Anyone from the 60´s reading this article? You will be super familiar with it… Rick Dale, “The King of the Surf Guitar”, included on the Rolling Stone top 100 best guitarists of all time. His style is as big and influential as Hendrix’s or any other of the amazingly talented guitarists from the ‘60s and […]
there’s something in the water in Texas and it must be talent, melody or some kind of mystical otherworldly pan-galactic musical goodness and Eric Johnson is definitely drinking it.
By the time Johnson released his Capitol Records debut Ah Via Musicom in 1990, he was regularly winning awards for his musicianship in the guitar press. During this period, Eric Johnson was also drawing recognition for the rich, violin-like tone he coaxed from his vintage Fender Stratocaster.
Eric fuses a more classical sense of melody with the a highly accomplished and adult sonic palette blending vibrato, bends, scales and tones in a way that avoids the hair-metal neo-classical plagiarism of guitar for guitar’s sake and the time honoured cliches of the been there, done that blues-rock guitar cannon. Here he is playing “Manhattan” – so, listen up and listen good because it’s said that Eric can tell the difference between the brands of batteries in his effects pedals.
In a recent post featuring Adrian Legg I slyly suggested that Bill Frisell was definitely another idiosycratic guitarist to look for in your listening research. Bill has always been an exponent of an healthy array of effects – most notably delay, reverb, chorus and more rarely pitch shifters to create unique tones and sounds; a uniquity exaggerated by his jazz leanings combined with clean sustain and an emotionally oblique sense of melody.
He does however ensure that his use of processing, or effects, don`t colour his sound in a way that might obscure the emotional intent or message. and seems incapable of descending into gratuitous, meaningless affectation. Bill often sounds as if his notes are shards of ice slowly melting as they descend through warmer water and the overall impression is of a glacial and ambivalently jazz-blues fusion. It`s a novel approach to sound, feel and melody that conjures up a sense of constant ideation. Use it…
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