Skip to main content

Hear Steve Stevens and the String Revolution reimagine Ozzy Osbourne's Crazy Train as a fiery classical guitar instrumental

Steve Stevens (left) and Randy Rhoads
(Image credit: Scott Dudelson/Getty Images, Fin Costello/Redferns)

Last year, late Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Randy Rhoads was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

To celebrate Rhoads's induction, Steve Stevens – best known as the longtime electric guitar player for Billy Idol – teamed up with four-guitar ensemble the String Revolution for a fiery, flamenco-inspired reinvention of Ozzy Osbourne's Crazy Train. You can give it a spin below.

With an opening riff that Guitar World readers ranked as the second greatest guitar riff of all time, Crazy Train is the most famous and enduring of Rhoads's many contributions to the rock guitar lexicon.

The cover features the String Revolution's Janet Robin and Art Zavala Jr. on acoustic guitar, Daniel Schwarz on baritone guitar, and Markus Illko on classical guitar. Stevens, also armed with a nylon-string model, takes the solo.

Evidently as skilled a classical player as he is an electric player, Stevens doesn't stray too far from Rhoads' sacred original lead break, but – given how much Rhoads loved the classical guitar, and how much classical influences informed his electric playing – it's cool to hear the legendary roller-coaster ride of a solo recontextualized like this.

"When I was told that Randy Rhoads was to be inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame I was thrilled,” Stevens said in a press release. “Long overdue but so deserving.

"As I was contacted to contribute to a reimagining of Ozzy’s Crazy Train in my mind, I had one requirement – that it not be in any way similar to the iconic original version. Upon hearing the track two things struck me immediately, it works so well as a Spanish guitar piece, and that Randy would have loved it. 

"It’s widely known that Randy was a beautiful classical guitarist, even continuing lessons through his Ozzy days," Stevens concluded. "I hope we did you proud buddy."  

For more on Stevens and the String Revolution, stop by their respective (opens in new tab) websites (opens in new tab).

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month*

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player (opens in new tab). Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder (opens in new tab) and Unrecorded (opens in new tab). Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.