MXR to release Randy Rhoads signature Distortion+ pedal in 2023

Randy Rhoads, pictured at Ridge Farm Studio in West Sussex, England in May 1980
(Image credit: Fin Costello/Redferns)

A new Randy Rhoads signature MXR Distortion+ pedal will be released next year, according to the late electric guitar legend's family.

In a new Instagram post, Rhoads' sister, Kathy Rhoads D’Argenzio, revealed that – for the first time in 40 years – the guitarist's legendary “chip pan” pedalboard was opened and dissected by the MXR team as part of the pedal's research and development.

"We’ve been working with Jimi Dunlap [Jimmy Dunlop] and his team for quite some time now and we are happy to officially announce a future Randy Rhoads Distortion Plus pedal,” Rhoads D’Argenzio wrote on Instagram earlier this week (December 6.)

"Jimmy and his team recently came down to check out Randy’s pedalboard. For the first time in over 40 years it was intricately examined, filmed, recorded and documented at Musonia. They have patiently awaited its return from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. (Randy always referred to it as 'the chip pan!')

"Today [December 6, Rhoads' birthday]," she continued, "seemed like the perfect day to celebrate all Randy did for rock 'n' roll and guitar players around the world. Be on the lookout for this pedal, upcoming in 2023! His music lives on."

Dubbed, as Rhoads D’Argenzio pointed out, "the chip pan," Rhoads' pedalboard is almost as legendary as any of his Gibson, Jackson, and Sandoval guitars or Marshall guitar amps.

An MXR Distortion+ was a central feature of the pedalboard, and played a significant role in the guitarist's hugely influential sound.

Stored in a flight case, the 'board featured at least eight switches and nine control knobs, and has long been shrouded in mystery

Rhoads D’Argenzio also said that after the MXR team completed its examination of the pedalboard, it was returned to a "secured location," not Musonia, the North Hollywood, California music school and Randy Rhoads museum founded by the guitarist's mother, Delores.  

In 2019, thieves broke into Musonia and stole a number of Rhoads' instruments, plus photos and memorabilia. All the missing items were eventually retrieved, and returned to Rhoads' family.

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Jackson Maxwell

Jackson is an Associate Editor at He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.