Philip Campbell

Decibel Level Be Damned
Decibel Level Be Damned

We recently caught up with Motorhead guitarist Philip Campbell to talk about his influences, the new album, and the band’s efforts.

Vintage Guitar: You’ve been a guitarist for Motorhead longer than anyone else.
Philip Campbell: Eighteen and a half years… I’ve been with Lemmy longer than any of ’em. It’s like a family!

Lemmy’s from North Wales, and Kim Simmonds is also Welsh.
He’s a great guitar player. Paul Chapman, from Lone Star, is also a Welshman.

Tell us about some of your pre-Motorhead bands and influences.
I started playing guitar when I was 10 years old, and at 13 I was playing semiprofessionally in a cabaret band all over South Wales. In ’79 I formed a band called Persian Risk, and after five years I left to join Motorhead.

What made me want to play guitar in the first place was Hendrix in the West, the live album; I loved the sound of it. In the early days, there was Black Sabbath, Jimmy Page, Michael Schenker in UFO, and Todd Rundgren – one of my sons is called Todd Rundgren Campbell. There were so many amazing players around. Jan Akkerman in a Dutch band called Focus was an incredible player.

Earlier guitars?
Just cheap copies. I bought my first Les Paul in ’73, but it was stolen. Then I had a natural (finish) Gibson Flying V. I wish I’d kept all of the guitars I’ve had over the years!

Now, I’m using a Lag Explorer-style, from a French company. I’ve also used PRS, Brian Moore Custom guitars, a Parker Fly. I just use what