Unplugged

Legends

Johnny 'Guitar' Watson

Johnny ‘Guitar’ Watson is one of those men who has fallen unjustly into oblivion. In the 50s he took his guitar into space with his innovative flashy style, without the need for a pick he found a vocal sound in the best tradition of Texan blues, by making his guitar sing. In the 60s he was crowned the gangster of love and the 70s saw him as a...

Dan Auerbach

Dan Auerbach and the Black Keys have been central to keeping the flame of rock alive in the 21st century, making their music ring out beyond the homes of the longtime fans of that music and having managed to convert more than one millennial to the religion of rock & roll and guitars. That is just one reason why we would hold him in the...

The Wildhearts - Renaissance Men (2019)

It must have been a hugely traumatic concert in Berlin with The Head Cat (Lemmy’s rockabilly group), because afterwards Ginger Wildheart said that he never wanted to play another acoustic set again in his life. “There was me and a friend on stage with acoustic guitars and thousands of Motörhead fans; to say it went down badly would be...

Duane Eddy

It was the dawn of rock & roll in the mid-50s, a hopping bopping rock & roll played by such names as Dick Dale, Chubby Checker, Frankie Avalon, and Paul Anka, while the radio was humming to the sounds of bands like Bill Haley and the Comets, The Corsairs, and The Isley Brothers, to mention a few of the many. These were fun times with plenty...

Peter Frampton

Peter Frampton was always ahead of the rest, in high school he got together with a boy 3 years older than him to play, his name was David Jones, but the world would end up knowing him as David Bowie, at 16 he hung out with members of the Beatles and the Stones as lead singer of The Herd, at 18 he formed a band with his idol, Steve Marriott, and at...

Skip Spence

In the life of Alexander ‘Skip’ Spence it is difficult to tell the reality apart from the legend, the perspective is lost on someone who played in three of the most important bands of the burgeoning psychedelia, Quicksilver Messenger Service, Jefferson Airplane, and Moby Grape, yet ended up homeless. Someone who released his first solo album...

Brian Setzer

Brian Setzer was born on April 10, 1959, in Massapequa, New York, the very same year Buddy Holly had died on February 3, Elvis was halfway through his 2 years of military service, Little Richard had quit rock & roll to find religion, Chuck Berry had various problems with the law, and Jerry Lewis was losing his career due to his scandalous...

Kurt Cobain

It is 25 years since the death of Kurt Cobain, the man who led Nirvana and became the last great rock star; something he hated deeply, having been a part of the alternative and 'underground' music of the 80s. Twenty-five years after his death his legacy remains alive, and is the main reference of 90s music. His career was short but practically...

George Benson

When Wes Montgomery died on June 15, 1968, the jazz world didn’t have to look very far to find his substitute, some months before George Benson had released his 3rd solo album, Giblet Gravy, and his refined, melodic style made him the deserving successor to the crown as the new king of the jazz guitar. This was also what the heavyweights of the...

Shawn Lane

The man who played with Ringo Starr, Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson, turned down an Alice Cooper tour, and reportedly ‘blew away’ Ted Nugent on an onstage guitar riff duel – Shawn Lane - is not well-known outside guitar circles.    And, even ‘among those in the know’, it is his shredding that predominantly captures the...

T-Bone Walker

Perhaps T-Bone Walker is remembered more for his famous disciples than his own music, but anyone who plays an electric guitar is indebted to him, as he was the first one to plug the instrument in to play and sing the blues, thus creating, electric blues. His Stormy Monday pushed B.B.King into getting an electric guitar but, besides that, the show...

Wes Montgomery

When The Incredible Jazz Guitar of Wes Montgomery was released in the early 1960, the jazz world, specifically the jazz guitar, experienced a seizure that it had been expecting for a long time. Since the tragic disappearance on March 2, 1942, at only 25 years of age, of the great Charlie Christian, the jazz guitar was orphaned by a...

Rory Gallagher - His marvelous acoustic styles

Rory Gallagher left this world in 1995 and the world gasped at the sudden absence of this truly gifted musician, a man whose career visited the many styles of not only his music, but also for his impact on legions of guitarists and fellow artists who admired the spectrum of genres he covered, from his high-energy electric blues/rock to his acoustic...

Randy California

This is the marvelous yet sad story of Randy California, an extraordinary guitarist whose fame was elusive despite hobnobbing with some of the heavyweights in rock history. If anyone has heard anything about him it’s perhaps about the controversy over how his Taurus served as an inspiration to Jimmy Page to compose Stairway to Heaven, but...

Gary Clark Jr. Portrait

Despite a hugely promising start as a guitarist at the centre of the blues world, when Gary Clark Jr was 26 years old there was a moment when he wondered whether it was all worth it.   “In 2010 I was thinking about doing something else,” he says, “bills weren’t being paid, my electricity got cut off and I’m sitting there...

Steve Hackett

Londoner Steve Hackett (born February 12, 1950) is best known as the lead guitarist for the legendary English progressive rockers Genesis, along with Phil Collins/drums, Peter Gabriel/lead vocals, Mike Rutherford/bass, and Tony Banks/keyboards. Today we will look at his formidable career as guitarist, songwriter, singer and composer that has...

Phil Manzanera

Phil Manzanera’s guitar served to define the sound of art/rock during his time with Roxy Music, his original sound and innovative solos that gave more angularity and musicality to a band ahead of its time that mixed art, fashion, and cinema with avant-garde music and rock & roll from the 50s. His curiosity also led him to innovative projects...

Carl Perkins

Carl Perkins found fame writing Blue Suede Shoes and taking it to the very top of the charts; played alongside Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan and the Beatles; and was named as one of Rolling Stone’s top 100 guitarists of all time, but his roots were as humble as can be imagined, and he carried them with him...

Howlin' Wolf

They say that sometimes life imitates art, so in the case of Howlin' Wolf we could say that his life was a long blues with a lot of art and, incredibly, a happy ending. After all the possible stops: the 'Dickensian' childhood, the plantation, the alcohol, the women and, of course, the music, came recognition. The music that howled in the...