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Category Archives: Artists

Jonny Wickersham

Social D Guitarist Does ’70s Cali Rock
 
Jonny Wickersham

Best known as the Les Paul Junior-slinging guitarist stage left of Mike Ness in Social Distortion, Jonny “Two Bags” Wickersham speaks with a laid-back SoCal drawl and peppers his conversation with modest asides. The uninitiated would never suspect he has just dropped his first solo record, (more…)

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Dave Stewart

Six-Strings, Studios, and Songs
 
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Guitarists often cite instruments as sources of inspiration. For musician, songwriter, and producer Dave Stewart, it wasn’t a ’57 Strat or a ’Burst that recently caused a creative flurry, but a guitar far more pedestrian. Stewart and bandmate Annie Lennox rose to fame in the early ’80s as the Eurythmics, a pop duo that, especially […]

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Billy Duffy

Weapon: Chosen
 
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Billy Duffy has long been a different sort of bloke. As his peers in rock bands of the mid ’80s mostly fell in line to play modified “superstrat” guitars with locking vibratos suitable for the trickery of the day, Duffy stuck with his trusty Gretsch White Falcon as his band, The Cult, scored its first […]

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Bobby Black

Steel Before and After Commander Cody
 
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When he got the invitation, Bobby Black wasn’t sure. The pedal-steel virtuoso, a 20-plus-year veteran of San Francisco’s music scene, had just been asked to join the long-hairs in Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen. It was the fall of 1971, and Black was in a comfortable situation – he owned a recording studio […]

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Bobby “Blue” Bland

The Guitarists of Blues’ Crown Prince
 
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On June 23 of last year, the blues lost one of its greatest singers with the death of Bobby “Blue” Bland at age 83. Best known for a 20-year run with Duke Records that yielded such classics as “I Pity The Fool,” “I’ll Take Care Of You,” (more…)

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Whit Smith

Rhythmic Rendezvous and the Hot Club of Cowtown
 
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For its latest album, Rendezvous in Rhythm, the Hot Club of Cowtown has stepped back in time. Guitarist Whit Smith plays acoustic jazz echoing the work of his heroes including Allan Reuss and Django Reinhardt. The result is a sweetly swinging collection of vintage jazz with a modern twist. True to its cattle-punching moniker, the […]

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Aaron Moreland

Where Zeppelin Meets Son House
 
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Growing up in a small Kansas town, 38-year-old Aaron Moreland took up guitar at 15, and his first garage band played classic-rock throwbacks like “Tush” and “China Grove,” occasionally getting more contemporary with R.E.M. and the Black Crowes. By 2001, when he met singer/harpist Dustin Arbuckle (more…)

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Status Quo’s Francis Rossi

On Guitars, Music, and Elusive Success
 
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“I’m only as good now as I should have been when I was 25,” laughs Francis Rossi, the 64-year-old lead guitarist, singer, and co-composer in Status Quo. “That’s why I practice at least two hours every night. I’ll watch some guitarist in a band opening for us and think, ‘I can’t bloody watch this,’ because […]

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Popa Chubby

Head, Heart, and Hands
 
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Popa Chubby is back on the road again, preaching the gospel to blues fans around the world. His new album, Universal Breakdown Blues, is a rollercoaster through the many facets of blues and rock. His stamp on tradition brings new life to the genre with a combination of tongue-in-cheek humor and mean guitar. Chubby plays […]

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James Burton

 
James Burton

In rural Louisiana in the early 1950s, it was no small feat when a family scraping by to survive bought a new Fender Telecaster for their 13-year-old son, especially when that $280 had been set aside to buy a car so their father could stop thumbing a ride to work. Guy and Lola Burton, however, […]

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