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What were Guitar World's first-ever tab transcriptions?

Paul Gilbert
(Image credit: Future)

#GuitarWorld40: In 2020, Guitar World marks its 40th anniversary. To celebrate this momentous occasion, we’ll be sharing key moments from the magazine’s storied history, taking you inside the guitars, the stars and the bizarre from 40 years of the world’s biggest guitar magazine.

GW has been printing transcribed music since its inception in one form or another, starting out with brief instructional segments in various how-to columns and eventually moving on to bits and pieces from popular songs (the solo from Charlie Christian’s Solo Flight in the January 1982 issue may be the first instance of actual tablature in the magazine).

The first complete guitar and bass transcriptions – the somewhat odd pairing of Racer X’s Scarified (co-written by Paul Gilbert, pictured) and Michael Hedges’ Ragamuffin – appeared in the May 1988 issue, establishing Guitar World as a force to be reckoned with in the burgeoning world of guitar tabs.

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