By Mark Kemp
The beauty of the acoustic guitar is its flexibility. Even in the age of highly electronic pop music, you’ll find Youtube videos of DJ/producer Skrillex strumming a Martin, teen actress and pop singer Hailee Steinfeld singing to the fingerpicked acoustic guitar playing of fellow teen heartthrob Shawn Mendes — not to mention full-on acoustic guitar-playing pop stars like Ed Sheeran. The acoustic guitar is not only not going anywhere anytime soon — it’s showing up in places that would have seemed unimaginable in earlier years.
Take the mashup — the mixing and blending of multiple songs into one cohesive musical idea. The mashup was popularized by artists like Girl Talk, aka producer Gregg Michael Gillis. Tracks such as “Play Your Part (Pt. 1),” from Girl Talk’s 2008 masterpiece Feed the Animals, mixed together songs as diverse as Spencer Davis Group’s “Gimme Some Lovin'” and OutKast’s UGK track “International Player’s Anthem (I Choose You).”
Now, enter Megan Davies — a classically trained guitarist who’s become a Youtube sensation for the acoustic mashups she does on her Martin 000-28. The song featured in this video — a mashup of rapper Wiz Khalifa and singer Charlie Puth’s “See You Again,” singer-songwriter Ellie Goulding’s “Love Me Like You Do,” and pop-rock band Maroon 5’s “Sugar” — shot to No. 1 on Spotify’s US and global Viral 50 charts last year.
Enjoy Davies’ performance with her sister Jaclyn and friend Tasha. And all hail the versatility of the acoustic guitar — and those young artists who choose to look beyond the horizon.