Take Five with Phoenix van der Weyden

Photo by Marcelo Vieira

As seen in Guitar Girl Magazine Special Edition Summer 2021 – “I Belong: Highlighting Women and Non-Binary Rockstars of Color”

Read the entire issue HERE.

Born in Brazil, raised in Rio de Janeiro, Phoenix van der Weyden is a force to be reckoned with. Endorsing companies like Kramer Guitars, Biondo Guitars, Swiss Picks, Lizard Spit, Soundslice FX, and more, she uses her passion for guitar to connect with others around her. She began playing guitar at a young age and, 14 years later, continues to positively influence those watching her journey. 

Inspired by the oldies, van der Weyden shares how guitarists like Eddie Van Halen helped mold the guitarist she is today. 

Tell us a little about your musical background. How old were you when you started playing guitar, and what inspired your passion for music?

I started playing guitar when I was 12 years old. My parents loved all kinds of music, from ’80s metal to classical music, and it all influenced me to become a musician. My passion for the guitar came from watching Eddie Van Halen play. He was born to play and make people happy, and that inspires me every day. 

What inspires you to wake up every day and continue pursuing your dreams?

The desire to write new music, teaching people how to play, and the support I get from my followers, which I am very grateful to have.

Take us through your songwriting process. What types of environments do you feel you need in order to be your most creative? 

Sometimes an idea buzzes in my ear, and I’ll run to record it, but at other times, it comes from inspiration that I get from watching other guitar players that I love and admire. I also pull inspiration from listening to old songs and soundtracks from some of my favorite films. 

What guitars are you playing right now? Name your top two or three, if possible. 

Currently, I am playing on my Biondo Guitars “Phoenix” Signature Model guitar, which is a 1984 Holy Grail-style guitar based on the Kramer Baretta model played by Eddie Van Halen. It has a custom design of a Phoenix, a 1984 Floyd Rose Tremolo, and a single-coil humbucker, the “Sanctorum” by Planet Tone. 

One of my other favorites to play is my Kramer 84 Reissue. It has a maple body and neck with the Duncan JB pickups installed on the bridge. It also has its original Floyd Rose, which I love.

Last but not least is my “Art Deco” semi-hollow by Biondo Guitars, which is a 335 style model based on imagery of the 1920s and 1930s. It has a mahogany body and neck and has a set of my signature pickups by Planet Tone. 

Finish this sentence: I believe music…

Transcends any earthly thing. It’s the closest thing we have from spirituality, a true gift.

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Gabriella “Guitar Gabby” Logan is an Atlanta Native and proud graduate of Spelman College and Vermont Law School. Her background in environmental and music law fueled her desire to start and manage the international all-women touring collective, TxLips Band, LLC. Logan believes it is important for artists to be well rounded and versed in many areas of the music business, thus inspiring women worldwide to be an unstoppable force. She is the Diversity Editor for Guitar Girl Magazine and the Board Chair for Girls Rock Asheville. http://www.txlips.com