The history of Jackson Guitars

Phil Collen
Def Leppard's Phil Collen was an early champion of the Jackson brand, and remains a high-profile endorsee (Image credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

The evolution of Jackson Guitars goes hand in hand with that of rock and metal itself. There has always been a symbiotic relationship between the design of the electric guitar and the scene it serves, but come the end of the 70s, that was to become ever more pronounced.  

Guitar playing was on the cusp of radical change. After a febrile period during which the big beasts of rock barrelled into long-form progressivism, their ever more ambitious compositions expanding upon rock’s template, guitar culture was intensifying. 

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Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to publications including Guitar World, MusicRadar and Total Guitar. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.