Three For Thursday: Guitarist Edition

GUITAR GODS

So, the picture above is from 1986. I was just a few months past 20 when it was taken. More important would be the guitar hanging from Miami Vice jacketed shoulder.

A 1978 Gibson The Paul Standard with walnut body, neck, and headstock, and exposed humbuckers, this beauty rivaled the1969 Gibson Les Paul I owned in the early 90s. I just loved the sound of this thing and I miss her dearly. So, what happened? I lost her to an unfortunate accident when I’d allowed a friend to play her in 1988. She was replaced by a Lotus Strat-copy, painted in white and black pinstripes. I hated that guitar (and not just because she wasn’t The Paul).

Anyway, I guess this is all just a lead up to listing my TOP THREE Guitar Players for this Three for Thursday. The point being, I do play. Was pretty decent at one time, and can still belt out a tune if my feet are held to the fire. So let’s get to it…

NUMBER THREE
RITCHIE BLACKMORE

From Deep Purple to Rainbow to Blackmore’s Night, Blackmore’s Classically infused style and simplistic but evocative riffs lured me in from the start. It was that synthesis of classical and blues that made him a unique voice in rock and roll, and later in his exploration of Medieval/Renaissance music.

It didn’t hurt a bit that he always surrounded himself with brilliant musicians and some of the greatest vocalists to ever take the stage. The mystical, magical symbology, particularly in early Rainbow and later Blackmore’s Night material, was a huge draw for me.

Top Three recommended albums would be Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow, Deep Purple: Perfect Strangers, and Blackmore’s Night: Shadow of the Moon

Favorite Song: Stargazer (Rainbow: Rising)

Favorite Solo: Wasted Sunsets (Deep Purple: Perfect Strangers)

NUMBER TWO
LINDSEY BUCKINGHAM

Lindsey Buckingham is a tremendous songwriter, and while other guitarists might be technically more skilled, his playing always seemed so unique and perfect for whatever song he was performing, whether his own work or that of another vocalist. Approaching the electric guitar with folk and banjo sensibilities made his style different from anyone else on the radio.

My Top Three recommended albums would be Buckingham Nicks, Fleetwood Mac (1976), and Fleetwood Mac: Tusk

Favorite Song: Stephanie (Buckingham/Nicks)

Favorite Solo: So Afraid (Fleetwood Mac)

NUMBER ONE
JIMMY PAGE

Jimmy Page. Yeah, he’s the guy. From thunderous metal to blistering blues to majestic acoustic folk, Page has been the epitome of “Guitar God” for me since I was a kid. While my list of favorite guitarists has ebbed and flowed over the decades, Page has never been threatened from his place on top of the mountain.

Page’s skills are accentuated by his considerable talents as a songwriter, composer, and producer. He was a trailblazer and a genius. He wrote the best riffs. Delivered the best solos. And when he stole from someone, he made it his own and elevated it.

Top Three recommended albums would be Led Zeppelin: Physical Graffiti, Lucifer Rising & Other Sound Tracks, and Led Zeppelin III.

Favorite Song — The Rain Song (Led Zeppelin: Houses of the Holy)

Favorite Solo — Too hard to call, but today it would either be Celebration Day (Led Zeppelin III) or The Rover (Led Zeppelin: Physical Graffiti). Ask me tomorrow and I might have a different answer.

3 Responses to “Three For Thursday: Guitarist Edition”

  1. Paul Hodson Says:

    I saw Plant & Page in the late 90’s ish, on their UnLeded tour.. For the encore they did a full on Rock n Roll and Whole Lotta Love, one of the most incredible things I’ve ever experienced at a gig.

  2. Yeah I’ve been lucky enough to see some outstanding gigs.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: