“Particular guitars can allow a special access to creative freedom”: Rob Chapman responds to Steve Lukather’s comments on gear

Lukather said last week that there’s “no magic guitar, no magic amp, there’s just magic people”.

[L-R] Rob Chapman and Steve Lukather

Credit: Getty Images

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YouTuber and owner of Chapman Guitars Rob Chapman has responded to comments made by Steve Lukather surrounding gear limitations.

Lukather, known for playing guitar in rock band Toto, recently stated that “there’s no magic guitar, no magic amp, there’s just magic people”, in an interview regarding his biggest gear hits and misses.

In the interview with Guitarist, Lukather was asked if he would rather buy a really good guitar and a budget guitar amp or a cheap guitar and a high-end amp. He replied, “I’ve played Eddie Van Halen’s guitars, Jeff Beck’s guitars, and I sound like me.

“A great guitar and a great amp? Sure, that helps. How could it not? But if you give a 1959 Les Paul to a 10-year-old kid that can’t play it’s not gonna make him sound like Gary Moore. You know what I mean?”

After we shared this story to our Instagram page, Chapman took to the comments to weigh in with his opinions on gear limitations as someone who plays a range of axes for his YouTube channel: “Hugely respect Steve, but I disagree… I have played thousands of guitars in my demonstration career, and from that one in a million Yamaha Pacifica, all the way through to the Beast or Eric Clapton’s Blackie I have been surprised by how particular guitars can allow a special access to creative freedom.”

He added, “Of course it comes down to much more than just the gear, and I guess that’s what he’s getting at, but gear really does make a big difference and I suppose it’s important to remember that he’s saying this whilst playing a $3000 guitar and a $3000 amplifier.”

The discussion surrounding whether or not expensive gear is truly worth it is a rising topic, with artists such as Kurt Ballou of Convergence and even Dolly Parton leaning towards cheaper gear to show that high spec doesn’t always mean top notch tone.


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