Lari Basilio on channeling joy through guitar playing, working with Leland Sklar and discovering 7-strings

Lari Basilio
(Image credit: Eduardo Orelha)

That smile. It's one of the first things you notice while watching Lari Basilio play guitar – a high-beam smile that’s big, wide and seemingly irrepressible. “People always comment about that,” she says. “They’re like, ‘Lari, you look like you’re having such a good time.’ And it’s true – music brings such joy to me, so when I play, I can’t help but show it.”

Basilio’s incandescent spirit runs throughout her stellar new album, Your Love. Whether she’s shredding sparks on the breakneck rocker Running to the Other Side, bopping to the sleek funk of Alive and Living or conducting a legato line masterclass on the shimmering title cut, she imbues each track with a kind of radiant positivity that’s impossible to resist.

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Joe Bosso

Joe is a freelance journalist who has, over the past few decades, interviewed hundreds of guitarists for Guitar World, Guitar Player, MusicRadar and Classic Rock. He is also a former editor of Guitar World, contributing writer for Guitar Aficionado and VP of A&R for Island Records. He’s an enthusiastic guitarist, but he’s nowhere near the likes of the people he interviews. Surprisingly, his skills are more suited to the drums. If you need a drummer for your Beatles tribute band, look him up.