Brian Setzer: “For guitar players, rockabilly is the best music you can play. You can do anything with it – you can inject jazz, country, blues into that style”

Brian Setzer
(Image credit: Russ Harrington)

The years might roll by, but in Brian Setzer’s world, it is forever the '50s. There’s the quiff, still upstanding at 62. The rack of Gretsch antiquities, gleaming like the hubcaps of the hot-rods parked on his driveway. 

The lyrics, exploring a hinterland of diners, drive-ins, jukeboxes and switchblades. The kingpin of modern rockabilly can even use the term ‘cat’, without irony, and pull it off.   

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Henry Yates

Henry Yates is a freelance journalist who has written about music for titles including The Guardian, Telegraph, NME, Classic Rock, Guitarist, Total Guitar and Metal Hammer. He is the author of Walter Trout's official biography, Rescued From Reality, a talking head on Times Radio and an interviewer who has spoken to Brian May, Jimmy Page, Ozzy Osbourne, Ronnie Wood, Dave Grohl and many more. As a guitarist with three decades' experience, he mostly plays a Fender Telecaster and Gibson Les Paul.