Last month, Gibson officially announced a new partnership with Dave Mustaine, the legendary guitarist, vocalist, songwriter, and Grammy-winning founder and leader of MEGADETH, who joined Gibson as a Brand Ambassador. The new Dave Mustaine Collection will span acoustic and electric guitars across Gibson, Epiphone and Kramer.
Mustaine spoke about his Gibson collaboration during a recent episode of his "The Dave Mustaine Show" on Gimme Metal radio. He said (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I've been telling you and telling you, a big announcement was gonna be coming, and it has. On February 23rd and 24th, we announced to the world that I am now a Gibson guitar ambassador for all of their brands.
"I have really, really wanted to be a Gibson man ever since I got my first KISS record that said on the back, 'We use Gibson guitars because we like the very best,'" he continued. "Well, so did I. I didn't know what the very best was at the time. Shoot, I was still just growing facial hair. But when I got a chance to see a guy next door to where my sister's future husband lived, I saw this Les Paul custom. And, of course, in my memoir, I tell you about stealing the guitar returning it. But I was so excited about that guitar that I took it in and made it my own.
"We've already made some really, really cool things take place over at Gibson," Mustaine added. "In fact, check this out — all of you who play acoustic guitars, they made an acoustic guitar for me, and because of the dimensions that I wanted for my custom guitar, with the 24 frets and the different neck and different fretboards and everything, they had to change something internally — they had to change the bracing inside the guitar; all of the little pieces of wood. Picture the inside of an old airplane when they show all those strings going back and forth and those little boards going back and forth — that's what's called bracing. And inside of a guitar, if you see a guitar with the lid off, from the front to the back, you can see all those little pieces of wood and those pieces of bracing. So the bracing is so heavy in my guitar, it changed the tone of the guitars. And they're going to make a bunch of changes and additions and improvements to some of their guitars, their acoustics, by changing the bracing and improving it. And I am so excited to have been able to have contributed to Gibson guitars so early.
"I can't wait till you guys pick up my model. I know you're gonna be blown away. Not only are they 24 frets, they're Gibsons. And not only are they Gibsons, they're Dave Mustaine signature models. So you know these are gonna be fantastic."
Dave will join the Gibson Artist Alliance — a forum which includes legendary musicians, innovative movers and shakers, and new talent — to share in thought leadership, research & development, mentorship of the next generation of players, as well as philanthropic endeavors. In addition to the Dave Mustaine Collection, Dave will be featured in original content and special projects across Gibson, Epiphone and Kramer.
"It's an honor to welcome icon, pioneer and visionary musician Dave Mustaine to the Gibson family as our brand ambassador", said Cesar Gueikian of Gibson Brands. "Dave is one of the most influential metal icons and riff lords of all time, having paved the way for multiple generations of players to carry the flag for hard rock and heavy metal, from riff writers to shredders and everyone in between. Working with Dave is especially gratifying because he is a guitar nerd like me, who gets involved in every aspect of the development of the concepts and ideas we have been designing with him at the Gibson Lab. When I was as kid learning how to play guitar, I aspired to play Dave's riffs and I was one of the fortunate fans who attended their 'Youthanasia' tour concert at Estadio Obras Sanitarias in 1994, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where the 'Aguante Megadeth' chant was born over the song 'Symphony Of Destruction'. That was an epic night that I will never forget. I look forward to bringing this partnership to life and unveiling the first stages of the Dave Mustaine Collection to the world."
In November 2019, Mustaine sold off much of his gear, including several Dean prototype signature models that he had used over the years. Two months ago, he confirmed that he was going separate ways with Dean after spending 13 years with the company.
Mustaine's Gibson announcement came two months after a employee for the American guitar maker accidentally leaked an image of a guitar that some devoted guitar aficionados speculated could be Mustaine's new signature model. The same prototype model was also spotted in an Instagram post by Gueikian.
When Mustaine's deal with Dean was first announced back in January 2007, he said he chose Dean over other guitar companies "because they understand the value of Dave Mustaine and MEGADETH. And it's mutual," he explained. "I know that this is the right place for me to finish out my career, endorsing their products, and having my guitars made by Dean."
Ranked No. 1 by Joel McIver in "The 100 Greatest Metal Guitarists" book, Mustaine godfathered fast-heavy-metal guitar generations, first as the original lead guitarist for METALLICA, and then as the founder of legendary MEGADETH.
In 1983, Mustaine founded MEGADETH, and the band released its first album two years later, established Dave and his bandmates as pioneers in the thrash metal movement. The band has since sold 38 million albums worldwide, including five consecutive platinum or multi-platinum albums in the U.S., while garnering 12 Grammy nominations. MEGADETH also landed a 2017 Grammy for "Best Metal Performance" for "Dystopia", the title track of the band's 2016 album.
Prior to MEGADETH, Mustaine was an early member of METALLICA. Before leaving the band in 1983, he had co-written a half dozen songs that would appear on METALLICA's first two albums.
In the video game arena, Mustaine composed the Grammy-nominated MEGADETH track "Sudden Death" for the 2010 release "Guitar Hero: Warriors Of Rock". The game also featured two other Mustaine-composed MEGADETH songs: 1990's "Holy Wars… The Punishment Due" and 2009's "This Day We Fight!"
MEGADETH is currently working on its 16th studio album.
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