bob sweet

Gear and music communities have come together to help combat Bob Sweet''s cancer

Bob Playing
Bob Sweet playing at Buzz''s before he found out about the cancerous tumor in his neck
Fort Lauderdale, FL (May 7, 2008) -- Considering the harsh and sometimes downright nasty tone of online gear forums, you''d think such a venue might be an unlikely place for mobilizing musicians and gear makers to work together for a worthy cause. That''s exactly what happened when word got out that one of their own had fallen hard. In fact, the collective efforts of these gearheads is still at work.

Bob Sweet is a pedal maker out of southern Florida whose line, Sweet Sound Electronics, is often noted for its simple designs, high quality construction and truly sweet sounds. In December, Bob found out that he had a cancerous tumor in his neck (squamous cell carcinoma). 

Needless to say, the cancer is trying to take him down. Since the start of chemotherapy he has encountered problems with his back. Several of his vertebrae have cracked as a result of calcium depletion. This has required more surgery and brought additional debilitating pain, beyond what was caused by the tumor alone. The back surgeries forced Bob to put off some of the chemo treatments and have limited his ability to make pedals that people continue to order -- pedals that he desperately wants to make.

In an interview with Premier Guitar, Bob described the pain, saying that at times he cannot even write an e-mail without pain shooting up his back and forcing him back to his bed -- a reclining chair that keeps his back at an appropriate angle.

Besides being an emotionally and physically draining experience, the actual cost of fighting the cancer is staggering -- chemotherapy costs up to $3500 a week. As we all know, being a professional musician and independent builder usually means having no health insurance and Bob''s situation is no different. However, Bob is not fighting this alone, thanks to a charity started by Musictoyz.com owner/Administrator, Ted Rasch, and user Paul DiBenedetto.

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