Who reads Guitarist?
People for whom the guitar is an obsession.
What plans do you have to celebrate the magazine's 25th anniversary?
We've created a special collector's anniversary issue with a fold-out cover and special foil-blocked presentation wallet. The lead feature is a huge list: The 100 Greatest Guitar Things Of The Last 25 Years. It celebrates what we believe were the best music, artists, and significant happenings (such as the internet) of the past quarter century. There is a lot of historical content in the magazine as well.
What makes an ideal story or feature for Guitarist?
A famous player feature or interview, but the caveat is that they must be a dyed-in-the-wool guitar nut.
Of which feature in the magazine are you most proud?
In this issue, it would be The 100 Greatest Guitar Things Of The Last 25 Years. It's a 17-page list, but it reflects us and our brand values perfectly.
Describe your relationship with PR professionals
Generally very good. PR professionals are obviously trying to get exposure for their brand or artists, and we're straight up about what we can and can't do. The bigger the artist, the more the relationship changes to us chasing them, instead of them chasing us. But Guitarist is an extremely high quality book, so the vast majority of people are only too happy to be associated with us, and represented in the mag.
What are your PR pet peeves?
The number one sin is misunderstanding the product. We're a guitar magazine, about guitars and the people who play them. It's very simple. You should see some of the releases we get - our recent favourite was for interview opportunities with an expert in cosmetic surgery for moobs - man boobs. And it was from an organisation called BAAPS. It wasn't a joke!
Describe your online offering and how the website and magazine fit together.
We have a blog site - www.guitarist.co.uk - where we post stories, competitions, sell subscriptions and so on, but the main site is www.musicradar.com, which is the umbrella site for Future Publishing's whole music magazine portfolio. The magazine remains resolutely narrow-and-deep in terms of its specialist focus while Music Radar attracts a wider group of enthusiasts.
Like everybody, our understanding of the print/online symbiosis is improving fast - moving away from fears of cannibalisation, and realising that the most effective offering for readers and advertisers is very much print and online - not either/or.
What are your media must-haves?
Personally, my favourite magazine always has and always will be Viz. Newspapers would be The Guardian and The Sunday Times. TV - Family Guy and Newsnight account for about 95 per cent of my TV watching. I love FaceBook and I've started tweeting. And being without my iPod is absolutely unthinkable... although not as unthinkable as going a day without playing the guitar. Professionally, any/all of the music press, Metro, a selection of dailies.
Lead time: 6-8 weeks