Dayton blues musician has new business venture, album



After releasing the album, “My Head Broke Open,” in 2019, Max B. Greene found himself in a creative rut. An online discovery inspired the Dayton musician, sparking a new business venture and new album, “Boxes Full of Blues.”

Greene recently discussed the collection of original blues songs performed on handmade cigar box guitars (C.B.G.).

Inspiration strikes: “A video of someone playing a cigar box guitar ran across my YouTube feed and I became fascinated with this bizarre-looking instrument. I got a cheap one off of eBay, which turned out to be poorly constructed. However, it got me hooked. I looked at what this builder had done and figured ‘I can do that’ and so I did. I built one in the fall of 2020, then another, and just kept going. It’s very addicting. By the end of 2021, I’d built a couple dozen.”

Instrument building: “Bad Dragon Guitars is my instrument-making company. I have a workshop set up in my basement where I make cigar box guitars, shovel guitars, stomp boxes and other handmade instruments. I recently put together a steampunk-inspired guitar made out of copper pipes. It’s gotten me a huge response on Facebook and YouTube.”

Watch Dayton musician Max B. Greene perform “Dead Man’s Hand” from his new album, “Boxes Full of Blues”:

Album concept: “Three-string guitars are all I play anymore. I’d become rather discouraged with my guitar playing prior to picking up the C.B.G. In fact, I hadn’t picked up a guitar for about a year. C.B.G.s reignited the spark in me for playing music. It was both simpler and more complex at the same time. I jumped deep down the rabbit hole.”

The process: “In the spring of 2021, I moved in with my elderly father to take care of him. In the fall, I set up a recording studio in the back bedroom and recorded 30 or so songs on C.B.G.s. After he passed, I moved the studio into my house and, over the next year or so, I recorded and re-recorded more songs. Early this year, I wrote and recorded the final three songs for the CD and finished mixing and mastering it this past spring.”

Future plans: “I’ve been spending all my time playing and making three-string guitars. I had my CD release at the Yellow Cab Showcase and am scheduled to play there again on Nov. 9. Currently, I’m looking for gigs for my solo act (and) looking for a drummer and bass player to put together a three-piece band. In addition, I’ve been spending a lot of time setting up my workshop and the Bad Dragon Guitars business. I’m also building guitars to sell during the upcoming holiday season.”

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