For nearly three years, Cottle has made a living finding old and beat-up drums, outfitting them with new parts and selling them back to the music industry. He finds his raw materials everywhere from garage sales to the Goodwill, and after sanding the wood, replacing the skin and putting new fasteners on them, he turns out a product that looks brand new.
“Somebody told me the other day that my drums already have a rich sound in them, because so many people have been playing them,” Cottle said.
Cottle, who also rents amplifiers and other equipment, will be among the vendors Sunday at the second Musician’s Swap Meet at Old World Village in Huntington Beach. The event, which took place for the first time in August, brings together merchants who sell records, books, equipment, instruments and even insurance for musicians.
Co-organizer Stan Velicky, who runs the swap meet with his father, plans to host a similar event every two or three months in Orange and Los Angeles counties. By Velicky’s estimate, there are about 500,000 musicians in the area, which made it a natural home for his enterprise.
“These two counties are basically the cream of the crop as far as the musicians market,” he said.
The swap meet will take place in the Festival Hall and the adjoining outdoor Old World Beer Garden.
Old World Village will provide a full bar and food, including bratwurst and hamburgers, during the event. Cyndie Kasko, the shopping center’s marketing director, said about 250 people attended last year’s event.
“Anything to do with music, you can find here,” she said.
Cottle isn’t the only vendor planning to sell products made out of recycled parts. Clifford Latshaw, the owner of Nitewalkerpreamp, manufacturers bass guitar preamplifiers by combining standard equipment with capacitors used by the military. Latshaw said he gets many of his parts from Russian military surplus equipment, which he buys on EBay.
Latshaw, who lives in Nevada, created his products to equal the sound of the bass he played as a teenager in the 1960s. After that, he said, technology changed, and the preamplifiers he had tried ever since didn’t render the same dynamic sound.
“It really does make a big difference,” he said. “It brings back a sound like the bass guitar is supposed to sound.”
If You Go
What: Musician’s Swap Meet
Where: Old World Village, 7561 Center Ave., Huntington Beach
When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday
Admission: $4 for adults, $2 for seniors, free for children 12 and younger