Thursday, February 11, 2010
1. You think playing really fast is overrated.
2. You aren't a fan of the trem bar.
3. You're a troll.
Things I appreciate about Steve Vai:
1. His playing is very deliberate and precise, unlike some guitarists I might mention.
2. Here is more work with the help of Joe Satriani (his friend and mentor) and John Petrucci (of Dream Theater).
3. Playing fast is not his only talent.
Totally different type of music, but if you want to appreciate fast and precise, check out youtube for:
Roy Buchanan Roy's Bluz and Hey Joe
Jan Akkerman just about anything
Jeff Beck is the guy all these fast burners will never be
Vai is a superb technician. The double picking, finger tapping and hammer-on's all accelerate the impression of speed playing, but much of that would sound pretty lame without a high gain amp. It's still VERY impressive, but leaves me a bit cold compared to Clapton.
Check out EC playing "River of Tears" at Madison Square Garden on You Tube. Not pyrotchnic...but it takes one's breath away.
Joe Satriani is a great musician and performer, I've seen him in concert. Steve was his student, some years ago.
Steve's great too; he really shreds. :)
Did you know he played the guitar riffs in the "Halo" soundtrack? Probably.
Tigerhawk Teen, you got good taste.
The Clapton piece was so nice. He always saves the best for the end. Never in a hurry to say immediately.
Ok, more for the Pantheon.
First, Jeff Beck, because, well, he owns the tremolo bar. And, for added enjoyment you can dig the beautiful bass playing of the beautiful bass player Tal Wilkenfeld. Even TH could groove on her.
Cause we ended as lovers
And heck, I propose we put David Gilmour in there too.
And though not Pantheon material, still apropos of the TH blog, here is Gilmour with Crosby and Nash in a tune that today's world has stood on its anti-war head, here so beautifully done:
Find the Cost of Freedom
I had the honour of seeing Clapton playing with the Allman Brothers last March at the little Beacon Theater in NYC. It was the first time EC ever played with the Allman Brothers, suprisingly. EC played two shows in the middle of a 15 night Allman stand. EC on songs like Elizabeth Reed made it extra special. Yeah, yeah, Layla was the encore.
Fast isn't always good. Leslie West was fat and slow ... but give a listen to the second half of this .... Hendrix loved him --
Clapton genuflects to Buddy Guy -- and so would Hendrix -- I saw Buddy Guy in a small hall in New Jersey this year -- he blows everyone away -- and I've seen almost all of the great guitarists of the last 40 years.
James Burton deserves a toast -- If there's a single show I could teleport back to see, "Roy Orbison's Black & White" would be on my short list. Houndog Bruce chases on Pretty Woman but never catches Burton's rabbit
There's an amazing back-up to Orbison on this, the core of which -- Burton included -- was Elvis's touring band.
If you want a special taste of EC here he is with Derek & The Dominoes on The Johnny Cash Show, with Carl "Nlue Suede Shoes" Perkins. This cuts across a lot of 1960s cultural barriers and alone makes it a seven minute time capsule:
Who the f*ck is Steve Gadd?
I've schooled my kids on Steely Dan. When Paul Simon's "Fifty Ways ...'" was on AM radio I asked my drummer son -- who had never heard the song before -- what it had in common what with "Aja". He guessed right.
"Who the f*ck is Steve Gadd?
Yeah, I didn't know much about that either, except that he just was a "cut above" anybody else I ever heard back up EC. Our drummer worships the guy. He has his own website taht you can Google if drums are your thing.
BTW, that video link was not the best version of River of Tears. I had a hard time finding The one on the "One More Car, One More Rider" DVD was truly awesome. Finally found the offical link to that one (over 10,000 views):
Keith Carlock is the new Steve Gadd ... go to 7:20 to the end
Carlock is now #1 in the professional drummer poll. He can play fusion and funk, and backs soft acts like James Taylor and Clay Aiken
"James Burton deserves a toast"
Did you know Burton played the razor-sharp guitar on the original Dale Hawkins version of "Suzie Q" when he was 15 years old? About 1000x better than the CCR version IMHO. Springsteen only embarrassed himself trying to follow Burton's solo in B&W. Even Orbison, known more as a singer than guitarist, was much better than Bruce.