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Three albums in, a packed touring schedule and a song gracing a big-budget mobile phone advert took Kill It Kid to the masses. But at the height of their success, singersongwriters Chris Turpin and Stephanie Jean dissolved the band and formed Ida Mae, a rootsy Americana duo. With no record deal to begin with, a collection of beautiful gear and a treasure trove of songs was all they had. And then, as Chris tells Sam Atkins, the real fun began…


Photography Joseph Branston

When acclaimed producer and multi-instrumentalist Ethan Johns contacted Ida Mae’s management team they may not have expected it, but they were ready for it.

“So we got this call and the message was, ‘Ethan wants to meet you at this time, on this day and at this address’. We ended up going to his house – in the wilds of Somerset, in a log cabin in the back of his garden – and talking about music all day,” Chris Turpin recalls. “Halfway through the day, the conversation changed and we thought, ‘Hold on, does he want to do our record?’ He ended up asking us to stay for dinner and then I just thought, ‘I’m going to call out the elephant in the room’ and I said, ‘We’d love for you to do our record’ and he said, ‘Fantastic, I’d love to record it’. We’re still not sure how it all happened!”

State Of Flux

The music industry is, and will always be, in a state of constant flux. What doesn’t change is the artist devoting all of their waking hours trying to make their music reach an audience. No longer can emerging bands, or even those who are more established, rely on album sales alone. Touring is the money maker but also a money pit. In the 21st century, having a song used in commercials can be the answer.

When advertising executives recognised the unique and raw sound of the hard-rocking British blues band Kill It Kid and used one of their songs on a Samsung TV advert, it propelled husband and wife, Chris Turpin and Stephanie Jean, into a world that didn’t seem natural to them.

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About Guitar Magazine

The June 2018 issue of The Guitar Magazine is on sale now! Inside we celebrate 135 years of Gretsch, check out a pair of the company’s sparkling new Anniversary models and trace the history of some of the most famous and affordable guitars ever to deliver ‘That Great Gretsch Tone’. We also find out how Jonathan Wilson became a go-to guitarist and producer for artists as diverse as Roger Waters and Father John Misty and get a close look at his killer live rig. Elsewhere, we get to grips with a breathtaking original Olympic White 1963 Stratocaster, rundown the world’s most popular fuzz pedals in our buyer’s guide and review a host of new gear from the likes of Universal Audio, Maybach, Eastman, Fender, Rift Amps, Way Huge and more. In this jam-packed special edition of the mag we also go behind the scenes with Crimson Guitars, interview the legendary Bill Wyman about the home-made bass that powered early Rolling Stones hits, give a mystery vintage Fender amp a makeover, go into the studio with up-and-coming UK roots duo Ida Mae, salute the genius of former Gibson president Ted McCarty… and give you the chance to win a road-ready Fender Hot Rod Deluxe IV combo worth £849. Phew! Get your copy of the June 2018 issue of The Guitar Magazine now.