Zakk Wylde on Randy Rhoads: "He Had Unbelievable Technique and Could Do All the Things on the Guitar That Are Astounding"

Today marks the 30th anniversary of the untimely death of guitar legend Randy Rhoads, who perished in a plane crash at the all-too-young age of 25.

Speaking to MusicRadar's Joe Bosso, Zakk Wylde recently reflected back on the influence Randy had on his playing. When asked if he studied Randy's technique even before he got the chance to audition for Ozzy Osbourne, Wylde said, "Oh, totally. Without a doubt, I studied him. He had unbelievable technique and could do all the things on the guitar that are astounding. His scales, the diminished scales he used – unreal. But it was his writing and the way he composed his solos – I mean, his solos were songs within the songs… He was way ahead of what everybody else was doing."

Rhoad's influence has been felt by Zakk throughout his career, especially with Zakk playing Randy's solos every night for a number of years.

"I think any guitarist who's inspired by or influenced by Randy knows what a brilliant soloist he was," said Wylde. "I really got my head around where you could go with a solo by playing Randy's music. Construction – playing a beginning, middle and end – that's one of the biggest things I got from him."

He added, "Randy had what only the greats have – he had feel. Great musicians, you don't just hear them, you feel them. When I listen to Randy Rhoads, I feel every note. I learned a lot from him."

You can read the full story here.

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Josh Hart

Josh Hart is a former web producer and staff writer for Guitar World and Guitar Aficionado magazines (2010–2012). He has since pursued writing fiction under various pseudonyms while exploring the technical underpinnings of journalism, now serving as a senior software engineer for The Seattle Times.