Gon Bops

The Gon Bops legend began in 1954 California when Mexican-American Mariano Bobadilla (born in Guadalajara) – who would go on to become one of the most highly-regarded conga builders in the percussion industry – started designing and building Conga and Bongo drums. A band instrument repairman and professional trumpet player, Bobadilla launched Gon Bops in his father’s old wooden garage in a downtown Los Angeles neighborhood. He chose the name Gon Bops because “Gon” was one of the colloquial expressions of the time, as in, “everything is gone, man” – and “Bops” because his friends nicknamed him Bob, which sounded like “Bop” in the Latino dialect.

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