Melanie Faye has been playing guitar since she was about 11 years old, having fallen in love with the instrument after diving into the video game Guitar Hero.
And since trading in her Xbox controller for the real thing, she has become one of Nashville's most influential guitarists, with a massive following on social media that has fallen in love with her R&B and neo-soul sound.
Faye began posting videos of covers or original compositions on her Instagram and YouTube accounts a few years ago and went viral in 2017 when influential artists like SZA and Willow Smith co-signed her work.
Since then, Faye has collaborated on a track with Mac DeMarco, given Beyonce’s lead guitarist, Bibi McGill, a guitar lesson and even opened for acclaimed Chicago rapper/poet/producer Noname.
Working such diverse musical luminaries showcases Faye's versatility as a guitarist, a trait she also values in her instruments, as noted in her recent demo of the Player Series Stratocaster.
"I want more people who don't necessarily listen to rock to also play guitar," said Faye. "I've experimented with a lot of guitars, but I think Fenders are really geared towards people like me who want versatility and something that's really, really comfortable."
As Faye continues to work on the release of her debut EP entitled HomoPhone, she has definitely learned a lot since playing "Cliffs of Dover" - her favorite song on Guitar Hero - on a gaming console.
"I think you should just be prepared," she said when asked about advice she would give to aspiring musicians. "There's going to be a lot of ups and downs. I've honestly put literal blood, literal sweat and literal tears into playing guitar. But I think in the end, it's all worth it. You'll hit plateaus and hit roadblocks, but it's all part of the process."
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