Who Plays Ed Sheeran Signature Guitars Besides Ed Sheeran?

Sheeran by Lowden W04
Sheeran by Lowden W04

I’m not really sure who else plays Ed Sheeran Signature guitars, other than Ed himself. I’m sure there are plenty of guitarists who have bought one and use it, but I just don’t know who they are.

However, Mr. Sheeran would like to increase the number of young guitarists who own these signature instruments, according to a recent report.

Continue reading “Who Plays Ed Sheeran Signature Guitars Besides Ed Sheeran?”

What Is an Acoustic Guitar?

Yamaha CGX102

An acoustic guitar is one that does not have electric amplification of its sound.

But it’s not as simple as that. If it were, I wouldn’t be writing this article for you.

This article is really going to be a comparison of what is traditionally known as the acoustic guitar versus the classical guitar and the acoustic-electric hybrid guitar.

Let’s first look at what is generally considered the oldest of the three, the classical. Then we’ll see what makes up an acoustic and finally the acoustic-electric guitar.

What Is a Classical Guitar?

There are two main distinguishing features of what we call a classical guitar.

One is that it uses nylon strings. Strings made of nylon exert less pressure on the guitar neck, so the maker doesn’t need to reinforce the neck structure in any way. The neck can hold its own versus the pressure the strings produce when you tighten them with the tuning knobs.

I managed to explain that first feature without comparing it to one of the other types of guitars we’ll be looking at later, but I really can’t get away with that when talking about the other main distinguishing feature which is the guitar’s overall size.

A classical guitar is smaller than the standard dreadnought acoustic guitar. It’s usually about ¾ the size of an acoustic guitar. True, I could have said that a typical classical guitar measures between 38 and 40 inches, but I don’t think that gives you as much information (when you don’t have one in hand) as the comparison does. In any case, now you have both pieces of information.

There is another feature that is often true of a classical guitar. The neck is usually wider than that on an acoustic guitar. There I go again making a comparison, but I think it’s another good one to know.

It almost goes without saying, but I better mention it anyway. A classical guitar does not have any electrical amplification on board. If you need to broadcast the sound far and wide, you have to place a microphone near the sound hole where you’re strumming the chords or picking the melody.

Now, on to the acoustic guitar.

What Makes Up an Acoustic Guitar?

For the description of an acoustic guitar, I’ll go full bore into the comparisons.

An acoustic guitar uses steel strings instead of nylon. Because the steel strings exert much more pressure on the neck, the maker inserts a metal truss rod inside for reinforcement. Otherwise, the neck might just collapse on you when you tighten up the strings.

An acoustic guitar comes in several sizes but is normally larger than a classical guitar, especially when you’re talking about the most common style, the dreadnought.

An acoustic guitar has a narrower neck than a classical guitar. Acoustic necks do come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, though.

An acoustic guitar has no electric amplification built in.

Or does it?

That brings us to the final type of guitar, the hybrid acoustic-electric guitar.

What Is an Acoustic-Electric Guitar?

An acoustic-electric (sometimes called an electric-acoustic) guitar is the same as an acoustic in every aspect, except that it does have electric amplification on board. You can plug it into an amplifier and be heard for miles around, if your amp is big enough.

Unless you make special adjustments, either to the guitar itself or to the sound after it travels out the electric cable, your acoustic-electric will still sound like an acoustic guitar, not like an electric guitar.

For many players, this is what makes an acoustic-electric so valuable. When you’re practicing at home, you don’t need to be plugged in to hear yourself play. When it’s time to go on stage with the rest of the band (or solo), you can easily amplify yourself so your whole audience can hear you (and maybe even sing along).

What Acoustic Guitars Do the Pros Play?

Speaking of singing along, that’s what professional guitarists hope you’ll do when they write songs with lyrics. So you might be wondering at this point, “What guitars do the pros play?”

Many of the stars play both electric and acoustic guitars. After all, that’s a huge part of their business, so why not play both kinds?

I did a little research and found some acoustic guitars that some of the more popular artists of today (and the recent past) have been using?

These stars have been seen playing these guitars. These aren’t the only ones each of these artists have ever played (or own), but it gives you a good idea of what the pros tend to go for. (Note: These are probably more expensive than anything you’ll want to get for yourself.)

John Mayer plays…

  • Martin 0045
  • Martin OMJM – 45SC (Stagecoach Edition)
  • Martin ECHF Belleza Nera
  • Martin D-45

Bruce Springsteen plays…

  • Gibson J-40
  • Gibson J-45
  • Takamine EF341C
  • Takamine EF350SMCSB

Dave Matthews plays…

  • Taylor 914CE (Grux) – his “signature” instrument

Brad Paisley plays…

  • Gibson J-45

Noel Gallagher plays…

  • Gibson ES-345
  • Gibson ES-355

Slash plays…

  • Martin D-18
  • Gibson Sheryl Crow
  • Taylor 616CE

Paul Simon plays…

  • Yamaha LS400
  • Martin OM-42PS

Dave Grohl plays…

  • Gibson Elvis Presley Dove
  • Martin D-28
  • Taylor 612CE

Neil Young plays…

  • Martin D-45
  • Martin D-18
  • Martin D-28

If you look back at that list, you’ll see that Martin, Gibson, and Taylor are rather dominant. That doesn’t mean they’re the best guitar makers around for every occasion – though they are very good.

The guitar you like best might be made completely differently from those the pros play. Much of what makes a player like his or her guitar is in the wood(s) used in construction.

So before leaving the topic of acoustic guitars, let’s examine the kinds of wood that they (especially the tops) can be made of.

What Is an Acoustic Guitar Made Of?

Some types of wood are much more commonly used than others, both because of their sonic qualities and their availability.

Note that it’s especially what the top of an acoustic guitar is made of that gives it its special sound.

Spruce is the most common wood for an acoustic guitar top. (The top is the area where the hole is, where you strum or pick the strings.) Makers can use a relatively thin piece of spruce that will still be both strong and resonant.

Cedar isn’t as strong as spruce, so it’s often used for classical guitars as well as for the sides and backs of the instruments.

Rosewood is a dark material that gives you more warmth and richness of tone than the above. It’s also more expensive and is popular for fingerboards and bridges.

Mahogany falls somewhere between spruce and rosewood, tone-wise. Many country western and blues artists like its sound.

Maple is commonly used for sides and backs of guitars because it has a lower resonance than the other woods. It won’t interfere as much with the tone that the top wood is trying to produce.

Cocobolo is also used for sides and backs. It’s a Mexican hardwood that produces a bright sound.

Ebony is great for your fretboard.

Koa is another pricey wood that can be used throughout a guitar but is most often employed as side, back, neck, and bridge material.

Ovangkoi is an African wood that gives you the warmth of rosewood but the brighter midrange of mahogany or koa. As such, it’s great for backs and sides.

Sapele, another African wood, is similar to mahogany and is used primarily for sides and backs.

Walnut is a decent alternative to mahogany and koa. It works well for all parts of the body.

Then there are the synthetics. Makers like Ovation and Rainsong, for example, use a fiberglass composite and graphite, respectively. Other makers may use other non-wood materials. There’s nothing wrong with this, per se. The main thing is that, while woods tend to improve with age, synthetics do not. That said, synthetics are less susceptible to climate changes. If that’s important to you, go for it.

Choosing Your Acoustic Guitar

I’m not going to actually give you any specific advice here about selecting an acoustic (or classical or acoustic-electric) guitar. That’s really beyond the scope of this article.

However, based on what you’ve learned above, you should be able to search for a guitar that would suit your purposes and desires in a knowledgeable way. For example, if the guitar you’re researching has a spruce top, you’ll know that’s not unusual. If it doesn’t have a spruce top, you might want to find out what the maker was trying to accomplish with that particular design.

You saw that even the pros don’t all agree on a “best” guitar. Each of them have guitars they like for different reasons.

You will too.

Seagull S6 Left-Handed Acoustic Guitar: An Interesting Design

Seagull S6 left-handed acoustic guitar
Seagull S6 left-handed acoustic guitar

Note: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

The S6 is the model that started it all for the Seagull line. The S6 Original Left is part of that same line, simply made for left-handers.

My guess is that “S6” means “6 strings”. In any case, the S6 acoustic guitars are some of the most popular made by Seagull.

Let’s take a quick look at how this instrument is put together, so you can decide whether it’s the left-handed guitar for you.

Continue reading “Seagull S6 Left-Handed Acoustic Guitar: An Interesting Design”

Fender Left Handed Acoustic Guitars: CD-60S or PM-1

Fender CD-60S Left

Note: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

Left-handed guitar players generally don’t have as many options as their right-handed counterparts, but at least with Fender left-handed acoustic guitars, you do get 2 models to choose from – the CD-60S and the PM-1.

In this Fender left-handed guitars review, I’ll take a look at these models with you, so you can get a better idea of which one might be best for your playing style.

Continue reading “Fender Left Handed Acoustic Guitars: CD-60S or PM-1”

Ibanez PF15 Left Handed Acoustic Guitar: Good Beginner for the Price?

Seagull S6 Left

Note: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

If you are a beginning, left-handed guitar player and don’t want to spend much money because you aren’t totally sure this guitar-playing thing is going to be what you really want to do, then you should take a good, long look at the Ibanez PF15 Left acoustic.

Ibanez is a well-known, respected brand, so you can’t really go wrong there. For a beginner guitar, you won’t find the highest quality as you would in more expensive models, but when you’re just starting out, you probably don’t care that much about such things. You just want to get your toes wet, so to speak. Continue reading “Ibanez PF15 Left Handed Acoustic Guitar: Good Beginner for the Price?”

Yamaha FG820L Left Handed Acoustic Guitar: Is Left Is As Good As Right?

Yamaha FG820L left handed acoustic guitar
Yamaha FG820L left handed acoustic guitar

Note: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

Yamaha has a very nice line of acoustic guitars known as the 800 series. Does this quality extend to their left handed models such as the Yamaha FG820L acoustic?

In this review, I’ll take a quick look with you at this FG820L so you can see if this is the correct (notice, I didn’t say “right”) acoustic-only guitar for you. Continue reading “Yamaha FG820L Left Handed Acoustic Guitar: Is Left Is As Good As Right?”

Martin LX1 Little Martin Left Handed Acoustic Guitar Review: Small Size, Big Sound

LX1 Little Martin Left Handed Acoustic
LX1 Little Martin Left Handed Acoustic

Note: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

Left handers have a little more difficulty finding a guitar that suits them. A left-handed acoustic guitar isn’t exactly rare, but it is more challenging to find a good one. The Martin LX1 Little Martin may be the end of the search for many left handed players. Continue reading “Martin LX1 Little Martin Left Handed Acoustic Guitar Review: Small Size, Big Sound”

The Best Left Handed Acoustic Guitars: There’s One for You Here

Seagull S6 Original left handed acoustic guitar
Seagull S6 Original left handed acoustic guitar

Note: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

I’m left-handed, but I do lots of things – including playing guitar – as a right-hander. If you play guitar left-handed, you have probably found it a little more difficult to find a guitar that suits you. A left-handed acoustic guitar isn’t exactly rare, but it is more challenging to find a good one.

In this article, I’ll take a look at several left-handed guitars that you might find interesting. We’ll examine guitars by Martin, Yamaha, Ibanez, Fender, and Seagull.

Continue reading “The Best Left Handed Acoustic Guitars: There’s One for You Here”

Best Acoustic Guitars for Kids: Take Any One of These

Yamaha JR1 acoustic guitar
Yamaha JR1 acoustic guitar

Note: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

When looking for the best acoustic guitar for kids, most of the time you’ll be looking at smaller models that are ¾ the size of a “normal” guitar. That’s what you’ll find in the four models I’ll review for you here.

In this review, I’ll look at two nearly identical models from Fender and one each from Yamaha and Taylor. Information on these smaller models is a little hard to come by in many cases, but I think you should be able to decide which one is best for your situation by the end of this article. Continue reading “Best Acoustic Guitars for Kids: Take Any One of These”