Scene News: Ahead of this year’s Melbourne Guitar Show, NICK CHARLES Shares his Fave SIX Guitars


  1. The most recent guitar that Maton has made for me has most of the features that I’ve longed for   and investigated over the years. So, for starters it’s essentially a 000 size acoustic with mahogany back and sides, a sitka spruce top, ebony fretboard, Waverly tuners, scalloped bracing and topped off by a stunning sunburst. That’s basically my ideal guitar (for now!)
  2. I’m a huge fan of the traditional sounds of American flattops particularly Doc Watson’s tone. Once again, a mahogany (but a dreadnaught). So, I wouldn’t mind that guitar he recorded Black Mountain Rag on the iconic Will the Circle be Unbroken. That’s a Gallagher.
  3. For the distinctive clarity of the classic singer-songwriter it’s hard to go past James Taylor’s late 50s Gibson J50. Once again that’s mahogany!
  4. I still love some great strumming sounds, so those 60s acoustic sounds on pop recordings (early Stones etc.) were created using Gibson Hummingbirds or Gibson Doves. Not so great for picking but produce really nice clarity for rhythm parts.
  5. For something quite different I have a 1948 Gibson LG sunburst. Quite beaten up but so many stories in it. It’s identical to the one played by one of my favourite bluesmen (and Robert Johnson partner) Johnny Shines. Great for rattling blues but not much else!
  6. Maybe just one more if I’m greedy. The sloped shouldered Martin deadnaught flatpicked by another hero, Norman Blake. A 12 fret to the body, slotted headstock. Magnificent.


The AGE has labelled Nick Charles “Australia’s virtuoso of acoustic roots and blues”. He has released nine solo albums since the late 90s, gathering every award in blues, folk and songwriting this country has to offer, including Port Fairy Folk Festival Artist of the Year, The Age Blues Album of the Year and every MBAS multiple times. His music draws on the rich history of fingerstyle blues, ragtime, early jazz with an instinctive eclectic melodic sense.

His musical icons range from Mississippi John Hurt ,Big Bill Broonzy and Blind Blake to more contemporary fingerstyle masters.

Nick has toured the USA 13 times in recent years, performing more than 300 shows there. His latest album “Guitar Music” has a typically broad palette of influences and includes wonderful renditions of acoustic guitar classics and a nod to his country blues heroes.

For more information:

The Melbourne Guitar Show has today added another haul of artists to the already impressive lineup, with the iconic show set to rock Caulfield Racecourse on March 4 and 5 – tickets are on sale now from It’s been 3 long years since the last show was devoured by over 5,000 guitar and music loving punters, but we’re breaking open the cases, dusting down the show, oiling its neck, setting its action and tuning it to perfection for a grand return in 2023. 

Proudly presented by the Australian Music Association and Australian Musician, sponsored by Marsh and supported by Triple M, PBS, Beat and Mixdown, the show dedicated to celebrating the world’s most popular instrument, will once again feature Australia’s largest pop-up guitar shop, and an axe-ellent lineup of guitarists from Aus and around the world. It will offer the chance to see, try and buy from the biggest range of guitars seen in Melbourne under one roof for the first time since 2019. Plus, the opportunity to see and meet the finest local and international exponents of fretted instruments across three stages.

Already announced to appear in performance or session for the 2023 Melbourne Guitar Show are: Eric Bibb (USA) in Q&A session, Nick Johnston (CAN), and Aussies; Steph Strings, Hussy Hicks, Simon Hosford plays Yngwie Malmsteen’s Trilogy, Kathleen Halloran, Lloyd Spiegel, and Kyran Daniel.

Now we’re thrilled to add these exciting guitar-based artists to the show:

Phil Manning & Nick Charles, Blues Roulette, Josh Smith (Northlane), King Canyon, Chris Bieniek, Opal Ocean, Joyce Prescher, Marcel Yammouni, Corey Legge, Charlie Bedford, Monica Weightman, James Ryan and Leon Todd. And with so many local and international artists in town that weekend, you never know who else will make an appearance at the show as it’s the coolest muso hang of the year!


#MGS2023 will host a monster gear expo with 60 exhibitors that will feature a huge variety of electric and acoustic guitars, basses, effects pedals, amps and more state-of-the-art guitar technology, both home-grown and from around the world. We call it Australia’s biggest pop-up guitar shop. Check out the exhibitor list here.


Get your kids’ heads out of those phones and iPads and show them what true inspiration is all about. There’s a whole weekend of performances and demos that’ll knock their socks off. Remember the first great music event you attended and how it made you feel? The Melbourne Guitar Show could be just as significant for your own kids. Then there’s the guitars! All the colours, all the shapes and attentive staff on hand to show them how it all works. It’s a fully indoor event, so don’t worry about the weather, and there’s plenty of food and drink to keep your family energised too.


Attend one of the many demonstration sessions, hosted by respected industry experts to learn all about the latest guitar gear.


Entertainment all weekend from the best guitar players from Australia and overseas on three performance stages, as well as a session room. If you’re not digging an acoustic act on the Mezzanine stage, you can find plenty of electric options on the Whammy Bar stage. There’s rock, roots, blues, fusion, and more to choose from. Check out the performer list here.

The Melbourne Guitar Show will be held at Caulfield Racecourse on March 4 & 5, 2023
Tickets are on sale now from

Visit the new Melbourne Guitar Show site at for the latest show announcements and information.
Check out the 2023 Promo video and Highlights Video from the last show 

SUNDAY March 5 | CAULFIELD RACECOURSE | 10.00am – 4.00pm |

Adult day pass $30, adult weekend pass $45, concession day pass $20, concession weekend pass $25.




About Mary Boukouvalas 1614 Articles
Mary is a photographer and a writer, specialising in music. She runs where she endeavours to capture the passion of music in her photos whether it's live music photography, promotional band photos or portraits. She has photographed The Rolling Stones, KISS, Iggy Pop, AC/DC, Patti Smith, Joe Strummer, PULP, The Cult, The Damned, The Cure, Ian Brown, Interpol, MUDHONEY, The MELVINS, The Living End, Foo Fighters, Smashing Pumpkins, Rage Against The Machine, The Stone Roses –just to name a few - in Australia, USA, Europe and the Middle East. Her work has been published in Beat magazine, Rolling Stone magazine, Triple J magazine, The Age Newspaper, The Herald Sun, The Australian, Neos Kosmos,,,, She has a permanent photographic exhibition at The Corner Hotel in Richmond, Victoria Australia.