Vaughan’s Top 5 Guitarists
These five guys all have very unique qualities but all of which have a strand of something running through them that has struck a chord in me (no pun intended), and how I approach the guitar…
5) Jimmy Page
Jimmy Page probably makes the top 5 of most guitarists. His playing has influenced so many guitarists during Zeppelins era and even now in modern music, yet his playing is still so unique and unrivalled by anyone. Led Zeppelin have such a diverse range of songs from heavy riff driven songs like ‘Black Dog’ to the acoustic masterpieces like ‘The Battle of Evermore’, and their both found on the same album (I haven’t even mentioned Stairway to Heaven… Ah well I have now).
He triggered my expensive love for Gibson Les Pauls (along with Mr Wylde) so here he is performing ‘Ramble On’ from Led Zeppelin II…
4) Tony Iommi
This guy created the sound of heavy rock music through a bit of bad luck! On his last day of work at a factory before quitting to be a full time musician, the ends of two of his fretting hand fingers were chopped off! Since that day he’s created his own fingertips with melted bottle tops and some leather for grip. In turn he then started tuning down his guitar to make the strings easier to bend.
What I love about Tony Iommi is the huge riffs that he brings to the table then goes off on one on jazz solos a la ‘Sabbath Bloody Sabbath‘.
The song below ‘Dirty Women’, is the live version from 1978 but it’s definitely worth checking out the studio version from 1976s Technical Ecstasy to witness his dual solos fighting each other to take centre stage. There is one note in there that gives me goosebumps every time!
3) David Gilmour
I’ve got be honest in that I haven’t really got into Sid Barrett era Pink Floyd but albums after Dai Gilmour got involved really grab my attention. You try listening to Dark Side Of The Moon with the lights off, you see things…crazy things…
Engineers/Producers Andy Francis & Phil Humphreys at Boneyard Studio created a bit of that vibe during the tracking of our song ‘Rain Dance’. The lights went of, the room lit by nothing but the power lights of the Orange & Marshall heads along with two gothic looking candle lamps…they cranked up the volume & the reverb… and then pressed record. Good times.
David Gilmour is Mr Feel. The song below ‘Shine on Your Crazy Diamond Part I-V’ is the proof…
2) Dimebag Darrell
My teenage years were pretty much dominated by Metallica, Down, COC, Alice In Chains and this guy in Pantera. I’m not sure anyone has ever played with the groove this guy had before his tragic on stage shooting in 2004.
I remember schoolmate Ainsley calling me up, panic in this voice “Vaughan, Dimes been shot!”. I didn’t believe him “Vaughan he has, check BBC news!” So I scrambled to the telly and to my horror he wasn’t lying. It was like a bit of our world died!
He plays some mental groovy technical licks like on ‘Cowboys From Hell’ & ‘Revolution Is My Name’ but it’s all still rooted in blues scales. As you’ve probably guessed the theme here, it’s full of emotion and feel!
I’d say that ‘Cemetery Gates’ is probably one of my favourite solos ever, but the solo & outro to the song below ‘Floods’ really is outstanding…
1) Joe Bonamassa
This guy is immense. He played with BB King when he was 12, grew up on Free, Peter Green era Fleetwood Mac, Deep Purple and has absorbed everything worthy of remembering from pretty much everybody.
He can play anything fom his blues/rock/folk solo work, classic/hard rock in Black Country Communion, funk in side project Rock Candy Funk Party… the list goes on…
Oh and his sound is incredible! Have a listen to ‘Black Lung Heartache‘ for a glimpse of diversity in a single song. Very bluesy and stripped back then….SMASH with a killer guitar sound…. I also need to mention his guitar sound… ‘The Ballad Of John Henry’, it’s COLLOSAL.
Ooooooo as you can probably tell I like this guy.
Here’s a live version of ‘Dust Bowl’ demonstrating the feel he conjures up over some of his more mellow songs. This guy is awesome.
So there we have it. Lewis and Wilkes are putting their lists together so get involved tell us who inspires you on your instrument and why! 👍
Over and out,