All of us at Thompson Guitars could not have been more proud this week to see the live stream taping of Austin City Limits with Billy Strings front and center, singing his heart out, with his Thompson guitar he has worn in so well! AND by his side his talented band Billy Failing (Banjo/Vocals), Royal Masat (Bass/Vocals and Jarrod Walker (Mandolin/Vocals) – so much great energy together creating a powerful impact on the music world from coast to coast. They are bringing their style of bluegrass and songwriting to many many enthusiastic fans! What a treat to watch the live taping – their hour and half show will air on PBS in October.
Our small shop, located in Oregon, has been fortunate to have the support of many talented pickers and singer/songwriters since Preston started making guitars in the 1980’s. Charles Sawtelle and Peter Rowan were among the first to enjoy the quality and sound of Preston’s builds, along with his friendship.
Speed forward a few decades to the next generation of players that Preston admired and there are many…. please take a look at our featured artist page sharing the players that have a Thompson in their collection. We are super thankful they support our efforts as we navigate the future and Preston’s legacy at our shop in Sisters. Also a big THANK YOU to all the musicians that play at home with their families or in their local region, we appreciate each and every one of you!!
We first heard Billy Stings via Carter Vintage Guitars in Nashville where he found one of our Thompson’s. Then came the order for his next guitar and the meet up at the shop before their show in Bend at the Volcanic Pub. This seems like so long ago and so much has happened since then…Preston was humbled and thrilled to have his guitars played by the newest generation of talented pickers and singer/songwriters. Many times he told me he was honored that he could be part of Billy’s trajectory into the future and I know he would have been very proud of the accomplishments that brought this special band to the infamous stage of Austin City Limits this week, Preston was a Texan after all!
A few photos of Billy’s time in the shop (above) and several much viewed videos from 2017 when he picked up his D-BA and a short interview before his show in Bend. The band and Billy made their way back to Central Oregon in 2019 to the 4 Peaks Music Festival and we had a chance to film a short interview. We look forward to the future and seeing Billy at Edgefield, in Portland, this September!