Jeff Campbell

I was fortunate to get a lift off Jeff Campbell to LA airport, and I left my food behind the back seat (sorry about that Jeff). He's gentlmen and a scholar and a fine judge of excellent songwriting. jeff campbell

Can you remember the first guitar you owned? What was the make and model and how did you acquire it?

It was a 1983, Martin Shenandoah Dreadnaught. I bought it used in 1995 for $500. Still have it.

What are the qualities that matter to you when deciding on buying a guitar, and how has this changed over time?

Guitars have a tendency to find me. I’ve had some amazing instruments fall into my lap or I’ve tripped over the right buys. Usually I find that if I go looking for one, I buy it and I’m rarely happy with it. I also don’t really care for newer instruments. I tend to like it when other people break them in for me… 30+ years ago :)

 How did you discover your present guitar, and how did it find its way home to you?

I have 2 acoustics that serve different purposes that I play regularly. One is a 1967 Gibson B15. I use this one when I’m traveling via airplane as it’s 100% mahogany and solid as a rock. It’s also a smaller guitar. Not 3/4 sized, but about the size of a nylon string. It’s also very warm and is great for solo gigs. The second is a newer Martin GPCPA1 that was provided by Martin and Guitar Center. I usually don’t like newer guitars but I love this one. It’s a beautiful instrument. I use it whenever I’m playing with my band as it has a great pickup system in it and cuts really well. And I use it at home for writing. For electrics, my go-to is a 1973 Telecaster Deluxe. I love it. My 2nd electric is a mid 90s G&L ASAT Classic.

 What historical aspects, if any, have you unearthed about your present or past guitars?

 I know that both the Shenandoah and the B15 were both “affordable” student models when they were put up for sale originally. And they’ve both stood up thru decades upon decades of use from multiple owners. A lot of the more affordable/intro models made today are flimsy, for lack of a better term. The ones I have are better than some of the higher end models being released today.

 What was the most recent song you composed on your guitar, and how did your present guitar tool lead you to discover the right music?

Last song I wrote to completion was a ballad called “Like a Glove” that I wrote on my B15 while on tour. I was in a finger-picky kind of mood and it just happened. I’m pretty proud of it. Will be on my next record for sure.


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