Guitarist Opens Up on What It’s Really Like to Be in Machine Gun Kelly’s Band, Says ’It’s Phenomenal and Inspiring’

Recently, guitarist Sophie Lloyd chatted with Ultimate Guitar about her solo material and her work with rapper-turned-pop-punker Machine Gun Kelly. Lloyd, who’s also known for her YouTube channel, joined the musician’s touring band in the spring of 2022. Asked about how that came to be, she replied:

“With him, it’s crazy. So, he randomly messaged me on Instagram one day and was just like, ‘Are you in L.A.? I’m looking for a guitarist for this tour,’ and I was like, ‘I can be…’ So, I managed to get a visa within three weeks, flew out there, and then we rehearsed for two weeks.

“It was all good, and we went out on tour, and honestly, for me, it was a whirlwind. It was also quick, like, I didn’t really audition or anything. I just sent some live videos, and he had me come out.

“So, again, it’s all the power of social media. But it was nice that they took that chance on me and were able to trust me, a bedroom YouTube guitarist, to actually go on tour. It was cool that they took that risk on me and believed in me. I think it paid off, at least; I hope it did [Laughs].”

Reflecting on the working relationship that she has with Machine Gun Kelly and other musicians in the touring band, she said:

“I love working with him. As time goes by, and the more I work with him, I just love working with him so much. He’s so great. Obviously, the media says a bunch of things, but he knows how to work the media. He’s an amazingly creative guy, and the whole band is some of the best musicians I’ve genuinely ever worked with.

“It’s phenomenal and inspiring to be around that level of creativity and knowledge of everything. The entire production is amazing, and he sees things in a unique way, which I think has been good for me to be around. I’ve learned a lot from him.”

Sophie Lloyd - Do Or Die (feat. Nathan James) Playthrough

When asked about whether he has any input on her playing in his band, Sophie replied:

“He’s definitely pretty open to me doing my own thing within his aesthetic. We’ll sit with our guitar tech, Eric Hillman, who’s an amazing guitarist and guitar tech, and we’ll design things ourselves based on what we want.

“Ultimately, he’s told me that he wants me to sound how I’m comfortable. Otherwise, I’m not really going to play at my best. But occasionally, if he wants, he might say to us, ‘Oh, can you add a bit more reverb to that? Can you change that? Can you change this?’

Sophie Lloyd - Delusions (Official Video)

“But he’s receptive to my ideas, and he trusts his band. He trusts everyone there. It works, and he seems happy with what I’m doing, so I’ll keep doing it.

Elsewhere in the interview, Sophie was also asked about being named the best rock guitarist of 2022 in Music Radar to which she replied:

“It’s incredible. Being among the names on that list of players that I admire so much means so much to me. Being names… in a way, it’s so weird, and it’s really crazy, but also extremely gratifying as well. With everything that happened last year with the new tour and stuff, I feel like that cemented the year for me. I’m very proud.”

As of this moment, Sophie is slowly preparing to release her debut solo album “Impostor Syndrome.” But although the record still doesn’t have its official release date, Sophie has its debut single out now, titled “Do or Die” and featuring vocalist Nathan James. Asked about this piece, she said:

“This is the first single of my upcoming album called ‘Impostor Syndrome.’ Basically, we’re doing something that’s inspired by Slash’s first solo record, where we’re having every single feature a different vocalist on it. And so, ‘Do or Die’ has Nathan on it, which is awesome as he’s from where I grew up. I’ve known him for a while, and he’s got such a powerhouse voice.”

Sophie Lloyd - Do Or Die (feat. Nathan James) Official Music Video

“He’s from my hometown. So, I’ve known him for a while. And he’s got such a powerhouse voice. He’s got this classic ’80s metal voice, and so collaborating with him led me to write this crazy powerful rock song.”

“He absolutely smashed it, which is crazy, considering we did the whole thing online during the pandemic. We essentially sent the files back and forth, and in the end, we had this track. I love it.”

Regarding her debut solo album that’s planned to come out sometime this year, Sophie said:

“It’s got loads of different artists on it. I can’t divulge too much about what artists are on it, but the next one was fun because it features Matt Heafy from Trivium, one of my favorite vocalists ever.

Avenged Sevenfold - Hail To The King (SHRED VERSION) || Sophie Lloyd

“There’s this picture of me when I was recording my ‘Delusions’ EP, and I’m wearing this homemade Trivium shirt that I ironed on myself [Laughs]. It was cool to go from that to actually working with Matt.

“But Matt was phenomenal as well. Working with him was cool as we recorded his track over Twitch, which made for something new and interesting. As for the rest of the album, there are a bunch of different styles, from metal to classic rock to pop punk.

“It’s a bunch of different stuff, but it has this running theme throughout it. So, I’m so excited. It’s been a long time in the making. I just want to get it out.

Fall Of Man (feat. Matthew K. Heafy)

Apart from the solo album, Sophie Lloyd has a newly released collaboration with Trivium’s Matt Heafy. The song is titled “Fall of Man” and is also another single from her upcoming solo record.

Photos:, Bennyasheldon (Machine Gun Kelly at a concert)

  • David Slavkovic

    David always planned for music to be nothing more than a hobby. However, after a short career as an agricultural engineer he ended up news editor at KillerGuitarRigs, senior editor at, as well as a freelance contributor to online magazines such as GuitaristNextdoor and brands like Sam Ash.