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.
You know him as Metallica’s lead guitarist. But to a select group of obsessive outsiders, Kirk Hammett is famous for a completely different reason: for years, the wizard of wah has been quietly amassing one of the world’s most extensive collections of classic horror memorabilia.
Metallica’s Kirk Hammett is a giant among men. There isn’t a guitar poll he hasn’t won, and his popularity runs high among fans and critics alike. Few would dispute the contention that he is, with the possible exception of Edward Van Halen, the most influential hard rock/metal lead guitarist alive today.
Kirk Hammett is wired and tired. It’s evening in Los Angeles, and in approximately one hour, Metallica will hit the stage of the Wiltern Theater to raise money for the Silverlake Conservatory of Music, a nonprofit music school for low-income students. While Hammett is psyched to be playing for this great cause, there is no denying that, at the moment, he’s draggin’ ass.
With his black work shirt, black jeans and big, black motorcycle boots, James Hetfield looks a little like a garage mechanic working the graveyard shift at a funeral home. His thoughts, like his outfit, are dark.
In the all-new December 2012 issue, Guitar World takes you through the making of The Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour. GW celebrates the 45th aniversary of the Fab Four's 1967 album and film with reminiscences from the group and engineer Ken Scott.