Here’s a name that you might not have heard for a few years – Eric Gales. If you go back in time to the late Eighties there were tons of new guitar heroes coming out each and every day. Because of the influence of mainly EVH and SRV (and all the hair metal heroes), every label was looking for the next 6-stringed rock god. We all remember guitar prodigy Jonny Lang coming out with his CD when he was only 16. But that was the late 90’s. His hit Lie to Me didn’t come out until 1997. Eric Gales got his first record deal at at 16 in 1990.
I remember hearing him on the radio with Paralyzed and Sign of the Storm. He just never had that breakout hit, but I did get his Eric Gales Band CD in 1991. He’s what I call the unsung hero of guitar heroes – and you can see what I mean in the video below. All these years and decades later he has just played, and played, and played all over the world. He has never stopped, and he is now an unmistakable virtuoso. SRV’s rendition of Little Wing has always been my #1 favorite (I like it even more than Hendrix). Eric’s live version always has crazy intense cascading arpeggios (in key of course). I mean, in pure theory it’s shredding. But (to me) it’s not Yngwie or Gilbert like. Your opinion may vary, but to me it’s like shredding – but with soul. If you weren’t already listening, I hope I made you rediscover (or find for the first time) Eric Gales. You will not be disappointed.
Check out Albert Collins, “The Iceman” back in 2003 paying the blues! He was know as the “Master of the Telecaster”! He had what the considered a vicious right hand attack, because he played completely with his finger and not a pick at all! He was also known for playing out of a Fender Super 6 Dual Reverb with 6 speakers in a cabinet aslmost as tall as him! Albert Collins is considered one of the original bluesman from the 60’s+.
Remember John 5 -the guitar player for Marilyn Manson? He was on Mechanical Animals – basically he played with Manson from 1998 – 2004. Whether you like Marilyn Manson or not – you have to acknowledge he was a good guitar player, but pop goth metal style he played for Manson is nothing compared to what he’s capable of. John (William Lowery) is from my neck of the woods, Grosse Point Michigan – but he took off for LA at the age of 17 and one of the first guys he met was Rudy Sarzo from Whitesnake. He worked on many projects, some television and some movie soundtracks (Speed 2), he was picked to play with Lita Ford for a time. I assume what many didn’t know was that he grew up on Buck Owens and country, and was as well versed on that side of music as he was rock and metal – which was why he was picked out of 2000 guitarists to play with K.D. Lang.
In the late 90’s he did an album with Rob Halford’s band 2wo (having missed the first audition for Manson – he was too late), and after 2wo split up he got to audition with Manson again and got the gig. He was with Manson for 6 years, and apparently (during his down time 98-2003) was also with the DLR (David Lee Roth) band. From 2005 until today he’s been with Rob Zombie – which he calls “the best experience, hands down”.
What you may not know (and I didn’t until recently), is that John 5 is one of the greatest unsung virtuoso’s of the electric guitar that you may never have heard. There are probably many of you that know exactly what I’m talking about because you read all the latest guitar rags, admittedly – I haven’t done that in years, so I may have missed the boat on this guy (and apparently I should have known about him years ago). What I’m talking about is that this guy is as good as Satriani, Vai, Eric Johnson – he’s an unbelievable country player, metal shredder, and everything in between. As a matter of fact, both Satriani and Eric Johnson both did guest appearances on his last solo album (apparently they admire his talents as well). In his playing it’s like you can hear a combination of everything he grew up on – it’s like a combination of Steve Vai meets Metallica, Van Halen meets Satriani – John 5 is one of the few guitar players I’ve ever seen on video where my mouth flies open and I say, “now THAT motherfucker can play!”. Once you hear him (if you haven’t before) – you’ll want to hear more and more and more of his playing, in one word – unfuckingbelieveable!
Check out these videos and tell me if you don’t think the same thing…the third one is last – because it’s the best and showcase nearly all his talents in 10 minutes. Fuck, I wish I could play like John 5!
John 5 video – “The Washing Away of Wrong
John 5 video – “At home with his new Squier guitar model
I love Joe Bonamassa. He has a distinctive blues guitar playing style that is a mix of Gary Moore and Pat Travers – in my opinion. The thing about him is he kind of burst on the scene when he was about 12 years old as a prodigy, and now that he’s 31 his albums show so much diversity over the years. He’s definitely not a one trick pony bluesman if you know what I mean. Just watch his progression over the years in these videos: