Austin Meade: "Heavier songs give us more opportunities to create guitar tradeoffs"

Austin Meade with a double-cutaway Gibson Les Paul Special (Image credit: Dalton Latham)

Not every young musician who one day finds himself featured in the hallowed pages of Guitar World actually had dreams of growing up to be a famous guitarist - some, such as Austin Meade, aspired to be the next great drummer along the lines of Don Henley, Paul Leim or Tommy Aldridge. 

But when Meade, the son of a church minister who grew up deep in the heart of Bible-Belt Texas, was suddenly asked to learn to play a few religious songs on a guitar because his father’s church was in a musical bind, little did he suspect that the course of his life was about to be forever altered.

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Jeff Kitts

As a teenager, Jeff Kitts began his career in the mid ’80s as editor of an underground heavy metal fanzine in the bedroom of his parents’ house. From there he went on to write for countless rock and metal magazines around the world – including Circus, Hit Parader, Metal Maniacs, Rock Power and others – and in 1992 began working as an assistant editor at Guitar World. During his 27 years at Guitar World, Jeff served in multiple editorial capacities, including managing editor and executive editor before finally departing as editorial director in 2018. Jeff has authored several books and continues to write for Guitar World and other publications and teaches English full time in New Jersey. His first (and still favorite) guitar was a black Ibanez RG550.