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Martin Issues Ed Sheeran Signature Edition Guitar

Despite its diminutive size, Martin Guitar’s new Custom Shop LX1E Ed Sheeran Signature Edition guitar comes with several plusses.

First there’s the + logo on the headstock and solid sapele top, a reference to the title of the English singer-songwriter’s Platinum-selling 2011 album, which spawned the mega-hits “Lego House,” “The A Team,” “Drunk” and “Give Me Love.”

Then there’s the charity component: a portion of the proceeds from sales of the guitar will be donated to East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices, a U.K.-based charity Sheeran supports. The organization assists families and cares for children and young people with life-threatening conditions, providing services in several U.K. counties, including Suffolk, where the 22-year-old Sheeran grew up.

The 23-inch-scale, 20-fret LX1E Ed Sheeran Signature Edition is small enough to take anywhere and comes with Fishman Isys T electronics and a padded gig bag—just right for the traveling musician.

“I had been playing this same model [the LX1E] for six years, carrying it on public transport, sleeping at friends’ houses,” Sheeran says.

“Carrying a huge case never appealed to me; I just put it all in a rucksack and had everything in one bag. I played small-ish venues then, so I didn’t need a big sound. But the bigger the venues got, I realized I could play arenas and stadiums with this guitar. It just has a huge sound. It’s done everything I’ve needed it to do.”

Sheeran also recommends the LX1E to kids just beginning to play guitar. “When I started, the acoustic guitar I had was almost bigger than me,” says Sheeran, who was inspired to take up the six-string after seeing Eric Clapton perform “Layla” on TV. “It’s great way to start. The neck’s not too thick, it won’t hurt your fingers and you can get your arm around it. It’s just right.”

In addition to its fluorescent-orange + logo, the LX1E Ed Sheeran Signature Edition’s headstock sports the words Est. 1991, a reference to the year Sheeran was born. Other features include a Richlite fingerboard, a hand-rubbed finish and a single-ring rosette.

For more information, visit martinguitar.com.

Photo: Jason Borucki

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Damian Fanelli
Damian Fanelli

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor, and his non-Pulitzer-Prize-winning stories have appeared in Guitar Aficionado, Vintage Guitar, Total Guitar and countless other publications, including 13.7 metric tons of daily newspapers. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton and Ty Tabor chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas, was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron, a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums (one of which appears in the 2015 Disney film 'Tomorrowland' starring George Clooney and Britt Robertson). He's in two NYC-area bands and plays Teles with four-way switches, B-benders and semi-snazzy aftermarket pickups. He quotes Terry-Thomas twice daily.