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Founded by Conrad Sundholm in 1965. Conrad's brother, Norm Sundholm, was the bass player for northwestern garage rockers The Kingsmen, notorious for their rendition of Richard Berry's "Louie Louie". Norm was dissatisfied with the amount of volume produced by his bass cabinet when the Kingsmen went on tour. He enlisted his brother to help rectify the problem. After building his first amplifier in 1964, an increase in demand from guitarists and bass players led to Conrad founding the Sunn amplifier company. In 1969, Sunn amplifiers powered the sound system at the Woodstock Music and Arts Fair.

Sunn amplifiers have enjoyed favor with demanding musicians over the years, used by such bands as The Who and Rush. Most recently they have enjoyed acclaim from those in the doom metal and sludge worlds, with artists from powerhouse doom label Southern Lord such as Goatsnake, Burning Witch, and Khanate championing them. Joe Preston of The Thrones also uses a Sunn amp. Another Southern Lord band featuring members of some of the afore-mentioned groups has even paid the company tribute in it's name, calling themselves Sunn 0))).

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