In the back of my head, I can always hear Howard Stern quoting Abraham Lincoln, “If you want to see the test of a true man, give him power and see what he does with it,” as he was about to (most of the time justifiably) boast about himself.

What did I do with my power when I became brewmaster at the BrickHouse Brewery in December?

For one, I forbade all employees from consuming any coffee or tea unless it was from Roast Coffee & Tea Trading Company. (True story; ask them.) I also began to collaborate with a local “guitar pedal ” company, Electro-Faustus, because I am addicted to these little metal boxes!

I have been playing bass for almost 15 years, and a pedal collector for about 14 of them. I was lucky enough to tour the country a bit, and play SXSW, but while those days are behind me, and brewing is my full time gig now, music isn’t going anywhere in my life.

And neither are my pedals. (Girlfriend Megan Camasi plants face in palm.)

Joe Vella and Eric Kessel are the proud owners of Electro Faustus of Patchogue. As long as Joe and I have been friends, we have talked about wanting to have a pedal expo event at a brewery.

When I got promoted, the timing was right with his company, and we got to work planning a big event for next week, Sept. 14, at the brewery on West Main Street, called Put the Pedals to the Kettle.

This event is dear to me because I get to bring two things that I enjoy together. And who says breweries can only collaborate together, or with other providers of ingredients? Can’t a collaboration just be a joining of a particular mindset? Art and music helped build the walls of the Brickhouse, as well as the town in general. This event is another extension of “shop local”

Electro-Faustus is far from your average “guitar pedal” company that brands its products as Noise Devices. Granted, they do have pedals to plug your guitar into, a lot of what they make are smaller, unique, noise-based instruments that you can  actually play, regardless of your talent level. Hence the term Noise Devices. We’ll also have stuff set up guitarists, bassists and drummers as well. Working on hooking up some horn players to some pedals,  I can promise that any musician will have a blast. 

For the beer, I wanted to take a similar approach, looking at something from a slightly different angle. Electro-Faustus had requested something of German influence and they let me take it from there. I came up with this idea of a West Coast Hopped Kölsch, a beer that would start and finish like a traditional Kölsch: crisp, clean, toasty, with a spicy noble hop character, but in the middle, you get this burst of fruity American hops for a twist on your pallet. It ends up being German-American Session IPA.

We named the beer Disruptor, after Electro-Faustus‘s most popular pedal, which just got a makeover and we are using the event to officially launch it in its new enclosure.

They also did eight black-and-red colored disruptors — themed after our tap handle colors — as well as a custom painted enclosure we will be raffling off the night of. The enclosure was painted by our very own Kim Lecker, bartender extraordinaire. For every pint of disruptor beer purchased, attendees will get a ticket to enter. You can also purchase tickets for $5. All the money from tickets sold will be donated to School of Rock, as well as a portion of every black and red disruptor sold. 

The event will be taking over every space at two-floor Brickhouse Brewery. Electro-Faustus will be taking over our upstairs with a full lineup on display, and ready to play, with 25 percent off everything the night of the show!

Guitars, basses, and amps will be provided by special guests Family Melody Center of Patchogue, so no need to worry about your prized guitar at the brewery.

We also invited a dear friend of mine, Matt Lamb, who builds very unique, sculptural instruments to come down and display some of his work. We will be plugging some of those throughout the corse of the expo. The previously mentioned Kim Lecker will have some of her artwork on display as well.

Last, but certainly not least, we have special guests Fuzzrocious Pedals coming from New Jersey, because shopping local doesn’t have to be about the place up the block — it can also be our neighboring state.

Fuzzrocious Pedals is a husband-and-wife team that, along with their children, make some killer pedals. Quitting their teaching jobs to do this full-time and live the American Dream. Ryan builds them, Shannon paints them, or if you choose, you can have their kids paint them. Raven did a really awesome Poké Ball pedal last I saw, and Caiden was telling me all about the “blood drop ghost” he had just painted. Fuzzrocious will also be offering discounts for the special event.

The expo will run upstairs from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., and our weekly open mic, run by Kyle Fitzpatrick of the band Funkin’ A, will start its sign up at 8 p.m. and will be going until closing. Both companies will have pedal boards downstairs for musicians to use live with a band for open mic.

So you can literally test the stuff out, with a live band downstairs, before you buy it.

If you are interested in playing open mic, your own instruments are required. We have a few set performances throughout the night by Bryan Gallo, Blueblack, and Tom Groeny & Friends.

All ages are welcome before 10 p.m., but must be accompanied by a parent after that.

art by Kim Leckers/Exquisite Aesthetics