Signature Models for Female Players on the Rise

Orianthi with new Gibson Orianthi SJ-200 signature acoustic guitar - Photo by photos, credit Jim Iouveau
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As seen in Guitar Girl Magazine Issue 15 – Spring 2021 – Electrified!

Some of the world’s iconic guitar manufacturers are taking notice of women’s influential purchasing power, and they are responding with new signature models for some of today’s top female guitarists. Could this possibly be due to Fender’s 2018 research study that revealed that new female guitarists are making up 50 percent of the guitar-buying market? This year at the 2021 Winter NAMM Believe in Music show, several new attention-grabbing electric and acoustic models were revealed.

Let’s look at some of the models announced late last year and what’s new for 2021.

Gibson Orianthi SJ-200 Acoustic Custom in Cherry
This collaboration has been in the works since mid-2020, and it was finally unveiled in January. The Orianthi SJ-200 features an ES-345-inspired neck, AAA sitka spruce top and maple back, cherry nitrocellulose lacquer finish, fingerboard mother-of-pearl inlays, and a lotus flower pickguard. For electronics, it is fitted with the LR Baggs Orianthi System, under-saddle piezo pickup, and soundhole mounted preamp and controls. With all this guitar has to offer, Orianthi really put her style on this model.

Epiphone Nancy Wilson Fanatic Electric Guitar in Fireburst
The new Epiphone signature model has the classic original Nighthawk mahogany body and a figured maple veneer top. It sports a pair of ProBucker humbuckers and a 5-way pickup selector switch that really allows you to dial in your tone. The neck is a rounded C-profile made of mahogany and an ebony fretboard. The finish is a stunning Fireburst Gloss.



Ibanez Lari Basilio Signature LB1 in Violet
Ibanez released the Brazilian guitarist Lari Basilio’s new signature model during Believe in Music week. This LB1 has 22 jumbo frets, AZ oval C-neck in Birdseye maple, an ash neck, and signature Seymour Duncan Lari Basilio neck pickups. The violet gloss finish and gold hardware finish off this exciting model.

The BMG Arielle Electric Guitar
Singer-songwriter and guitarist Arielle collaborated with Brian May to create her signature guitar based on her love for classic 20th-century guitar design and her own “Two Tone” guitar she built with friend Patrick Yates. The 24” scale guitar has a retro-futuristic design in an orange and blue diagonal pattern, along with a raised center-strip. Made of limba wood, it has a mahogany neck, a vintage-styled two-piece pickguard, BMG Tri-Sonic style sing coil pickups, and May’s uniquely designed BM switching system. Chrome hardware, including Grover Tuners and Wilkinson WVP Tremolo finish off the overall beauty of the Arielle.

Fender H.E.R. Stratocaster in Chrome Glow
The H.E.R. Stratocaster model was released last year for the R&B performer and has the classic Stratocaster features, an alder body, maple mid-‘60s C-shape neck, and an eye-catching custom Chrome Glow finish. Fender Vintage Noiseless Stratocaster single-coil pickups and anodized aluminum pickguard complete this model’s custom look. H.E.R. made an appearance at this year’s Superbowl with a stunning performance of “America The Beautiful.”

Fender Chrissie Hynde Telecaster in Ice Blue Metallic
The Fender Chrissie Hynde Telecaster in Ice Blue Metallic is simply gorgeous. Launched by Fender in collaboration with the iconic rocker, the guitar mirrors many of Hynde’s beloved 1965 Tele features. Boasting an alder body, custom mid-‘60s C-shaped maple neck, upgraded locking tuners, a stainless steel 6-saddle bridge, custom Chrissie Hynde single-coil pickups, chrome mirror pickguard, and Fender’s Road Worn hardware, this guitar is sure to please guitarists seeking the tone of a vintage Tele.

Fender Billie Eilish Signature Ukulele
Fender partnered with Grammy-award-winning superstar, Billie Eilish (who taught herself how to play) for her own signature concert uke. Made of sapele with an open-pore satin finish, the 15” scale uke has a nato neck, flat walnut fingerboard, white dot inlays, and 4-inline-Tele headstock. It comes equipped with a Fishman Kula preamp and built-in tuner. The nickel hardware, abalone rosette, and black matte finish showcasing Eilish’ s “blohsh” symbol make this uke a standout.

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SOURCEPress Release
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Born and Raised in Miami, FL, Vanessa started playing music at a young age. Progressing through high school, Vanessa was playing and performing on multiple instruments including guitar, piano and trumpet. She was awarded a scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. During her time there, she studied the guitar playing of such influences as Pat Martino, Slash, Pat Metheny, John Scofield, Eric Johnson and many others. After graduating with a degree in Music Business, she went on to work with such artists as Pat Metheny and Christian McBride. After years in the business end of the industry, she decided to pursue her own performing career and moved to Atlanta, GA. Once in Atlanta, she was playing with several groups, and doing recording sessions.  A year later, she was chosen as a finalist by Beyonce to audition for her all-girl backup band. Vanessa has traveled the world playing guitar, visiting countries such as France, Germany, Egypt, Italy, Japan, South America and the Caribbean. She has performed on the bill with such renown artists as Darius Rucker, LA Sno, KISS, Skid Row and Paramore. She is currently recording and performing as the front woman for rock trio, BAST.