The mega-selling pop outfit’s 6-string guru shows us his vintage Teles, Matchless and Suhr amps, and ultra-flexible pedal and rack setup.

For tunes where he needs a soaring lead sound, Valentine also plays a mahogany-and-maple semi-hollowbody built by Swedish luthier Johan Gustavsson.

Premier Guitar’s John Bohlinger met with Maroon 5’s James Valentine before the band’s February 27, 2015, gig at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. In this segment, we see how the closet jazz cat uses a variety of vintage and high-end boutique guitars and amps to get the wide variety of sounds he has to replicate at each show.

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A father-and-son team work together to create an original, futuristic gold guitar, and the result is extremely satisfying.

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While Monolord has no shortage of the dark and heavy, guitarist and vocalist Thomas V Jäger comes at it from a perspective more common to pop songsmiths.

Photo by Chad Kelco

Melodies, hooks, clean tones, and no guitar solos. Are we sure this Elliott Smith fan fronts a doom-metal band? (We’re sure!)

Legend has it the name Monolord refers to a friend of the band with the same moniker who lost hearing in his left ear, and later said it didn’t matter if the band recorded anything in stereo, because he could not hear it anyway. It’s a funny, though slightly tragic, bit of backstory, but that handle is befitting in yet another, perhaps even more profound, way. Doom and stoner metal are arguably the torch-bearing subgenres for hard rock guitar players, and if any band seems to hold the keys to the castle at this moment, it’s Monolord.

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