This is the music I grew up on. My first guitar was a Gretsch 6120, and I just loved listening to artists like Elvis, Chuck Berry and Stray Cats. But when I wanted to go make records, it was hard. I couldn't really be on the show [Drake & Josh] and then go in and do a three-piece rockabilly-type record of Fifties music.
I was a little kid, like six or seven years old, when the Beatles came out. I remember hearing their music and I couldn’t imagine where that sound was coming from. Then I saw a picture of the Beatles, and George [Harrison] had an electric guitar, and I was like “That’s it!” It was that sound—the sound of George’s guitar—that first captured me when I was really young. It all goes back to that sound.
Ah, how young and innocent we all were when Fender introduced its first signature model — the Eric Clapton Stratocaster — in 1988. Of course, Chet Atkins' signature appeared on several Gretsch models (the Tennessean, for example) long before then, and let's not forget that Les Paul -- the name that appears on millions of headstocks — was actually a person.
Eagle Rock Entertainment will release a new Stray Cats DVD, Live At Montreux 1981 on November 6. The concert, which has been restored with DTS Surround Sound, Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital Stereo, features 15 songs, almost equally divided between original compositions and vintage rockabilly classics from 1956 to '61.
In 1991, I was invited by my girlfriend to see a band she thought I would enjoy. I was very into 1950s rock 'n' roll. I wore blue jeans and rolled-up white T-shirts and I had just bought myself a 1956 Buick Special, red with a white top, four doors, a little rusty but the original tube radio still worked…I was sold.