Johnny Hiland

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Johnny Hiland
Johnny Hiland.jpg
Background information
Born January 18, 1975
Genres Country, rock
Occupation(s) Musician, songwriter, session guitarist, clinician, guitar instructor
Instruments Guitar, vocals
Years active since 1996
Labels Favored Nations, Shrapnel Records, Independent
Associated acts Toby Keith, Hank Williams III, Albert Lee, Danny Gatton
Notable instruments
Fender Telecaster
Paul Reed Smith JH signature, Ernie Ball Music Man Axis Sport

Johnny Hiland is a legally blind American musician/guitar artist known for mixing chicken pickin' country guitar with rock, blues, and western swing!"

Early life[edit]

Hiland grew up in Woodland/Baileyville, Maine, with an eye disease called nystagmus. He started playing guitar at age 2, played his first talent show at age 5, performed on Dick Stacey's Jamboree on local TV at age 7, and won Talent America at age 10, with sister Jodi and brother Jerry, "The 3 J's," playing bluegrass country, joined the Downeast Country Music Association and won numerous awards performing all over New England and Canada opening for such stars as Boxcar Willie and Lynn Anderson.

The 3 J's broke up when Johnny turned 15, due to his voice changing. The fact that Johnny started playing electric guitar at age 12 didn't help either. Johnny left bluegrass, and started playing country, rock, and blues.


In 1996, Hiland moved to Nashville and worked as a session musician for country artists including Toby Keith, Ricky Skaggs, Janie Fricke, and Hank Williams III. Meanwhile, he played with the Don Kelley Band at Robert's Western World. Hiland signed with Steve Vai's Favored Nations label as a solo artist. The Johnny Hiland formed his band, and they started touring in 2006. Johnny has since released a few more albums, and he continues to keep chicken pickin' alive!! Now, in 2017, Johnny is releasing his 5th album, and his autobiography should follow thereafter.

Other activities[edit]

Hiland also works as a motivational speaker as well as a children's author. Hiland's first children's book. Tuff and Friends," which he wrote and illistrated himsslf. Johnny is also soon to release his autobiography. More information will be available on his website at

On a personal level, Johnny enjoys spending time with his sweet wife, Kimmie, playing with his 2 dogs, Buddy and Ella, and studying the Bible.


2002 "Lovesick, Broke and Driftin," Hank Williams III, Curb 2002 "Forgive," Jesus and Bartenders, Rebecca Lynn Howard MCA

2004 "The Bluegrass Sessions," Lynn Anderson,DM Nashville 2004 "The Bluegrass Sessions," Janie Fricke,DM Nashville 2004 "Passing Through," Angels, Randy Travis, Word Records 2005 "R.I.D.E.," Trick Pony, Curb 2005 "Honky Tonk University," She Left Me, Toby Keith, Dreamworks Records Nashville

2007 "Brand New Strings," Brand New Strings, Ricky Skaggs, Skaggs Family Records,Inc

  • 2007 Jennifer Brantley, Breakdown, Mountainside Productions
  • 2008 Damn Right, Rebel Proud, Hank Williams III, Curb
  • 2009 Loud And Proud (O.I.E. Records)

2010 "Rebel Within," Hank Williams III, Sidewalk Records Inc.

2013 "Brothers of the 4x4," Hank 3, Hank 3 Records

  • 2013 Higher To Go – A tribute To Forrest Lee, Sr., Out West Records

2015 "80 and Pickin' with my Friends," Nokie Edwards

2017 Gear List[edit]


Johnny Hiland proudly endorses Ernie Ball Music Man Guitars. He currently uses 2 Axis Sports from 1998. He also has a number of Silhouettes as well. All of Johnny's guitars are decked out with his signature pickups designed and built by Billy Megela of Electric City Pickups. Billy also builds Johnny's signature wiring harnesses as well. Johnny also uses a product called, "the Runbarr," on some electrics for sweep picking and speed picking.

Johnny proudly endorses Godin Guitars for acoustics. He currently has a Multiac Slim, an A6, and an Acousticaster.

Johnny has other guitars in his studio arsenal to include telecasters built by Charles Whitfill, Bluesman Vintage, Lloyd Prins, Forrest Lee Jr., and Roman Rist. He has a strat built by Will Kelly, and a beautiful jazz box built by Bill Comins. (Just to name a few!)

Johnny proudly endorses and/or uses....., Elixir Strings V-Picks - Johnny Hiland signature pick Lizard Spit Polish Gator Cases Analysis Plus Cables Longhollow Leather Straps Super Vee Tremolo Systems Shubb Capos Hercules Stands

Amps Johnny proudly works with Cliff Cultreri and Through Cliff, Johnny started playing Reeves Space Cowboy 100 watt heads. He uses 2 of those through his signature Johnny Hiland cabs built by Avatar! Johnny has those loaded with Celestion G12-K100's.

All of Johnny's amps run through the Brown Box by AmpRX to regulate proper voltage. Johnny proudly endorses and uses this product faithfully!!

Pedals and Pedalboards[edit]

Johnny proudly endorses and uses PedalTrain Pedalboards with Voodoo Lab Power Supplies. He uses a number of great pedals to include...,

Loopers-Carl Martin OctaSwitch MKII Loop Masters 10 Loop Switcher

Tuner - GoGo Horizon Tuner

Compressors - Origin Effects Cali76, TC Electronic Hyper Gravity, JHS Pulp n' Peel

OD/Distortions- Metal Pedals Signature Johnny Hiland JH-3 and Grumble Box, Carl Martin Plexitone Single Channel, TC Electronic Mojo-Mojo, Boss Fender 59' Bassman, Jetter Red Shift, Cast Engineering Texas Flood

Boost- KHDK #2, Xotic RC Booster

Buffer- TC Electronic Bonafide Buffer

Noise Reduction- ISP Decimator II, TC Electronic Sentry

Multifunction effects- Eventide Pitchfactor

Tremolo- JHS Honeycomb Deluxe, Hardwire Tremolo, DLS Tremolo, Cast Engineering Tremolo

Rotary- DLS RotoSim and RotoSpin

Chorus- DLS Chorus Waves, Xotic Arion Stereo Chorus

Delay- TC Electronic Flashback X4, Cast Engineering Casper Delay, Hardwire Delay/Looper

Reverb- TC Electronic Hall of Fame, Hardwire RV-7

Phaser- Big Joe Phaser

12 String Pedal- Digitech Mosaic


External links[edit]