Gibson player and legendary singer and songwriter, John Hiatt was at SXSW for the New West Records showcase and to check out his daughter Lilly’s gig with her band The Dropped Ponies. SXSW, Hiatt told USA Today’s Mike Snider, “"has gotten bigger and bigger and huger and huger. It looks pretty damn enormous to me."
So taking respite from the crowds Hiatt sat on the Gibson bus and checked out some new Gibson Acoustic guitars. Turns out, Hiatt is a J-45 fan of long standing.
"I've got two J45s that came off early some of the earliest runs out of Montana and I love those guitars. You know I've always thought of them as new guitars but I was sitting around the other day and said, 'Well, you know, they are about 35 years old.' I guess that qualifies for vintage at this point. They sound beautiful. They have aged and the sound has changed accordingly in good ways."
And there’s something about Gibson guitars in general that has kept Hiatt enamored of the brand. "I've just always preferred the tone,” he said. “That thump (of) the J45s is real. They suit my style, I play a rhythmic thing and that thumpy thing seems to work for me. And I like the way the way they feel."
But his favorite guitar, he says, is "a little LG-2 from 1947" that he bought in 1986 and began using when writing songs such as “Thing Called Love” for 1987's Bring The Family album. "It's my favorite guitar. It's not thumpy like a 45. It kinda barks. It has a little bark to it. It's given me a whole lot of songs over the years."