With just weeks to go until revolutionary virtual guitar show Guitar.com Live, we caught up with the team from founding partner Taylor Guitars to find out why they were so excited to be part of this new venture, what fans can look forward to at the show from Taylor, including a top-secret new launch…
“The world has changed, and it’s not going back to the way it was,” is the frank assessment of Scott Reinhardt, director of Taylor’s digital marketing – but that doesn’t mean that we can’t do new and exciting things as a result of the new normal.
“Every business has to adapt to life with the coronavirus, including how we host and participate in events and trade shows,” he continues. “Taylor Guitars always welcomes new ideas, and we see Guitar.com Live as an opportunity to interact with guitar players from across the globe whom we would not be able to reach otherwise. Guitar.com Live will allow musicians to virtually explore new Taylor products and stories in a unique and immersive digital environment, hear from Taylor’s craftspeople and artists, win Taylor prizes, and find their next dream Taylor guitar.
“By coming together for Guitar.com Live, we’ll have the opportunity to connect as music makers, and to share the energy around Taylor’s instruments as we look forward to the coming holiday season and a new year full of new opportunities.”
Guitar shows are as much about the product launches as they are the artist appearances and discussion panels, and as a founding partner, Taylor will be giving attendees a chance to get up close with some of its most exciting new products, including something that’s never been seen before.
“There are several new product releases we’re excited to spotlight,” said Jim Kirlin, Taylor’s editorial director. “The first is our Builder’s Edition collection, an ultra-premium class of guitars within the Taylor line. This family features nine models, each of which uniquely showcases our envelope-pushing advances in sound and playing comfort, along with the highest levels of Taylor craftsmanship.
“The second is our American Dream Series, developed in response to the global challenges of this year. These guitars combine pro-level performance with exceptional value, making a US-made, solid-wood Taylor experience more accessible than ever.
“The third is a fantastic new guitar that we’ll be unveiling at the Guitar.com Live event. We think it will be a game-changer for many players. Designed entirely from the ground up, it promises to inspire people in a whole new way.”
As musicians adjust to a new landscape, a fresh injection of inspiration could be just what they need. The guitar-making industry has had to adjust as well – Monte Montefusco, Taylor’s vice president of sales told us how the brand had been coping: “We’re fortunate to be in an industry that has seen remarkable demand during these times. Keeping our craftspeople safe continues to be the most important job at Taylor Guitars.
“We immediately modified our factory environments to meet social distancing guidelines. We quickly shifted gears to innovate and produce new models in record time. Our teams learned how to collaborate in a virtual workspace and successfully launch new guitars. Players responded and added new Taylor instruments to their collections. We’re proud to be a part of so many musical journeys.
“Inspiring creativity when the world needs it the most has been very rewarding to us all at Taylor. We’re even more excited about the future than we were at the start of the year.”
In a world still struggling with a pandemic, sustainability and conservation remain at the heart of what Taylor does. The brand’s director of natural resource sustainability, Scott Paul, tells us that all three of its flagship sustainability initiatives – The Ebony Project, Paniolo Tonewoods in Hawaii (koa), and its work in Southern California with urban trees “have not been terribly affected by the pandemic. This is a testament to the decentralised nature of this work and the strength of our relationships with our partners.
“Normally such initiatives require us to travel to where they are, but our partners have handled everything on their own quite well in our absence. So, this ongoing work continues. Meanwhile, we also have some earlier-stage sustainability projects concerning species from new regions, along with a review of our overall campus footprint here in El Cajon, although they have had to take a back seat for the time being.”
You’ll be able to learn more about Taylor’s sustainability initiatives, as well as new product launches for 2020 and what’s in store for the future at Guitar.com Live, happening 2-4 October.
Entry to the Guitar.com Live is free. Be sure to sign up for updates and register as an attendee over at guitar.com/live.