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Jimmy Page Discusses His New Solo Album, 'Outrider,' and More in 1988 Guitar World Interview, Part 1

Jimmy Page Discusses His New Solo Album, 'Outrider,' and More in 1988 Guitar World Interview, Part 1

Page expressed his displeasure with questions he considered too obvious or just plain dumb by answering curtly, as if his patience were being stretched to the breaking point; but in the next exchange, he'd seem as ingenuous as TV's Mr. Rogers.

Engage, disengage -- that's the way it went throughout. But so what if he's less articulate than his guitar hero peers? As a guitarist, Page is as important as anyone who's ever plugged in, and, as he is wont to carp, "The music speaks for itself, doesn't it?"

The truth is, he has gone through with the myriad inconveniences of this solo gambit primarily in order to do what he enjoys more than anything else in life – play his music onstage.

When he tours North America in the fall, concertgoers will likely be seeing and hearing a revitalized Jimmy Page -- a guy who, for all his mystique, really just wants to play his guitar. If that weren't the foremost thing on his mind, I seriously doubt that he would have put up with the time and effort he put in to produce what follows.

-- Bud Scoppa

GUITAR WORLD: You're going back home today, so this is the last thing on your slate. I'll imagine you're feeling up about that.

Yeah, you can bet that. It's all right when you're playing and working, but this is the microscope week, where you go under the microscope.

What I hear on your solo album is a very familiar sound -- a sound that you've been making for some time now ...

For about twenty-five years.

Your approach and your equipment have undergone numerous changes over those twenty-five years, and you've used a variety of instruments and still do. And yet the sound remains the same, if you will -- it has a palpable consistency. What is it that you do that is so distinct that it supersedes the technology you employ?

Well, I'm not trying to be flippant here, but I just play the guitar, don't I? That is my characteristic and it's my identity as you hear it. I suppose as far as this album goes, in a way it's almost like a back-to-basics album. And with the guitar, as you've heard, I've limited the guitar effects as such, and in fact the "effects" are the layering -- the textures of the things. That was the basic idea of it.

That means, then, that you use a variety of guitars for their specific tonalities, as opposed to a variety of effects.

Guitars and amps as well.

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