These articles originally appeared in the April 2018 issue of Acoustic Guitar magazine. You’ll find even more lessons, music to play, profiles, and guitar coverage in our digital archives.

Video Lesson: Five Jazz Masters on Rhythm Changes

When George and Ira Gershwin first wrote “I Got Rhythm” for the 1930 musical Girl Crazy, they couldn’t possibly have imagined the effect that this catchy song would have on American popular music. It soon became not just one of the most celebrated tunes in the Great American Songbook, the…

Jackson C Frank

Lead Belly, Jackson C. Frank Documentaries in the Works

Chances are you know Lead Belly, the iconic, influential, and greatly celebrated folk and blues master. You will not be surprised to learn that he is the subject a forthcoming documentary film directed by Curt Hahn featuring reflections on the singer-guitarist from such heavyweights as Joan Baez, Harry Belafonte, Arlo…




Guitar maker George Lowden in his shop.

George Lowden, Building Guitars His Own Way for 43 Years

Northern Ireland’s Lowden Guitars recently celebrated the production of its 20,000th guitar with a commemorative model called Genesis. This instrument marks over 40 years in lutherie for George Lowden, whose journey has brought him to the upper echelons of guitar makers worldwide. Working with a small crew that includes members…


Eddie Lang, Wes Montgomery, Django and More | A Century of the Acoustic Guitar in Jazz

When you see the words “jazz guitar,” what pops into your mind’s ear first? Odds are that you hear the clean, smooth, rich sound of an electric archtop, possibly with its tone knob rolled down for extra low-mid emphasis, picking out chord melodies à la Joe Pass or octave lines in the manner of Wes Montgomery. Without a doubt, this is the stereotypical jazz guitar sound, but over more than 100 years of history, there have been many others. And a significant percentage of them were (and are) produced without the aid of a pickup, cable, or amplifier.
Martin Model America 1 and Standard Series D-28 acoustic guitars

Review: Martin Model America 1 and Standard Series D-28

In an era when tropical tonewoods such as mahogany and rosewood have become increasingly regulated and scarce, it makes perfect sense to make a guitar entirely from North American woods. The Model America 1 is based on the stalwart D-18, but with tonewoods that can be found in Martin’s—or maybe even your own—back yard.
Monroe brothers

Acoustic Classic: New River Train

If you’re unfamiliar with mountain music—the traditional sounds of the southern Appalachians and Ozarks—then “New River Train” is a good place to dive in. This arrangement is based on the version of the old tune that the Monroe Brothers made famous in the 1930s, as well as an interpretation that…


Collings OM1 acoustic guitar

Review: Collings Julian Lage Signature OM1 JL

Throughout the history of guitar making, collaborations between luthiers and guitarists have influenced the discipline and produced spectacular instruments. A brilliant example of this practice is the new Collings Julian Lage Signature OM1 JL, based on a deep exchange of ideas between the late builder and company founder Bill Collings and contemporary guitar phenom Julian Lage.