As Root recently explained, he’s more of a song and riff man, admitting he finds solos “stressful.”
“I love to do them,” Root told Guitar.com. “They’re a lot of fun and, of course, you want to showcase your skills. But if the song doesn’t need a guitar solo, why put one in there?"
Root continued, “I always find myself overthinking solos to the point where they don’t feel natural. I want to showcase my skills but I also want to play for the song. It makes me fucking crazy!”
This is perhaps an unusual take for a guitarist playing heavy metal, where the solo traditionally holds pride of place. But Root’s preferences when it comes to the guitar itself – he favors classic Tele, Strat and Jazzmaster designs – is somewhat atypical.
Which is what he likes about working with Fender. As he explained about his first pairing with the company, which resulted in a signature Tele model, “I thought it was cool because no one expects somebody to play music like Slipknot’s on a Telecaster – something you’d see Tom Petty with. I thought that was a nice cool juxtaposition.
“At the time, I was like, ‘Well, I’m gonna go against this.’ It’s sort of my anti-metal punk-rock mentality.”
As for future signature models he’d like to explore with Fender?
“I’d love to do a Meteora,” Root mused. “They’re really cool. But I feel like I’ve asked [Fender] for a lot already. I might be pushing my luck!
"Maybe we could even do a Coronado? I’d like to try it with one of those – it might make me approach guitar playing a little differently.”