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Guitar Aficionado: An Interview with Brian Setzer

The following is an excerpt from Guitar Aficionado's interview with the legendary Brian Setzer. You can read the full interview at this location.

In a career spanning more than four decades, Brian Setzer has made an indelible mark on rockabilly and big-band music. With his latest album, he’s now conquered instrumental music as well.

You won’t find many successful musicians forsaking Southern California’s balmy climes for Minneapolis’ frigid environs, but that’s just what Brian Setzer did. In 2005, the guitarist relocated to the city from Los Angeles, his home for two decades. The move apparently did nothing to slow him down. Since then, the former Stray Cats frontman has recorded several outstanding albums, including the rocking solo album 13 and his most recent studio effort with the Brian Setzer Orchestra, Songs from Lonely Avenue, a jazzy, sophisticated collection of self-penned material that many critics praised as some of the finest work in his 30-year career.

“Minneapolis is a good place to be,” says Setzer, relaxing among an impressive assortment of vintage and custom Gretsch guitars and classic amps scattered about his downtown loft. “It’s really nice up here, if you don’t mind the cold weather. The people are great, it’s not crowded, and there is no rush-hour traffic. You can drive 15 minutes and go fishing or enjoy any variety of outdoor activities. There’s also a really good music scene downtown.”

Head here to read the full interview.

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Chris is the co-author of Eruption - Conversations with Eddie Van Halen. He is a 40-year music industry veteran who started at Boardwalk Entertainment (Joan Jett, Night Ranger) and Roland US before becoming a guitar journalist in 1991. He has interviewed more than 600 artists, written more than 1,400 product reviews and contributed to Jeff Beck’s Beck 01: Hot Rods and Rock & Roll and Eric Clapton’s Six String Stories.