Features http://www.guitarworld.com/taxonomy/term/5/0 en Guest Starrs: The Top Five Guitar Solos on Ringo Starr Songs http://www.guitarworld.com/guest-starrs-top-5-guitar-solos-ringo-starr-songs <!--paging_filter--><p>Former Beatle Ringo Starr will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of fame this weekend.</p> <p>I figured I'd celebrate this most joyous of occasions by gathering up five songs that feature some of the best guitar work to be found on Ringo's solo albums.</p> <p>After all, from 1970's <em>Sentimental Journey</em> through 2015's <em>Postcards from Paradise</em>, Ringo's albums have featured guest appearances by several talented guitarists, including George Harrison, Eric Clapton, David Gilmour, Joe Walsh, Stephen Stills, John Lennon, Robert Randolph, Jeff Lynne, Paul McCartney, Peter Frampton and former GuitarWorld.com blogger <a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/outside-box-exploring-acoustic-guitar-lj-whats-score">Laurence Juber.</a></p> <p>So, as promised, here are five solo Ringo Starr songs with guitar work that really stands out. </p> <p>05. <strong>PRIVATE PROPERTY,</strong> from <em>Stop and Smell the Roses</em> (1981)<br /> <strong>Guitarist:</strong> Laurence Juber</p> <p>This tune, which was written by Paul McCartney, is one of three songs McCartney and his crew (including his wife Linda, Wings guitarist Laurence Juber and pedal steel guitarist Lloyd Green) contributed to Ringo's <em>Stop and Smell the Roses</em> sessions. </p> <p>Juber's brief but brilliant solo is near the end of the song. NOTE: The song itself doesn't start until 1:04 in the video below.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/kBdUWRrpokQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> 04. <strong>A DOSE OF ROCK 'N' ROLL,</strong> from <em>Ringo's Rotogravure</em> (1976)<br /> <strong>Guitarists:</strong> Peter Frampton, Jesse Ed Davis, Danny Kortchmar</p> <p>There's not much to say about the two-part guitar solo on this song (most likely played by Jesse Ed Davis and Peter Frampton), except that it's dang perfect, although a little too brief. Listen to how it starts off all friendly and happy and then heads off into a menacing place as it follows the solo's unique chord changes.</p> <p>I recently spoke to Frampton about this song, and here's how it went:</p> <p><strong>ME: You’re credited with playing guitar on a Ringo Starr single from 1976, “A Dose of Rock ’N’ Roll,” from <em>Ringo’s Rotogravure</em>. But is that you playing the actual guitar solo?</strong></p> <p><strong>PETER FRAMPTON</strong>: I can't remember [laughs]. It was the Seventies, and I know I was sober for the session, but I'm not sure about right after. I'd have to listen to it again and see. People keep coming up to me, saying, "Is this you on this?" And I have to go listen to it to find out. I did more sessions than I remember doing. There were a lot of things in the Seventies that I played on that people keep reminding me about.</p> <p>[I play the song to him.]</p> <p>Yeah, the first part is me. I forgot all about that! That's me. And then, I forget who it is that comes in there, but that sounds like I'm playing my Gibson and then a Telecaster or a Strat comes in.</p> <p><strong>ME: Well, Jesse Ed Davis is one of the other guitarists who plays on that track. [NOTE: Guitarist Danny Kortchmar also plays on the song.]</strong></p> <p>Oh, yeah, Jesse Ed Davis. That's probably who it is.</p> <p><em>To read the rest of my conversation with Frampton, <a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/interview-peter-frampton-talks-talk-boxes-and-recording-george-harrison-all-things-must-pass">head here.</a></em></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/V_oYIlTw3mo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> 03. <strong>NEVER WITHOUT YOU,</strong> from <em>Ringo Rama</em> (2003)<br /> <strong>Guitarist:</strong> Eric Clapton</p> <p>This song, a bright spot from Ringo's way-too-freaking-long Mark Hudson era (Hudson was Ringo's not-so-great producer), is Ringo's tribute to George Harrison, who had died of cancer only two years earlier. </p> <p>It features some great Eric Clapton riffs, from the solo through to the end of the song. That dude playing the Strat and miming the solo in the video is not Clapton, by the way. You might want to close your eyes during the solo to avoid distraction.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/9PjnOdHq-T8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> 02. <strong>$15 DRAW,</strong> from <em>Beaucoups of Blues</em> (1970)<br /> <strong>Guitarist:</strong> Jerry Reed</p> <p>This is one of the killer songs from Ringo's second solo album, 1970's <em>Beaucoups of Blues,</em> which he recorded in Nashville with some of the city's best studio musicians. Charlie Daniels is on this album, as are D.J. Fontana, Pete Drake and Sorrells Pickard, who wrote this song. </p> <p>Anyway, "$15 Draw" sums up Jerry Reed's playing style to a T. You can hear Reed explore this same sort of picking in his song "Guitar Man." He plays on his own version of the song and on Elvis Presley's version. </p> <p>I've always thought this song could be a hit for someone. It tells a great story, it takes you on an emotional roller coaster and it has a super-catchy guitar riff. It might be cool if a young female country artist were to record it. (Please credit me with the idea!) </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/2-RuDWaRhxM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> 01. <strong>BACK OFF BOOGALOO,</strong> A-side of a 1972 Apple Records single; available on <em>Photograph: The Very Best of Ringo Starr</em><br /> <strong>Guitarist:</strong> George Harrison</p> <p>George Harrison's slide guitar playing is all over this Richard Starkey (Ringo Starr) composition, the 1972 follow-up to Ringo's first hit single, "It Don't Come Easy," which also features a great solo by Harrison. </p> <p>The song also features some fine drumming by Ringo, bass playing by <a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/interview-klaus-voormann">Klaus Voormann</a> and piano tinkling by Gary Wright.</p> <p>Harrison played several great guitar solos on Ringo's records throughout the years, including "Early 1970," "Down and Out," "Wrack My Brain" and "King of Broken Hearts." </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/BXg1AxBXN5g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><em>Damian Fanelli is the online managing editor at </em>Guitar World<em>. He performs every year at Abbey Road on the River, he's played on sessions and soundtracks in New York and Los Angeles, and he's tired of eating apples.</em></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/beatles">The Beatles</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/george-harrison">George Harrison</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/eric-clapton">Eric Clapton</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/peter-frampton">Peter Frampton</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/guest-starrs-top-5-guitar-solos-ringo-starr-songs#comments Eric Clapton George Harrison Jerry Reed Laurence Juber Peter Frampton Ringo Starr The Beatles Blogs News Features Fri, 17 Apr 2015 19:13:02 +0000 Damian Fanelli http://www.guitarworld.com/article/11542 The Top 10 Heavy Metal Album Openers http://www.guitarworld.com/top-ten-heavy-metal-album-openers <!--paging_filter--><p>No one ever went to a Led Zeppelin concert expecting the band to open with “The Rain Song.” </p> <p>It's a fine tune, to be sure, but the electric charge of a crowd in waiting must be met in kind. </p> <p>The same applies to the album: Kiss didn’t open <em>Destroyer</em> with “Beth,” for example. And Metallica had the prudence to place “Fade to Black” a good four songs into <em>Ride the Lightning</em>. </p> <p>When you get down to it, just about any band from any genre wants to kick things off hard and fast, and none more so than axe-wielding heavy metal masters. </p> <p>With that, we present the 10 greatest starting guns from metal’s most iconic albums.</p> <p><strong>Metallica—“Enter Sandman”</strong><br /> <strong>The Black Album</strong></p> <p>How does the world’s greatest thrash band open its masterpiece album? Not with sledgehammer riffs or machine gun drum patterns, but rather a droning E-minor tritone pattern that ushers in bass, drums and a drudging minor-2nd power chord riff. </p> <p>The song’s signature E to F interval has become so synonymous with “Enter Sandman” that, in the Nineties, a rumor began that Metallica trademarked the progression and would sue any band that used it. This proved a hoax, but showed how indelible a mark the Black Album’s opener left on heavy metal.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/CD-E-LDc384" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Pantera—“Cowboys From Hell”</strong><br /> <strong><em>Cowboys From Hell</em></strong></p> <p>Abandoning their previous glam metal sound, <em>CFH</em> showcased Pantera’s new groove metal style, no better exemplified than in the title track. </p> <p>Dimebag begins by pedaling a flanger-soaked open E string, then subtly introduces his immortal riff before launching into full-on open-string chainsaw fury.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/_7EQlfprV9E" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Judas Priest—“Painkiller”</strong><br /> <strong><em>Painkiller</em></strong></p> <p>Priest drummer Scott Travis demonstrates that screaming guitars aren’t the only way to open an album with this explosive double-bass onslaught, which ushers in one of the veteran metal band’s most crushing tracks. </p> <p>Glenn Tipton and K.K. Downing lay down blazing riffs and solos, Ian Hill’s bass is rock steady with Travis, and Rob Halford’s ear-splitting vocals sound like his nuts are on the business end of a steel-toe boot; it’s a metal behemoth and a return to form after the more pop-oriented <em>Turbo</em> and <em>Ram It Down</em> albums.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/nM__lPTWThU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Slayer—“Angel of Death”</strong><br /> <strong><em>Reign in Blood</em></strong></p> <p>Any metal band can start an album with walls of guitar and rapid-fire drum blasts, but Slayer kicks off their seminal 1986 effort with one of the most controversial tracks in the genre’s history. </p> <p>Guitarist Jeff Hanneman wrote “Angel of Death” about infamous Nazi doctor Josef Mengele. Though Hanneman and the rest of the band insisted the song is a documentary, and in no way an endorsement of Nazism, Neo-Nazi labeling ensued upon the album’s release in 1986. </p> <p>Lyrical interpretation notwithstanding, the song is still considered a “classic” thrash metal track.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/K6_zsJ8KPP0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Black Sabbath—“Sabbath Bloody Sabbath”</strong><br /> <strong><em>Sabbath Bloody Sabbath</em></strong></p> <p>“The riff that saved Black Sabbath” may have never come to fruition had it not been for the supposedly haunted recording location at Clearwell Castle in England. </p> <p>In 1973, guitarist Tony Iommi was suffering writer’s block trying to come up with ideas following the success of <em>Volume 4.</em> With no luck in L.A., the band reconvened at Clearwell, writing and recording in the dungeons of the 18th-century castle. While the song rarely appears in the band’s live set, it launched one of Sabbath’s most critically lauded albums and has been covered by everyone from Anthrax to Amon Amarth to, um, the Cardigans.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/mDJ-UxHPWx4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Iron Maiden—“Aces High”</strong><br /> <strong><em>Powerslave</em></strong></p> <p>The 24-second eighth-note intro is the subtle pattern that lulls the listener into complacency; it’s just another somber churner, a la “Hallowed Be Thy Named.” </p> <p>Then the blazing 16th note harmonies drop and <em>Powerslave</em> takes off. “Aces High” is a heavy fan favorite among metal acts like Children of Bodom and Arch Enemy, both of whom have covered the song, and recalls a feisty Iron Maiden poised to take over the metal world.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/pEcpwSenouQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Children of Bodom—“Living Dead Beat”</strong><br /> <strong><em>Are You Dead Yet?</em></strong></p> <p>Keys are an unlikely way to open a metal album, but with melodic death metal quintet Children of Bodom, an ominous synth intro here or there is expected. </p> <p>“Living Dead Beat” opens with a John Carpenter-style synth lead, but is quickly appended with gattling gun guitars, a la Laiho and guitarist Roope Latvala. The guitars dominate the album, but throughout, the baleful melodies of Janne Wirman’s keyboards can be heard creeping in the mix.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/k9hmZVV7REg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Testament—“D.N.R. (Do Not Resuscitate)”</strong><br /> <strong><em>The Gathering</em></strong></p> <p>It would be nine years before Testament would release another studio album, but fans had much to be content with from 1999’s <em>The Gathering</em>. Loaded with some of Testament’s fastest, most aggressive material, the band itself is shy of a few classic lineup members, namely guitarist Alex Skolnick and drummer Louie Clemente. </p> <p>Former Death guitarist James Murphy and Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo filled in, their up-tempo playing styles appearing throughout the album. “D.N.R.,” at just over 3:30 minutes, is a blistering insight into the album’s pure ferocity.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/cfIUhR875as" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Megadeth—“Last Rites/Loved to Deth”</strong><br /> <em>Killing is My Business… and Business is Good</em></p> <p>Far from the polished and intricate sonic architecture that would become Megadeth’s trademark, the debut release from Mustaine and crew makes up for its minimalism with raw, unbridled energy. </p> <p>“Last Rites/Loved to Deth” begins with an excerpt from Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor before Mustaine and guitarist Chris Poland’s guitars take center stage. The dark, baroque intro may have aligned itself better with later, more sophisticated Megadeth work, but there’s no denying “Last Rites/Loved to Deth” ushered in new champions of thrash metal.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/7mWPJK1wJnM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Motörhead—“Ace of Spades”<br /> <strong><em>Ace of Spades</em></strong></strong></p> <p>Bridging the gap between punk and metal, Motörhead’s seminal 1980 release had a substantial impact on many up-and-coming thrash bands. </p> <p>The ferocious pick attack of guitarist “Fast” Eddie Clarke no doubt provoked many budding bands’ inclinations towards blazing tremolo riffs, not least of all metal kings Metallica, who released four Motörhead covers as b-sides with their single “Hero of the Day” in 1996.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/eBIa0o36pPo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/slayer">Slayer</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/megadeth">Megadeth</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/testament">Testament</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/black-sabbath">Black Sabbath</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/top-ten-heavy-metal-album-openers#comments Black Sabbath Megadeth Metallica Motorhead Slayer Guitar World Lists News Features Fri, 17 Apr 2015 18:25:18 +0000 Tony Grassi http://www.guitarworld.com/article/10796 Joan Jett Talks Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Lou Reed and "I Love Rock ’N’ Roll" http://www.guitarworld.com/joan-jett-talks-rock-and-roll-hall-fame-lou-reed-and-i-love-rock-n-roll <!--paging_filter--><p><strong><a href="http://guitarworld.myshopify.com/collections/guitar-world/products/guitar-world-may-15-joan-jett?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=article&amp;utm_campaign=JoanExcerpt">This is an excerpt from the all-new May 2015 issue of Guitar World. For the rest of the story—and all of the May 2015 issue—head here.</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Girl’s Got Rhythm: <em>Joan Jett has been banging out some of rock’s greatest power chords since the age of 15. With her induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, there’s only one thing you need to know—she still loves rock and roll.</em></strong></p> <p>Joan Jett looks perfect. In other words, she looks exactly the way you want Joan Jett to look. </p> <p>With her iconic black shag and eyeliner, she saunters into the <em>Guitar World</em> photo studio wearing a variation on a rock and roll uniform she had worn almost her entire life: a tight black sleeveless shirt, black jeans and black motorcycle boots, all of it topped with a kick-ass leather jacket. </p> <p>And if you have to ask about the color of her jacket, you clearly haven’t been paying much attention. </p> <p>The last few years have been pretty supersonic for Jett and her band the Blackhearts. Since releasing the critically acclaimed <em>Unvarnished</em> album in late 2013, which featured the hit “Any Weather,” co-written with Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl, she has been touring up a storm while snagging honors right and left, like the Revolver Golden God award and the Alternative Press Icon Award. </p> <p>To complete the trifecta, this month she is being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, long considered music’s ultimate validation. Not bad for a veteran celebrating her fourth decade in the biz. </p> <p>Truth is, Joan Jett’s entire career is nothing short of miraculous, especially when you consider just how difficult it was for her to simply get out of the starting gate. </p> <p> “My parents got me a guitar for Christmas when I was 13 and I went to take lessons,” Jett says in her distinctive sandpapery voice. “I told the teacher I wanted to learn how to play rock and roll, and because I was just a naïve kid, I thought he was going to be able to show me in one lesson! I didn’t know that you had to learn the ropes. If he would’ve explained that to me, it would’ve been fine, but instead he said something far worse. He told me, ‘Girls don’t play rock and roll,’ and then tried to teach me ‘On Top of Old Smokey.’ ”</p> <p> In response, Joan grabbed her guitar and stormed out never to return. A mere two years later, at the age of 15, Jett proved her teacher—and every other sexist naysayer—wrong when she formed the Runaways, a groundbreaking all-female rock band, best known for their 1976 hit “Cherry Bomb.” The band didn’t last very long, but their music and exploits became legendary to multiple generations, partly due to <em>The Runaways</em>, a successful movie biopic about the band released in 2010 starring Kristen Stewart as Jett. </p> <p>While the Runaways were crucial to Joan’s development, it was her solo career that made her a household name. A succession of Top 40 hits including “Bad Reputation,” “Crimson &amp; Clover,” “Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)” and the 1981 monster smash “I Love Rock ’N’ Roll” cemented her status as the quintessential queen of noise. And the accompanying MTV videos didn’t hurt either. </p> <p> If you had to design a woman rocker from the ground up, it would probably look a helluva lot like Joan in videos like 1988’s “I Hate Myself for Loving You.” With her white Gibson Melody Maker slung low, she was sleek, tough and sexy—the living embodiment of the ultimate badass girl with a guitar. </p> <p> Image aside, as a musician, she’s no slouch either. One former Blackheart bandmate recently commented, “You could build a fortress on the foundation of Joan’s rhythm hand.” True, that. Her power chords detonate with the shattering force and clarity of a nail bomb going off at Tiffany’s, and outside of AC/DC’s Malcolm Young or Keith Richards, it’s hard to think of anybody that can lay down a groove like Joan. What’s her secret? That’s partly what we’re here to find out. </p> <p>It’s interesting to note that Joan rarely uses the word “rock” to describe her favorite music. Instead, she almost always refers to it by its somewhat antiquated and more formal name, “rock and roll.” Maybe it’s just out of habit, but perhaps it’s out of respect. It’s clear from our conversation Joan has a deep reverence for rock and roll. One thing is very certain: she clearly loves it. </p> <p><strong>How do you feel about being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?</strong></p> <p>It’s awesome and an honor. The Hall has inducted so many people that I look up to, so it’s incredible to be counted among them. That said, it’s not something I ever aspired to. When I write songs or play music it’s not something I really think about. You just want to tour and get your songs out. I mean this in the best way, but the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is just an aside. </p> <p>The part that I think is really positive about the Hall of Fame is that rock isn’t being acknowledged at the Grammy’s and other music awards shows, so it’s cool that we have our own moment. And I really hope it stays focused on rock, because all other music already gets acknowledged on all the other shows. </p> <p><strong>You are being inducted with two other musicians that are cut from the same cloth. Both Lou Reed and Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day are great singer/rhythm guitarists. Did you ever hang with Lou and his legendarily decadent crew in the Seventies?</strong></p> <p>No, unfortunately. In the early days, I was based on the West Coast and he was in New York City. However, I remember buying Transformer with “Walk on the Wild Side” as a kid and I was really impressed with how it freaked people out! People would say he couldn’t carry a tune, but that wasn’t the point. He was a storyteller and singing about things nobody else was talking about at the time.</p> <p>I finally met Lou at a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony a few years ago. We were sitting at different tables near each other, and that particular year there were a few acts being inducted that weren’t really rock and roll. We just kept looking at each other, making faces. It was a special moment between the two of us, because no one else saw what we were doing. [laughs]</p> <p><strong>When you were in the Runaways, you actually covered Lou Reed’s song “Rock and Roll,” but you did it more in the style of Mitch Ryder’s great 1971 version of the song.</strong></p> <p>Yeah, the weird thing is, we weren’t even aware of Lou Reed’s version at that time. We had heard Mitch Ryder’s version and fell in love with the great guitar riff that kicks off the song so we focused on that. A couple years later I started listening to Lou’s original recording, and as a rhythm guitar player I started liking it more, because it had a weird rhythm to it. It has an extra bar tucked in, which is something I always find intriguing. </p> <p><strong>“I Love Rock ’N’ Roll,” your biggest hit, actually has that extra bar in it.</strong></p> <p>The two songs are connected in a funny way. I first heard “I Love Rock and Roll” in England while the Runaways were touring. It was the B-side of a single by a group called the Arrows and I immediately thought it sounded like a hit. I played it for the band, but they didn’t want to do it because we had just recorded “Rock ’N’ Roll” and they didn’t think it was a good idea to have two songs on the same album with the words “rock ’n’ roll” in the title, so we didn’t do it. I thought to myself, I’ll just stick it in my back pocket, and maybe we’ll revisit in another album or two. Anyway, the band broke up, I ended up recording it for my solo album and the rest is history.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/A4cFIzr85cU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><strong>You were only 15 when you formed the Runaways and had been playing guitar for just a couple of years, yet your rhythm playing was already rock-solid. Was that just something that came naturally?</strong></p> <p>After my first guitar teacher tried to discourage me from playing rock and roll, I went out and bought one of those teach yourself how to play guitar books and learned all the basic open chords and barre chords and started playing along with records. The first songs I was able to figure out were things like “Smoke on the Water” by Deep Purple, Black Sabbath songs like “Iron Man” and “Sweet Leaf” and “Bang A Gong” by T. Rex. </p> <p>I immediately gravitated to power chords because I found I could be more rhythmically accurate with them and they sounded closer to the music I was listening to. But to answer your question, I never really thought about whether I was any good or could keep a beat, I just played along to albums. My bigger problem was that I was alone—I couldn’t find other kids to rock out with. </p> <p>Eventually my family moved from Rockville, Maryland, to California, which was really great because I knew there had to be other girls in Los Angeles that could play music and maybe I could form a band. That idea really motivated me. Not long after, I met Sandy West, who would eventually be the drummer for the Runaways. She was a big, strong girl and her idol was Led Zeppelin’s John Bonham and she played like him. We set up in the rec room of her house and just started to jam, and the sound was so powerful we knew we were on to something. We said, “We gotta go find some other girls.” I knew pretty quickly that I was a rhythm guitar player and not a lead player—I just wasn’t interested in that. </p> <p><em><a href="http://guitarworld.myshopify.com/collections/guitar-world/products/guitar-world-may-15-joan-jett?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=article&amp;utm_campaign=JoanExcerpt">This is an excerpt from the all-new May 2015 issue of Guitar World. For the rest of the story, head here.</a></em></p> <p><em>Photo: Jimmy Hubbard</em></p> <p><img src="/files/imce-images/Screen%20Shot%202015-04-17%20at%2012.03.07%20PM.png" width="620" height="807" alt="Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 12.03.07 PM.png" /></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/joan-jett">Joan Jett</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/joan-jett-talks-rock-and-roll-hall-fame-lou-reed-and-i-love-rock-n-roll#comments Brad Tolinski Joan Jett May 2015 Interviews News Features Magazine Fri, 17 Apr 2015 16:11:31 +0000 Brad Tolinski http://www.guitarworld.com/article/23949 Stevie Ray Vaughan on 'Austin City Limits' — Three of SRV's 30 Greatest Recordings of All Time http://www.guitarworld.com/stevie-ray-vaughan-austin-city-limits-three-songs-srvs-30-greatest-recordings <!--paging_filter--><p>For someone who spent a mere seven and a half years as a heavy player on the world stage, Texas guitar-slinger Stevie Ray Vaughan left behind a wealth of recorded material—and one hell of a legacy.</p> <p>In that blink of an eye between his incongruous appearance on David Bowie’s <em>Let’s Dance</em> in 1983 and his death in a freak helicopter crash in 1990, Vaughan unleashed four indispensable studio albums that hijacked the trajectory of modern blues guitar. </p> <p>Without the aid of light shows, edgy haircuts and goofy rock-star posturing, he introduced the MTV generation to passion-fueled guitar music—not to mention the work and importance of Jimi Hendrix, Albert King, Buddy Guy and Howlin’ Wolf.</p> <p>He even had time to star in his own mini rock-star drama of drug and alcohol addiction, breakdown, recovery and triumphant return.</p> <p>In the October 2014 issue of <em>Guitar World</em>—in honor of what would have been Vaughan’s 60th birthday (It’s about as difficult to picture SRV at 60 as it is to picture Hendrix at 72)—we looked back at what we consider his 30 greatest guitar moments. Our list digs deep into his six-string artistry, while taking historical importance and other factors into account. </p> <p>In terms of material, we’ve considered everything, including his official studio work and numerous posthumous studio and live releases—basically everything that will be included on Legacy Recordings’ new 13-disc box set, <em>Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble: The Complete Epic Album Collection</em>, which was released in October, the anniversary of Vaughan’s birth. </p> <p>We also considered his DVDs and videos available on YouTube—pretty much everything and anything he recorded with a Fender Strat, a guitar that, as reported elsewhere in this issue, also happens to be celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. </p> <p>Today we focus on three performances from Vaughan's October 1989 performance on <em>Austin City Limits</em>. These recordings represent numbers 5, 11 and 12 on our Top 30 list. Enjoy!</p> <p><strong>05. “Leave My Girl Alone”</strong><br /> <strong>(<em>Austin City Limits</em>, 1989; released on <em>The Real Deal: Greatest Hits 2</em>, 1999)</strong></p> <p>One of the most frustrating things about Vaughan’s tragic death in August 1990 was the fact that, in the last two years of his life, his playing had somehow improved. Vaughan’s (and the rest of the band’s) coke-induced distractions were snuffed out, and his portal—that magical gateway that connected the guitarist to his unique source of inspiration, divine or otherwise—was wide open. </p> <p>A perfect example is this live 1989 version of Buddy Guy’s “Leave My Girl Alone,” recorded on the <em>Austin City Limits</em> TV show. </p> <p>Eric Clapton has mentioned how Jeff Beck “pulls” notes from his guitar; in this case, Vaughan is clearly “pushing” the notes out of his Strat, all in relentless, lightning-fast bursts that make you wonder what you’ve been doing with your life. </p> <p>His ominous groans between phrases underscore the passion and excitement he felt during every performance, especially when he was able to experience his surroundings as a clean and sober guitar god. — <strong><em>DF</em></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/lJXwZFwC3mw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>11. “Mary Had a Little Lamb”</strong><br /> <strong> (<em>Austin City Limits</em>, 1989)</strong></p> <p>“When I go out and play [“Mary Had a Little Lamb”], I can hear people say, ‘Oh, that's Stevie's number,’ ” Buddy Guy once said. “So I say, ‘Okay man, that's Stevie's number.’ But Stevie knows whose number it was.” </p> <p>“Mary,” the first Guy composition to be recorded by Vaughan, was the perfect canvas for Vaughan and keyboardist Reese Wynans to slather with their mad skills. </p> <p>Like the rest of this priceless 1989 <em>Austin City Limits</em> broadcast, Vaughan is simply on fire. </p> <p>Between the song’s funked-up sections, he delivers a series of stellar, note-perfect solos that careen and soar with the aid of some nifty whammy-bar action. — <strong><em>DF</em></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/4cGphy7XeZk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>12. Tightrope </strong><br /> <strong>(<em>Austin City Limits</em>, 1989)</strong></p> <p>When Stevie cut 1989’s <em>In Step</em>, his last studio effort with Double Trouble, he showcased more of an R&amp;B/soul approach than ever before, evidenced by the hit tracks “Crossfire” and “Tightrope.” “Tightrope” is a straightforward 4/4 groover with a James Brown–meets–Albert King type of feel. </p> <p>Shot on October 10, 1989, for <em>Austin City Limits</em>, Stevie’s performance is extraordinary, displaying a combination of raw power, deep emotion and technical brilliance in perfect measure. </p> <p>His Fuzz Face–drenched solo is crushing in its power while also beautifully melodic and precise. </p> <p>The intense multi-string bent vibratos at the start of his outro solo (3:42–3:46) are just the tip of the iceberg as he closes out this truly masterful performance. <strong>— <em>AA</em></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/GX5ioDq1m5I" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/stevie-ray-vaughan">Stevie Ray Vaughan</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/stevie-ray-vaughan-austin-city-limits-three-songs-srvs-30-greatest-recordings#comments Austin City Limits Damian Fanelli GWLinotte October 2014 Stevie Ray Vaughan Videos News Features Magazine Fri, 17 Apr 2015 15:58:22 +0000 Damian Fanelli, Andy Aledort http://www.guitarworld.com/article/22153 Guitar World DVD: Go 'In Deep' with Stevie Ray Vaughan http://www.guitarworld.com/guitar-world-dvd-go-deep-stevie-ray-vaughan <!--paging_filter--><p>One of the most important electric blues artists of the 20th century, Stevie Ray Vaughan revived blues rock and influenced guitarists across many genres with his fiery, soulful playing. </p> <p>A new instructional DVD from <em>Guitar World</em>, <em>In Deep with Stevie Ray Vaughan</em>, will teach you everything you need to master his techniques and unlock the secrets of his indelible style. </p> <p>You'll learn how to play in SRV's style using licks, patterns and tricks that will transform your blues playing overnight! <em>In Deep with Stevie Ray Vaughan</em> features more than 60 minutes of instruction! </p> <p><strong>Highlights include:</strong></p> <p> • Essential Licks &amp; Phrases<br /> • Uptempo &amp; Slow Blues<br /> • Mastering the "Stevie Shuffle"<br /> • Great SRV Turnarounds<br /> • Phrasing, Bending &amp; Chords</p> <p>Your instructor is Andy Aledort, a longtime contributor to <em>Guitar World</em> magazine and the author and producer of literally hundreds of artist transcriptions, books and instructional DVDs, Andy has influenced and inspired guitarists around the world for decades. </p> <p><strong>Note: This product includes a PDF booklet on the DVD and can be retrieved by opening the DVD on your computer.</strong></p> <p><strong><a href="http://store.guitarworld.com/products/in-deep-with-stevie-ray-vaughan/?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=daily_scroller&amp;utm_campaign=InDeepSRV">This DVD is available now at the Guitar World Online Store for $14.99.</a></strong></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/stevie-ray-vaughan">Stevie Ray Vaughan</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/guitar-world-dvd-go-deep-stevie-ray-vaughan#comments Stevie Ray Vaughan In Deep with Andy Aledort News Features Fri, 17 Apr 2015 15:39:43 +0000 Guitar World Staff http://www.guitarworld.com/article/20222 Kirk Hammett Discusses Metallica's 'No Life 'til Leather' Cassette Reissue http://www.guitarworld.com/kirk-hammett-talks-metallicas-no-life-til-leather-cassette-reissue <!--paging_filter--><p>Last month, Metallica announced they'd be offering a unique, limited-edition reissue for Record Store Day on April 18: a remastered cassette version of their 1982 demo, <em>No Life ‘til Leather</em>. </p> <p>That seven-song demo, which was recorded July 6 of that year, and which spread like wildfire through the thriving underground tape-trading scene, featured the original Metallica lineup of James Hetfield (vocals/guitar), Lars Ulrich (drums), Dave Mustaine (lead guitar) and Ron McGovney (bass).</p> <p>It contains many of the band’s now-classic songs, including “Hit the Lights,” “Motorbreath,” “Seek &amp; Destroy” and “Jump in the Fire,” all of which eventually found their way onto Metallica’s stunning 1983 debut, <em>Kill ‘Em All</em>.</p> <p>Although Hammett didn’t play on the demo (he left Exodus to replace Mustaine in early 1983 prior to the recording of <em>Kill ‘Em All</em>), we recently caught up with him to discuss his unique relationship with <em>No Life ‘til Leather</em>, as well as Metallica’s plans to release deluxe reissues of their entire back catalog.</p> <p>“We’re gonna reissue everything,” Hammett says. “We’re in the process of finding artifacts. Me, I didn’t hardly save anything. [<em>laughs</em>] But Lars, on the other hand, is an archivist and [is] obsessive-compulsive about it. He has all that stuff. </p> <p>"When the idea was floated around about releasing the <em>No Life ‘til Leather</em> demo as a cassette, I thought they were joking. Then the next thing you know I’m holding a fucking cassette! [<em>laughs</em>] </p> <p>“Then I started to remember that even though I didn’t play on this cassette, it was so monumental to my connection to the band. It was the cassette Metallica’s sound guy, Mark Whitaker, who was also Exodus’ manager, sent me so I could learn the songs for my audition. </p> <p>"I still have my copy of <em>No Life ‘til Leather</em>. It came with a cassette slip case that said, ‘Metallica Is: James Hetfield, vocals/guitar, Lars Ulrich, drums, Ron McGovney, bass, Dave Mustaine, guitar.’ But [<em>on my copy</em>] someone scratched out Dave Mustaine’s name and put “Kirk Hammett”!</p> <p>"I thought it was a pretty funny joke back in the day in ’83. But when I look at it now there’s an irony and poignancy to it that kinda brings a tear to my eye. But I’m glad the <em>No Life 'til Leather</em> demo is out in its original cassette form.”</p> <p><em>Photo: Jimmy Hubbard</em></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/EBotKJTwMV4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/metallica">Metallica</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/kirk-hammett-talks-metallicas-no-life-til-leather-cassette-reissue#comments Dave Mustaine Kirk Hammett Metallica no life til leather Record Store Day Interviews News Features Thu, 16 Apr 2015 21:31:35 +0000 Brad Angle http://www.guitarworld.com/article/23939 The Top 30 12-String Guitar Songs of All Time http://www.guitarworld.com/top-30-12-string-guitar-songs-all-time <!--paging_filter--><p>When considering the choices for this list, we realized it wasn't as easy a task as we first thought. </p> <p>What makes for a great 12-string guitar song as opposed to a great song that just happens to have a 12-string somewhere on it? </p> <p>Let's face it, if "Stairway to Heaven" had a ukulele on it, it would immediately be in the running for Greatest Ukulele Song of All Time.</p> <p>That being said, we looked at not only the legacy of the song but how prevalent 12-string guitar is in the song and how influential the song would be in inspiring others to pick up their 12-strings. Without the movie <em>A Hard Day's Night</em>, the Byrds might not have existed as you now know them, and without "Stairway to Heaven," the doubleneck guitar might be sitting in a museum as a one-time oddity produced by Gibson.</p> <p>So what song will we crown as the Greatest 12-String Guitar Song of All Time? Read on ...</p> <p><strong>30. Pantera, "Suicide Note, Part 1" <em>The Great Southern Trendkill</em> (1996)</strong></p> <p>This song marked one of the most experimental moments in Pantera's catalog, with Dimebag Darrell's dark 12-string guitar part perfectly echoing the song's somber subject matter.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/_zzUE6jSfjo?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>29. John Butler Trio, "Ocean" <em>John Butler</em> (1998)</strong></p> <p>The newest song to make the cut, John Butler's instrumental masterpiece "Ocean" stands as a fine example of the timeless sound of the 12-string. Keep an ear out for Butler's use of two-hand tapping ala Satriani in "Midnight."</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/6VAkOhXIsI0?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>28. America, "A Horse With No Name" <em>America</em> (1971)</strong></p> <p>Although the 12-string acoustic guitar plays only a supporting role in this ubiquitous folk-rock tune about a nameless equine, it actually plays a major part in its overall sound. When "A Horse With No Name" was released, a lot of people thought it was a Neil Young song, which is ironic because it replaced Young's “Heart of Gold” at the No. 1 spot on the U.S. pop chart.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/zSAJ0l4OBHM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>27. Bob Dylan, "Hurricane" <em>Desire</em> (1976)</strong></p> <p>Most assume it was Dylan himself who played the 12-string here, but it was actually session guitarist Vinnie Bell manning the Danelectro Bellzouki 12-string guitar on this classic cut.</p> <p><strong>SORRY, THERE'S NO VIDEO FOR THIS ONE.</strong><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>26. Gordon Lightfoot, "Early Morning Rain," <em>Gord's Gold</em> (1975)</strong></p> <p>Gordon Lightfoot re-recorded this old Gordon Lightfoot tune for his 1975 compilation album, <em>Gord's Gold,</em> and it's this lush, radio-friendly version that became the hit. While 12-string electric guitars were all the rage in the Sixties, 12-string acoustics had taken their place in the Seventies; this song is a prime example of that shift. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/KP_MDIYhPH0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>25. Alice In Chains, "I Stay Away" <em>Jar of Flies</em> (1994)</strong></p> <p>If ever there was a rock band who had an equally strong handle on menacing drop-D riffs and menacing, introspective acoustic music, it was most certainly Alice In Chains. "I Stay Away" from <em>Jar of Flies</em> is not only the band's best 12-string moment, but it marks the first track Jerry Cantrell wrote with then-new Alice in Chains bassist Mike Inez.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ODTv9Lt5WYs?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>24. The Hollies, "Look Through Any Window" <em>Hollies</em> (1965)</strong></p> <p>As you'll see, 1965 was a huge year for the electric 12-string guitar. It was big like synthesizers and skinny black ties were big in 1982. You had your Byrds, of course, your Beatles—and your Hollies, who rode the 12-string bandwagon to great heights with this song written by Graham Gouldman and Charles Silverman. That's Tony Hicks on the 12-string, by the way.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/CQp1IDVZdCg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>23. Queen, "39," <em>A Night at the Opera</em> (1975)</strong></p> <p>Brian May's massive-sounding 12-string acoustic is an integral part of this sci-fi masterpiece, the B-side of "You're My Best Friend." It's about a group of astronauts who set out on what they think is a one-year journey, but when they get back, they realize they've been gone for 100 years. They simply don't write Einstein allusions like this anymore.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/BjuyXR5by2s" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>22. Mahavishnu Orchestra, "You Know You Know" <em>The Inner Mounting Flame</em> (1971)</strong></p> <p>It's undeniable that Mahavishnu Orchestra had many fine 12-string moments in their career, but "You Know You Know" off their first album, <em>The Inner Mounting Flame</em>, stands out as guitarist John McLaughlin's shining moment with the instrument. Fun fact: This song was later sampled by both Mos Def and Massive Attack.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ujcYw2QTPzM?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>21. Red Hot Chili Peppers, "Breaking the Girl" <em>Blood Sugar Sex Magik</em> (1991)</strong></p> <p>One of only two Chili Peppers songs in 3/4 time, John Frusciante's main 12-string riff in this song was inspired by none other than Jimmy Page.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/iyu04pqC8lE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/top-30-12-string-guitar-songs-all-time?page=0,1">CLICK HERE TO SEE SONGS 20 THROUGH 11.</a></strong><br /> <br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /></p> <hr /> <p><strong>20. Jimi Hendrix, "Hear My Train A-Comin'" <em>Blues</em> (1969)</strong></p> <p>Jimi Hendrix sitting alone playing blues on a 12-string acoustic guitar is a reminder that, despite all of his distortion and psychedelia, he always felt a strong connection to his roots, including Delta blues. Although he performed and recorded electric, full-band versions of this song (as heard on the <em>Valleys of Neptune</em> album), this version is more stark and disarming. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Q0bjU9i7774" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>19. Supertramp, "Give A Little Bit" <em>Even in the Quietest Moments....</em> (1977)</strong></p> <p>This international hit for Supertramp is a pop masterpiece in the key of D, which, as the Byrds proved a decade-plus earlier, is the 12-stringiest of all the keys. It was written by Roger Hodgson, and a solo Hodgson performance is featured in the video below.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/hWhqs-fvLpI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>18. David Bowie, "Space Oddity" <em>David Bowie/Space Oddity</em> (1969)</strong></p> <p>Long before working with the likes of Adrian Belew, Carlos Alomar, Robert Fripp and Stevie Ray Vaughan, Bowie himself manned the 12-string for his 1969 ballad of Major Tom. The song was so well-received, the album it appeared on, <em>David Bowie</em>, was renamed after the song before its 1972 reissue.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/8LVC9eW9Q4E?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>17. The Who, "Substitute" (1966)</strong></p> <p>When Pete Townshend wanted a riff to one-up the Rolling Stones' "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction," he reached for his 12-string. "Substitute" was a top 10 hit twice in the U.K., once in 1966 when it was originally released an again 10 years later when it was re-issued. The track found unlikely supporters in the punk rock movement, being covered by both the Sex Pistols and the Ramones. (Note: In the video below, just ignore the Tele, which is essentially just a poorly chosen prop for the video.) </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/eswQl-hcvU0?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>16. The Beatles, "A Hard Day's Night" <em>A Hard Day's Night</em> (1964)</strong></p> <p>Although the Byrds were the band that was most associated with the 12-string Rickenbacker in the '60s, their inspiration came from the Beatles. "We went as a group to see <em>A Hard Day’s Night</em> multiple times and were totally taken with the Beatles," said Roger (formerly Jim) McGuinn. </p> <p>"I liked George Harrison’s Rickenbacker 12, but I couldn’t find one that looked like his with the pointy cutaways, so I bought the blonde 360 model." For a clear, crisp example of the beauty of the guitar's sound, check out the 12-string riff as the song fades.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/NaAgWeeUWg0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>15. Rod Stewart, "Maggie May" <em>Every Picture Tells A Story"</em> (1971)</strong></p> <p>"Maggie May," Rod's Stewart's first hit as a solo performer, starred a striking combination of 12-string acoustic guitar and mandolin. In 2004, <em>Rolling Stone</em> ranked the song at No. 130 on its list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. We like it too.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/7T5hYlUsQ0s" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>14. Bon Jovi, "Wanted Dead or Alive" <em>Slippery When Wet</em> (1986)</strong></p> <p>Half-inspired by Old West Outlaws and half by Bob Seger's "Turn the Page," Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora managed to craft arguably the most recognizable acoustic guitar riff of a ballad-heavy era in rock music. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/SRvCvsRp5ho?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>13. The Rolling Stones, "As Tears Go By" <em>December's Children (And Everybody's)</em> (1965)</strong> </p> <p>This was one of the first Jagger/Richards compositions—although producer Andrew Loog Oldham is also credited as a writer. Legend has it that ol' Loog Locked Mick and Keith in a room and told them to come out with an original song, period. This is what they came up with, and they gave it to Marianne Faithfull in 1964 before taking a stab at it a year later.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/lQlmywY_qEM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>12. The Byrds, "Mr. Tambourine Man" <em>Mr. Tambourine Man</em> (1965)</strong></p> <p>Even though George Harrison had been recording with his 12-string Rickenbacker for a while, with this song, Jim (later Roger) McGuinn showed the world exactly how cool a 12-string guitar could be. Its jangly sound was the perfect partner to Bob Dylan's ethereal lyrics. The 12-string Rick would be an integral part of the Byrds' sound until they disbanded in 1973.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/06rGW0AQGiY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>11. Led Zeppelin, "Stairway to Heaven" <em>Led Zeppelin IV</em> (1971)</strong></p> <p>With this song, Jimmy Page did for the doubleneck guitar what Roger McGuinn of the Byrds did for the 12-string electric. Or perhaps more fitting, Page did for the doubleneck what Henry Ford did for the horseless carriage.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/BcL---4xQYA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/top-30-12-string-guitar-songs-all-time?page=0,2">See songs 10 through 1.</a><br /> <br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /></p> <hr /> <p><strong>10. Rush, "Closer to the Heart" <em>A Farewell to Kings</em> (1977)</strong></p> <p>Taken from Rush's 1977 album <em>A Farewell to Kings</em>, "Closer to the Heart" begins with a majestic-sounding arpeggio picking pattern played by guitarist Alex Lifeson on a 12-string guitar. This song was also Rush's first hit in the U.K. and has been a staple of their live show ever since.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/TSh2XeLY7YE?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>09. Ozzy Osbourne, "Mama I’m Coming Home" <em>No More Tears</em> (1991)</strong></p> <p>Zakk Wylde's obvious Southern-rock homage in the opening bar gives way to beautiful, descending riff, which anchored Ozzy Osbourne's only solo Top 40 hit. Rest assured there are plenty of Zakk's patented pinch harmonics to go around, but the sound of the 12-string intro is what makes this song instantly recognizable.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ZA_lWS5FL2A" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>08. Boston, "More Than a Feeling" <em>Boston</em> (1976)</strong></p> <p>A classic rock radio mainstay and one of the most recognizable 12-string guitar intros in all of rock, "More Than a Feeling" reportedly took Tom Sholz five years to write.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/SSR6ZzjDZ94" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>07. Tom Petty, "Free Falling" <em>Full Moon Fever</em> (1989)</strong></p> <p>Back when the Traveling Wilburys ruled the airwaves, Tom Petty, a Wilbury himself, adopted the band's thick, acoustic sound for <em>Full Moon Fever,</em> his first solo outing. He also took fellow Wilbury Jeff Lynne along for the ride as co-producer. This one features 12-string acoustic on the rhythm and a touch of 12-string Rickenbacker on the mini-solo. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1lWJXDG2i0A" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>06. The Byrds, "Turn! Turn! Turn!" <em>Turn! Turn! Turn!</em> (1965)</strong></p> <p>Yes, it's The Byrds again. This song is higher up on the list than "Mr. Tambourine Man" because of its beautiful 12-string Rickenbacker solo and the fact that the Byrds are actually playing on it (which is not entirely true for "Mr. Tambourine Man"). </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/V6jxxagVEO4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>05. The Beatles, "Ticket To Ride" <em>Help!</em> (1965)</strong></p> <p>Yet another one from '65. This tune, with its crisp 12-string Rickenbacker intro, is one of the many highlights from the Beatles' second feature film, <em>Help!</em> Just play an A on the G string, an open E string, a C sharp on the B string, that A again and then an open B string, and you're on your way. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/VMxyK9azXR4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>04. Stevie Ray Vaughan, "Rude Mood" <em>Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble (Box Set)</em> (1990)</strong></p> <p>It was a little surprising when SRV turned up on MTV's <em>Unplugged</em> in 1990 with a Guild 12-string, tearing through a slew of <em>Texas Flood</em> tunes, including "Pride and Joy," "Testify" and "Rude Mood." Then again, that's also the year he recorded "Life By the Drop" on a 12-string. Perhaps he'd stumbled upon something new that he could've put to greater use in the future. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/IYSoJmSMctU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>03. Pink Floyd, "Wish You Were Here" <em>Wish You Were Here</em> (1975)</strong></p> <p>Recorded to sound like it was being played through an old transistor radio, the 12-string intro of Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here" never fails to evoke a sense of nostalgia. When David Gilmour plays the overdubbed six-string solo, sounding like a lonely old man playing along with the radio, you get one of the most timeless songs in the back catalog of one of the most timeless bands of all time.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/UTeXkHfWYVo?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>02. Led Zeppelin, "Over the Hills and Far Away" <em>Houses of the Holy</em> (1973)</strong></p> <p>"Stairway" may be the most revered song on this list, but there's no denying "Over the Hills and Far Away" as the quintessential 12-string guitar song in Led Zeppelin's catalog.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/o-tT62bpYlU?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>01. The Eagles, "Hotel California" <em>Hotel California</em> (1976)</strong></p> <p>Yes, it's "Hotel California." What a nice surprise! Admit it: Don Felder's 12-string acoustic guitar intro (and every other note and chord he plays on this song) is, at this point, a part of our collective consciousness. This song, the ubiquitous soundtrack to 37 trillion barbecues, elevator rides and long trips through the desert at 3 a.m., has never gone away—and probably never will.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/2dyw6LZpSOA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/top-30-12-string-guitar-songs-all-time#comments Alice in Chains Beatles Bon Jovi Led Zeppelin Rolling Stones The Beatles The Byrds The Eagles The Who Tom Petty Guitar World Lists News Features Thu, 16 Apr 2015 17:17:41 +0000 Josh Hart, Damian Fanelli http://www.guitarworld.com/article/11735 The 30 Most Badass Guitarists of All Time http://www.guitarworld.com/30-most-badass-guitarists-all-time <!--paging_filter--><p>Guitar players are the coolest creatures on this planet. </p> <p>Don’t believe us? Consider Buddy Holly. Take away his guitar and he might as well be Melvin Poindexter, full-time accountant and part-time carnival geek. Give him a Stratocaster and suddenly he’s dumping Peggy Sue Gerron and shacking up with Maria Elena Santiago, <em>una caliente Latina</em>! </p> <p>In fact, guitarists are on a whole different planet when it comes to defining cool. When you play guitar, you can get away with all kinds of acts normal people could never attempt. Face it: An ordinary dude could not walk down the street wearing a leopard-skin jacket, high-heel cowboy boots, flowing silk scarves and dozens of silver bangles without getting beaten up within minutes. </p> <p>But put a guitar case in that dude’s hands and suddenly grown men want to buy him a drink, and ladies slip him their phone numbers. Or try doing Chuck Berry’s famous duck walk without a guitar; people will think you’re mental. But do it with a guitar and they’ll pelt you with a sea of money and panties. </p> <p>Since guitar players are automatically cool, that means cool guitar players are the coolest of the cool. In this issue, we exalt this elite class of cold — the players who even we would sell our wives and first born just to have some of their mojo rub off on us. Some of them are pioneers who paved a bold, daring path to define new styles of cool, while others are simply the kind of guitarists we want to be when we never grow up (which is part of being cool). </p> <p>These people are the real reason why the guitar remains the world’s most popular instrument, so let’s all raise our headstocks and give them a 21-power-chord salute. </p> <p><strong>JAMES HETFIELD</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> August 3, 1963<br /> <strong>Band</strong> Metallica<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> 1984 Gibson Explorer<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Leper Messiah” — <em>Master of Puppets</em> </p> <p>Most metal guitarists would kill to have half of the power and precision of James Hetfield’s right hand, not to mention his ability to write the most devastating riffs known to mankind, from “Seek and Destroy” and “Creeping Death” to “Enter Sandman.” Of course, most musicians with skills comparable to Hetfield’s have such big egos that they become the targets of our murderous intentions. That’s not the case with Hetfield. </p> <p>Years of hard-earned success and fame have not changed his down-to-earth attitude. Even though he has become one of the world’s richest rock stars, he hasn’t married a supermodel or become a pompous art collector. Instead, he’s remained true to his working-class roots, spending his spare time building incredibly cool kustom cars and cruising the streets with his car club buddies, the Beatniks of Koolsville. </p> <p>His kustom masterpieces like “Slow Burn” (a 1936 Auburn boat-tail speedster), “Skyscraper” (a 1953 Buick Skylark) and his daily driver known as “The Grinch” (a 1952 Oldsmobile) are drivable works of art that defy the bland Toyota Priuses, Lexuses and Land Rover SUVs of his Northern California environs like a stiff middle-finger salute wearing a skull ring.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/xZ1z-QPr6ZE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JOE STRUMMER</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> August 21, 1952 (died December 22, 2002)<br /> <strong>Band</strong> The Clash, Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> 1968 Fender Telecaster<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> "Train in Vain" — <em>London Calling</em> </p> <p>Joe Strummer was far from the most proficient rhythm guitarist in punk rock, and his tone was often downright wimpy. </p> <p>Yet you’d never find a punk rocker who didn’t want to be just like him. Whereas most punk guitarists found inspiration from the same hard rock and proto-metal players that they pretended to despise, Strummer was influenced by reggae, rockabilly, soul, ska and even early New York rap music when most of the world still hadn’t heard of the Sugarhill Gang. </p> <p>Those influences helped him develop a truly unique rhythm guitar style that no one has been able to duplicate since. Perhaps the coolest thing about Joe Strummer is no one could ever predict what he would do next. In 1981, the Clash played 17 consecutive nights at the 3,500-capacity Bond’s International Casino nightclub in Manhattan, but when they returned to New York the next year they played two sold-out shows at Shea Stadium as an opening act for the Who. </p> <p>Julien Temple’s documentary, <em>Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten</em>, reveals what many would perceive as Strummer’s flaws: from his hippie squatter roots to the way he dissed former bandmates during the Clash’s last gasps. But ultimately, Strummer was a man who simply did wanted he wanted to do without giving a shit what anybody else thought.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/eNot47WRBFk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>SLASH &amp; IZZY STRADLIN</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>July 23, 1965 (Slash); April 8, 1962 (Izzy)<br /> <strong>Band </strong>Guns N' Roses<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>1985 Gibson Les Paul Standard (Slash); Gibson ES-175 (Izzy)<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>"Welcome to the Jungle" — <em>Appetite for Destruction</em> </p> <p>Rock music has produced some memorable tandem guitar teams: Keef and Ronnie, Angus and Malcolm, Glenn Tipton and K.K. Downing to name a few. </p> <p>But Slash and Izzy Stradlin, with the original lineup of Guns N’ Roses, have to go down as one of the coolest duos ever. Gutter rats Slash and Izzy had just enough yin and yang going on to provide the color and contrast that made them more than the ordinary lead and rhythm guitar team. </p> <p>Both loved similar bands, like Aerosmith and Led Zeppelin, but Izzy’s tastes leaned more toward groove-oriented bands like the Rolling Stones and the Doors, with a healthy dose of punk rock thrown in, while Slash loved guitar heroes like Michael Schenker and Jeff Beck. </p> <p>The combination of Slash’s rough-edged pyrotechnic solos and Izzy’s raw power chords and off-kilter rhythms resulted in an unusual mish-mash with massive crossover appeal that metalheads, punks, glam poseurs, pop fans and classic rockers loved alike. Slash and Izzy also made vintage guitars cool again, strapping on Gibson Les Pauls, Telecasters and ES-175 hollowbodies when most guitarists were playing DayGlo superstrats, pointy metal weapons or minimalist headstock-less Stein-bortions. </p> <p>Balding guitar players also have Slash and Izzy to thank for making hats fashionable rocker attire during a time when big hair was all the rage.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/zBmFVlOqR4M" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JIMI HENDRIX</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>November 27, 1942 (died September 18, 1970)<br /> <strong>Band </strong>The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Band of Gypsys<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Fender Stratocaster<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>"Machine Gun" — <em>Band of Gypsys</em> </p> <p>Most guitarists view the guitar in terms of scales to master and tones to tame, but Jimi Hendrix viewed the instrument as an open canvas for his imagination, pulling sounds out of his Stratocaster and Marshall stacks that no one previously knew the guitar was capable of making. </p> <p>The first guitarist to chain effect pedals together, Hendrix combined their tones and textures with whammy bar squeals and growls and unorthodox playing techniques to make the guitar sound like a symphony, animals, armies or the far reaches of outer space. While most Sixties psychedelic music was banal bubblegum pop with fuzz-tone guitar hooks, Hendrix made music that actually sounded like a trip after ingesting a cocktail of LSD, mushrooms and THC. </p> <p>What makes Hendrix stand out is how he could play chilling, beautiful music without the sonic bombast as well. Naked, unadorned songs like “Little Wing” and “Red House” still burn with intensity even without sound effects and studio trickery, showing Jimi’s uncanny ability to speak through his instrument. </p> <p>His playing shocked, awed and frightened even Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck, who still view Hendrix as some sort of supernatural, mythical being. Of course, they may have also been scared of how Jimi could make even a puffy shirt and a marching band jacket look fashionable.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/xJ2Qya1KCoo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>EDDIE VAN HALEN</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>January 26, 1955<br /> <strong>Band </strong>Van Halen<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Homemade "Frankenstein" Strat<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>"Panama"—<em>1984</em> </p> <p>Eddie Van Halen forever changed the way that the guitar is made and played, but that’s not why he’s cool. Sure, he’s single-handedly responsible for the whole hot-rodded guitar and amp phenomenon that brought companies like Jackson and Charvel fortune, techs like Jose Arredondo and Lee Jackson fame and inventors like Floyd Rose immortality. </p> <p>Yes, he perfected the two-handed tapping technique that made the guitar sound like a fucking synthesizer. And, okay, he crafted a legendary sound that guitarists are still trying to duplicate today. But what makes Eddie cool is his attitude—especially how he makes work seem like it takes no effort at all. </p> <p>While he could put out an album of his farts or slap his name on any shitty guitar and still make millions, he is a painstaking perfectionist who spent years agonizing over every minute detail of his EVH Wolfgang guitar and EVH 5150 III amp before offering it to the public and who has refused to release a new Van Halen album until he feels it’s ready. </p> <p>Even after splitting with Valerie Bertinelli after 26 years of marriage, surviving battles with alcohol and cancer and enduring the presence of David Lee Roth and Sammy Hagar for most of the last 38 years, nothing has wiped the big, warm, friendly smile off of his face.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/w-NshzYK9y0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>LINK WRAY</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>May 2, 1929 (died November 5, 2005)<br /> <strong>Band </strong>Link Wray and the Ray Men, Robert Gordon<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Supro Dual Tone<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>"Run Chicken Run" — <em>Rumble: The Best of Link Wray</em> </p> <p>Back in 1958, most guitarists and guitar amp designers tried to avoid distortion. Not Link Wray. When he recorded his instrumental “Rumble,” Wray poked holes in the tweeters of his Premier Model 71 amp to make it sound even more nasty and distorted than it could on its own. </p> <p>A direct line can be drawn from “Rumble” to “My Generation,” “Anarchy in the U.K.” and “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” The song is often credited as the origin of the power chord, but it also heralded the transformation of rock from the music of youth to the soundtrack of juvenile delinquency. Several radio stations banned “Rumble” because they thought it was too sexy, raunchy and violent. Wray even dressed like a juvenile delinquent, embellishing his greasy black pompadour with a leather jacket, jeans and shades at a time when most white rock and rollers still took fashion cues from Perry Como and Bing Crosby. </p> <p>Wray kept the hits coming through the Sixties, issuing singles like “Jack the Ripper,” “Ace of Spades,” the manic “Run Chicken Run,” the appropriately titled “The Fuzz” and the coolest version of the <em>Batman</em> theme ever. Wray rocked hard until the end, playing his last gig only four months before he passed away at the age of 76.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ac9brCLmnRk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JOHNNY RAMONE</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>October 8, 1948 (died September 15, 2004)<br /> <strong>Band </strong>The Ramones<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Mosrite Ventures II<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>"Blitzkrieg Bop" — <em>Ramones</em> </p> <p>If ever there were a forensic investigation to identify the true biological father of punk rock guitar, all DNA evidence would point clearly to Johnny Ramone. The guitar style that people most associate with punk—briskly downpicked barre chords executed with blinding precision at breakneck tempos and marshaled in service of concise catchy song structures—is the invention, progeny and proud legacy of the man born John Cummings on Long Island, New York. </p> <p>Johnny was a strange case, a rock and roll outsider who was obsessed with uniformity. And that obsession helped forge the Ramones aesthetic: the identikit leather jackets and ripped jeans worn by each band member, the single surname shared by all four (in the absence of any actual familial kinship) and the terse pacing of the music itself, with not a single excessive note or lyrical utterance. </p> <p>It all added up to a cartoonish minimalism that struck a vital cultural nerve when the Ramones burst out of Manhattan’s Lower East Side CBGB scene in the mid Seventies. They were the perfect antidote to the bloated self-indulgence of Seventies arena rock and the tendency—a hangover from the hippie era—for rock and rock musicians to take themselves way too seriously. The Ramones were passionate about rock, without ever being pompous. </p> <p>Their songs cut right to the melodic and rhythmic core of great rock and roll. Johnny contributed song ideas and slashing guitar arrangements, but he also kept the whole thing on the rails. A straight guy in a world of addicts, perverts, weirdoes and psychos, Johnny’s politics were dubious. But, like Mussolini, he made the Ramones’ rock and roll train run on time for more than two decades. John Cummings passed from this life in 2004 after a five-year fight with prostate cancer. </p> <p>But in the clashing clangor of Green Day, Rancid, Blink-182 and the next bunch of punk rock misfits rehearsing in some basement or garage, Johnny Ramone lives on.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/BbDekaqw3lQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JAMES WILLIAMSON</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>October 29, 1949<br /> <strong>Band </strong>Iggy and the Stooges, Iggy Pop<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Gibson Les Paul Custom<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>"Search and Destroy"—<em>Raw Power</em> (Iggy and the Stooges) </p> <p>James Williamson was the man who facilitated Iggy Pop’s transition from self-lacerating Stooges frontman to solo artist, icon and all-around elder statesman of punk. In a way, Williamson was the only man for the job. He shared Iggy and the Stooges’ Detroit garage rock roots and was a friend of Stooges founding guitarist Ron Asheton during the mid Sixties. </p> <p>But he also had his act way more together than any of the Stooges during their cataclysmic heyday. By the early Seventies, the Stooges were two albums into their career and starting to come apart at the seams due to myriad drug problems and an overall lack of widespread commercial acceptance of their music. </p> <p>Williamson injected new life into the group, bringing an ideal balance of discipline and frenzy, best heard on the group’s 1973 disc <em>Raw Power</em>, the album that launched thousands of punk and post punk bands. “I’m his biggest fan,” the legendary Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr once said of Williamson. “He has the technical ability of Jimmy Page without being as studious and the swagger of Keith Richards without being sloppy. He’s both demonic and intellectual, almost how you would imagine Darth Vader to sound if he was in a band.” </p> <p>Williamson went on to produce and play on Iggy’s classic solo 1979 album <em>New Values</em>, which features gems like “I’m Bored” and “Five Foot One.” The guitarist also played a key role on the follow-up disc, <em>Soldier</em>, anchoring a punk rock all-star lineup that included ex-Pistol Glen Matlock, Ivan Kral from the Patti Smith Band and Barry Adamson from Magazine. Shortly after <em>Soldier</em>, Williamson took a hiatus from rock to study electronic engineering, becoming Vice President of Technology and Standards for Sony. </p> <p>When Ron Asheton died, Williamson took an early retirement from Sony and returned to his rightful place as the Stooges’ guitarist. Their new album, <em>Ready to Die</em>, came out this year.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/PMKFLHx2c-M" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>BUDDY GUY</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>July 30, 1936<br /> <strong>Band </strong>Solo, Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy &amp; Junior Wells<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>1957 sunburst Fender Stratocaster, polka-dot Buddy Guy signature Fender Strats<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> "The First Time I Met the Blues" — <em>Can't Quit the Blues</em> </p> <p>Buddy Guy is our greatest living link to blues tradition—a man who sat and played with immortals like Muddy Waters, Howlin Wolf, Willie Dixon and Otis Spann, and who still climbs up onstage at events like the Crossroads Festival to jam with greats such as Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Carlos Santana, not to mention newcomers like John Mayer. </p> <p>Clapton himself has repeatedly called Guy “the greatest living guitarist.” Hendrix literally knelt at Buddy’s feet in the late Sixties, the better to study his riffs. Guy’s secret? He combines an old-time blues feel with the technical facility of a modern guitar player. He was a youngster at the legendary Chess Records in early Sixties Chicago. Fresh up from Lettsworth, Louisiana, Guy was some 20 years junior to giants like Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf, yet old enough and gifted enough to share the studio with them. </p> <p>And when Cream, Hendrix and Led Zeppelin brought amped-up guitar hysteria to the fore, Buddy was still in his prime, ready, able and eager to join the fray. He’s still going strong today, an inspiration—and intimidation—to all who would strap on an electric guitar and dive deep into the mighty river that is the blues.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/m9v5Oevbyx8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JOHNNY THUNDERS</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>July 15, 1952 (died April 23, 1991)<br /> <strong>Band </strong>New York Dolls, the Heartbreakers, Gang War<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Gibson Les Paul Jr.<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>"Chinese Rocks" — <em>Blank Generation: The New York Scene (1975-78)</em> (The Heartbreakers) </p> <p>Johnny Thunders’ snot-nosed New York take on Keith Richards’ cool is one of the pillars on which punk rock was built. An Italian-American guy (birth name John Anthony Genzale Jr.) from Queens, he was born a little too late to be part of the Sixties rock explosion. But the bands of that era were his influences, and he put his own spin on them in the early Seventies as the New York Dolls came together with Thunders on lead guitar. </p> <p>Thunders had the riffs to match the glam-trash group’s mascara. He took rock guitar and cooked it down to its essence, playing open chords and switchblade riffs that laid bare the amphetamine urgency behind the Dolls’ concise, catchy tunes. The Dolls had split up by the time punk rock got underway in New York and London, but their influence was profoundly felt on both shores. </p> <p>Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols has repeatedly cited Thunders as a major influence, Dee Dee Ramone was a friend, colleague and drug brother, and Richard Hell played alongside&nbsp; him in the Heartbreakers. While Thunders shared Keith Richards’ appetite for excess, he sadly was not blessed with Keef’s monumental endurance. </p> <p>Thunders died in New Orleans in 1991 under mysterious, although most likely drug-related, circumstances.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/P-M9Ymvgd0A" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>KEITH RICHARDS</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>December 18, 1943<br /> <strong>Band </strong>The Rolling Stones, the X-Pensive Winos<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>1953 Fender Telecaster <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>“(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” — <em>Out of Our Heads</em> </p> <p>Keith Richards has made living on the edge his life’s mission. Grinning blissfully—and blatantly stoned—from mid-Sixties picture sleeves, lean and lanky, swathed in flowing scarves and stylish shades, he defined the look, the attitude and the swagger essential to the vocation of rock guitarist. </p> <p>From day one, his playing asserted the primacy of riffs and rhythm as the structural backbone of rock music. Following his lead, an entire generation discovered the ancient mysteries of the blues and learned to cultivate a little sympathy for the devil. Effortlessness is the key to Keef’s cool. </p> <p>He’s sauntered down through the decades unfazed by stints in jail and hospital, heroin addiction, assorted femmes fatales, copious boozing, rampaging Hells Angels and assaults from fellow icons like Chuck Berry and Peter Tosh. Unconstrained by the grinding gradations of clock, calendar, public morality or legal prohibition, he has defined life on his own terms. </p> <p>The same lawless sense of effortlessness defines his playing. Guitar slung low, cigarette dangling from his lip, he’s never hyper, never tries too hard and always swings free of such limited concepts as lead versus rhythm. This is what enables him to get down to the raw truth of the groove.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/qpGqwHdZJ4Y" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>ROY ORBISON</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>April 23, 1936 (died December 6, 1988)<br /> <strong>Band </strong>Solo, the Traveling Wilburys<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Gibson ES-335<br /> <strong>Classic Riff </strong>“Oh, Pretty Woman”—<em>The Essential Roy Orbison</em> </p> <p>Most people think of Roy Orbison as the super-smooth crooner who sang songs like “Crying,” “In Dreams” and “Only the Lonely.” But Orbison was also a wicked guitar player, who ripped out several impressive solos on early Sun Records singles like “Ooby Dooby.” In fact, Sun owner Sam Phillips was more impressed with Orbison’s guitar playing than his singing during the early days of the rocker’s career. </p> <p>Although Orbison’s good friend and Sun Records labelmate Johnny Cash may be known as “the Man in Black,” Orbison habitually dressed from head to toe in black in the early Sixties, a decade before Cash adopted his dark uniform. Even Orbison’s raven hair and impenetrable jet Ray-Bans were blacker than the cover to Spinal Tap’s <em>Smell the Glove</em>, adding to his alluring persona as a mysterious, brooding artiste. </p> <p>By 1964, most of Orbison’s early rock and roll contemporaries were either dead, strung-out on drugs, in jail or making crappy movies, but Orbison’s musical career still hadn’t reached its peak. In between the ballads, he recorded singles like “Mean Woman Blues” (check his wild guitar solo) and “Oh, Pretty Woman” that showed upstarts like the Beatles, the Animals and the Rolling Stones that Americans still could rock harder than any Brit.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/_PLq0_7k1jk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>MIKE NESS</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> April 3, 1962<br /> <strong>Bands </strong>Social Distortion, Easter, solo<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>1971 Gibson Les Paul gold top with Seymour Duncan P-90s<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>“Ball and Chain”—<em>Social Distortion </em> </p> <p>Bull necked and heavily tattooed, Mike Ness is not the kind of guy you’d want to mess with. The Southern California guitarist, singer and songwriter has known good times and bad, punching his way out of a serious drug addiction in the mid Eighties. He has funneled these experiences into some of the most hard-hitting, plain-dealing rock songs to come out of the SoCal punk milieu. Ness launched Social Distortion in 1978. </p> <p>Initially a hardcore act—in fact one of the most vital bands on the Orange County beach town/skater hardcore scene—Social Distortion morphed over the years into a vehicle for Ness’ ever-evolving narrative songwriting gift, dedicated to a few simple-but-slamming guitar chords and lyrics that recount life’s hard lessons. </p> <p>An avid skateboarder and hot-rod enthusiast, Ness epitomizes working-class Southern Californian culture. Springsteen comparisons are always dangerous, but the Boss did appear on Ness’ 1999 solo disc <em>Cheating at Solitaire</em>. Springsteen also named Social Distortion’s <em>Heaven and Hell</em> as his favorite record of 1992. Brian Setzer is another kindred spirit and musical collaborator. Ness is one skate punk kid who has stood the test of time.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/QVRpOXGcZ9Q" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JAMES HONEYMAN-SCOTT</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>November 4, 1956 (died June 16, 1982)<br /> <strong>Band</strong> The Pretenders<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> 1980 custom metal-front Zemaitis<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>“Tattooed Love Boys”—<em>The Pretenders </em></p> <p>James Honeyman-Scott’s moment in the spotlight was far too brief. He recorded only two albums with the Pretenders before he died of heart failure, but those tracks revealed incredible talent and versatility that quickly made him the most revered guitarist to emerge during the early days of post-punk new wave. </p> <p>Honeyman-Scott’s solos were concise and economical, getting the point across in only a few measures. His solo on “Kid” is a pop song unto itself that evokes the Beatles’ finest melodic moments, while his three- and four-second bursts on “Tattooed Love Boys” unleash more emotion, fire and style than most guitarists can convey in an extended 15-minute solo. </p> <p>Unlike most new wave guitarists at the dawn of the Eighties, Honeyman-Scott had impeccable fashion sense. He always maintained a timeless detached rocker look, and his aviator shades, medium-length shag haircut, suit jacket and jeans attire never really went out of style, unlike the geometric haircuts and DayGlo suits that many of his contemporaries wore. He always played the coolest guitars onstage as well, from classic Gibson Les Pauls and Firebirds to custom-made Hamers and Zemaitis metal-front guitars. </p> <p>He even married a model with coolest imaginable name for a guitarist’s girlfriend—Peggy Sue Fender.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/erW_1wA8smo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>BRIAN SETZER</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> April 10, 1959<br /> <strong>Bands </strong>Stray Cats, Brian Setzer Orchestra<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> 1959 Gretsch 6120<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Runaway Boys”—<em>Stray Cats </em> </p> <p>Most musicians who revive a musical style from the past are like classic-car restorers, refusing to modify it in any way and insisting on keeping it exactly as it was back in the day. Brian Setzer is more like a hot rodder, keeping certain essential elements as a foundation but updating them with a lot more power, speed and style. </p> <p>With the Stray Cats he made rockabilly sound as dangerous as punk, and his fleet-fingered solos impressed even the most technically minded metalheads. He pulled off a similar feat in the Nineties with the Brian Setzer Orchestra, making big-band jazz appealing to rockers. </p> <p>Although Gretsch went out of business and ceased making guitars about the same time that the Stray Cats emerged, Setzer helped bring the company back to life by showing players just how cool Gretsch guitars could sound. As a result, Setzer was the first artist since Chet Atkins to be honored with his own signature-model Gretsch guitar. </p> <p>For those of us who dread Christmas music, Setzer’s holiday collections with the Brian Setzer Orchestra provide relief, giving guitar fans plenty of shredding solos to enjoy in between schmaltzy verses about figgy pudding and some fat, creepy man in red velvet pajamas.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/YLwqaAJgFsI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>DJANGO REINHARDT</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> January 23, 1910 (died May 16, 1953)<br /> <strong>Band</strong> Quintette du Hot Club de France<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> Selmer Modèle Jazz<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Mystery Pacific”—<em>The Very Best of Django Reinhardt </em> </p> <p>Electric guitarists like Charlie Christian and T-Bone Walker rightfully get a lot of credit for introducing the concept of the single-string electric guitar solo, but many historians forget that Belgian Gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt was shredding the strings a few years before those gents—and he didn’t need electricity. </p> <p>The acoustic solos Reinhardt recorded with the Quintet of the Hot Club of France between 1936 and 1940 are simply astounding displays of virtuosity, melodic taste and speed that left indelible impressions on players throughout several generations, including Les Paul, Jimmy Page and Michael Angelo Batio. Django didn’t even need all four fretting fingers either, using only two left hand fingers to play complicated chords and hyperspeed solos (his third and fourth fingers were badly burned in a fire). </p> <p>Django’s “handicap” later inspired Tony Iommi and Jerry Garcia to keep playing guitar after they permanently injured their fretting hands. Django lived life as hard and fast as he played guitar. A notorious gambler, drinker, gourmand and womanizer, he died of a brain hemorrhage at the age of 43, but his solos continue to awe players today.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/wufCkIla_ic" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>T-BONE WALKER</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> May 28, 1910 (died March 16, 1975)<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> Solo, Sebastian’s Cotton Club Orchestra, Freddie Slack’s Orchestra<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> Gibson ES-250<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Strollin’ with Bone”—<em>The Complete Imperial Recordings, 1950–1954 </em> </p> <p>As the first blues guitarist to pick up an electric guitar and play single-string solos in the late Thirties, T-Bone Walker didn’t just lay down the foundation for electric blues and rock and roll—he also built the first three or four floors. John Lee Hooker credits T-Bone Walker with making the electric guitar popular, claiming that everybody tried to copy T-Bone’s sound. </p> <p>That’s not an overstatement, as traces of T-Bone’s influence can be heard in the early recordings of Albert, B.B. and Freddie King, Muddy Waters, and especially Chuck Berry, who adopted many of Walker’s signature licks as his own. A sharp-dressed, flamboyant performer who played the guitar behind his head and did the splits without missing a note, Walker helped reposition the guitar player from the sidelines to center stage, inspiring Buddy Guy, Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan to copy his impossible-to-ignore moves. </p> <p>Walker’s licks were so fresh and ahead of their time that his solos on the 1942 single “Mean Old World” and his 1947 breakthrough “Call It Stormy Monday” still inspire guitarists today.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/JxaTaDs_uC0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JIMMY PAGE</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> January 9, 1944<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> The Yardbirds, Led Zeppelin, the Firm, Coverdale/Page<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Black Dog”—<em>Led Zeppelin IV </em> </p> <p>Normal people define cool as laid-back, excellent or highly skilled, but most guitarists define cool as Jimmy Page circa 1975 in a black velvet bellbottom suit decorated with embroidered dragons, playing a Les Paul slung down to his knees. As the musical mastermind behind Led Zeppelin, one of the greatest rock bands of all time, Page elevated the guitar riff to an art form, crafting orchestrated overdubbed parts that bludgeoned listeners like the hammer of the gods. </p> <p>Page’s musical contributions with Led Zeppelin are well known to readers of this magazine, but here are some cool facts about him you may not know. As a session musician in the Sixties, Page played guitar on the singles “Gloria” by Them, “You Really Got Me” by the Kinks, “I Can’t Explain” by the Who and “It’s Not Unusual” by Tom Jones. </p> <p>He’s owned homes previously lived in by Richard Harris, Michael Caine and Aleister Crowley, and his guitar collection consists of more than 2,000 instruments. The devil sold his soul to Jimmy to learn how to play the blues. As for that guy in the Dos Equis ads, forget him—Jimmy Page has already won the title of Most Interesting Man in the World.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/6tlSx0jkuLM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>BILLY GIBBONS</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> December 16, 1949<br /> <strong>Band</strong> ZZ Top<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard, a.k.a. “Pearly Gates”<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Heard It on the X”—<em>Fandango! </em> </p> <p>Bumper-sticker philosophy says that he who dies with the most toys wins. If that’s true, Billy Gibbons would be the hands-down champion. </p> <p>The sharp-dressed ladies man known to his friends as “the Reverend Willie G” owns more hot rods, Harleys, vintage and custom guitars, amps, stomp boxes, museum-quality African art pieces, cowboy jackets, tortoise-shell combs and cheap sunglasses than two dozen sultans of Dubai could ever hope to acquire. </p> <p>Every ZZ Top tour is a treat for guitar geeks, as Gibbons uses the occasions to unveil a six-string surprise. (Last year it was an elusive Gibson Moderne.) But what really makes Gibbons cool is a certain undefinable quality called “vibe.” Anyone who has ever met Billy and gotten to know him—however briefly—has an outrageous story to tell about the encounter. </p> <p>Gibbons has also twisted more than a few towering tall tales in his time, but his life is so surreal that it’s hard to tell where the truth ends and the trip takes over. His colorful manner of speech, known as “Gibbonics,” has made him one of <em>Guitar World</em>’s favorite interview subjects, especially since his poetic ponderings are loaded with insight, wisdom and a unique sense of humor.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/CPAR2zSV84I" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>ZACKY VENGEANCE &amp; SYNYSTER GATES</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> December 11, 1981 (Vengeance); July 7, 1981 (Gates)<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> Avenged Sevenfold (both), Pinkly Smooth (Gates)<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitars</strong> Schecter Vengeance Custom (Vengeance); Schecter Synyster Custom (Gates)<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Unholy Confessions”—<em>Waking the Fallen </em> </p> <p>You’d be hard-pressed to find a more distinctive guitar tandem in modern metal than Zacky Vengeance (Zachary Baker) and Synyster Gates (Brian Haner, Jr.). From their sound, to their look, even to their names, the duo routinely go down guitar paths other metal axmen don’t dare travel, spicing up Avenged Sevenfold’s otherwise dark and aggressive attack with, among other things, hooky, major-key melodies, laid-back acoustic picking, buoyant, carnival-esque rhythms and a whole lot of style. </p> <p>They can also shred like nobody’s business: Though Vengeance largely fills the role of rhythm player while Gates handles the majority of the solos, almost every A7X song finds the two locking up for at least one or two rampaging runs of dual-guitar harmony leads. </p> <p>Vengeance and Gates’ ascent to the top of the metal guitar heap did not always seem inevitable. Avenged Sevenfold began life as a somewhat traditional Orange County–style metalcore act, as evidenced on their 2001 debut, <em>Sounding the Seventh Trumpet</em>, for which Vengeance served as the primary guitarist. But the band has been reinventing and refining its sound ever since. By A7X’s third effort, 2005’s <em>City of Evil</em>, they had morphed into a swaggering, thrashy unit with an adventurous edge that showed itself in everything from the grand, instrumentally dense songs to the band’s theatrical image. </p> <p>On 2007’s self-titled effort and the new <em>Nightmare</em>, Avenged Sevenfold have continued to expand their sonic template, leaving Vengeance and Gates plenty of space to explore a range of different styles. At the end of the day, however, metal is metal, and at its essence that means killer riffs and shredding solos, which the duo unleash in abundance. A7X staples like “Bat Country,” “Almost Easy” and the latest single, “Nightmare,” are chock full of blistering rhythms and finger-twisting, speed-of-light leads, while they tread that sweet spot between catchy melodicism and all-out aggression. </p> <p>As metal guitar continues to evolve in even faster and wilder ways, expect Vengeance and Gates to be two of the players leading the pack for a long time to come.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/vSaBveD7zvA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>MUDDY WATERS</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> April 4, 1915 (died April 30, 1983)<br /> <strong>Band</strong> Solo<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> 1958 Fender Telecaster<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Rollin’ and Tumblin’ ”—<em>The Real Folk Blues</em> </p> <p>The father of electric blues, McKinley Morganfield was born in rural Mississippi, where he absorbed the folk blues stylings of Son House, Big Bill Broonzy and Robert Johnson. But in the Forties, he made the pilgrimage to Chicago, picked up an electric guitar and forged a bold new style all his own. </p> <p>He assumed the stage name Muddy Waters and released a series of historic recordings on the legendary Chess Records label. These discs established the quintessential Muddy Waters persona—the jive-talkin’, sharp-dressed, tough-as-nails, mojo-workin’ Hoochie Coochie Man. Waters’ confident, cocky vocal delivery was augmented by the knife-edge drama of his bottleneck guitar leads. This steely, highly electrified sound galvanized a new rising generation of British rock musicians when Muddy first visited those shores in 1958. </p> <p>A group of blues-crazy Brits even took their name from one of his songs: the Rolling Stones. The blues in general, and the recordings of Muddy Waters in particular, became the “roots music” for the youth counterculture that sprang up in the Sixties. Countless bands, from the Stones on down, have assayed Waters classics like “Rollin’ and Tumblin’,” “Got My Mojo Workin’,” “You Shook Me,” “I Just Wanna Make Love to You” and “Mannish Boy.” </p> <p>Leading rock publications Rolling Stone and Mojo also paid proud titular homage to Muddy Waters, who passed away in 1983. It’s no overstatement to say that there would be no rock and roll had Muddy Waters not come along.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/x6Q2uTqB3lM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>BILLY ZOOM</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> February 20, 1948<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> X, Billy Zoom Band<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> Gretsch Silver Jet<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Johnny Hit and Run Pauline”—<em>Los Angeles </em>(X)</p> <p>As guitarist for the seminal punk band X, Billy Zoom played a key role in launching the L.A. punk scene in the late Seventies. His raw-nerved guitar work with X drew heavily on Fifties rockabilly, spelling out the connection between punk rock and the original rock and roll music. </p> <p>But Zoom also served as the perfect foil for X’s principal songwriters, singer Exene Cervenka and bassist John Doe, who were arty, bohemian denizens of hip L.A. environs like Silverlake and Venice. Zoom was a politically conservative Christian greaser from the notoriously uncool southern L.A. suburbs of Orange County. In the now-classic L.A. punk documentary <em>The Decline of Western Civilization</em>, he is famously shown refusing to get a tattoo. </p> <p>But opposites not only attract—sometimes they also make groundbreaking music together. This is certainly true of Zoom’s collaboration with Doe and Cervenka. Since that band broke up, Zoom has gone on to do session work with everyone from the late John Denver to the Raconteurs. He’s also become semi-legendary as a guitar amp hotrod guru, having tweaked circuitry for Jackson Browne, the Black Crowes, Los Lobos, L7 and Social Distortion, among many others.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/1Nt-vGexNDE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>WAYNE KRAMER &amp; FRED "SONIC" SMITH</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> April 14, 1948 (Kramer); September 13, 1949 (Smith; died November 4, 1994)<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> The MC5 (both), Gang War (Kramer), Sonic Rendezvous Band (Smith)<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitars </strong>Custom Strat with American Flag finish (Kramer); Mosrite Ventures (Smith)<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>“Ramblin’ Rose”—<em>Kick Out the Jams</em> (MC5)</p> <p> The MC5 were the nexus where radical politics and proto-punk belligerence first came together. This dangerous mixture touched off an explosion that’s still rocking the world today. The group burst out of Detroit in the cataclysmic year of 1969, with its roots firmly planted in mid-Sixties garage rock, and mutated by injections of inner-city R&amp;B and free-jazz mayhem. </p> <p>The MC5 was founded by guitarists Wayne Kramer and Fred “Sonic” Smith, friends since their teen years and veterans of the Detroit garage rock scene. They honed a two-guitar attack that owed much to the heavy rock sounds being popularized at the time by acts like Cream, the Jimi Hendrix Experience and Led Zeppelin. But Kramer and Smith laid down their riffs with more reckless abandon and a greater sense of desperate urgency than any of those groups. </p> <p>Many Sixties rock acts made political statements, but the MC5 were among the first rockers to make a serious commitment to revolution, aligning themselves closely with the White Panther Party (a Black Panther offshoot organization) and effectively serving as the White Panthers’ agitprop machine. Their blue-collar Detroit roots lent a certain gritty gravitas to their stance. These weren’t effete rock stars dabbling in left wing chic but working-class guerrillas with ammo belts strapped across their bare chests and guitars brandished as rifles. </p> <p>Kramer served a prison sentence on drug-related charges after the MC5 split up. When he got out, he teamed up with Johnny Thunders to form Gang War and later re-emerged as a solo artist on L.A. punk label Epitaph. Smith went on to lead the punishingly loud Sonic Rendezvous Band and married New York punk rock poet, artist, singer and originator Patti Smith. He passed away in 1994. But from the Clash to Fugazi, Crass and Green Day, the politicized wing of punk rock continues to fly the banner first raised by the Motor City 5.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/8XhQRFO4M7A" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>CHUCK BERRY</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> October 18, 1926<br /> <strong>Band</strong> Solo<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> Gibson ES-355<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Johnny B. Goode”—<em>Gold </em> </p> <p>Chuck Berry is probably the only man alive who could kick Keith Richards ass, and not only would Keef let him get away with it, he’d thank Chuck afterwards. That’s because Keef knows that without Chuck there would have been no Rolling Stones, let alone the Beatles or Beach Boys. </p> <p>Chuck Berry is the true founding forefather of rock and roll. His guitar playing in the mid Fifties defined the true personality and vocabulary of rock and roll guitar so comprehensively and conclusively that it’s impossible to find any rock player who doesn’t still steal his licks, riffs and tricks today. In fact, Berry doesn’t even tour with his own band; instead, he hires local musicians to back him up, because almost everyone all over the world knows how to play his songs. </p> <p>Berry is also an energetic performer who invented perhaps the ultimate rock and roll stage move: the duck walk. Surprisingly, Chuck still performs this signature move when he plays onstage, even though he’s now in his 80s.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/6ROwVrF0Ceg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>LOU REED</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> March 2, 1942<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> The Velvet Underground, solo<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitars</strong> Gretsch Country Gentleman (Velvets), Schecter, Klein, Sadowsky and other customs<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff</strong> “Sweet Jane”—<em>Loaded </em>(The Velvet Underground) </p> <p>The dark underbelly is Lou Reed’s comfort zone. Despair and degradation are his muses. Emerging in the mid Sixties at the helm of the Velvet Underground, he offered up a gritty black-and-white alternative to the rainbow-colored pyschedelia of the prevailing rock culture. He brought us along, albeit reluctantly, to meet junkies and hustlers, S&amp;M bondage goddesses and suicidal transvestites. He was one of the first rock guitarists to embrace chaos truly and wholeheartedly. </p> <p>But the avant-garde din of Velvet Underground rave-ups seemed a genteel curtain raiser compared with the full-bore cacophony of Lou’s 1975 solo opus <em>Metal Machine Music</em>. The noise-guitar side of Lou’s legacy set the stage for cutting-edge genres like industrial, art damage, dream pop, grunge and present-day noise exponents, like Wolf Eyes and Yellow Swans. </p> <p>But Lou’s edgy lyrical stance and image spawned something even more fundamental to deviant aesthetics: punk rock. It is with considerable justice that he graced the first cover of <em>Punk</em> magazine in 1976 and was subsequently dubbed the Godfather of Punk. Lou embodied a new kind of rebel hero, an amalgam of two distinctly different but equally vilified social pariahs: the disaffected intellectual and the scumbag street hustler. In recent years, he’s added a third persona: the grumpy old man. </p> <p>And let's not forget his recent album with Metallica ... Still, there can be no underestimating Lou’s immense contribution to rock or the fierceness of his commitment to obtaining guitar tones and lyrical images that cut like a knife and leave a permanent scar.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Uc26EFI1_nw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JOHNNY MARR</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> October 31, 1963<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> The Smiths, Electronic, the Pretenders, The The, Johnny Marr and the Healers, Modest Mouse, the Cribs, solo<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar</strong> Rickenbacker 330<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>“What Difference Does It Make?”—<em>The Smiths </em> </p> <p>Johnny Marr is a chief architect of the post-modern rock-guitar aesthetic. As the guitarist for seminal Eighties poetic pop stars the Smiths, he created a tonal palette and crisp stylistic approach that still forms the roadmap for much modern rock guitar playing. It was Marr who created the orchestral guitar soundscapes that enhanced the moody drama of Smiths singer Morrissey’s introspective lyrics and ironically detached vocals. </p> <p>From the low-string riff for “What Difference Does It Make?” to the deep tremolo textures and swooning string bends of “How Soon Is Now,” Marr always seemed to have the notes and the tone to suit the moment perfectly. Marr’s work has been profoundly influential to guitarists of the Nineties and beyond. Noel Gallagher of Oasis dubbed Marr “a fucking wizard,” and Radiohead guitarist Ed O’Brien has cited Marr as the reason he picked up a guitar. In essence, Marr is a classicist, drawing much of his approach from the guitar sounds of the Sixties British Invasion, yet deftly adapting those influences to rock and roll modernity. </p> <p>He embodies the stylish sideman identity forged by guitar greats like George Harrison and Keith Richards: a neatly trimmed pudding-basin haircut, and a stage presence that never upstages the frontman. Yet, he is intriguing in his own right. Marr’s post-Smiths career has been stellar. He’s worked with everyone from New Order’s Bernard Sumner (in Electronic) to Oasis to John Frusciante, and has been quite active recently with both Modest Mouse and the Cribs. He has an uncanny knack for being around whenever cool music is happening.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/r8VgouaH4No" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>RITCHIE BLACKMORE</strong><br /> <strong>Born </strong>April 14, 1945<br /> <strong>Bands</strong> Deep Purple, Rainbow, Blackmore’s Night<br /> <strong>Iconic Guitar </strong>Fender Stratocaster with scalloped neck<br /> <strong>Coolest Riff </strong>“Smoke on the Water”—<em>Machine Head </em>(Deep Purple) </p> <p>The original dark knight of metal guitar, Ritchie Blackmore boasts a surname that evokes Medieval England and a pedigree that goes back to the beginning of classic rock. Early studies in classical guitar left him with an astounding legato technique that laid the groundwork for the neoclassical and shred movements several decades later. </p> <p>In the early Sixties, Blackmore did sessions with legendary British producer Joe Meek and apprenticed with U.K. session ace (and Jimmy Page mentor) Big Jim Sullivan. Blackmore founded Deep Purple in the late Sixties and led the group through various incarnations. He also spearheaded metal icons Rainbow with the late Ronnie James Dio and has more recently played a role in Blackmore’s Night with his wife Candice Night. </p> <p>The history of metal wends ever onward, but, much like Mephistopheles, Ritchie Blackmore has a way of always turning up.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/7mCK05dgwgU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>JOE PERRY</strong><br /> <strong>Born</strong> September 10, 1950<br /> <strong>BANDS</strong> Aerosmith, Joe Perry Project<br /> <strong>ICONIC GUITAR</strong> Gibson Les Paul<br /> <strong>COOLEST RIFF </strong>“Walk This Way”—<em>Toys in the Attic</em> (Aerosmith) </p> <p>Joe Perry is the American distillation of the good-old Keith Richards/Jimmy Page recipe for sideman/lead guitarist cool. He’s got the look and the licks, and he’s maintained both over the course of three or four decades—despite all odds. Jagger and Richards are the Glimmer Twins, but Perry and Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler went down in history as the Toxic Twins. </p> <p>They took the Sixties formula of sex, drugs and rock and roll to new heights in the decadent Seventies. Yet they also cranked out a steady stream of hard rock gems throughout a career that has known more ups and downs than a roller coaster. What’s perhaps most amazing about Tyler and Perry’s partnership is that Perry is the <em>sensible</em> one. </p> <p>He averages only about one meltdown to Tyler’s every three and keeps the Aerosmith juggernaut anchored with endless heavy guitar hooks. He’s even marketed his own brand of hot sauce. How cool is that?</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZS3YYzecik0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/buddy-guy">Buddy Guy</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/aerosmith">Aerosmith</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/deep-purple">Deep Purple</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/zz-top">ZZ Top</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/billy-gibbons">Billy Gibbons</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/30-most-badass-guitarists-all-time#comments Articles Buddy Guy Chuck Berry Django Reinhardt GW Archive T-Bone Walker ZZ Top Guitar World Lists News Features Thu, 16 Apr 2015 15:46:42 +0000 Alan Di Perna, Chris Gill, Richard Bienstock http://www.guitarworld.com/article/3497 Essential Listening: Eric Johnson's 10 Greatest Guitar Songs http://www.guitarworld.com/eric-johnsons-10-greatest-guitar-moments <!--paging_filter--><p>As much as he might try to deny it, Eric Johnson is a member of that small group of players sometimes referred to as "guitarists' guitarists." </p> <p>Players—like Jeff Beck, for instance—whose skills are (secretly, perhaps) the envy of his peers.</p> <p>Johnson is, however, well aware of the dual trademarks that are likely to become his legacy: instantly recognizable tone and a painstaking pursuit of perfection.</p> <p>"I've realized I've always been pretty hypocritical," Johnson told <em>Guitar World</em> in 2000. "My favorite albums have always had mistakes on them, but I can't stand to have mistakes on mine."</p> <p>Today, for your listening and viewing pleasure, we've gathered 10 of Johnson's greatest songs—tracks that we feel come pretty damn close to perfection. Although we've tried to make it a career-spanning list, we couldn't help but put a bit of extra emphasis on his 1990 masterpiece, <em>Ah Via Musicom.</em> </p> <p>We also couldn't help but include live clips of all 10 songs. After all, there are a hell of a lot of high-quality YouTube videos of Johnson in action.</p> <p>So sit back and enjoy some of the finest guitar playing you'll hear—and see—today! And even if you don't agree with nine of these 10 choices (no one's making an Eric Johnson best-of list without "Cliffs of Dover"), it's pretty much impossible to fault the playing in these 10 clips. Enjoy! — <em>Damian Fanelli</em><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Benny Man’s Blues"</span><br /> <em>Eclectic,</em> Eric Johnson and Mike Stern (2014)</p> <p>"Mike [Stern] was saying we should have an up-tempo blues piece for [<em>Eclectic</em>], which I thought was a cool idea," Johnson told <em>Guitar World</em> last year. "While I was figuring out what to do, I started thinking about some of those old Benny Goodman records where there’s just a couple of chord changes, but it still has that blues vibe."</p> <p>"That's a really cool track with a Texas-swing feel to it," Stern added. "I originally didn't know how Eric wanted to do it, but once [drummer] Anton [Fig] started playing the back beat, I immediately got where he was coming from."</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/pzPly187T1Y" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Austin"</span><br /> <em>Up Close</em> (2010)</p> <p>On the gutsy, blues-rock stomper “Austin,” Johnson fills the verses with glassy, jazzy chords before letting loose with a jaw dropper of a solo in which notes seemingly somersault over one another.</p> <p>“I really love that song,” Johnson told <em>Guitar World</em> in 2011. “I’m a born-and-bred Texan, and I wanted to write something about the town I remember as a kid. Austin’s still a great place to live, but it’s changed in some ways environmentally that I’m not pleased about.” </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ogAxrezGFqg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"S.R.V."</span><br /> <em>Venus Isle</em> (1996)</p> <p>And speaking of Austin, “S.R.V.,” from Johnson‘s <em>Venus Isle</em> album, was written as a tribute to fellow Austin-based guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, who died in 1990. </p> <p>The studio version of the track features a guest solo by SRV's big brother, Jimmie Vaughan, who also appears on "Texas" from Johnson's <em>Up Close</em> album (The track also features fellow Texan Steve Miller).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/OOR8II_Cb3g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Fatdaddy"</span><br /> <em>Up Close</em> (2010)</p> <p>“This song was kicking around for a few years, and I could never figure out what to do with it," Johnson recently told <em><a href="http://www.musicradar.com/news/guitars/eric-johnsons-up-close-286794/3">Music Radar</a></em>. </p> <p>"Sometimes it takes a while for a number to find a home. And the funny thing is, this was the last track that I cut for the album, the one that I had in my back pocket for so long.</p> <p>“I didn’t plan on recording it for the record, but right as I was finishing, I thought I was lacking an uptempo instrumental song, something that kind of rocks in a no-nonsense way. So I cut 'Fatdaddy' at the last moment. To me, the riff is a little Jan Hammerish, and I definitely had that in mind for years. The solo, though, is completely improvised, which is why it sounds pretty fresh, I think.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/EF_697nnjpg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Trail of Tears"</span><br /> <em>Tones</em> (1986)</p> <p>As "Trail of Tears" proves, there's nothing quite like the sound of a '54 Fender Strat going through a 100-watt Marshall head. Especially when Johnson is playing it.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/s9sMTTd802k" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Desert Rose"</span><br /> <em>Ah Via Musicom</em> (1990)</p> <p>Here's a touch of jangly Eighties pop made glorious by its guitar solos. In this particular video, Johnson's guitar is way too low in the mix during the first solo (although we have no problem at all hearing that snare drum); the problem is repaired in time for the second guitar solo.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/y05n6mADlQU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Trademark"</span><br /> <em>Ah Via Musicom</em> (1990)</p> <p>Here's "Trademark," one of the lesser-known <em>Ah Via Musicom</em> instrumentals, which has a definite Eighties vibe to it, often even bringing the Police's Andy Summers to mind. It's another fine example of the magic Johnson can conjure with a Strat.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Yiq-P86PDMg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Zap"</span><br /> <em>Tones</em> (1986)</p> <p>"I guess 'Zap' is the only one we cut head on," said Johnson of the exciting, Grammy-nominated exciting fusion-rocker from <em>Tones</em>. "We recorded that as a three-piece, and I added just a very little bit of overdubs."</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/WtRk1YSpcKU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Manhattan"</span><br /> <em>Venus Isle</em> (1996)</p> <p>Here's this list's official smooth jazz entry, "Manhattan," from <em>Venus Isle.</em></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Mz2DgmBj0pM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">"Cliffs of Dover"</span><br /> <em>Ah Via Musicom</em> (1990)</p> <p>“I don’t even know if I can take credit for writing ‘Cliffs of Dover,’ ” says Eric Johnson of his best-known composition. </p> <p>“It was just there for me one day. There are songs I have spent months writing, and I literally wrote this one in five minutes. The melody was there in one minute and the other parts came together in another four. I think a lot of the stuff just comes through us like that. It’s kind of a gift from a higher place that all of us are eligible for. We just have to listen for it and be available to receive it.”</p> <p>While it is true that he wrote the song in a blessed instant, the fact is that Johnson, a notoriously slow worker, took his time polishing it up to form. “It took me a while to achieve the facility to play it right,” he says. “I was trying to work out the fingerings and how I wanted particular notes to hang over other notes.”</p> <p>Even allowing for Johnson’s perfectionism, it took an extraordinarily long time for him to record a song that “came to him” in five minutes. That epiphany occurred in 1982, and within two years “Cliffs of Dover” was a popular staple of his live shows. He planned to include the song on his solo debut, Tones (Capitol, 1986), but, ironically, it didn’t make the cut. “It was ousted by the people who were doing the record with me,” Johnson explains. “I think they thought the melody was too straight or something.”</p> <p>Luckily, wiser heads prevailed on <em>Ah Via Musicom</em>. Though he had been playing “Cliffs of Dover” live for four or five years by then, it still took Johnson multiple takes to nail the song to his satisfaction—and he was never pleased with any version. </p> <p>“The whole solo is actually a composite of many guitar parts,” Johnson says. “I knew exactly how I wanted it to sound—almost regal—and though I had versions that were close, none quite nailed it, so I kept playing around with different permutations of the many versions I had recorded until I got it just right.</p> <p>“As a result, I actually ended up using two different-sounding guitars. Almost all of the song is a Gibson 335 through a Marshall, with an Echoplex and a tube driver. But in the middle of the solo there’s 20 or 30 seconds played on a Strat. It really does sound different if you listen closely and at first I didn’t think it could work, but I really liked this string of licks so we just decided to keep it. It basically just sounds like I’m hitting a preamp box or switching amps."</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/15eu7ar5EKM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/eric-johnson">Eric Johnson</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/eric-johnsons-10-greatest-guitar-moments#comments Eric Johnson Essential Listening Roland Videos News Features Thu, 16 Apr 2015 11:11:54 +0000 Guitar World Staff http://www.guitarworld.com/article/23912 May 2015 Guitar World: Joan Jett, Judas Priest, How to Play Rock and Roll Guitar, Ian Anderson and More http://www.guitarworld.com/may-2015-guitar-world-joan-jett-judas-priest-how-play-rock-and-roll-guitar-ian-anderson-and-more <!--paging_filter--><p><a href="http://guitarworld.myshopify.com/products/guitar-world-may-15-joan-jett/?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=daily_scroller&amp;utm_campaign=GWMAY15">The all-new May 2015 issue of Guitar World is available now!</a></p> <p><em>Guitar World</em>’s May 2015 issue features the queen of noise, <strong>Joan Jett!</strong> She's been banging out some of rock's greatest power chords since age 15. With her induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, there's only one thing you need to know: she still loves rock and roll. </p> <p><strong>Special Rock Riffs Lesson: Andy Aledort</strong> examines the essential riffs and licks that define true rock and roll guitar, from <strong>Chuck Berry</strong> to <strong>Joan Jett. </strong></p> <p>Then, just over 30 years ago, <strong>Judas Priest</strong> recorded the heavy metal call to arms, <em>Defenders of the Faith</em>. Here, Priest guitarist <strong>Glenn Tipton</strong> and singer <strong>Rob Halford</strong> recall the making of their masterwork.</p> <p>Later, remix magician <strong>Steven Wilson</strong> and <strong>Jethro Tull</strong> frontman <strong>Ian Anderson</strong> detail the finer points of breathing new life into classic Tull albums like the newly reissued <em>Minstrel in the Gallery.</em> Also, Anderson readies a new rock opera about Jethro Tull's namesake, while Wilson tackles his toughest subject matter yet on latest solo disc, <em>Hand. Cannot. Erase.</em></p> <p>Finally, from his home in Gothenburg, Sweden, acoustic singer-songwriter <strong>José González</strong> opens up about <em>Vestiges &amp; Claws,</em> his first solo album in seven years. </p> <p>PLUS: Tune-ups on <strong>Fear Factory, Gang of Four, Venom</strong> and <strong>We are Harlot</strong>.</p> <p>Soundcheck reviews of Supro 1624T Dual Tone, S6420 Thunderbolt and 1690T Coronado combos, Epiphone Gary Clark Jr. Casino guitar, Decibel Eleven Dirt Clod pedal, Toneville Broadway amp and much more!</p> <p><strong>Five Songs with Tabs for Guitar and Bass:</strong></p> <p> • Joan Jett &amp; The Blackhearts, "I Love Rock 'N' Roll"<br /> • Judas Priest, "Freewheel Burning"<br /> • Hozier, "Take Me to Church"<br /> • Emerson, Lake &amp; Palmer, "From the Beginning"<br /> • Periphery, "Alpha"</p> <p><strong><a href="http://guitarworld.myshopify.com/products/guitar-world-may-15-joan-jett/?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=daily_scroller&amp;utm_campaign=GWMAY15">The all-new May 2015 issue of Guitar World is available now at the Guitar World Online Store!</a></strong></p> <p><img src="/files/imce-images/Screen%20Shot%202015-03-25%20at%2012.23.16%20PM.png" width="620" height="805" alt="Screen Shot 2015-03-25 at 12.23.16 PM.png" /></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/may-2015-guitar-world-joan-jett-judas-priest-how-play-rock-and-roll-guitar-ian-anderson-and-more#comments May 2015 News Features Thu, 16 Apr 2015 11:09:47 +0000 Guitar World Staff http://www.guitarworld.com/article/23838 Backbeat's 'Blues Guitar Handbook' Teaches Blues History and Multiple Techniques http://www.guitarworld.com/backbeats-blues-guitar-handbook-teaches-blues-history-and-multiple-techniques <!--paging_filter--><p><em>The Blues Guitar Handbook: A Complete Course in Techniques &amp; Styles</em> by Adam St. James is the latest entry in Backbeat's bestselling handbook series. </p> <p>It starts by exploring the humble beginnings of blues guitar through the early decades of the 20th century, including profiles of such players as Robert Johnson, Charley Patton and Son House. As the story moves into the '40s and '50s, and blues players migrate to major urban centers, St. James follows the evolution of the music at the hands of such electric blues kingpins as Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf and B.B. King. </p> <p>Then it's the blues-rockers of the '60s, '70s, and '80s (including Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Stevie Ray Vaughan) before the story comes up to date, with blues flame-keepers such as Keb Mo' or Duke Robillard, and some not-quite-traditionalists, such as Robben Ford or Derek Trucks. </p> <p>A comprehensive section for mastering electric and acoustic blues follows this historic overview. Starting from the very basics, it leads you into more advanced rhythm and lead techniques before examining four key styles: acoustic blues, classic electric blues, blues rock and jazz blues. </p> <p>The many exercises in the book are supported by specially recorded audio tracks on the accompanying CD. </p> <p><strong><a href="http://store.guitarworld.com/collections/mix-books/products/the-blues-guitar-handbook/?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=daily_scroller&amp;utm_campaign=BluesGuitarHandbook">The book is available now at the Guitar World Online Store for $29.99.</a></strong></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/backbeats-blues-guitar-handbook-teaches-blues-history-and-multiple-techniques#comments News Features Wed, 15 Apr 2015 12:54:11 +0000 Guitar World Staff http://www.guitarworld.com/article/18118 Deep Purple's Ritchie Blackmore Talks Yngwie, Hendrix and His Development as a Guitarist in 1991 Interview http://www.guitarworld.com/deep-purples-ritchie-blackmore-discusses-his-development-guitarist-1991-guitar-world-interview <!--paging_filter--><p><strong>This interview with Ritchie Blackmore of Deep Purple appeared in the February 1991 issue of <em>Guitar World</em></strong>. <a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/photo-gallery-guitar-world-magazine-covers-through-years-1991">To see the Blackmore cover—and all the GW covers from 1991—click here.</a></p> <p>It’s a cold, rainy night in Connecticut. Executive Editor Brad Tolinski and I are in the lobby of a fine hotel, waiting to meet Ritchie Blackmore. </p> <p>The veteran guitarist has, in his infinite mercy, granted us a rare interview. (Perhaps the imminent release of the new Deep Purple album, <em>Slaves And Masters</em>, featuring Purple's latest member, Joe Lynn Turner, has something to do with this.) At the moment, Blackmore is dining with some friends; he is to join us at the conclusion of his meal.</p> <p>Tolinski and I are a bit apprehensive. Blackmore's irascibility is legend, as is his antipathy toward the press. To make matters worse, even some of those close to the star have warned that he could become "troublesome." I feel like I'm about to meet Darth Vader.</p> <p>As I examine my tape recorder to ensure that everything is in working order (I'm always worried that it will break down), a grim scenario plays itself repeatedly in my brain: The interview has commenced. I ask my first question—"How does this version Deep Purple differ from past formations?" Blackmore stares at me, his features growing black with rage. </p> <p>“How <em>dare</em> you ask me that?” he barks. "Take that!" He bops me over the head with a white Strat, which falls all around me in splinters. The angry man rises and stalks out. End of interview.</p> <p>I return to an uneasy reality, but calm myself with the thought that my guitar hero can't possibly be such an ogre. Then I remember that as a youth, Blackmore had a penchant for throwing eggs, tomatoes and four-pound bags of flour from moving vehicles at passersby (with particular preference, presumably, for elderly women in wheelchairs.)</p> <p>At last, a member of Blackmore's entourage comes by to say that the great one is ready. We enter the dimly-lit dining area to the accompaniment of mellow piano music, diners' chattering and dishes clattering, and seat ourselves. After a few moments, we are joined by Ritchie Blackmore.</p> <p>He looks great—better than he did ten years ago, which is far more than can be said of most longtime rockers. As usual, he's dressed in black, except for a white ruffled shirt that makes him look like a French nobleman. He grasps our outstretched hands ("a good sign," I think) and we introduce ourselves. Blackmore seats himself, and orders a beer.</p> <p>"Are you ready?" I ask, and Blackmore nods his assent. But before I can ask the first question, he points at my tape recorder and in thick British tones says, "By the way, that's not on."</p> <p>"Oh no," I think. "The tape's busted!" My worst fears, realized. Tolinski stares at me, horror etched on his features. I examine the contraption, but it seems to be running smoothly. I turn to Blackmore, a bit befuddled, and insist, "It's moving. It's on.”</p> <p>"Just checking," he says slyly. And with that, the interview commences. Within a few dizzying moments he demonstrates that, his reputation notwithstanding, he is a hell of a nice guy, funny—a great dude to hang out with. He even performs a magic trick, changing a nickel into a quarter before our very appreciative eyes.</p> <p>Two hours pass. The restaurant 's proprietor stops by to announce, "Closing time." I wholeheartedly thank Ritchie for being so cooperative. "Thank you for being so attentive," says this amiable bane of rock journalists.</p> <p><strong>GUITAR WORLD: How does this edition of Deep Purple differ from past formations?</strong></p> <p>Musically, I would say the singer doesn't drink as much. [laughs] But seriously, the older I get, the more I want to hear melodies. We really worked hard on constructing good, memorable songs and interesting chord progressions. That 's what excites me at the moment.</p> <p>It also helped that our new singer, Joe Lynn Turner, writes and sings great melodies. With Joe, we didn't have to rely as much on heavy riffs. When I was 20, I didn't give a damn about song construction. I just wanted to make as much noise and play as fast and as loud as possible.</p> <p><strong>As a guitarist, what were you looking to do differently on this new record? For instance, the solo on "King Of Dreams" has an exotic tinge that doesn't appear in any of your previous work.</strong></p> <p>I wanted that solo to evoke a certain mood. It isn't meant to be a pointless exercise in speed; that's why it's very sparse. I was trying to make it an extension of the vocal melody and have it express something that was connected to the bloody song. I didn't want to just show off some trick I'd learned at the music store on Saturday morning.</p> <p><strong>When writing, or when engaged in preproduction for an album, do you work solos out in advance?</strong></p> <p>I never work out my leads. Everything I do is usually totally spontaneous. If someone says, "That was good; play that again," I'm not able to do it. The only solo I've committed to memory is "Highway Star" [from I972's <em>Machine Head</em>]. I like playing that semitone run in the middle.</p> <p><strong>[Keyboardist] Jon Lord plays more textures, rather than actual lines, on this new album.</strong></p> <p>Jon likes to see what I'm going to do and he enhances that. He's not a leader; he likes to follow.</p> <hr /> <strong>Is that why your relationship has lasted so long?</strong> <p>Yes, because we don't tread on each other's toes.</p> <p><strong>Let's go back to the beginning of Deep Purple. How did you and Jon meet?</strong></p> <p>I met him in a transvestite bar in '68, in Hamburg, Germany. [laughs] Back in the late Sixties, there were few organists who could play like Jon. We shared the same taste in music. We loved Vanilla Fudge—they were our heroes. They used to play London's Speakeasy and all the hippies used to go there to hang out—Clapton, the Beatles—everybody went there to pose. According to legend, the talk of the town during that period was Jimi Hendrix, but that's not true. It was Vanilla Fudge. They played eight-minute songs, with dynamics. People said, "What the hell's going on here? How come it's not three minutes?" Timmy Bogert, their bassist, was amazing. The whole group was way ahead of its time.</p> <p>So, initially we wanted to be a Vanilla Fudge clone. But our singer, Ian, wanted to be Edgar Winter. He'd say, "I want to scream like that, like Edgar Winter." So that's what we were—Vanilla Fudge with Edgar Winter!</p> <p><strong>After your breakthrough record, <em>Concerto For Group And Orchestra</em> [1970] with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, your playing took a more aggressive turn. <em>In Rock</em> [1970] almost became the blueprint for all subsequent Purple records.</strong></p> <p>I became tired of playing with orchestras. <em>In Rock</em> was my way of rebelling against a certain classical element in the band. Ian Gillan, Roger Glover and I wanted to be a hard rock band—we wanted to play rock and roll only. So off we went in that direction.</p> <p>I felt that the whole orchestra thing was a bit tame. I mean, you're playing in the Royal Albert Hall, and the audience sits there with folded arms, and you're standing there playing next to a violinist who holds his ears every time you take a solo. It doesn't make you feel particularly inspired.</p> <p><strong>You started using the vibrato bar extensively on <em>In Rock</em>.<strong></strong></strong></p> <p>Yes, that's right. I'd seen the James Cotton Blues Band at the Fillmore East, and the guitarist in the band played with the vibrato bar. He got the most amazing sounds. Right after seeing him, I started using the bar. Hendrix inspired me, too.</p> <p><strong>You used to give the whammy bar a real workout.</strong></p> <p>I went crazy with it. I used to have quarter-inch bars made for me because I'd keep snapping the normal kind. My repairman would look at me strangely and say, "What are you doing to these tremolo bars?" Finally, he gave me this gigantic tremolo arm made of half-an-inch of solid iron and said, "Here. If you break this thing, I don't wanna know about it!"</p> <p>About three weeks later I went back to the shop. He looked at me and said, "No—you <em>haven't.</em>" And I said, "Yes, I have." In graphic detail, I explained to him how I would twirl the guitar around by the bar, throw it to the floor, put my foot on it and pull the bar off with two hands. He was a bit of a purist, so he wasn't amused.</p> <p><strong>There is a lot of unusual noise during the final solo of "Hard Lovin' Man" [<em>In Rock</em>]. Is that you, throwing your guitar around in the studio?</strong></p> <p>If I remember right, I was knocking my guitar up and down against a door in the control room. The engineer looked at me oddly. He was one of your typical, old-school engineers. Like my repairman, he wasn't amused, either.</p> <p><strong>Did you ever try a locking-nut tremolo system?</strong></p> <p>No. I don't use the twang bar anymore. It's become too popular.</p> <p><strong>Between <em>In Rock</em> and <em>Fireball</em> [1971], you switched from Gibsons to Fender Strats. How did that affect your playing style?</strong></p> <p>It was difficult, because it's much easier to flow across the strings on a Gibson. Fenders have more tension, so you have to fight them a little bit. I had a hell of a time. But I stuck with the Fenders because I was so taken with their sound, especially when they were paired with a wah-wah.</p> <p><strong>Around <em>Fireball</em> and <em>Machine Head</em> [1972], your playing took on a blues and funk edge. Did Hendrix have anything to do with that?</strong></p> <p>I was impressed by Hendrix. Not so much by his playing, as his attitude—he wasn't a great player, but everything else about him was brilliant. Even the way he walked was amazing. His guitar playing, though, was always a little bit weird. Hendrix inspired me, but I was still more into Wes Montgomery. I was also into the Allman Brothers around the time of those albums.</p> <p><strong>What do you think of Stevie Ray Vaughan?</strong></p> <p>I knew that question was coming. His death was very tragic, but I'm surprised that everybody thinks he was such a brilliant player when there are people like Buddy Guy, Albert Collins, Peter Green and Mick Taylor; Johnny Winter, who is one of the best blues players in the world, is also very underrated. His vibrato is incredible.</p> <p>Stevie Ray Vaughan was very intense. Maybe that's what caught everybody's attention. As a player, he didn't do anything amazing.</p> <p><strong>How did you develop your own unique finger vibrato style?</strong></p> <p>In my early days, I never used finger vibrato at all. I originally carved my reputation as one of the "fast" guitar players. Than I heard Eric Clapton. I remember saying to him, "You have a strange style. Do you play with that vibrato stuff?" Really an idiotic question. But he was a nice guy about it. Right after that I started working on my vibrato. It took about two or three years for me to develop any technique. Around '68 or '69 you suddenly hear it in my playing.</p> <p><strong>I've noticed that your rhythm parts aren't always played with a pick.</strong></p> <p>That's from being lazy. It's like Jeff Beck—when he can't find a pick, he just plays with his fingers. You know how it is. You're watching television and you can't find a pick, so you just play with your fingers. Even on something as simple as the riff to "Smoke On The Water," you 'd be surprised at how many people play that with down strokes, as though it were chords. I pluck the riff, which makes a world of difference. Otherwise, you're just hitting the tonic before the fifth.</p> <p><strong>Why do you think that, of all your work, "Smoke On The Water" is so enduring? The riff is the rock equivalent to the opening of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony.</strong></p> <p>Simplicity is the key. And it is simple—you can still hear people playing it at music stores. I never had the courage to write until I heard "I Can't Explain" and "My Generation." Those riffs were so straightforward that I thought, "All right, if Pete Townshend can get away with that, then I can, too!"</p> <p><strong>What did you think of Tommy Bolin when he took your place in Deep Purple, following your '74 departure?</strong></p> <p>I originally heard him on Billy Cobham's <em>Spectrum</em> album, and thought, "Who is this guy?" Then I saw him on television and he looked incredible—like Elvis Presley. I knew he was gonna be big.</p> <p>When I heard that Purple hired him I thought it was great. He was always so humble. I remember he would always invite me out to his house in Hollywood to see his guitar. One day I went to his place. I walked in and tried to find him, but no one was around. There were no furnishings—nothing. I stayed there for ten minutes before he finally appeared. He showed me his guitar, and the strings must have had a quarter-inch of grime on them, as though he hadn't changed them in four years. I asked him when was the last time he'd changed strings, and he said very seriously, "Gee, I don't know. Do you think I should change them?"</p> <hr /> <strong>Following your departure from Purple, you drifted back to a slightly classical direction in Rainbow.</strong> <p>I was never sure <em>what</em> I wanted to be. I found the blues too limiting, too confining. I'd always thought -- with all due respect to B.B. King—that you couldn't just play four notes. Classical, on the other hand, was always too disciplined. I was always playing between the two, stuck in a musical no-man's land.</p> <p><strong>Did you ever toy with the idea of playing strictly classical music?</strong></p> <p>Yes. I would love to go back to the 1520s, the time of my favorite music. A few of my friends in Germany have a very authentic four-piece, and they play medieval music. I've always wanted to play with them, but it hasn't panned out yet. But in general, I'm not good enough, technically, to be a classical musician. I lack discipline. When you're dealing with classical music, you have to be rigid. I'm not a rigid player. I like to improvise.</p> <p><strong>The song "Stargazer," from the second Rainbow album [<em>Rainbows Rising</em>, 1976], has a strong classical feel. How did you come up with that one?</strong></p> <p>That was a good tune. I wrote that on the cello. I had given up on the guitar between '75 and '78. I completely lost interest. I was sick of hearing other guitar players and I was tired of my tunes. What I really wanted to be was Jacqueline DuPrey on cello. So I started playing cello.</p> <p><strong>Did you ever record with a cello?</strong></p> <p>Yes, just on a small backing track—I can't remember on what. But you have to give your whole life to a cello. When I realized that, I went back to the guitar and just turned the volume up a bit louder.</p> <p><strong>Was there anything you learned from the cello that you applied to the guitar?</strong></p> <p>Not really. The cello is such a melancholy instrument, such an isolated, miserable instrument.... But it was an appropriate choice for me at the time, because my girlfriend had left me and I was going through this miserable phase.</p> <p><strong>What do you think of Yngwie Malmsteen? He's often credited you as an influence.</strong></p> <p>He's always been very nice to me, and I always get on very well with him. I don't understand him, though -- his playing, what he wears. His movements are also a bit creepy. Normally you say, "Well, the guy's just an idiot." But, when you hear him play you think, "This guy's no idiot. He knows what he's doing." He's got to calm down. He's not Paganini—though he thinks he is. When Yngwie can break all of his strings but one, and play the same piece on one string, then I'll be impressed. In three or four years, we'll probably hear some good stuff from him.</p> <p><strong>What do you think of tapping?</strong></p> <p>Thank goodness it's come to an end. The first person I saw doing that hammer-on stuff was Harvey Mandel, at the Whisky A Go-Go in '68. I thought "What the hell is he doing?" It was so funny [laughs], Jim Morrison was carried out because he was shouting abuse at the band. Jimi Hendrix was there. We were all getting drunk. Then Harvey Mandel starts doing this stuff [mimes tapping]. "What's he doing?" everybody was saying. Even the audience stopped dancing. Obviously, Eddie Van Halen must have picked up a few of those things.</p> <p><strong>What do you think of him?</strong></p> <p>It depends on my mood. He is probably the most influential player in the last 15 years 'cause everybody's gone out and bought one of those, what does he play, Charvel, Carvel ...</p> <p><strong>Kramer, with the locking nut.</strong></p> <p>Yes, with the locking nut! And everyone's gone hammer-on crazy! So he's obviously done something. He's a great guitar player, but I'm more impressed by his recent songwriting and keyboard work. I think he's going to be remembered -- he could be the next Cole Porter.</p> <p><strong>How do you feel about your own guitar hero status?</strong></p> <p>It's funny to find myself in that position, because when I first came to America I thought, "Why go to America when they have these fantastic players?" I was brought up on [pedal steel great] Speedy West and [country guitarist] Jimmy Bryant, people like that. When I was 13 years old, I couldn't believe how good they were. I thought, "When I go to America, I'm going to get killed."</p> <p>Everything changed when we had a hit with "Hush." I found people saying, "Oh, you play guitar really well." I'd say, "How can you say that when you've got these guys in Nashville who just tear me apart?" I still say it. If you tune into <em>Hee Haw</em> you'll see these guys who are absolutely amazing. Jeff Beck once told me that he went to Nashville to do a record. While he was in the studio, this guy who was sweeping up asked him, "Can I borrow your guitar for a second?" Jeff said, "Oh, of course." The guy started playing and completely blew Jeff away. He left soon after that. Thank goodness all those amazing players stay in Nashville!</p> <p><strong>Has your approach to sound processing changed? Have you checked out any of these multi-effects racks?</strong></p> <p>I don't put myself on Jeff Beck's level, but I can relate to him when he says he'd rather be working on his car collection than playing the guitar. I'm enjoying other things in life, but when I do pick up the guitar, I want to simply plug into a loud amplifier, and that's it. Maybe if I were 20, I'd pay more attention to equipment trends; at 45, you start to go in other directions. I get turned on by soccer shoes; I listen to Renaissance music—those are the things that really stir my soul.</p> <p>There are so many effects and new guitar players. I can't comprehend it all. When you hear them, you suddenly realize that they all sound the same—like Eddie Van Halen, speeded up. </p> <p><strong>Do you have a home studio?</strong></p> <p>No, I don't. It's gotten out of hand—everybody has their own studio. I'd rather write something on the spur of the moment, while doing a formal recording. I believe in inspiration.</p> <p><strong>What does the future hold for you?</strong></p> <p>I'm very moved by Renaissance music, but I still love to play hard rock—though only if it's sophisticated and has some thought behind it. I don't want to throw myself on a stage and act silly, 'cause I see so many bands doing that today. There's a lot going on today that disturbs me—so much derivative music. Where are the progressive bands like Cream, Procul Harum, Jethro Tull or the Experience? I could go on, but we have to live with it.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/deep-purple">Deep Purple</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/deep-purples-ritchie-blackmore-discusses-his-development-guitarist-1991-guitar-world-interview#comments Deep Purple February 1991 GW Archive Ritchie Blackmore Roger Glover Interviews News Features Magazine Tue, 14 Apr 2015 12:20:43 +0000 Mordechai Kleidermacher http://www.guitarworld.com/article/13141 Guitar World's New Special Edition: 'Metallica — 30 Years of the World's Greatest Heavy Metal Band' http://www.guitarworld.com/guitar-worlds-new-special-edition-metallica-30-years-worlds-greatest-heavy-metal-band <!--paging_filter--><p>James Hetfield, Kirk Hammett, Robert Trujillo and Lars Ulrich—these are the men of Metallica. </p> <p>For 30 years, they have been the reigning kings of the heavy metal world, and deservedly so. </p> <p>With such landmark albums as <em>Master of Puppets, ...And Justice for All, Metallica</em> and <em>Death Magnetic</em>, Metallica steadily evolved, progressing beyond the limits of the thrash-metal barrier without ever wavering in their goal to be the best heavy metal outfit on earth.</p> <p>In <em><a href="http://store.guitarworld.com/collections/guitar-world/products/guitar-world-presents-30-years-of-metallica/?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=daily_scroller&amp;utm_campaign=Metallica30Years">Metallica: 30 Years of the World's Greatest Heavy Metal Band</a></em>, you'll read about the storied band's rise to prominence in some of the most powerful articles ever published in the pages of <em>Guitar World</em> magazine.</p> <p> • Learn how Metallica coped with the accidental 1986 death of original bassist Cliff Burton.</p> <p>• Read about the writing and recording of such legendary albums as <em>Kill 'Em All, Master of Puppets</em>, the Black Album and <em>Load.</em></p> <p> • Sit alongside guitarist Kirk Hammett as he reconnects with his guitar teacher, Joe Satriani.</p> <p> • Go behind the scenes of the making of the group's revealing documentary film, <em>Some Kind of Monster.</em></p> <p>• The 100 Greatest Metallica Songs of All Time: <em>Guitar World</em> ranks them from first to worst.</p> <p>It's all right here, in <em>Metallica: 30 Years of the World's Greatest Heavy Metal Band</em> - the myths, the memories, the triumphs, the tragedies of America's foremost heavy metal team.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://store.guitarworld.com/collections/guitar-world/products/guitar-world-presents-30-years-of-metallica/?&amp;utm_source=gw_homepage&amp;utm_medium=daily_scroller&amp;utm_campaign=Metallica30Years">It's available now at the Guitar World Online Store for $19.95.</a></strong></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/metallica">Metallica</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/guitar-worlds-new-special-edition-metallica-30-years-worlds-greatest-heavy-metal-band#comments Metallica News Features Tue, 14 Apr 2015 11:56:12 +0000 Guitar World Staff http://www.guitarworld.com/article/20128 100 Greatest Guitar Solos: No. 15 "Highway Star" (Ritchie Blackmore) http://www.guitarworld.com/100-greatest-guitar-solos-no-15-highway-star-ritchie-blackmore <!--paging_filter--><p>“Highway Star” is but one highlight of <em>Machine Head</em>, Deep Purple’s greatest triumph. Ironically, it almost never came to be. In early 1972, shortly after retreating to Montreaux, Switzerland, to record, the British band was beset by a wealth of problems. </p> <p>"First, the place they were staying, which overlooked Lake Geneva, burned down—inspiring them to write “Smoke on the Water.” Then, in response to a complaint about excessive noise, the police kicked the band out of the ballroom where they were recording.</p> <p>“We were stuck in Switzerland with nowhere to go, and a friend of ours who was the mayor of the town said that there was an empty hotel we could use,” recalls Ritchie Blackmore. “We gladly accepted and retreated to this lonely hotel in the mountains. We set up all the equipment in the corridor, with the drums and some amps tucked into alcoves.</p> <p>“We had the Rolling Stones’ mobile recording unit sitting outside in the snow, but to get there we had to run cable through two doors in the corridor into a room, through a bathroom and into another room, from which it went across a bed and out the veranda window, then ran along the balcony for about 100 feet and came back in through another bedroom window. </p> <p>"It then went through that room’s bathroom and into another corridor, then all the way down a marble staircase to the foyer reception area of the hotel, out the front door, across the courtyard and up the steps into the back of the mobile unit. I think that setup led to capturing some spontaneity, because once we got to the truck for a playback, even if we didn’t think it was a perfect take, we’d go, ‘Yeah, that’s good enough.’ Because we just couldn’t stand going back again.”</p> <p>But while the vibe may have been loose, Blackmore’s solo on ‘Highway Star’ was well planned. “I wrote that out note for note about a week before we recorded it,” says the guitarist. “And that is one of the only times I have ever done that. I wanted it to sound like someone driving in a fast car, for it to be one of those songs you would listen to while speeding. And I wanted a very definite Bach sound, which is why I wrote it out—and why I played those very rigid arpeggios across that very familiar Bach progression—Dm, Gm, Cmaj, Amaj. I believe that I was the first person to do that so obviously on the guitar, and I believe that that’s why it stood out and why people have enjoyed it so much.</p> <p>“[<em>Keyboardist</em>] Jon Lord worked his part out to mine. Initially, I was going to play my solo over the chords he had planned out. But I couldn’t get off on them, so I made up my own chords and we left the spot for him to write a melody. The keyboard solo is quite a bit more difficult than mine because of all those 16th notes. </p> <p>"Over the years, I’ve always played that solo note for note—again, one of the few where I’ve done that—but it just got faster and faster onstage because we would drink more and more whiskey. Jon would have to play his already difficult part faster and faster and he would get very annoyed about it.”</p> <p><a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/article/100_greatest_guitar_solos_14_quotlaylaquot_eric_clapton_duane_allman">Next: 14) "Layla"</a></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Wr9ie2J2690" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/deep-purple">Deep Purple</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/100-greatest-guitar-solos-no-15-highway-star-ritchie-blackmore#comments 100 Greatest Guitar Solos 100 Greatest Guitar Solos Deep Purple Ritchie Blackmore News Features Mon, 13 Apr 2015 21:16:25 +0000 Guitar World Staff http://www.guitarworld.com/article/1609 Practice Made Perfect: Guitar World Rounds Up 17 Amazing Practice Amps http://www.guitarworld.com/practice-makes-perfect-five-amazing-practice-amps <!--paging_filter--><p>Playing live might be the best way to hone your performance skills, but when it comes to technique, you need practice, practice, practice. </p> <p>If you play an electric guitar, your woodshedding sessions demand an amp that not only reveals the details and nuance of your playing but also sounds great—so great that it makes you want to practice more and become the best guitarist you can. </p> <p>Of course, it’s even better if it has built-in effects, a tuner, a metronome, and connectivity to the world of digital apps, downloads and MP3 players. </p> <p>With that in mind, we set out to find the best-sounding and best-outfitted practice amps currently on the market. Over the next pages, you’ll find practice combos and heads that pull double-duty as studio and rehearsal powerhouses and others that offer computer, USB, Bluetooth, iOS and Android connectivity. </p> <p>Whether you love an all-tube rig, solid-state power, or feature-laden digital/modeling amps, you’re sure to find that one of these tone machines makes practice perfect.</p> http://www.guitarworld.com/practice-makes-perfect-five-amazing-practice-amps#comments Carr Amplifiers Epiphone Fender Ibanez Peavey Roland September 2014 Amps News Features Gear Magazine Mon, 13 Apr 2015 13:59:40 +0000 Paul Riario http://www.guitarworld.com/article/21835