Monday, 2 February 2009

Paul Gilbert: with nuno bettencourt

Nuno Bettencourt and Paul Gilbert play through an acoustic version of more than words, Extreme.

Extreme Paul Gilbert More Than Words

Rusty Cooley: wide interval licks

I'm sure this has been posted before, but worth a second look. Rusty Cooley goes through extreme wide interval licks at extreme speeds, no doubt in tribute to one of his major influences Shawn Lane.

Rusty Cooley Improv Shred

News: total guitar competition for uk players

More chances for you to win prizes for your playing with Total guitar. Win A Spot At Download With TG's Guitar Wars! Over the next year, TG is on the hunt for the UK’s best undiscovered guitar heroes.

The winner will be chosen by you, will get to play at Download 2010 and have a single recorded and released on iTunes via South Coast Sounds!

Wanna enter yourself for TG’s Guitar Wars? Email your name and a link to your music to

Steve Vai: another date in italy

Steve Vai added another date to his Italian shows. This on on April 30 date in Torreano di Martignacco just added:

April 30th - Torreano di Martignacco (UD), - THE GROOVE FACTORY

Alex Lifeson: 2009 a rush oddity

Looking for rare Rush... well check out where there are unusual mixes of Rush music including this one of Alex Lifeson recorded live, but with Neil and Geddy removed from the mix and no sound effects... spooky

News: top 50 guitar solos

Guitar World post a very detailed account of the top 50 guitar solos.... like of loath it, Jimmy Page is number one with one of the most recognised tracks, the solo from "Stairway to Heaven"

"Stairway to Heaven" (Jimmy Page) - Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin IV, 1971

If Jimmy Page is the Steven Spielberg of guitarists, then “Stairway” is his Close Encounters. Built around a solid, uplifting theme—man’s quest for salvation—the epic slowly gains momentum and rushes headlong to a shattering conclusion. The grand finale in this case is the song’s thrill-a-second guitar solo.

Page remembers: “I’d been fooling around with the acoustic guitar and came up with several different sections which flowed together nicely. I soon realized that it could be the perfect vehicle for something I’d been wanting to do for a while: to compose something that would start quietly, have the drums come in the middle, and then build to a huge crescendo. I also knew that I wanted the piece to speed up, which is something musicians aren’t supposed to do.

“So I had all the structure of it, and ran it by [bassist] John Paul Jones so he could get the idea of it—[drummer] John Bonham and [singer] Robert Plant had gone out for the night—and then on the following day we got into it with Bonham. You have to realize that, at first, there was a hell of a lot for everyone to remember on this one. But as we were sort of routining it, Robert started writing the lyrics, and much to his surprise, he wrote a huge percentage of it right there and then.”

Plant recalls the experience: “I was sitting next to Page in front of a fire at our studio in Headley Grange. He had written this chord sequence and was playing it for me. I was holding a pencil and paper, when, suddenly, my hand was writing out the words: ‘There’s a lady who’s sure, all that glitters is gold, and she’s buying a stairway to heaven.’ I just sat there and looked at the words and almost leaped out
of my seat. Looking back, I suppose I sat down at the right moment.”

While the spontaneous nature of Plant’s anthemic lyrics came as a pleasant surprise, the best was yet to come. The beautifully constructed guitar solo that Guitar World readers rated the “best ever” was, believe it or not, improvised.

“I winged it,” says Page with a touch of pride. “I had prepared the overall structure of the guitar parts, but not the actual notes. When it came time to record the solo I warmed up and recorded three of them They were all quite different from each other. All three are still on the master tape, but the one we used was the best solo, I can tell you that.”

“I thought ‘Stairway’ crystallized the essence of the band. It had everything there, and showed the band at its best. I’m not talking about solos or anything; it had everything there. Every musician wants to do something that will hold up for a long time, and I guess we did that with ‘Stairway.’"

News: famousguitaristscenter blog

Another guitar blog on the block:

Ethan Brosh: review of namm 2009

Ethan Brosh's recent appearance at NAMM 2009 is documented in this recent MySpace post:
This year NAMM was just too much fun! It seems like every year it becomes more and more exciting for me. I was very happy I got the opportunity to play so much on all four days. This is the second time I'm playing at the ISP technologies booth for Buck Waller. The guy is a genius and he designs some of the most amazing gear you could ever find. We shot a video of me playing Night City off of Out of Oblivion and hopefuly it will be up on the isp technologies website and on youtube very soon. We recorded the sound pretty well so hopefully it will be a nice quality video.

I was also playing at the NADY booth for the first time. I got treated very well by everyone at NADY and had a blast playing for them. They head two Nady heads and 4X12 cabs so I got to play in stereo! (Hell yeah!) Their booth was placed in a really good spot right in the middle of all the action. I put up a video of me playing Blade Runner at NADY up on youtube.

Besides having the time of my life playing and being seen by so many people, I got the chance to see George Lynch playing with a Dokken tribute band! It sounded like the old Dokken! George is just such an amazing player and a super super cool guy! I am so happy he played on Downward Spiral in my album.

I saw Greg Howe playing at Tone Merchants. He did a two hour show. He played kick it all over from his first album! It was so exciting! That night Greg's playing I thought was better than ever. It doesn't seem possible but I think he keeps getting better and better! At the end of the show he brought Jennifer Batten for a jam. I talked to her for a bit and she's a really cool lady!

I felt so lucky to get the chance to see Racer-X live!!! What a line up it was for that Ibanez show at the Sheraton! Andy Timmons, Paul Gilbert and Racer-X! Ran into Andy after his show and like always he was the nicest guy on the planet. His playing was off the wall! Racer-X was just so nice to see after so many years of listening to those old albums. They actually played JUST the old stuff! Paul Gilbert had two white Marshall stacks. It was just way to cool!

I could go on and on and on about all the shows we got to see and all the amazing people and old friends I ran into. It was very nice talking with the cool guys at Kahler...Looking forwards to many years of working with them. I also got a guitar from a Korean company name Alden. The guys were very cool and hopefully we're going to do some nice work together. The guitar they gave me is so beautiful and plays like a dream!

All in all I just couldn't ask for a better show. Had the time of my life and can't wait for next year! BTW...If you end up going to the Summer NAMM in Nashville, I'll be playing at the ISP booth so come say hi...Ethan

News: new facebook group for lims 2009


A new facebook group to discuss the upcoming show:

The spectacular London International Music show is back for its second year at the world class ExCeL exhibition centre, London Docklands June 11th to 14th 2009. The all encompassing music show is the biggest of its kind in the UK and incorporates four exhibitions including Drummer Live and London Guitar Show, Unplugged and Sound Recording Technology.

Featuring world class rock stars, an exhibition of the best musical instrument brands and a host of exciting seminars and activities, this is the ultimate day out for anyone interested in music. From professional to amateur, classical to heavy metal and student to teacher, over the four days, the show offers real hands-on experience to try, hear and see everything to do with making, recording and listening to music.

With a 3000 capacity arena, past artists that have played the show include Joe Satriani, Chad Smith, Jason Bonham, Steve Vai and Courtney Pine. Next years line-up will feature more world class artists, with names to be announced over the next few months. This promises to be a fantastic opportunity to not only see some of the world’s most prestigious performers up close and personal, but also a chance to meet them with signing and question and answer sessions. In addition, a range of inspirational seminars, featuring top experts from the industry will be held during the show, covering careers advice, free tuition, instrument demonstrations, hints & tips from world class producers and much, much more.

The exhibition can already announce the world’s biggest brand names at the show including Marshall amps, Shure microphones, Tama drums, Ibanez Guitars and Roland keyboards. In total, the organisers expect more than 200 top manufacturers to exhibit representing more than 300 brand names. Covering state-of-the-art equipment to dream instruments, acoustic to digital, recording to stage equipment, software to sheet music, educational courses to accessories, the show brings together the world’s most famous manufacturers, displaying the coolest new innovations and the most exciting gear the music world has to offer.

Quite simply, if you love music, you’ll love this!

For more information about tickets and the show artist line-up visit

Bob Zabek: youtube site spotted

I'me not sure how I missed this one: a self interview posted last summer.

Bob Zabek says THANK YOU

The MySpace:

Shawn Lane: movie medley

An interesting video put together by Wiljay covering one of Shawn Lanes passions, film scores! Wiljay says:
Here Shawn Lane plays a medley of 3 movie themes.

First Shawn plays "Journey to the Line" from the movie "The Thin Red Line" (on keys), followed by "Omaha Beach" from "Saving Private Ryan" (on guitar), then "St. Crispin's Day - The Battle of Agincourt" from the movie "Henry V" (on keys).

Shawn Lane - Movie Medley (keyboard & guitar) (AUDIO)

Allan Holdsworth: carvin namm 1997

An old video of Allan Holdsworth back in 1997, 21 minutes of musical pleasure... even if the sound quality is somewhat lacking.

Allan Holdsworth - Carvin booth NAMM 97

News: guitar worshop..."my god it's full of stars!..."

2009 Guest Artist Announcement for guitar workshop

Rock Summit with Special Guest TBA...
July 26 - 31
Jam Summit with Jimmy Herring and Oteil Burbridge
Jazz Summit with Pat Metheny
August 2 - 7 Rock Summit with Paul Gilbert
August 9 - 14 Blues Summit with Robben Ford
Chicago July 12-17 Blues Summit with Buddy Guy
Austin, TX July 19-24 Blues Summit with Jimmie Vaughan
Twang 101 with Brent Mason

Mattias IA Eklundh: italian guitar clinic dates

Kudos to

If you fancy a little 'guitar freaks do not miss the clinic Matthias "IA" Eklundh, reserved for members of Backline, organized with the help of Laney and Mogar. The clinic will take place in Milan at the Teatro Barrios (via Baffalora, ang. Barona) on February 20, starting from 21, 2009.

Mattias IA Eklundh has now become one of the main points of reference of the current electric guitar soloist, compared by critics to colleagues such as Yngwie Malmsteen and Steve Vai. With his two solo discs "Freak Guitar" and "Road Less Travelled" he has set the foundations of his "guitar freak". Mattias IA Eklundh has helped to broaden the vocabulary of technical and expressive electric guitar, which produces sounds not explored before.

Seats are limited and entry is free: to win a seat is required to enroll immediately Backline.