Billy Strings Takes ‘Amazing Tour’ of Martin, Gets to Play Kurt Cobain’s Guitar: PHOTOS

by Alex Falls

The music world has a young new superstar on its hands in the form of Billy Strings. The appropriately named virtuoso guitarist treks across the country offering huge crowds his unique take on bluegrass music. Recently, Strings had the opportunity to take a break from the stage and connect with his roots at Martin Guitars.

Strings marked the occasion by posing with some iconic guitars from Martin’s history. Through his Instagram, he provided his followers a behind-the-scenes look at the inner workings of the iconic guitar brand.

“Thanks @martinguitar for the amazing tour and for letting me play this sweet little guitar from 1837 .. and Kurt Cobain’s D-18,” String wrote in the post.

His fans were quick to note their admiration for the rare chance to peek behind the curtain at Martin, with a hint of jealousy. “Well, when you’re the best guitar player on the planet…” wrote one user. “I would play come as you are immediately after sitting down with that beauty,” wrote another.

One follower noted it’s not the instrument that makes the musician, but the other way around. “Guitars are just pieces of wood and metal. It’s people who bring them alive!”

The Power of Music to Billy Strings

Strings came from humble beginnings. As much as he loved music, he never thought he would make it in the business. In a recent interview with Live For Live Music, Strings detailed growing up with bluegrass through his father and his nostalgic beginnings first becoming familiar with the guitar.

“Playing music was just a way of life around the house, it was never something that I thought was an option as a career,” String said. “Like, you’re not gonna ‘make it.’ When I was in elementary and middle school and high school and stuff, I read books about, like, Kurt Cobain and Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix and all of those larger-than-life kind of people and, you know, I wanted to be somebody like that, some musical icon or something.”

Strings recalled being exposed to a lot of negativity growing up. He witnessed substance abuse at an early age and saw friends go down the wrong path. However, he used music as his way to avoid darkness. Through his music, he found life has too much to offer and chose to dedicate himself to the craft.

“When I was a teenager playing in metal bands and stuff, like, paying to play, [I started realizing] wow, this is really tough and that’s kind of an unfathomable dream and this is probably not going to happen,” String said. “But I just stuck to it and I realized that, okay, I’m not gonna be Jimi Hendrix but I could be, like, a dude that makes a living playing music and have a good life and not have to work some job that I hate.”