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Helen Ibe advances to final round of the Martin No Limits Challenge

Helen Ibe plays a Martin SC-10 acoustic guitar
(Image credit: Helen Ibe music/YouTube)

This week, Martin – in partnership with Guitar World – kicked off the first semifinal round of its No Limits Challenge competition.

This round of the No Limits Challenge – which features eight guitarists facing off against one another, covering tunes you wouldn't normally associate with an acoustic using a Martin SC model – saw R.J. Ronquillo and Helen Ibe showcase their acoustic blues skills.

Ronquillo tipped his cap to Stevie Ray Vaughan with a raucous acoustic version of Rude Mood, while Ibe switched things up a little with her own original acoustic blues instrumental. 

We asked Guitar World's readers – with the help of GW's editors – to weigh in, and vote for their favorite of the two performances. Ronquillo's ferocious cover was formidable, but in the end Ibe's bright original instrumental won the popular vote, and advanced her to the final round of the competition.

There, she'll be joined by either Sophie Burrell or Gretchen Menn, who in next week's semifinal matchup will take on two power-pop classics. 

Be sure to check back next week to see their performances, and cast a ballot for your favorite.

For more info on Martin's SC acoustics, visit the company's website.

Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.