“I love Alter Bridge, but more Myles Kennedy’s playing, rather than Mark Tremonti. Myles goes for the gross notes, which I really like”: Meet James Frankland, the classical-loving instrumentalist fusing Rachmaninoff and Guns N’ Roses

James Frankland
(Image credit: Sarah Frankland)

James Frankland has made a name for himself as an instrumental guitar player who’s able to bring intricate layers into his music, as we see on his latest release, Fate’s Right Hand. However, he didn’t find an immediate connection to music. 

“I first started playing when I was seven, but I didn’t like it for about six years,” he says. “Then when I was about 13 there were YouTube and Ultimate Guitar tabs, so I could access Joe Satriani and Guns N’ Roses lessons. It was a good time for learning.”

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Glenn Kimpton

Glenn Kimpton is a freelance writer based in the west of England. His interest in English folk music came through players like Chris Wood and Martin Carthy, who also steered him towards alternate guitar tunings. From there, the solo acoustic instrumental genre, sometimes called American Primitive, became more important, with guitarists like Jack Rose, Glenn Jones and Robbie Basho eventually giving way to more contemporary players like William Tyler and Nick Jonah Davis. Most recently, Glenn has focused on a more improvised and experimental side to solo acoustic playing, both through his writing and his own music, with players like Bill Orcutt and Tashi Dorji being particularly significant.