DJ Williams has ESP. No, really.
Ummmm, I never thought that I would ever have a guitar endorsement deal my whole life. Seriously though…. not once, not never. I know a few people who have, but I think I got really lucky. ESP guitars have never really ever appealed to me as anything that I would have liked since most of their artists are metal musicians (including Willie Adler from Richmond’s own Lamb of God), but my custom ESP PC-2V is probably hands down the best guitar I’ve ever played.
We were in Hollywood doing the Sticky Fingers tour with Anders Osbourne and some of the guys from Slightly Stoopid at the House of Blues when I was approached by a guy named Hal Henckel backstage at the end of the night. He was telling me how he really dug my approach to the Rolling Stones stuff we did and that Ron Wood was an artist for ESP guitars. He told me to come down to the factory in Burbank the next day so I could meet some of the reps. I thought he was full of shit, so I drank my beer and went outside to leave to go to the hotel. The next day I got a phone call from him at 9am to meet at the ESP warehouse. (Almost didn’t pick up the phone since I had gone to bed at 6am). Karl let me use a rental car and I drove up to Burbank with our trumpet player Chris Littlefield to check things out.
We pulled up to a HUGE warehouse by the airport (right next door to Ozzy Osbourne’s rehearsal space & across from the Pearl Drum factory) and walk into ESP where I was greeted by some really great people. Allen Steelgrave offered me an endorsement deal and took me on a tour of the warehouse as we talked about music, Richmond, guitars, and bullshit. I left there like a kid on Xmas day with 3 new guitars and 3 more being shipped to my apt back in VA.
Everyone on that team has been really great and those guys really DO craft a fine instrument. I play their Vintage Telecaster, my custom PC-2V, EW-O acoustic, EC-1000VB, and Vintage 4 bass. Check em out.