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Hear Terry Kath’s Isolated Guitar from Chicago's “25 or 6 to 4”

(Image credit: David Redfern/Getty Images)

Terry Kath has long been praised as one of the great guitarists of the classic rock era. As a founding member of the jazz-rock band Chicago, Kath held down guitar duties for the group until his tragic death from an accidentally self-inflicted gunshot wound in 1978.

One of Kath’s most celebrated guitar tracks is Chicago’s 1970 hit “25 or 6 to 4,” which features his extended guitar solo that includes generous use of a wah pedal.

Though he recorded other tracks that showcased his guitar talents—notably “Introduction” and “Free Form Guitar,” both from the group’s 1969 debut, The Chicago Transit Authority—the hit status of “25 or 6 to 4” ensured it was always performed live, where Kath got plenty of room to flex his considerable chops.

Happily, we can now hear Kath’s guitar parts on the original recording almost entirely isolated from the other instruments. The recording below features Kath’s guitar parts interspersed with the brass and Peter Cetera’s vocals. The track lets you hear his verse fills as well as his epic solo distinctly.

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Christopher Scapelliti is editor-in-chief of Guitar Player (opens in new tab) magazine, the world’s longest-running guitar magazine, founded in 1967. In his extensive career, he has authored in-depth interviews with such guitarists as Pete Townshend, Slash, Billy Corgan, Jack White, Elvis Costello and Todd Rundgren, and audio professionals including Beatles engineers Geoff Emerick and Ken Scott. He is the co-author of Guitar Aficionado: The Collections: The Most Famous, Rare, and Valuable Guitars in the World (opens in new tab), a founding editor of Guitar Aficionado magazine, and a former editor with Guitar WorldGuitar for the Practicing Musician and Maximum Guitar. Apart from guitars, he maintains a collection of more than 30 vintage analog synthesizers.