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Patti Smith famously described Tom Verlaine's guitar sound as "a thousand bluebirds screaming."

Patti Smith famously described Tom Verlaine's guitar sound as "a thousand bluebirds screaming."

"My part is just a few notes over and over," Iggy Pop once said about the Stooges song "TV Eye," "but Ron created a whole world around that." In Asheton's hands – on proto-punk anthems like "I Wanna Be Your Dog" and "No Fun" – the classic three-digit barre chord felt more like a superpowered battering ram: droning, relentless and almost mystical.

"My part is just a few notes over and over," Iggy Pop once said about the Stooges song "TV Eye," "but Ron created a whole world around that." In Asheton's hands – on proto-punk anthems like "I Wanna Be Your Dog" and "No Fun" – the classic three-digit barre chord felt more like a superpowered battering ram: droning, relentless and almost mystical.

Robby Krieger. The Doors. John Densmore, Robby Krieger, Raymond Manzarek and…

Robby Krieger. The Doors. John Densmore, Robby Krieger, Raymond Manzarek and…

You can trace all things loud and riff-y right back to the Kinks' Dave Davies, starting with the fantastically simple power chords of "You Really Got Me," which he recorded at age 17 – setting off a run of proto-metal singles from "All Day and All of the Night" to "Till the End of the Day." Davies, who created the distortion on "You Really Got Me" by slicing an amp speaker with a razor, has laughed off claims that it was actually played by an uncredited Jimmy Page

You can trace all things loud and riff-y right back to the Kinks' Dave Davies, starting with the fantastically simple power chords of "You Really Got Me," which he recorded at age 17 – setting off a run of proto-metal singles from "All Day and All of the Night" to "Till the End of the Day." Davies, who created the distortion on "You Really Got Me" by slicing an amp speaker with a razor, has laughed off claims that it was actually played by an uncredited Jimmy Page

[58] In late 1966, Peter Green had the job of replacing Eric Clapton in John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. Mayall told his producer, "He might not be better [than Clapton] now. But you wait... he's going to be the best." Soon, with the original Fleetwood Mac, he was Britain's most progressive blues guitarist, with a Chicago-informed aggression heightened by the melodic adventure on albums like 1969's Then Play On

100 Greatest Guitarists

[58] In late 1966, Peter Green had the job of replacing Eric Clapton in John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. Mayall told his producer, "He might not be better [than Clapton] now. But you wait... he's going to be the best." Soon, with the original Fleetwood Mac, he was Britain's most progressive blues guitarist, with a Chicago-informed aggression heightened by the melodic adventure on albums like 1969's Then Play On

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