Me & My Music

Howdy! My name is Ed Pitt aka Big Beat and I'm a musician, guitar repairman and historian. I was born in Moscow, USSR, back when there still was a USSR, and I emigrated to America while Comrade Brezhnev was still in power and rock was still a four-letter word behind the Iron Curtain. Why "Big Beat"? I came up with that nickname when I needed a handle for e-mail addresses and internet forums. Big Beat is another name for rock 'n' roll. In 1960s Russia, as in Europe, it was actually the more common name. The music that Americans knew as the British Invasion in the 1960s was known as Beat music in Britain. That's actually the reason John Lennon named his group "The Beatles".

As a musician, I play primarily blues, retro-punk and Russian rock. Basically, if you can visualize a link between the music of Jimmy Reed, the Dead Kennedys and Mike Naumenko, that's where I'm coming from. In the early 1990s, I was in a band called The Hazmats, which made some noise in New York City clubs and had quite a following, but unfortunately never recorded. I also spent 14 years promoting other indie bands through the Russian Rock Club of America, organized numerous concerts and music festivals, including the Echo festival. I have worked with Russian rock stars and headliners such as Umka, Mikhail Bashakov, Alexander Chernetsky, Billy's Band, AveNue, Tequilajazzz, Alexander Liapin (ex-Aquarium), Oleg Khovrin (ex-Master), The Red Elvises and others. I play occasional solo gigs and have recorded two self-released CDs of original rock 'n' roll sung in Russian.

I have written for Vintage Guitar magazine, The Blue Book of Electric Guitars and 1001 Guitars. I'm especially partial to the guitars of the USSR and Eastern Europe and am a leading authority on these guitars, having researched and written about them for over 25 years. I was one of the founders of, the very first online resource about these instruments, and am one of the resident experts on

I'm probably fixing some old Jolana right now.

Rock on!

- Big Beat


Click HERE to go to the GUEST BOOK and leave your comments about junk guitars and

Click HERE to read all about The Hazmats.

Click HERE to buy my CD.


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