Guitar Zero 2010 – Call For Ugliest Guitar Nominations is up to it again and have just announced the return of their Ugliest Guitar Awards.

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder – but seriously what could some people be beholden to when they come up with some of the strange custom guitar modifications we see on the web these days?

Although took a break from exposing aspiring custom luthiers in 2009, previous years the awards came with names like “The Texas Guitar Massacre (Worst of 2005)”, “Frankenstrat (Worst of 2006)”, “The London Axe Murders (Worst of 2007)”, and the simple yet elegant “Ugliest Guitars of 2008”.

And the worst hack-job axes this year will walk (or crawl) away with the title of “Guitar Zero 2010”.

If you would like to nominate a particularly ugly guitar, you can click here.

Pictures of some of the previous losers are also available on the link above.

So vote early, and vote often, for Guitar Zero 2010!


12 Stones announced today that the band has parted ways with Wind-Up Records after 9 years. The band stated “We felt it was time for a change. We have a vision for this band that we feel is best pursued elsewhere.”

From Mandeville, LA, 12 Stones signed to Wind-Up Records in 2001 after forming 15 months earlier. In their 10 year career, 12 Stones has sold over 2 million singles and albums collectively, won a Grammy Award for Paul’s contribution to the single “Bring Me To Life” from Evanescence (which went on to sell a million singles and 7 million albums in the US), and have received multiple GMA Dove Nominations for their singles “Broken” and “Lie To Me”. The bands current EP “The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday” debuted at #2 on the iTunes Rock Album chart and #6 overall on iTunes.

12 Stones is currently playing selective tour dates while writing and recording additional material and will begin speaking to new sources for a new home and a 2011 release.


JanSport Sets The Stage For Its Third Online Battle Of The Bands Competition

JanSport, the original outdoor gear Brand that equips people globally with quality backpacks, travel gear and collegiate apparel, today announced its third annual Battle of the Bands competition in conjunction with Sonicbids, the website that helps bands get gigs and promoters book the right bands.

Now through Nov. 1, 2010, amateur, unsigned bands who have submitted to SXSW are invited to submit a song, photo, video and bio for the chance to win the JanSport Battle of the Bands contest. Once you’ve submitted to SXSW at, you will receive further instructions from Sonicbids on how to make your free submission to the JanSport Battle of the Bands competition. Following public submissions, JanSport and Sonicbids will nominate the top 50 semifinalists. From Nov. 17 – Dec. 17, the public can vote for their favorite band and determine the top 10 finalists. The top ten finalists will be revealed on Jan. 3, 2011. Of those 10 finalists, JanSport, in conjunction with Sonicbids, will select the grand prize winner who will be revealed on Jan. 25, 2011.

Each one of the top ten finalists will receive a JanSport prize package consisting of a JanSport original Right Pack and luggage set. The contest’s grand prize winner will receive JanSport’s Right Pack and luggage set, in addition to a 3 day, 2 night trip for the band to Austin, Texas and the opportunity to play the Sonicbids Official Party at SXSW 2011 presented by JanSport.

“Self expression has always been at the core of the JanSport Brand, and this competition truly allows us to embrace that attribute via music,” said Ann Daw, marketing director for JanSport. “Last year’s Battle of the Bands was a huge success and an incredible experience for us as we became exposed to so many talented musicians and we’re looking forward to partnering with Sonicbids this year, as we start the process all over again.”

“Consumer brands like JanSport are tapping into the indie music scene more and more as emerging artists have very strong and powerful connections with their fanbases. It has always been our mission to align Sonicbids with brands that can help take our members’ careers to the next level,” said Panos Panay, founder and CEO, Sonicbids. “We’re excited to team up with JanSport again this year to engage our artists’ fans in selecting a band for Sonicbids Official SXSW Party. Nearly three thousand avid music fans attended last year and we’re looking forward to the talent discovered through this year’s battle.”

The 2011 South by Southwest music festival will be held March 16-20 in Austin, TX.

Meriwether Vocalist Releases a Statement

Statement from Meriwether vocalist

I know that rumors have begun to circulate about the state of Meriwether, so I thought I’d let everyone know exactly what is going on. After seven wonderful years together, Josh and Steve have decided to depart from the band. As we have grown so close together as friends over such a long time, we have also evolved individually. Also, Sam recently got an offer to tour with the band 10 Years and has decided to pursue that opportunity. Skip and I, however, don’t plan on ending our tenure as band mates just yet. We will continue to perform music together and are actually recruiting a new group of musicians; some which you guys have probably seen play in other bands with us in the past. As a whole, we know we have accomplished some incredible things together – things we never thought we ever would accomplish. And we especially cherish the tradition and community that our music has created. That is inspiring and what keeps the fire burning, and i don’t plan on ending this wonderful tradition and community that easily. I am looking forward to the future, honoring the past and grasping hold of the present with excitement. As always, when new members join a band, the sound may change. All I can hope is that you will all love my new music just as much, if not more than you have loved the old. This is just the next chapter. Band names might change (this is currently undecided) and people may go, but I put my heart into everything I write, and that will never change. Josh and Steve will be playing their last shows with Meriwether in the near future. We look forward to sharing those last days with all of you. So please come out and show your support for them. The shows will be spectacular, I’m sure of it. We have two coming up soon, that you can see listed below. I will also be playing some solo shows here and there, so keep a look out for those. You can also continue to see Steve perform as NightEater. Keep an eye out here for updates for when ! there is news, we will share. Again, thank you for all of your support over the last seven years.

July 15, Ruston, LA – Rabb’s – 18+

July 16, Baton Rouge, LA – The Varsity Theatre 18+

Guitar Center Presents Your Next Record with Slash


Guitar Center, the world’s largest musical instrument retailer, today announced that Guitar Center Presents Your Next Record with Slash, a first-of-its-kind unsigned band competition, has received more than 8,000 submissions from unsigned bands across the country, in its first month alone. The competition provides emerging artists the chance to win the ultimate career-altering opportunity: record a 3-song EP with legendary producer, Mike Clink (Guns N’ Roses, Motley Crue, Megadeth) and have Slash write, record and perform on the winning artists’ single. Through April 30th, 2010, unsigned bands across the United States are still invited to submit their music at for a chance to win the aforementioned prize package, which also includes:

* A management development deal with “The Collective” (Linkin Park, Slash, Avenged Sevenfold)
* Feature of winning artists’ single on iTunes
* Worldwide distribution of winning artists’ music through TuneCore
* $10,000 Guitar Center Shopping Spree
* New gear and endorsement deals from Ernie Ball Music Man
* An opening slot on Slash’s Monster Energy Bash
* An editorial feature on the winning band in Guitar World Magazine

A Guitar Center Presents Your Next Record with Slash promo video can be viewed here at

“The response so far has been tremendous and a lot of the music we’ve received sounds amazing but I still want to hear more,” said Slash. “We’re looking to find a great band with some kick ass songs and good energy, who hasn’t been able to get their foot in the door otherwise, and take them to the next level.”

The opportunity coincides with what will be Slash’s first true solo album. Slash announced today his CD, SLASH, will release in April 2010. The album features an all-star roster of guest musicians including Ian Astbury, Chris Cornell, Rocco DeLuca, Fergie, Dave Grohl, Myles Kennedy, Kid Rock, Lemmy Kilmeister, Adam Levine of Maroon 5, Duff McKagan, M. Shadows of Avenged Sevenfold, Ozzy Osbourne, Iggy Pop, and Andrew Stockdale of Wolfmother.

Guitar Center Presents Your Next Record with Slash is just one of many Guitar Center initiatives created to foster growth and success within the music community, including its annual King of the Blues, Drum-Off and On-Stage competitions, among others. Guitar Center’s King of the Blues is a nationwide amateur guitar skills competition with the goal of finding the next great undiscovered blues guitar player. Drum-Off is an annual drumming competition that, now in its 21st year, has been a launching pad for many drummers, including Cora Coleman-Dunham and Tony Royster Jr, two Drum-Off winners who have gone on to become highly acclaimed professional drummers (with Prince and Jay Z respectively). Guitar Center On-Stage is a musical competition judged by Motley Crue. The winning band, The Last Vegas, has since gone on to open for Motley Crue on tour and subsequently topped iTunes critics’ 2009 “Rock Singles of the Year List” with their hit single “I’m Bad.”

The Gibson Guitar App Has Arrived

Gibson Guitar, the world’s premiere musical instrument manufacturer and leader in music technology, is proud to announce the highly anticipated launch of the Gibson Guitar App. This free to download App will be available exclusively for all Apple iPhone and iPod Touch users directly from the Apple App Store 25th February 2010. This is one App every guitarist and fan of Gibson Guitar must own. Over the past two years over 3 Billion Apps have been downloaded around the world, the Gibson Guitar App cements Gibson’s reputation as the industry’s leader in innovation and music technology.

The Gibson Guitar App includes a number of special features, such as a traditional chromatic tuner which starts in “All Notes” mode that tracks whatever is played. Owners of the App can choose a tuning on the “Mode” page so the tuner will only track notes for that particular tuning. Also included is a standard chromatic tuner, a simple tuner which allows less advanced users to tune to Standard tuning Open G, Open D etc by touching the key. For iPhone users, the Gibson headstock inlay will automatically change color indicating if the string is sharp, flat or in tune. For iPod Touch users they can turn the “Play Notes” option on so they can hear the appropriate tuning since they do not have a microphone facility.

The Gibson app also features a standard metronome that allows users to choose a specific BPM or tap the screen three times to automatically set the tempo. Other key features of the app include over 30 chord charts with finger markings to help the user with mastering the chord. For those who prefer to learn new guitar riffs, licks or chord sequences via video tuition can now have that option from their Gibson App. The app will be updated frequently with new video content so users of all guitar ability can improve their technique from the comfort of their home.

For those who want to keep up with everything Gibson Guitar related including the announcement of new products, artist activity, news stories, interesting and factual features, exclusive contests and special events to name a few can now do this via the option. By popular demand the Gibson Guitar App is a multi-purpose and fully interactive guitar application which can be used at home, on the road or in the Studio. It’s a must have for guitarists and music enthusiasts of all ability and style, and best of all its free. Get yours today.

Indiegrrl Announces 2010 Indiegrrl International Music & Arts Conference & Festival

Indiegrrl Women in the Arts nonprofit announces that the 2010 Indiegrrl International Music & Arts Conference & Festival is set to take place in Knoxville, TN this year on August 19 to 22 with the theme “Taking It To The Streets”. A festival style format for showcases has been added to the event this year to bring more public awareness to our selected performing artists by putting showcases in downtown Knoxville, Old City, and Market Square area venues and galleries. Some of these showcases will have live TV streaming on the internet through KnoxIvi 11 O’clock Rock, and main stream radio broadcasts with WDVX FM Radio in Knoxville and also broadcasts on Writer’s Block. There are 120 showcase opportunities available and all genres of music, comedy, and spoken word artists are invited to submit for showcasing slots. Visit for details on how to submit and to register to attend. Deadline to submit is March 31, 2010.

The hosting site for the conference is the beautiful Holiday Inn World’s Fair Park conveniently located within walking distance or a short trolley ride to all of the participating venues. They are extending a discounted hotel room rate for all conference attendees along with free parking opportunities. The conference is a 4 day event packed with educational workshops, panel discussions, and keynote speakers aimed to help independent artists with career development. It is a great networking opportunity with artists and industry professionals and with the addition of the festival format this year to also network with the general public and build a new fan base. Vendors set up to market products and services that enhance the careers of independent artists. Both women and men can attend this event. All showcase artists must identify as females. All bands, groups, and duos must be female fronted.

“Our main goal with producing this event is to build an extremely affordable ‘Human Interaction’ opportunity for networking, career development education, and live performance opportunity that is not available through time spent on the internet. I have had many artists and professionals tell me that after attending this conference it super charged them and helped them take their careers to a stronger level and gave them a new commitment to better their skills and entrepreneurial minds. I feel personally as an artist, so much is taking place on the internet that we all sometimes get lost in the shuffle, and lose touch with the need for actual human interaction and bouncing ideas off each other and having question and answer sessions in person. This conference is packed with opportunities like that to interact with your peers and with other leading edge industry professionals. It also builds awareness of women in music, comedy, and spoken word with the community.” states Vicki Blankenship President of Indiegrrl Women in the Arts.

Sponsorship opportunities are available in everything from print ads in the conference program, to tote bag stuffer program, vendor opportunities, and logo inclusion in all print material, advertising, and radio promotion announcements. Contact Vicki Blankenship at or Karen E. Reynolds , Vice President of Indiegrrl Women in the Arts at Indiegrrl appreciates all sponsorship involvement that helps us in producing this and other events.

Whotune will showcase unsigned bands at SXSW

Music site will offer unsigned artists the opportunity to be seen by record company executives, managers, promoters and fans of music at the upcoming SXSW Festival in Austin, TX. Artists can use the company’s ‘Jam Cam’ to perform LIVE via webcam and be seen on the big screens at the whotune booth at SXSW. To perform all you need to do is register at and schedule a time on the Jam Cam scheduler. See

Gulf Coast’s Guitar Great Guthrie Trapp

C. D. Harvill

This past week I had the opportunity to meet with someone who is, arguably, one of the best guitarists to come out of the Gulf Coast. Many along the Florida-Alabama shore may have heard of Guthrie Trapp.

From a young age, Guthrie, was intrigued with music. He grew up listening not to the radio, but his family’s collection of bluegrass, folk, and rock and roll records. While hanging around his uncle, who was a self-taught musician, he started playing around with different instruments.

Although Guthrie did attend some workshops, he mostly honed his musical abilities by going to live shows, listening to different music, and hanging out with his uncle. “I just picked up on it. Those are the things you can’t teach somebody. You can’t learn how to play with soul or feeling from a school, you just have it.”

First Guthrie learned to play the harmonica. He quickly grew bored with the instrument’s simplicity and picked up guitar and later the mandolin.

Unlike most musicians trying to make a living along the Gulf Coastal region, Guthrie never had to play Jimmy Buffet covers. “Most people have to play cover music. I never did down there. I was so lucky I never had to. I was either playing with Gove (Gove Scrivenor), or with the Filthy Rich Band. We played all of our own music.”

Barely an adult, Guthrie was paired up with Nick Branch, playing original music in the Filthy Rich band. They shined throughout the region with their intense blues, roots, and swing guitar power. They even traveled overseas.

Being such an accomplished musician and having his pick of places to live, why did Guthrie pick Nashville to call home? Guthrie explained he never had a thought of moving to New York or Los Angeles, partially because Guthrie does not read music and the Nashville Number System is not frowned upon in its name sake town, but also because Guthrie, despite his success, is a laid back guy.

While kicked back on his couch he shared, “I just knew that Nashville was happening. I never had a thought of moving to one of those places… I never had a plan, it just happened, I was in my early twenties and it was time to move away from that hometown. I’m glad I did”, he also stated, “People here are from small towns, I’m from a small town”.

Due to his career really kicking off in Nashville, and his touring with Patty Loveless, some people pigeonholed Guthrie, as a guitarist, in the country/bluegrass genre. Guthrie made it very clear it’s just not true. His current personal project, “18 South”, where he has equal footing with the other members (including: Larry Atamanuik on drums, Mike Bub on doghouse bass, Jimmi Wallace with piano and vocals, Jon Randall with vocals and rhythm guitar, and Jessi Alexander’s vocals.) may give him a bit broader palette to express his versatile guitar skills, but it is still not a far cry from bluegrass, nor is it precisely what Guthrie would put together if given free reign. Guthrie opened his laptop and put on a video to help describe to me what he would enjoy playing the most. The sound I heard was more of a funk/experimental jazz, a description with which Guthrie agrees. Such a sound would truly give Guthrie the room a guitarist of his caliber needs to stretch himself as a musician.

If you don’t recall hearing Guthrie play with Allison Kraus, Jerry Douglas, Patty Loveless, Earl Scruggs or various other artists, then I suggest you check out “18 South” on Myspace. With Jon Randall having written a hit like Whiskey Lullaby, Jessi Alexander having written one of the latest Miley Cyrus chart toppers, The Climb, and Guthrie Trapp’s guitar runs, you better believe you will want to be at the front of this band wagon.