|Pictured at the Gibson Guitar New York Showroom are Gibson Chairman and CEO Henry Juszkiewicz, Fellowship winner Brendan James and BMI's Phil Graham. photo by Robbin Ahrold|
This innovative program provides a much needed outlet for the creative community in New York City where rehearsal space and pianos come at a premium. The fellowship will give some of BMI's most promising artists the chance to write and practice freely with instruments made by Gibson Guitar and Baldwin Piano.
BMI songwriter/artist Brendan James is the Gibson/BMI Fellowship's first recipient, having already begun his three month stint at the Gibson Guitar New York Showroom. With a career that already includes joining Carly Simon on stage at last year's Nobel Peace Prize concert, being honored at a recent Songwriters Hall of Fame national showcase, and being invited on stage by Les Paul to perform an original song, Brendan is also a featured artist on BMI's new podcast series, "See It Hear First." Born and raised in New Hampshire, his small town sensibilities add an honesty and sincerity to his anthem-like pop songs. He currently calls New York his home and has just completed the first few songs for his upcoming debut release.
Gibson is known worldwide for producing classic models in every major style of fretted instrument, including acoustic and electric guitars, mandolins and banjos. Gibson's digital guitar, introduced in 2002, represents the biggest advance in electric guitar design in over 70 years. Founded in 1894 in Kalamazoo, MI, and headquartered in Nashville since 1984, Gibson Guitar Corp.'s family of brands now includes Epiphone, Dobro, Valley Arts, Kramer, Steinberger, Tobias, Slingerland, Maestro, Baldwin, Hamilton and Wurlitzer.