Photo Gallery: Guitar World Magazine Covers Through the Years — 1992
Typically, presidential election years are remembered for hot-button political controversies, heated ideological debates and general public discontent ("These are the two guys I gotta choose from?"). But in 1992 the music world was holding its own partisan race.
The old guard had dominated the last 10 years from its stronghold in Los Angeles with unwavering popularity. There was, however, an underground uprising from the Pacific-Northwest, armed with disenchantment and vigor, ready to usurp L.A.'s grasp over the American airwaves.
The race was on.
Guns N' Roses displayed an impressive feat with "November Rain," the longest song ever to break the Billboard Hot 100 top 10 -- and one of the most expensive music videos ever made. Yet while the Use Your Illusion albums showed a masterful rock band at their creative peak, there was no denying the new kid in town.
Nirvana's Nevermind reached No. 1 on Billboard early in the year, officially ushering in the era of grunge.
And what was Guitar World up to? Check out the covers below to find out.
Van Halen struck gold again with the previous year's Grammy-winning album, For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. In this interview the entire band talks with Brad Tolinski about the rigors of playing live -- something the band has historically done quite well.
Slash had good reason to be conflicted in 1992. Guns N' Roses' Use Your Illusion albums were chart-busting successes, but they cost the lead guitarist his six-string partner in crime, Izzy Stradlin. Said Slash, "I mean, the guy didn't want to tour or do videos; he hardly wanted to record. I just never thought he was one of those guys that this would happen with."
Whether you were a fan of grunge or metal, 1992 was all about Tap! They were back with a new album, Break Like the Wind, and could be found rocking out Springfield Arena on The Simpsons and this cover of Guitar World, which featured an exclusive "ultimate" lesson with Nigel Tufnel.
After Randy Rhoads' death in 1982, the guitarist left behind a small cache of work, but a huge legacy of influence. Almost as good as a lost recording, GW unearthed a pre-Ozzy private lesson with Rhoads.
Guitar World was embracing the new era of rock music sweeping the country. June featured a roundtable discussion with members of Soundgarden, Pantera and Skid Row. Kim Thayil commented on the elusiveness of his evolution as a player. "It's hard to trace where my lead playing comes from. My playing just evolved from experimentation."
Satch was still doing the impossible in 1992, bringing instrumental guitar rock to the masses. He did it again, five years after Surfing With the Alien, with his most commercially successful album, The Extremist. The album got a bit help from "Summer Song," which featured prominently in a Sony add for the Discman. And we all remember the Discman.
Metal collides as two of the genre's most innovative songwriters meet for the first time. Black Sabbath's Tony Iommi and Metallica's James Hetfield got along well, as evident by Iommi's exhibition of the fingertips he lost in a factory accident decades prior, a display by Iommi that left a profound affect on Hetfield.
Jimi Hendrix's estate was on the eve of numerous long and bitter legal entanglements, but there was still plenty about the man himself to talk about. In this issue, Guitar World dishes the dirt on the recording of Axis: Bold as Love and Electric Ladyland.
For those frustrated guitar players who ever wondered "why did I pick this thing up in the first place," the October issue had your answer. Eric Clapton, Yngwie Malmsteen, Joe Satriani and a cast of other guitar greats revealed the reasons they picked up, and still play, the guitar.
In Slash's second appearance of the year, the GN'R guitar god gets over Izzy Stradlin's departure and talks with Guns' newest rhythm player, Gilby Clarke.
It ends as it begins, with Extreme's Nuno Bettencourt holding... well, court in the December issue as he had in the January issue. Extreme had released III Sides to Every Story in September, but were still riding high on the huge success of their previous album, Extreme II: Pornograffitti.
Extreme guitarist Nuno Bettencourt was named GW's Most Valuable Player. You'd think he'd be happy, but Nuno actually had some choice words for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who'd previously criticized Extreme's sound. "Oh yeah, those are the guys that had a hit with Stevie Wonder tune. I don't usually buy records by bands that aren't able to write their own material."