There are a lot of people banging the “guitar music is dead” drum these days. While a lot of reasons exist to make claims such like that, the core of the worldwide guitar playing community is stronger than ever. Yet the rumors persist.
The advent of home recoding with laptop instruments, synthesizers, looping and sampling. The rise of hip-pop (not real, quality, soul filled hip-hop, but the corporate rock version of the actual music genre). The oddity that America is moving away from the imagery of what rock and roll stands for: sex, drugs, and rock & roll. These are all reasons one can point to in making an argument for reading the guitar its last rites.
No matter what you blame it on, it’s a shame. Without guitar, there would be no rock & roll, no blues, no metal. No one would know about guys like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Randy Rhoades, Eddie Van Halen, or Dimebag Darryl. No B.B. King, Carlos Santana, or Muddy Waters. No Bonnie Raitt, Nancy Wilson, or Nita Strauss. And with the decline in guitar music popularity, rising talents like Justin Johnson , Ola Englund, and Rabea Massaad aren’t getting the sort of attention their generational predecessors did - which is a serious shame.
Even with the onset of the “YouTube star”, something guys like Englund, Keith Merrow and others have used greatly to their benefit, people still keep saying the guitar is dying. Sadly, there’s data to back up the claims. It’s a shame.
But the folks at Rolling Stone, who obviously have a great deal of motivation to push a more positive outlook, seem to think guitars are rising in popularity in many segments of the population.
No matter how you slice it, if you love guitar music, maybe buying a guitar for someone in your life as a Christmas present might be a good idea these days. The quality of entry level guitars has never been higher. You can pick up a borderline pro-quality guitar from Jackson, Ibanez, Fender, or any number of others for a few bills. Gifting a budding musician in your life with “Rock Band” or “Fender Play“ or any of a number of other modern, tech-driven ways to learn to play is another idea.
Since this is S.N.O.T., how about that “Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker” trailer?
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