Although the world has changed beyond all recognition in recent months, this period of lockdown has perhaps provided many of us with an opportunity to finally get around to things we’d been putting off for a very long time. Personally, I’ve been ploughing through several Christmases worth of hitherto unread books and, of course, playing a lot of guitar.
As soon as everyone in the band was geared up for it – and the free trial of Logic has certainly helped, thanks Apple! – we started collaborating remotely on new material in a way that simply wouldn’t have been possible just a few years ago. If this sounds like something you’d love to get into but you don’t know where to start, check out our rundown of lockdown essentials for guitarists. Whether you’ve got £29 or upwards of a grand to spend, there are solutions here that can help you get pro guitar tones at home without annoying the neighbours.
Elsewhere in this month’s mag, we chat to two men at the helm of very different guitar companies: Muse star Matt Bellamy and Chris Martin IV. Bellamy’s investment in Manson Guitar Works typifies the new breed of dynamic artist relationships with gear brands, while Chris Martin’s tenure as the head of the family business has seen America’s oldest guitar company evolve into an operation that looks like it has every chance of lasting for a further 187 years. What will the guitars of 2207 look like? And who will be playing them? By then, even Bellamy’s futuristic new signature model will look retro.
As if all that wasn’t enough, you’ll also hear from Larkin Poe, Brian Ray and Jared James Nichols, find out how to rewire a Les Paul, learn to play chords like Bob Dylan, and read about hot new gear from Fender, PRS, Gretsch, Blackstar and more. Enjoy the issue – I’ll see you next month.
Inside the issue
Jared James Nichols always seems to be having a good time – and you might be too if you were touring the world with your own power trio and being praised as a rising star of blues-rock. We spoke to the Wisconsin native about fingers, thumbs, his love of Les Pauls and why he only needs one pedal.
The Martin Guitar CEO talks heritage, innovation and turning around the fortunes of America’s oldest guitar company