Players

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Kenny Burrell

Kenny Burrell has been a very consistent guitarist throughout his career. Cool-toned and playing in an unchanging style based in bop, Burrell has always been the epitome of good taste and solid swing. Duke Ellington's favorite guitarist (though he never actually recorded with him), Burrell started playing guitar when he was 12, and he debuted on records with Dizzy Gillespie in 1951. Part of the fertile Detroit jazz scene of the early '50s, Burrell moved to New York in 1956.

Keith Richards

He's acknowledged as perhaps the greatest rhythm guitarist in rock & roll, but Keith Richards is even more legendary for his near-miraculous ability to survive the most debauched excesses of the rock & roll lifestyle. His prodigious consumption of drugs and alcohol has been well documented, and would likely have destroyed anyone with a less amazing endurance level.

Julian Bream

Originally taught by his father, Julian Bream (b. 1933) made his debut with the Cheltham Guitar Circle at the age of 14. By the age of 16, already a seasoned recitalist, he entered the Royal College of Music. He made his London debut in 1950, but it was his appearance in November of 1951 at Wigmore Hall that propelled his career to international success. This led him first to Switzerland in 1954, followed by a European tour, and in 1958, the United States.

In 1950, Bream took up the Renaissance lute, and began a life-long fascination with Elizabethan music.

Joni Mitchell

When the dust settles, Joni Mitchell may stand as the most important and influential female recording artist of the late 20th century. Uncompromising and iconoclastic, Mitchell confounded expectations at every turn; restlessly innovative, her music evolved from deeply personal folk stylings into pop, jazz, avant-garde, and even world music, presaging the multicultural experimentation of the 1980s and 1990s by over a decade.

John Sykes

John Sykes (born July 29, 1959 in Reading, Berkshire), is an English heavy metal/hard rock guitarist who has played with Streetfighter, Tygers Of Pan Tang, Badlands, Thin Lizzy, Whitesnake, Blue Murder, and his solo project John Sykes. He was in a band called Badlands, with his one time Whitesnake bandmate Neil Murray (not to be confused with the band Badlands featuring guitarist Jake E. Lee). Sykes played on the 1987 Whitesnake self titled album.

John Scofield

One of the "big three" of current jazz guitarists (along with Pat Metheny and Bill Frisell), Scofield's influence grew in the '90s. Possessor of a very distinctive rock-oriented sound that is often a bit distorted, Scofield is a masterful jazz improviser whose music generally falls somewhere between post-bop, fusion, and soul jazz. He started on guitar while at high school in Connecticut, and from 1970-1973 Scofield studied at Berklee and played in the Boston area.

John Petrucci

John grew up on Long Island, Kings Park to be exact, where he, John Myung & Kevin Moore all attended school together. He started playing guitar at the age of 12 (After a brief fling at age 8 when he noticed his sister got to stay up late for her organ lessons. His little plan didn't work out being that his guitar lesson was after school, and soon lost interest.) He quickly realized his influences and was determined to reach their level of ability. Some early influences include Yngwie Malmsteen, Randy Rhoads, Iron Maiden, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Yes, Rush etc (see his rig).

Johnny Winter

John Dawson "Johnny" Winter III (born on 23 February 1944 in Beaumont, Texas, USA) is an American blues guitarist, singer and producer. He is the first son of John and Edwina Winter who were very much responsible for both Johnny's and younger brother Edgar Winter's early musical awareness. Both Johnny and Edgar have albinism.

John McLaughlin

A household name since the early '70s, John McLaughlin was an innovative fusion guitarist when he led the Mahavishnu Orchestra and continued living up to his reputation as a phenomenal and consistently inquisitive player through the years. In fact, he was the first real fast guitar player. He started on guitar when he was 11 and was initially inspired by blues and swing players. McLaughlin worked with Alexis Korner , Graham Bond , Ginger Baker , and others in the 1960s and played free jazz with Gunter Hampel for six months.

John Jorgenson

Southern California native John Jorgenson, a three-time winner of the Academy of Country Music award for Guitarist of the Year, was destined to be a part of the music business from an early age. Classically trained as a child, his father conducted for Benny Goodman. John, who idolized Goodman, played with his hero while his father was leading the way. Later, he went on to work for eight years as a member of the jazz and bluegrass group at Disneyland.

John Fogerty

John Cameron Fogerty achieved fame as the lead singer/songwriter and guitarist in Creedence Clearwater Revival and has since gone on to a chart-topping solo career. Born in Berkeley, CA, Fogerty and his brother Tom organized the group that would become Creedence as the Golliwogs in the late '50s.

John Abercrombie

John Abercrombie's tying together of jazz's many threads made him one of the most influential acoustic and electric guitarists of the 1970s and early '80s; his recordings for ECM have helped define that label's progressive chamber jazz reputation. His star has since faded somewhat, due largely to the general conservatism that's come to dominate jazz, though he has remained a vital creative personality.

Joe Walsh

From his early hits with the James Gang through to his tenure with the Eagles - as well as a successful solo career - Joe Walsh remained one of the most colorful characters in rock & roll, lending his distinctively reedy vocals, off-the-wall lyrics, and expansive guitar leads to a series of AOR staples including "Funk #49," "Rocky Mountain Way," and "Life's Been Good." Born November 20, 1947 in Wichita, KS, Walsh initially studied the oboe and clarinet, later playing bass in local bands the G-Clefs and the Nomads; while attending Kent State University, he finally picked up the guitar, f

Joe Satriani

Along with teaching some of the top rock guitar players of the '80s and '90s, Joe Satriani is one of the most technically accomplished and widely respected guitarists to emerge in recent times. Born on July 15, 1956, in Westbury, NY, and raised in the nearby town of Carle Place, Satriani - inspired by guitar legend Jimi Hendrix - picked up the guitar at the age of 14 (although he was initially more interested in the drums).

Joe Perry

Along with Kiss' Ace Frehley, Aerosmith's Joe Perry was responsible for inspiring thousands of teenagers to pick up guitars and start rocking n' rolling in the 1970's and beyond. Born September 10, 1950 in Lawrence, MA, Perry got his first taste of rock n' roll at the ripe old age of 6, when neighbors turned him on to such early rock nuggets as "Rock Around the Clock," "Tutti Frutti," etc.

Joe Pass

Joe Pass (1929 - 1994) began playing the guitar when he was nine years old and by age fourteen he was playing in local bands in the Johnstown Pennsylvania area. In 1947, at eighteen, he went on the road with the Tony Pastor band for a short time before returning to high school. He appears on several Pastor recordings from this period as a rhythm player.

Jimmy Page

Unquestionably one of the all-time most influential, important, and versatile guitarists and songwriters in rock history is Jimmy Page. Just about every rock guitarist from the late '60s/early '70s to the present day has been influenced by Page's work with Led Zeppelin - his monolithic riffs served as a blueprint for what would eventually become heavy metal, yet he refused to be pigeonholed to any single musical style (touching upon folk, country, funk, blues, and other genres).

Jimmy Bruno

One of the finest jazz guitarists in Philadelphia, Jimmy Bruno is a passionate hard bopper who loves to swing aggressively but can be a very sensitive ballad player when he puts his mind to it. The Italian-American was raised in South Philly, where he fell in love with jazz as a kid and took up the guitar at the age of seven.

Jim Hall

A harmonically advanced cool-toned and subtle guitarist, Jim Hall has been an inspiration to many guitarists, including some (such as Bill Frisell) who sound nothing like him. Hall attended the Cleveland Institute of Music and studied classical guitar in Los Angeles with Vincente Gomez.

He was an original member of the Chico Hamilton Quintet (1955-1956), and during 1956-1959 was with the Jimmy Giuffre Three. After touring with Ella Fitzgerald (1960-1961) and sometimes forming duos with Lee Konitz, Hall was with Sonny Rollins' dynamic quartet in 1961-1962, recording The Bridge.

Jerry Garcia

Jerry Garcia was the lead guitarist, vocalist, and spokesman for the seminal '60s rock & roll band the Grateful Dead. Throughout his career, he led the Dead through numerous changes, becoming one of the most famous figures in the history of rock & roll. Simultaneously, Garcia pursued an eclectic array of side projects, ranging from the bluegrass group Old & in the Way to his folky solo recordings. Garcia stayed active as a member of the Grateful Dead and as a solo performer until his death in 1995.

Jerry Donahue

Jerry Donahue (born September 24, 1946, Manhattan, New York City) is a guitarist who has played for Poet And The One Man Band, Fotheringay, Fairport Convention, Joan Armatrading and the Hellecasters with Will Ray and John Jorgenson. Jerry is a technical master, and a hallmark of his musical vocabulary is the technique of string "bending".

Jennifer Batten

The 'guitar shredder' genre of the late '80s was comprised almost entirely of males, but one exception was the fleet-fingered Jennifer Batten. Born in Upstate New York, Batten got her first electric guitar at the age of eight (inspired by her older sister who already owned an instrument, as well as the Beatles and the Monkees), before her family relocated to San Diego, California, a year later. In 1979, Batten began attending G.I.T. (Guitar Institute of Technology), where she befriended such fellow up-and-comers as Steve Lynch (later of Autograph).

Jeff Healey

What makes Jeff Healey different from other blues-rockers is also what keeps some listeners from accepting him as anything other than a novelty - the fact that the blind guitarist plays his Fender Stratocaster on his lap, not standing up. With the guitar in his lap, Healey can make unique bends and hammer-ons, making his licks different and more elastic than most of the competition. Unfortunately, his material leans toward standard AOR blues-rock which rarely lets him cut loose, but when he does, his instrumental prowess can be shocking.

Jeff Beck

While he was as innovative as Jimmy Page, as tasteful as Eric Clapton , and nearly as visionary as Jimi Hendrix , Jeff Beck never achieved the same commercial success as any of his contemporaries, primarily because of the haphazard way he approached his career. After Rod Stewart left the Jeff Beck Group in 1971, Beck never worked with a charismatic lead singer who could have helped sell his music to a wide audience. Furthermore, he was simply too idiosyncratic, moving from heavy metal to jazz fusion within a blink of an eye.

Jason Becker

Jason Becker is an American hard rock guitarist who formed the band Cacophony in the late '80s with fellow guitarist Marty Friedman and recorded two albums with it, Speed Metal Symphony (1987) and Go Off! (1988). He made the instrumental solo album Perpetual Burn in 1988. In 1989, he left Cacophony and was hired by David Lee Roth to replace Steve Vai in his backup band, appearing on the album A Little Ain't Enough (1991).

Jan Akkerman

A musician of near-legendary prowess, Jan Akkerman for a time eclipsed Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, and Jeff Beck among reader polls in England as the top guitarist in the world. Akkerman was born in Amsterdam, Holland, and showed his musical inclinations early, taking up the guitar while still in grade school. His taste and interests were extraordinarily wide-ranging, from pop-rock to classical, with room for blues, Latin, and other influences. He joined his first band, Johnny &The Cellar Rockers, in 1958, at age 11, which included his boyhood friend Pierre van der Linden, on drums.

James Hetfield

When it comes to defining Metallica, most people use James Hetfield as their guide. There's never any bullshit with James and there's never any shirking of duties. Example? When he threw his back out on the Summer Sanitarium 2000 tour, James ploughed his way through three weeks of intense physical therapy in four days, according to his physical therapist. And when the going got really tough, and James needed help in 2001, he sought it out, took it on and came back stronger than ever.

Ike Turner

Ike Turner is certainly one of the most dehumanized figures in rock history. Mention his name and the first association that comes to most anyone's mind is "abusive husband," not "soul star" or "rock & roll pioneer." According to legend, Turner was a tyrannical ogre who used physical violence and psychological intimidation to control his infinitely more talented wife Tina, while indulging his own appetites for cocaine and women at every turn.

Howlin' Wolf

In the history of the blues, there has never been anyone quite like the Howlin' Wolf. Six foot three and close to 300 pounds in his salad days, the Wolf was the primal force of the music spun out to its ultimate conclusion. A Robert Johnson may have possessed more lyrical insight, a Muddy Waters more dignity, and a B.B. King certainly more technical expertise, but no one could match him for the singular ability to rock the house down to the foundation while simultaneously scaring its patrons out of its wits.

Herb Ellis

An excellent bop-based guitarist with a slight country twang to his sound, Herb Ellis became famous playing with the Oscar Peterson Trio during 1953-1958. Prior to that, he had attended North Texas State University and played with the Casa Loma Orchestra, Jimmy Dorsey (1945-1947), and the sadly under-recorded trio Soft Winds.

Hank Marvin

A major influence on British guitar heroes of the '70s such as Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page, Hank Marvin played lead guitar for the Shadows, one of the U.K.'s top instrumental outfits and backing band for Cliff Richard on most of his hits. Born Brian Robson Rankin on October 28, 1941, Marvin grew up in Newcastle learning guitar, banjo and piano. He played in various skiffle groups around the area, and met up with rhythm guitarist Bruce Welch . After moving to London in 1958, the two were recruited to serve in Cliff Richard's backing band, the Drifters, with Ian Samwell and Terry Smart.

Glenn Frey

While remaining best known for his tenure in the Eagles, Glenn Frey also enjoyed considerable success as a solo performer, with a career dating back to the glory days of the Detroit rock scene of the mid-1960s.

George Lynch

One of the most popular guitarists to emerge from '80s-era heavy metal was Dokken's George Lynch. With an arsenal of snazzy-looking guitars and speedy solos, Lynch helped propel Dokken toward the top of the charts for a spell (before interband tension broke up the group), and later, launched a solo career. Although born in Spokane, WA, on September 28, 1954, Lynch was raised in Sacramento, CA, where he took up the guitar as a teenager. Influenced by the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Leslie West, Jeff Beck, and Allan Holdsworth, Lynch played the L.A.

George Harrison

As lead guitarist for the Beatles, George Harrison provided the band with a lyrical style of playing in which every note mattered. Harrison was one of millions of young Britons inspired to take up the guitar by British skiffle king Lonnie Donegan's recording of "Rock Island Line." But he had more dedication than most, and with the encouragement of a slightly older school friend - Paul McCartney - he advanced quickly in his technique and command of the instrument.

 

George Benson

George Benson is simply one of the greatest guitarists in jazz history, but he is also an amazingly versatile musician; and that frustrates critics to no end who would paint him into a narrow bop box. He can play in just about any style - from swing to bop to R&B to pop - with supreme taste, a beautiful rounded tone, terrific speed, a marvelous sense of logic in building solos, and, always, an unquenchable urge to swing. His inspirations may have been Charlie Christian and Wes Montgomery - and he can do dead-on impressions of both - but his style is completely his own.

Gary Moore

One of rock's most underrated guitarists (both from a technical and compositional point of view), Gary Moore remains relatively unknown in the U.S., while his solo work has brought him substantial acclaim and commercial success in most other parts of the world -- especially in Europe. Born on April 4, 1952, in Belfast, Ireland, Moore became interested in guitar during the '60s, upon discovering such blues-rock masters as Eric Clapton , Jimi Hendrix , and perhaps his biggest influence of all, Fleetwood Mac 's Peter Green.

Freddie King

Guitarist Freddie King rode to fame in the early '60s with a spate of catchy instrumentals which became instant bandstand fodder for fellow bluesmen and white rock bands alike. Employing a more down-home (thumb and finger picks) approach to the B.B. King single-string style of playing, King enjoyed success on a variety of different record labels. Furthermore, he was one of the first bluesmen to employ a racially integrated group on-stage behind him. Influenced by Eddie Taylor, Jimmy Rogers, and Robert Jr.

Frank Zappa

Frank Zappa was one of the most accomplished composers of the rock era; his music combines an understanding of and appreciation for such contemporary classical figures as Stravinsky, Stockhausen, and Varèse with an affection for late-'50s doo wop rock & roll and a facility for the guitar-heavy rock that dominated pop in the '70s. But Zappa was also a satirist whose reserves of scorn seemed bottomless and whose wicked sense of humor and absurdity have delighted his numerous fans, even when his lyrics crossed over the broadest bounds of taste.

Frank Marino

Frank Marino was born in Canada in 1954. He began playing guitar at the age of 13 after having played drums for three years.

His main influence was Jimi Hendrix and throughout his career he delivered bluesy rock solos.

Frank Gambale

Frank began playing guitar at age 7 in Canberra, Australia where he was born and raised. He was influenced by the blues playing of Jimi Hendrix, John Mayall / Eric Clapton, and Grateful Dead's Jerry Garcia. In his mid-teens he discovered Steely Dan, The Brecker Brothers and Chick Corea, which pointed him in a jazzy direction. In 1982 at 23 he decided to leave his home to study at the Guitar Institute of Technology (GIT) in Hollywood. He graduated with the highest honor, Student of the Year and was offered a teaching position which he kept for 4 years.

Eric Johnson

Very few musical artists achieve a true signature style - one which makes comparisons to other musicians impossible. But Texas guitarist Eric Johnson arguably comes as close to this echelon as any musician from the past quarter-century. Like fellow Lone Star State guitarists Johnny Winter, Billy Gibbons, and Stevie Ray Vaughan, Johnson blends the rock style of Jimi Hendrix and the blues power of Albert King.

Eric Clapton

By the time Eric Clapton launched his solo career with the release of his self-titled debut album in mid-1970, he was long established as one of the world's major rock stars due to his group affiliations - the Yardbirds , John Mayall's Bluesbreakers , Cream , and Blind Faith - affiliations that had demonstrated his claim to being the best rock guitarist of his generation (see his rig).

Eddie van Halen

With their 1978 eponymous debut, Van Halen simultaneously rewrote the rules of rock guitar and hard rock in general. Guitarist Eddie Van Halen redefined what electric guitar could do, developing a blindingly fast technique with a variety of self-taught two-handed tapping, hammer-ons, pull-offs, and effects that mimicked the sounds of machines and animals (see his rig). It was wildly inventive and over the top, equaled only by vocalist David Lee Roth, who brought the role of a metal singer to near-performance art standards.

Duane Allman

Duane Allman went from musical unknown to become one of rock's most revered guitar virtuosos, only to die a legend, all in about 24 months. He barely had time to establish his legacy, much less his name - two finished studio albums with his band, a live album and lots of shows with them (some of which, off radio, are starting to surface on bootlegs), and session work in which he played behind other artists, along with songs off of a busted solo album project.

Don Felder

During the Eagles' most commercially successful period (the late '70s), the press seemed transfixed on Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Joe Walsh, and Timothy B. Schmit, rather than the mysterious man in the background, guitarist Don Felder. But in addition to the group's trademark vocal harmonies, it was Felder's guitar harmonies that proved to be an important ingredient to the Eagles' sound (not to mention composing all of the music to one of rock's all-time greatest tracks, "Hotel California," including its epic guitar solo).

Django Reinhardt

Django Reinhardt was the first hugely influential jazz figure to emerge from Europe - and he remains the most influential European to this day, with possible competition from Joe Zawinul, George Shearing, John McLaughlin, his old cohort Stephane Grappelli and a bare handful of others.

Dimebag Darrell

While the majority of acclaimed hard rock guitarists of the early '90s focused primarily on songwriting rather than shredding away, there were a few exceptions to the rule, like Pantera 's Dimebag Darrell . Born Darrell Lance Abbott on August 20, 1966 in Dallas, Texas, Darrell was born into a musical family, as his father, Jerry Abbott, was a country & western songwriter and producer. It wasn't long before Darrell became more interested in hard rock/heavy metal (see his rig), especially upon his discovery of the masked quartet Kiss , and their guitarist, Ace Frehley.

Dickey Betts

Dickey Betts joined the Allman Brothers Band as second lead guitarist and singer in the late '60s. In addition to matching bandleader Duane Allman lick for lick, Betts also wrote such memorable songs as "Revival" (number 92, 1971) and the instrumental tour de force "In Memory of Elizabeth Reed."

Debbie Davies

Davies rise to the upper echelon of blues music started at an early age as she absorbed the music heard constantly in her home. Her (professional) musician parents were either sitting at the piano or spinning discs on their turntable, filling the air with the sounds of big band jazz, harmony vocal groups, or the pop icons of the day. But the young Davies was particularly attracted to the bluesier sounds of her father’s Ray Charles records, and by the age of 12 realized that her affinity for an instrument was not for the piano, but for the guitar.

David Gilmour

Born March 6, 1944 in Cambridge, England, Gilmour is one of the most influential rock guitarists of all times as Pink Floyd is one of the most influential groups of all times. He recorded tens of memorable solos, when people whistle a Floyd tune, they never bypass Gilmour's solo.

The legendary Pink Floyd guitarist merges sensibility with megalomania in a special way. He was brought to Floyd by his crazy pal and diamond, Syd Barrett in the sixties.

Dave Mustaine

Although he never appeared on any of their albums, guitarist Dave Mustaine lent a major hand in creating Metallica's groundbreaking thrash metal sound. Born on September 13, 1961, in La Mesa, CA, Mustaine and his family had to move often while he was a youngster to escape the wrath of his alcoholic and violent father.

Danny Gatton

Guitar virtuoso Danny Gatton was known for the incredibly wide stylistic range of his playing; based in rockabilly, Gatton's musical vocabulary included R&B, pop, country, rock, and jazz, all of which he could play effectively. Gatton began playing at age nine, joining his first band, the Lancers, three years later. In 1960, Gatton pursued a jazz direction when he joined the Offbeats, where pianist/organist Dick Heintze proved to be one of Gatton's biggest influences.

Bumblefoot - Ron Thal

Bumblefoot, aka Ron Thal, is a NYC guitarist/vocalist with two releases on Shrapnel/Roadrunner Records, "The Adventures Of Bumblefoot" (1995) and "Hermit" (1997), and the soundtrack to SEGA video game "Wild Woody" (1996). Through his own production company "Hermit Inc", Bumblefoot released the CD "Hands" in 1998.

In 2001, Bumblefoot toured Europe, and in November released "9.11", a benefit CD with 100% of his profits donated to the American Red Cross. The experimental lounge-rock "Uncool" CD was released February 2002.

Buddy Guy

He's Chicago's blues king today, ruling his domain just as his idol and mentor Muddy Waters did before him. Yet there was a time, and not all that long ago either, when Buddy Guy couldn't even negotiate a decent record deal. Times sure have changed for the better - Guy's first three albums for Silvertone in the '90s all earned Grammys. Eric Clapton unabashedly calls Buddy Guy his favorite blues axeman, and so do a great many adoring fans worldwide.

Buckethead - Brian Carroll

The Buckethead backstory begins with a kid named Brian Carroll growing up in a Southern California suburb not far from Disneyland. He's a shy kid and spends a lot of time in his room, which is filled with comic books, video games, martial-arts movie memorabilia, slasher-flick stuff, all the usual youth-culture detritus. He also spends a whole lot of time at Disneyland.

Brian Setzer

Former Stray Cat Brian Setzer was born in New York City and raised in Long Island. His first instrument, at age eight, was the euphonium, and he played the tuba-like instrument for ten years. He began having dreams of leading a big band with horns as a teen, but got sidetracked by punk. Initially, as a guitarist and songwriter, he took his inspiration from blues-rock bands like Led Zeppelin, although as a teen he'd take the train into New York to hang around the jazz clubs, sneaking into places like the Village Vanguard and the Village Gate.

Brian May

With a musical career spanning 3 decades, Queen founding member Brian May is a world-renowned guitarist (see his rig), songwriter, producer and performer.

Brian Jones

Brian Jones was born Lewis Brian Hopkin Jones on February 28, 1942, to Lewis and Louisa Jones, in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England. His father, Lewis worked at Dowty's aircraft works, and his mother Louisa was a piano teacher. His schooling started at Dean Close public school, and from there went to Cheltenham Grammer school. He was suspended for a short time, but yet maintained good grades. Brian sang in the choir and played the saxophone in many jazz bands. Two of the bands was Bill Nile's Delta Band and the Ramrods, which would perform at art schools.

Bonnie Raitt

Long a critic's darling, singer/guitarist Bonnie Raitt did not begin to win the comparable commercial success due her until the release of the aptly titled 1989 blockbuster Nick of Time; her tenth album, it rocketed her into the mainstream consciousness nearly two decades after she first committed her unique blend of blues, rock, and R&B to vinyl. Born in Burbank, CA, on November 8, 1949, she was the daughter of Broadway star John Raitt, best known for his starring performances in such smashes as Carousel and Pajama Game.

Bo Diddley

He only had a few hits in the 1950s and early '60s, but as Bo Diddley sang, "You Can't Judge a Book by Its Cover." You can't judge an artist by his chart success, either, and Diddley produced greater and more influential music than all but a handful of the best early rockers.

Blues Saraceno

Blues Saraceno received his first record deal at the tender age of 16 with "Guitar for The Practicing Musician." The first record is called called "Never Look Back". He then recorded "Plaid" and "Hairpick" for them as well. All three were instrumental albums that sold well over 100,000 copies.

He went on to play with Michael Bolton, Taylor Dayne, Cher, and toured the world several times over with Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker of " Cream ". He recorded " Crack a Smile " with the band POISON their last album for Capitol Records.

Blind Lemon Jefferson

Country blues guitarist and vocalist Blind Lemon Jefferson is indisputably one of the main figures in country blues. He was of the highest in many regards, being one of the founders of Texas blues (along with Texas Alexander), one of the most influential country bluesmen of all time, one of the most popular bluesmen of the 1920s, and the first truly commercially successful male blues performer.

Billy Gibbons

Along with the late Stevie Ray Vaughan , ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons is unquestionably one of the finest blues-rock guitarists to ever emerge from Texas. Born on either March, 4 or December 16, 1950 (both dates have been given in the past), and raised in Houston, Texas, Gibbons grew up in a home that favored both classical and country sounds, but upon discovering Elvis Presley via an appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show , Gibbons became transfixed by rock n' roll.

Chuck Berry

Chuck Berry, a music pioneer aka the Father Rock 'n' roll pioneer, died on Saturday (18 March 2017) at age 90. Chuck Berry’s family wrote on his Facebook page: “We are deeply saddened to announce that Chuck Berry - beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather - passed away at his home today at the age of 90. Though his health had deteriorated recently, he spent his last days at home surrounded by the love of his family and friends.”

Chris Rea

British singer and guitarist Chris Rea has enjoyed a run of popularity in Europe during the late '80s and early '90s after almost a decade of previous recording.

Rea started out performing with a local group called Magdalene, taking David Coverdale's place; the band won a national talent contest in 1975 as the Beautiful Losers, but still failed to get a record contract. Rea left the band and recorded the album Whatever Happened to Benny Santini?, which alluded to a discarded stage name, which went gold on the strength of the U.S. Top 20 hit "Fool (If You Think It's Over)."

Chris Impellitteri

Chris Impellitteri is one of those metal guitar heroes that one might expect to find on the Shrapnel Records roster. His style has often been favorably compared to Yngwie Malmsteen, and with good reason, as both are neo-classical speed/shred guitarists of the highest order.

Chet Atkins

Without Chet Atkins, country music may never have crossed over into the pop charts in the '50s and '60s. Although he recorded hundreds of solo records, Atkins' largest influence came as a session musician and a record producer. During the '50s and '60s, he helped create the Nashville sound, a style of country music that owed nearly as much to pop as it did to honky tonks.

Charlie Christian

It can be said without exaggeration that virtually every jazz guitarist that emerged during 1940-65 sounded like a relative of Charlie Christian. The first important electric guitarist, Christian played his instrument with the fluidity, confidence, and swing of a saxophonist. Although technically a swing stylist, his musical vocabulary was studied and emulated by the bop players, and when one listens to players ranging from Tiny Grimes, Barney Kessel, and Herb Ellis, to Wes Montgomery and George Benson, the dominant influence of Christian is obvious.

Bireli Lagrene

Bireli Lagrene was born on September 4, 1966 in Saverne, Alsace, France. The son of Fiso Lagrene, a popular guitarist in pre-war France, Lagrene displayed a prodigious talent as a very young child. Born into a gypsy community, his origins and his fleet, inventive playing style inevitably generated comparisons with Django Reinhardt. In 1978, he won a prize at a festival at Strasbourg and subsequently made a big impact during a televised gypsy festival.

Bill Frisell

The defining characteristic of any given jazz musician is frequently his sound. The more control a player has over the nature of that sound, the more likely he is to project a distinctive musical personality. For example, a saxophonist has virtually unlimited physical control of the sound that comes through his horn, and therefore a wide range of tonal expression at his command - which partially explains the disproportionate number of saxophonists in the pantheon of great jazz musicians.

B.B. King

Universally hailed as the reigning king of the blues, the legendary B.B. King is without a doubt the single most important electric guitarist of the last half century. A contemporary blues guitar solo without at least a couple of recognizable King-inspired bent notes is all but unimaginable, and he remains a supremely confident singer capable of wringing every nuance from any lyric (and he's tried his hand at many an unlikely song, anybody recall his version of "Love Me Tender?").

Carl Perkins

 

While some ill-informed revisionist writers of rock history would like to dismiss Carl Perkins as a rockabilly artist who became a one-hit wonder at the dawn of rock & roll's early years, a deeper look at his music and career reveals much more. A quick look at his songwriting portfolio shows that he composed "Daddy Sang Bass" for Johnny Cash, "I Was So Wrong" for Patsy Cline, and "Let Me Tell You About Love" for the Judds, big hits and classics all.

Carlos Santana

At the beginning of a new century and the dawn of a new millennium, Carlos Santana is at the pinnacle of a remarkable recording and performing career. Carlos' music has spanned five decades, outlasted countless musical trends, sold more than fifty million albums, played live to upwards of thirty million fans, and garnered countless awards and honors, including a 1998 induction into the Rock 'n Roll Hall Of Fame.

Barney Kessel

One of the finest guitarists to emerge after the death of Charlie Christian, Barney Kessel was a reliable bop soloist throughout his career. He played with a big band fronted by Chico Marx (1943), was fortunate enough to appear in the classic jazz short Jammin' the Blues (1944), and then worked with the big bands of Charlie Barnet (1944-1945) and Artie Shaw (1945); he also recorded with Shaw's Gramercy Five. Kessel became a busy studio musician in Los Angeles, but was always in demand for jazz records.

Angus Young

Most rock fans would agree that AC/DC guitarist Angus Young is one of the genre's most energetic and entertaining performers. It's impossible to imagine an AC/DC show without Young bobbing his head up and down in time to the music, playing amped up Chuck Berry licks on his Gibson SG guitar, shirtless and drenched in sweat. And in addition to his manic stage persona, he's one of the best (and underrated) rock guitarists of all time.

Andy Summers

While Andy Summers is best known as the guitarist of the Police, he has since forged a successful and acclaimed solo career with new age-influenced contemporary instrumental music that, like his work with Sting and company, draws on his love for jazz and his fascination with creating instrumental textures. Born Andrew James Somers in Poulton-Fylde, Lancashire, England, on December 31, 1942, the young Somers (who later changed his surname to the more easily spelled Summers) moved to Bournemouth as a child and, upon taking up the guitar at 14, immersed himself in the local jazz scene.

Alvin Lee

Born in Nottingham England, Alvin Lee began playing guitar age 13 and formed the core of the band Ten Years After by aged 15. Originally influenced by his parent's collection of jazz and blues records, it was the advent of rock and roll that truly sparked his interest and creativity, and guitarists like Chuck Berry and Scotty Moore provided his inspiration.

Andres Segovia

The father of the modern classical guitar movement, Andres Segovia raised his chosen instrument to new peaks of popularity and respectability; it is widely held that without his efforts, the classical guitar would still remain in the eyes of purists a lowly bar instrument, to be performed only by peasants. Born in Linares, Spain on February 21, 1893, Segovia began playing at the early age of four; although discouraged by his family, who felt he should adopt a "real" instrument instead, he continued studying and made his concert debut in Granada at the age of 16.

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