artists now are jumping on the money train and
cashing out. I’m into timeless songs that will be
around long after I’m gone.
Most artists get the usual kind of kudos
after a gig, but, Lynda, I understand people
actually thank you after your shows—thank
you for bringing that vibe back.
Kay: Well, almost every time I finish a show
and I’m loading out my gear someone
approaches me and says “Thank you for
bringing back the music I grew up on.” Lots
of people grew up hearing Johnny Cash,
Tammy Wynette, Rose Maddox, George
Jones and other greats on their parents’
record players. There’s an undeniable con-
nection when I’m playing a show and people
have such a glow in their faces, because I
believe they are relating sonically and visu-
ally. Not a lot of artists are out there tugging
on those heart strings.
Congrats on the Gretsch endorsement.
Kay: I feel truly honored to be endorsed
by Gretsch. It was a dream come true when
Joe Carducci offered me an endorsement
deal. Gretsch was reissuing their 1955
Knotty Pine Roundup guitar and asked me
to be the featured artist for that model.
The Knotty Pine is a semi-hollowbody with
two DynaSonic single-coils to create that
great Gretsch sound. And with its bookmatched knotty pine top, tooled-leather
trim around the mahogany body, and western motif belt-buckle on the tailpiece, this
guitar is a work of art.
Jonny, how did the Epiphone Zakk Wylde
coffin-shaped guitar come about?
20-year Breedlove employee
Coffin: It started with Zakk. He had been
talking to the guys over at Epiphone for
years about this, to their custom guitar
guys that he works with, and that turned
into them contacting me for the cases for
it. Jim Rosenberg contacted me, and then
he ended up coming down to the warehouse. He said, “The coffin is really your
thing. We want you behind this, so can you
do the cases? Let’s get this thing going.”
Then they sent me the guitar. That thing
was amazing. I designed the case for it.
Zakk wanted a specific logo—a cross logo
of his that features his skull on the cross.
So we did the prototype case. Everyone
loved it, so they went into production
last October. I think it was released last
Halloween in a limited run. Now they’re
going to make some with more graphics. It
was launched at NAMM this year. We featured it in our Coffin fashion show that we
had at the NAMM show.
Slash was your first customer. Who was
The all new American Series
100% Made in USA
Starting at $999 street
(Imaginatively Appointed: $100,000)
Coffin: Keith Richards. A few months after
Slash got his, I got a call from Pierre, Keith
Richards’ assistant. He had heard about
Slash’s case and told Keith, “Hey, you’ve
got to get one of these things.” They were
recording at the time, so I went down to
the studio and met with Keith and hung
out with him for a couple of days in the
studio—that was an experience in itself.
Keith’s comment was great when I walked
in to the studio with some custom cases.
He saw them and said, “Can you make one
big enough to put Mick in it?” [Laughs].
He was on his hands and knees opening
one up. He looked up at me and said,
“You know, Jonnny, we’re all vampires.”