what is distortion?
To understand distortion, we need to look at what’s happening sonically. Distortion is when something is changed, twisted, or exaggerated. Musical distortion is the sound of an amplified instrument that is significantly altered, creating a fuzzy, overpowered sound after the original signal has been pushed to its limit.
In 1961 Country artist Marty Robbins had a track called ‘Don’t Worry’. During recording of the track the bassist was plugged directly into the mixing desk, however there was a problem with the channel which caused it to distort and create an intense, distorted fuzz effect. There are similar stories of experimentation with distorted sounds, and in 1964 Ray Davies of The Kinks supposedly took a knitting needle or razorblade to the speaker cone and cut it to get that distorted sound!