Jim Root on designing his first-ever Charvel signature model, his '80s metal heroes and the most common mistakes he sees in Slipknot guitar covers

Jim Root
(Image credit: Charvel)

We now know him as the towering lead guitarist of Slipknot, one of the most widely revered metal bands on the planet. But once upon a time, long before he donned the jester mask that would transform him into the Iowa juggernaut's #4, a young Jim Root soaked up the vibrant scene of '80s hair metal.

It was an era defined by loud outfits and even louder electric guitars, with Root citing the likes of Mötley Crüe, Dokken, Twisted Sister as some of his early influences. And inspired principally by the six-string arsenal of Ratt's Warren DeMartini, Root quickly developed an affinity for Charvel guitars.

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at GuitarWorld.com from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.