutter free!

Which Wes Montgomery song is the most fun to play?

Tear It Down!

You teach guitar—what advice could you give to a beginning guitarist?

Learn guitar music theory first. When you understand what you are doing you will advance and learn in less time.

What was the first album you owned?

Meet the Beatles, 1964.

When did you get your Tele?

I bought my Telecaster in 1980. It is American made and it cost about $325.00 new.

Jose Martinez-Morales
Pedal Assembly
Victor Buenrostro
Shipping Dude
Randi Stock
Shipping Coordinator
Owner of Chirping Phone
Marla Lopez
Software wrangler
Favorite sushi?

Yellowtail with jalapeno and yuzu sauce. I could eat this every day

Have your two pugs, Luke and Leia watched Star Wars?

Not yet, but that’s a great idea!

Favorite outdoor activity?

Right now, my favorite is probably snowboarding.  I’m not very good but I really enjoy it.

What led you to be interested in Mechanical Engineering?

I think it all started with my dad’s job. I remember visiting him as a kid and being amazed when I saw how airplane parts were made.

Favorite past time?

Definitely skeet shooting.

Favorite thing to take apart as a kid?

RC cars! I really enjoyed doing this with my dad.

Matt Alegrete
Hardware Engineer
Mark McCrite
Product Development
What is your favorite pie for your pie hole?

Banana Cream

How old were you when you wrote your first song?


What is your favorite song that uses a Mellotron?

I have to give you for each of the iconic sounds: STRINGS: The Rain Song – Led Zeppelin, FLUTES: Strawberry Fields Forever – the Beatles, CHOIR: Exit Music (for a film) – Radiohead

Is it true that your Elvis impression is good enough for a Vegas wedding chapel?

Probably, but my Ricky Nelson impression is better.

Prized rare song you have in your collection?

Studio version of “Ode to Lethargy” by Jason Falkner

What past musical group should kids these days listen to?

King Crimson (1973-1974 John Wetton era)

Are you a Strymon nerd or a Strymon hipster?


Isabel Hernandez
Pedal Assembly
Teddy Hernandez
Shipping Assistant
Matt Piper
Copywriter / Videographer
Jacob Stock
Jr. Engineer
Minh Dinh
Repair Technician
What is your favorite DIY show on TV?

I have several DIY shows that I watch, but mostly I have been watching HGTV and This Old House.

Best place you have traveled?

Paris and Vietnam.

What place you would most like to visit in the future?

I would like to visit Japan and eastern Europe in the future.

What was a home DIY project that you are most proud of?

I replaced carpeted stairs with wooden ones, and did the backsplash tile in my kitchen.

Maria Martinez-Morales
Pedal Assembly
Sasha Stock
Customer Service
Steve Celi
Finance Guy
Jack Heine
Marketing Specialist
Gohan Ruiz
Technical Support
Dean Miller
Software Engineer
Mikel Hernandez
Rosa Tamayo
Pedal Assembly
Sabina Stock
Customer Service
Sara Stock
Adolfo Zaragoza
Manufacturing Associate
Arlene Romero
Procurement Specialist
Johnny Hornsby