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Interviews


  • When Dave Navarro pawned his custom Ibanez in 1991, he told himself he'd go back to pick it up that same night, but he never did. Twenty-eight years later it made its way to Guitar Center Hollywood and, through some local connections, back to Navarro himself. We chatted with Dave about how he and the guitar were separated and what it's like to reunite after all this time.
  • In celebration of Game of Thrones’ long-anticipated final season, Fender Custom Shop has teamed up with HBO to create three unique masterbuilt guitars, each representative of the houses made famous by the hit series. The trio, dubbed the Game of Thrones Sigil Collection, includes the Game of Thrones House Stark Telecaster; the Game of Thrones House Lannister Jaguar; and the Game of Thrones House Targaryen Stratocaster. We invited Game of Thrones Creator and Guitar Center Hollywood regular D.B. Weiss and his Sigil collection to our Vintage Room just days before the finale air date to learn the backstory on the collaboration, DB’s connection to playing guitars during his off-time on set, and an unexpected twist you can anticipate in the final episode.
  • When Guitar Center asked me to profile five guitarists, I wanted to put forth names that are doing something different, and that I truly believe in. Names that you might not have heard of yet but you will not stop talking about once you do. To better understand the force behind each artist and the tools behind the creativity, I asked each artist four questions that get down to the bottom of what drives ones passion and expression to create music and perform it for the world to see. - Fabi Reyna
  • We sat down with John Petrucci and engineer Jimmy T to chat about the new Ernie Ball Music Man Majesty, how John Petrucci gets his guitar tones, and to deconstruct a Pro Tools session from Dream Theater’s latest record, "Distance Over Time."
  • John took a break during rehearsals for his latest world tour to show us the tones of the Silver Sky, as well as give us some insight into working with Paul in the creation of this idealized version of a vintage single-coil guitar. 
  • Two years ago, London-based musicians Annie Wagstaff & Hannah Koppenberg joined forces to create their first Instagram video - looping synthesizers, piano & guitar through Ableton and sharing out to the world. Now performing under the artist name HANNIE, they’ve amassed a following of over 300,000 fans – and there’s no end in sight for the duo’s curiosity and creativity. We met up with HANNIE during our recent visit to London for a behind-the-scenes look at their ever-evolving home studio set-up, a discussion about the role of social media in their success, and how they’ve utilized their online presence to grow their collection of gear.
  • In 2016, we asked multi-Grammy-Award-winning country artist Vince Gill to choose 5 new guitarists to join him on stage for one night only at The Mint in Los Angeles, each competing for the chance to record their own original music with Vince in the studio, as well as open for him at one of his shows. After choosing Claudio Tristano as the winner for the evening, he shocked the audience by also inviting all 5 finalists to join him as opening acts for a future show. After a few years of touring with legendary rock group The Eagles, Vince Gill returned to Nashville for a special evening at 3rd & Lindsley with all five finalists, each joining Vince and his band for 20-minute sets of Vince classics and original music. We caught up with Vince, Arielle, Claudio, Justus West, Stephan Hogan and Tony Pierce backstage before the show to see what they've been up to since we last brought them together.
  • Two years ago, when Emily Wolfe stepped into the studio with Alabama Shakes’ keyboardist Ben Tanner at the board, she had already mapped out just about every sound she envisioned for the record. “The good thing about Emily is that she knows the sound when it’s there. The songs were fully formed in her head by the time she got the studio,” said Ben. Emily, a native of Austin, Texas, has spent the last several years making a name for herself as an electrifying, blues-driven live rock act, accompanied on the road by her trusty Epiphone Sheraton (picked up at Guitar Center Austin at the start of her career) and ever-evolving pedal board. With the release of her debut self-titled album, she effortlessly harnesses the raw power of her live performances in collaboration with Ben’s in-studio experimentation - creating an album that marries the roots of rock with the soaring choruses of modern pop. We sat down with Emily and Ben to talk about inspiration for the album, the process and gear behind nailing the sound, and how they brought to life Emily’s genre-bending dream of mixing “Demi Lovato with Queens of the Stone Age.”
  • During our recent visit to the UK, we stopped by the home studio of Mary Spender – a YouTube-based musician whose channel has already amassed a whopping 6.2 million views thanks to her “Tuesday Talks” YouTube series, in which she deep dives into music topics of her choosing with artists like K.T. Tunstall, James Valentine and more. We joined Mary for a Tuesday Talks of our own, covering the topics of her YouTube origins, evolving her process as a musician through social media, and how to kickstart your own YouTube channel with just an iPhone and a great mic.
  • Starting their journey as three college kids in Boston, A R I Z O N A have come quite the distance since their days of playing the east coast’s rock club scene. Now, the band’s genre-bending ‘electronic-hybrid’ sound has opened the doors for touring new music, as well as headlining festivals across the country. We caught up with Nate, David, Zach and their touring crew just before they opened for Panic! At The Disco at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, where we chatted about their current gear lineup, how it has evolved throughout the years, and why techs are the true superheroes of any successful touring band.
  • These days, songwriter Marv Green is known as a bit of a Nashville legend. After penning the 1999 Lonestar hit song "Amazed", reaching the top of the Billboard Hot 100 charts shortly after its release, he's gone on to write for top country artists including Carrie Underwood, Reba McEntire, Eric Church, Tim McGraw and more. We sat down with Marv at his This Music studio on Music Row in Nashville for chat about making it as a songwriter, as well as the story behind his trusty Vintage 1950 Gibson J-50.
  • Performing an original song in front of an audience is no easy task. Now, try performing during of one of Nashville's most coveted showcases to a sold-out crowd - you've just put yourself in the shoes of a Bluebird Cafe songwriter. We threw a pop-up Bluebird Cafe In-The-Round Experience at our Guitar Center Nashville store, inviting seven songwriters to perform and talk about their experience navigating Music City's plethora of opportunity - meet Alabama-natives Josh & Judy Allison.
  • The featured artists of the Dominican Sounds showcase find a welcome stage at SOBs Sound of Brazil in Lower Manhattan, specializing in the Latin soundscapes of the Dominican Republic, Brazil and beyond. Each born and raised in the island of the Dominican Republic, the opportunity for these singer/songwriters to play for a new audience is a chance to celebrate the most vibrant colors of their celebrated art and heritage. We caught up with the artists after their showcase to talk about the experience of bringing their music to the states, as well as the gear they can't leave home without.

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