1. Bam 8002XLW Classical Guitar Case
I've used BAM cases for years and continue to be impressed with the durability and lightness of my 8002XLW case. When you travel as much as I do it's so important to have a case that's strong and also towards the smaller and lighter end when it comes to dimensions and weight. Flying with a guitar is a subject that I won't delve into here, but this case is small enough to fit into the overhead lockers on every medium/large plane I've ever been on and will always fit in the cupboard on a smaller propeller plane if necessary. Using a white case that reflects the sun is a great idea if you're travelling in warmer countries, and it just looks cool.
2. Sam McClaren Concert Model Classical Guitar
Sam's guitars are just beautiful and I've been using his instruments in all of my concerts for several years now. This spruce top guitar was made for me in 2014 and continues to be my constant companion in all of my adventures. When thinking about what guitar to use in your own concerts and performances, it's always important to consider aspects such as projection, tone-balance and whether you simply feel at home on the instrument and enjoy playing it. I love playing Sam's guitars.
3. Removable Accessory Pouch
This one speaks for itself. The removable accessory pouch slides into the BAM 8002XLW case just underneath the neck and, as we will learn, is always full of fascinating items.
4. D'addario Pro Arté Nylon Strings
I always carry at least three spare sets of hard tension D'addario Pro Arté strings with me. In a week I may sometimes play three concerts or more and it's really important to make sure that the strings on my guitar are still up to the job. When choosing your own strings, you might consider aspects such as how much volume you want to get from your instrument, playability and how bright you would like your sound to be. I really like hard tension strings as they provide the perfect balance for me between a good, solid tone and nice playability.
5. A sock with the end cut off
Well, this is definitely the strangest and one of the more insightful items in my case. This is for use when practising in countries with a hot, sticky climate. If a classical guitarist is wearing a short-sleeve shirt then one can simply slip this ingeniously modified sock onto their right arm and, presto, their arm will no longer stick to the guitar! We're a colourful lot.
So there it is, the first five items on the list of what I keep in my case. I really hope that you've enjoyed reading and that you'll tune in for Part 2 of the series, coming soon! Don't forget to subscribe to the mailing list for all of the latest news on forthcoming concerts, releases and other announcements.
Michael, November 2016