LIndsay Ell Happy to 'Lead the Charge' of Inspiring Female Guitar Players

Lindsay Ell is becoming a trailblazer for female artists, and not just because her current hit, "Criminal," marked the first time a female artist has topped the Canadian charts since 2008. The 29-year-old is also one of the few women in country music who also happens to be a KILLER guitar player."Yeah, it's crazy. There are not a lot of female lead guitar players, but there are a few coming up, and I'm really, really happy that I can sort of lead that charge," Ell tells PopCulture.com. "It's one of the coolest things that a fan can come up to tell me, especially when they're young, or when it's a little girl. When she says, 'Lindsay, you've inspired me to start playing the guitar,' it's one of the coolest things."

Ell has had a front-row seat to watching one of the greatest guitar players of this generation, while serving as the opening act on Brad Paisley's Weekend Warrior Tour.

"It's been amazing," Ell gushes. "Brad Paisley is so sweet and generous. His taking us into his road family all year; I can't believe we're almost at the end of the Weekend Warrior tour ... I just have so much thanks to give to Brad Paisley, and it's been so inspiring as a guitar player to watch him play every night. I'm gonna be really, really sad when the tour's over."

Paisley has been inviting Ell to join him on stage, usually to sing "Whiskey Lullaby," which she admits is a bit intimidating.

"He's the perfect guitar player," says Ell. "Sometimes it's frustrating to me to watch his show. And he's so perfect, he never makes a mistake. It encourages me to wanna go backstage and practice. If that's the bar of what I can shoot towards, that's a pretty good direction."

The Canadian will get to watch another master guitar player later this year, when she opens for Keith Urban on the Canadian leg of his Graffiti U Tour, where they will undoubtedly perform their collaboration, "Horses," from Urban's upcoming Graffiti U record.

Before Ell hits the road with Urban, she will first spend part of the summer on the road with Sugarland on their Still the Same Tour.

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A list of all of Ell's upcoming shows can be found on her website. "Criminal" is the second single from Ell's 2017 The Project album. Download the record on iTunes.

Photo Credit: Instagram/lindsayell