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By Rocky Dohmen, but enhanced by others

Little River Musician Invents Tremolo System For Acoustic Guitar 



Predice Hendricks: Inventor of the Acoustic Tremolo



Predice Hendricks  


 Where Music Meets Invention

                      Written by Roger Yale            Picture by Janet Blackmon

                                                  

                                                Published on 3/21/12


Predice Hendricks can best be described as a renaissance man. A musician, carpenter and inventor hailing from Hampton, Va., Hendricks spent a couple of years in the Outer Banks, N.C. helping a friend build oceanfront beach houses there and gearing up to begin an ambitious multistate tour with wife Terri Mason-Hendricks and their musical duo That’s Cool And Stuff. They played every Southern state over the course of more than three years, and in 2000, the pair became Grand Strand residents.


We were playing in Charleston, and a friend lived up here,” he says. “We came to visit, and when he decided to move back to Virginia, we took over the place he was renting. We figured that this was a good central location and we love the beach.” Hendricks now lives in Little River with his wife and three sons: (Predice) D’Metri (8), Mason (7), and Elijah (4).


That’s Cool And Stuff continues to play gigs, most recently last week at Patio’s Tiki Bar in Little River, and the couple recently began an ASCAP affiliated music publishing company, Open Minded Music Publishing. Hendrix was also involved with 80 Proof, a 1980s metal tribute band. “This was a side project that I put together with Derek Amato and Nathan Utz, and Earl Truette was the original drummer for the project,” he says. “It was a full-on theme show with big backdrops, fake flames onstage – smoke machines – something straight out of 1985. It was great.” He also sat in on bass with Freedom Street Prison.


Making a living as a musician on the Grand Strand can be a daunting proposition, and many who attempt this here tend to have other irons in the fire. Hendricks is no exception. “I’m a subcontractor and a handyman.” His scope of services run the gamut: additions, decks, window replacement, sheetrock, trim – flooring, painting, insulation. “I’m also a remodeling consultant,” he says. “I will sit down with people if they are not sure what to do with a project and come up with ideas to help them utilize the space they have.”


For years, however, Hendricks has been nurturing a groundbreaking idea – an invention that was granted patent status in 2010, the Acoustic Tremolo System – ostensibly a “whammy bar” for acoustic guitar.I came up with the idea in 1991; electric guitars had tremolo systems, but I noticed there was no system like this for acoustic guitars.” Later, when working at Ripper’s Music in Virginia, the store dealt with every major guitar manufacturer, and Hendricks talked to all of the reps about this. “Nobody had it, and I researched this for two years and found nothing.”


Hendricks had expertise in wood working, especially in relation to grain and differing wood strengths. He also built several electric guitars in the past. “I took my knowledge how wood worked with guitars and designed my own tremolo system.”


Last year, Hendricks attended the NAMM [National Association of Music Merchants] Show in Nashville, Tenn. as a featured guitarist for B.A. Ferguson Guitars. “While I was there I went around to other booths and talked to other guitar companies, and the response I got was like, ‘Wow! Somebody is actually doing this.’ A couple of companies said they tossed the idea around, but nobody pursued it.”

He is working on the prototype for the system, and has played the devil’s advocate. “One of my teachers in high school told me that whenever you build something, go to the other side of the table and start trying to find every way you could pick it apart. So I did that – challenging myself constantly when I was designing this thing and covered every little nook and cranny – and why this thing would work.” He says the patent process began in 2001.


Clearly, Hendricks is a busy guy. Downtime includes family time – walks at Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens or time at the beach or pool. “We still get a chance to hire a babysitter and take the time for me and Terri to go out – but that is rare.”

Hendricks plans on remaining Grand Strand-based because of its centralized location and, of course, the beach. But he’s going all-in with his Acoustic Tremolo System. “I’m focusing on getting the invention out and making it into a National thing.”


For more about the Acoustic Tremolo System, go to http://predicehendricks.tripod.com.

Know of a local with an interesting job or career that should be given the Working 4 A Living treatment? 

Contact Roger Yale at   rgyale@gmail.com.


 http://www.myrtlebeachonline.com/2012/03/20/2727968/working-for-a-living.html