There's something special about your first riff. In this edition of Gear Factor, powered by Sweetwater, Good Charlotte's Billy Martin takes us through some of his favorite riffs, both from his own band and other acts, while revisiting the music that started it all for him.

“The first band that really tripped me out and made me want to play music was Silverchair because they were young. They were like 15 or 16 when their record came out and that was only a year or two older than me. It made me think, ‘Oh, I don’t have to wait until I grow up to be in a band. I want to get a guitar now and start doing this,’” said Martin. “The first riffs off Frogstomp, the first record, were some of the first riffs I learned to play. It was really special to me for that reason.”

The guitarist then plays a bit of Silverchair's "Pure Massacre," still able to recall it all these years later despite not having played it since his youth.

Martin also says Silverchair played a role in the first guitar he got. “Daniel Johns in Silverchair played PRS and that’s the reason I wanted to play one, too. I grew up in Maryland where the PRS Factory is and this is like the Maryland guitar. All the good guitar players in all the local bands, they wanted to play PRS, and that’s also kind of a cool home connection for me.”

In addition to the Aussie outfit, Martin praises Korn and Deftones as early influences, paying homage to Deftones' "My Own Summer." "Soon as I heard that riff for the first time, it was the song of the summer for me, and I definitely had to learn how to play it,” says Martin.

As for his own band, Martin says he's partial to Good Charlotte's "Girls and Boys." “Benji [Madden] wrote this one, but ‘Girls and Boys,’ I think the main guitar riff for that song, the way it starts out and the bass comes in with a very '80s sound, as soon as that came together real quick, I think we knew it was a special song,” said the guitarist, before performing a bit of the fan favorite.

Watch the full chat with Good Charlotte's Billy Martin below and if you want to pick up a guitar and start playing just like Billy, head over to for all your gear needs.

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