Can you believe it’s been a year since this Guitar Girl’d column was born? To celebrate, I thought it only fitting to resurrect my favorite column of the last 52 weeks: my list of the top 10 hot male guitar players. Yep, last year when I broke this concept, I admit I was a bit perturbed by all those lists of hot female guitarists … with the word “hot” not defining their scathing performance skills. Oh no!
At an unassuming 5-foot-2, Lauren Larson likes to startle. So don’t let her diminutive size fool you. Larson’s ferociously energetic guitar onslaught renders her a gargantuan guitar force. She’s just chock full of hair-flailing, guitar-wailing goodness. Larson fronts Austin-based Ume (pronounced ooo-may), a power trio whose other two members are Larson’s husband, Eric, on bass and Rachel Furhrer on drums.
Hailing from Australia, Laura Wilde already has a well-shaped leg up with great looks and a fabulous accent. But it’s her rip-your-head-off, full-fledged guitar assault that’ll really get your attention. No gimmicks. No backing down. Just gonna have-a-good-time raunch rock with fierce guitar riffs, searingly unapologetic lyrics and a driving back line. Oh yeah. Remember when rock was rockin’? Now you know what I’m talking about.
Some of you may know I am co-producing a groundbreaking event at the end of the summer from August 27 to 31, 2012: The Women’s Music Summit. What?! Women need their own summit? I know some of you are thinking that, and as you may guess my answer is YES. And here’s why.
I did it. I played electric guitar live with the band for the first time. And by golly, it wasn’t as terrifying as I thought it would be. In fact, it was really fun! Honestly, even though I’ve played acoustic guitar for many years, most of the time when I perform live, my duties consist of singing only. No playing. Why? I dunno.
Born and raised in Denmark, pedal steel guitarist Maggie Björklund wasn’t content to settle in with just ANY instrument. Now appearing live with Jack White, Björklund is thrilled to bring the pedal steel guitar to stages and TV studios worldwide! Early in her career, Björklund was best known in Europe as a guitarist for the all-girl country band, The Darleens, and experimental pop group, Miss B Haven.
I got a taste of what playing through a really amazing tube amp felt like when I visited my friend Rich and plugged into his vintage Fender Super Reverb. Wowza! My eyes and ears just popped open. Now that’s what rock and roll feels like! So here’s the thing. If I was gonna jam on electric guitar with the band, I needed a killer, ballsy tube amp.
While it seems we’ve taken it for granted that our favorite rockers are gonna keep on wailing into their geriatric years, what about the rest of us? Rock keeps you young, right? But even grandmas need pick up an axe once in a while. My new goal? I want to annoy the hell out of my future grandchildren with screaming leads from songs they think are “old” and “boring.” YES!
Lydia Loveless was born into country music. But she wasn’t content to just join the family business; she had to put her own personal stamp on it. Or, more likely, she had to stomp all over it! Loveless grew up with a dad who owned a country music bar, and she often woke up in a house full of musicians. When she got older, she blazed her own path and immersed herself in punk, soaking up the musical influences.
From sweet to rippin’, these ladies know how to make a song their own. Here are 15 takes on Beatles classics, plus a laughable hall of shame mention thrown in for good measure. From rockin’ to sublime, The Beatles are universally appealing, and these covers prove it. Got a favorite I missed? Lemme know!