"Her musicianship is a clear indication she has been here before! Pass her by at your peril,” says Brian May.
And if you haven’t already heard American singer-songwriter and guitarist Arielle, you can watch the music video for her new single, “’73,” here.
The title track from her forthcoming album, “’73” is an ode to the maestro’s beloved 1973 VW bus named Magick.
Featuring some slick slide licks, Arielle tells us the track will, “have you checking your speedometer more than once.”
Around this time in ‘73, May was getting ready to launch Queen’s self-titled debut album. Half a century on and the Brian May Guitars company is offering an impressive array of solidbodies, among them the Arielle model.
Notable as “the first original build that the Queen virtuoso has actively contributed to since he and his father embarked on the construction of the Red Special,” Arielle appears on the cover of her new LP, ’73, strapped with her signature axe in a Two Tone finish. (The same model is also available in Windermere Blue and Antique Cherry.)
"To understand why this guitar was irresistible to me, you need to hold her in your hands,” says Arielle. “The guitar is light, and smooth and agile. The BMG Arielle sings like a bird.”
Arielle has long followed her own path in the music world. A guitar prodigy, she first met May at his Bang! The Complete History of the Universe book-signing event in Hollywood in 2007 when she was a student at L.A.’s Musicians Institute.
Taking along her own self-built six-string (not dissimilar to May’s Red Special) the pair got talking about guitars and hit it off immediately.
Having become pen pals, Arielle would send the Queen guitarist videos of her performing from time to time.
“He told me, ‘That’s really good – you should audition for my musical,’” she told Guitar Player. “So at 18, I got a visa, packed a suitcase and a couple of guitars, moved to England and landed a spot in We Will Rock You.”
Since appearing in the London stage production of Queen’s We Will Rock You musical and working with artists like Nuno Bettencourt, Eric Johnson and Vince Gill, Arielle has notched up an impressive catalog of albums.
A unique blend of classic rock and '60s-style songwriting, self-proclaimed analog girl Arielle’s 12-track studio album ’73 is slated for release on April 20.
Pre-order ’73 here.
Visit Arielle’s website for more information.
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Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Guitar World, Guitar Player and MusicRadar in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.