Here's a list of the Top Ten Guitar Solos as voted by the readers of a respected magazine, Total Guitar:
1) Led Zeppelin - Stairway to Heaven
2) Van Halen - Eruption
3) Guns N' Roses - Paradise City
4) The Eagles - Hotel California
5) Metallica - Enter Sandman
6) Cream - Crossroads
7) Jimi Hendrix - Voodoo Child (Slight Return)
8) Ozzy Osbourne - Crazy Train
9) Free - All Right Now
10) Queen - Bohemian Rhapsody
Anybody noticed any absentee from the list yet?
Of course, it may be that it reflects the age group of the readership and the selling power of these bands. But, either way... what the hell happened to guitar playing after these records were made?
Personally, I'd go back to before the 70s for my favourites... Carl Perkins and Eddie Cochran for their styles as well as Scotty Moore and Chet Atkins for their skill.. I wouldn't be surprised if Alvin did too - those guys influenced his work just as he went on to influence a later generation. But what happened to the legacy after that? Did somebody drop the baton here? The guitar is still rock and pop's major instrument.... but what's happened to it? I'm trying not to sound tooooooo much like an echo of my dear old Dad... but these young uns can't play like the old uns, can they?
(Pleeeeeese... no JG jokes, OK?)
Mar 28, 2006 - 1:41PM
Re: Best guitar solos?
"Top Ten All Time Lists" in magazines are by nature silly and ridiculous. I don't pay any attention to them at all.
There are some young pickers around that can play, but they don't seem to get as much notice as the guitar-slingers of the 70s. Alot of them are playing on the blues circuit now, probably because the popular music of this time doesn't give a guitar player much room to stretch.
Voting Stairway to Heaven the all time best guitar solo (it isn't even Jimmy Page's best) sort of invalidates the rest of the list, in my opinion. But I agree we're not hearing much from young guitar players these days - of course, how could we? I don't know about your neck of the woods, akc, but here in the U.S., radio is dominated by rap, hip hop, syrup laden little boy bands and the Brittney Spears flavor of the month. Not much room for a new and hot guitar player to get himself heard.
Mar 28, 2006 - 2:24PM
Re: Best guitar solos?
I'd like to know the criteria for making the "top ten" list. Was it the difficulty and technique used or was it the most popular or the most influence. Maybe the most unique or most cutting edge of its time. Who knows? I think the fact that you don’t hear a lot of solos in today’s rock music (Brittney type pop aside) goes back to the mid 90s when the punk/grunge sound came to be. Punk by nature doesn’t lend itself to virtuosity. Look back to the original punkers like the sex pistols or clash. Solos were almost non existent. Or even go to the god fathers of punk like the Who. There music wasn’t about the big guitar solo. You can still find great guitar players playing awesome solos but you won’t hear it in the mainstream for a while.
Not counting the big hair bands of the 80's and 90's(of wich I was never a fan), the last "guitar hero" I can think of was Stevie Ray Vaughan. And the thing about him is, he seemed to be liked and respected by everyone, from his fans, to his peers, to his influences from the 60's(Beck, Clapton, Winter), and the older bluesmen who were around long enough to witness him. John Lee Hooker said "there was no one better", Albert King called him "my adopted son", B.B.King said "he was like an endless well of ideas while soloing". Even heavy metal dudes like Metallica, and country pickers like Vince Gill say they were big fans.
I agree with Toni and Don, in that radio (here in the U.S. anyway) don't give anyone a chance anymore. It's going to take a "shock to the system" to change that. Think about it. In 1983, all you heard on the radio was New Wave, Punk, and cheesy keyboard oriented bands. Then one day you turn on the radio and out comes blasting "Texas Flood", a true honest to goodness slice of Texas blues being played on mainstream radio. That's what we need again, something that powerful.
I also agree with akc that the first generation rock and roll guitarists seem to have been forgotten by alot of people. Carl Perkins with "Blue Suede Shoes", Eddie Cochran's "Twenty Flight Rock", Scotty Moore's psychotic breaks on "Hound Dog" and "Jailhouse Rock", Chuck Berry's "Johnny B. Goode" and "No Particular Place To Go", Chet Atkin's (well...EVERYTHING), Duane Eddy's "Rebel Rouser", Link Ray's "Rumble". All of these were HUGE influences on Alvin, Page, Beck, Harrison, Townshend, etc...
My favorite top ten of ANYTHING changes day to day .
Oh, I just remembered. One of my favorite guitar solo's of all time was the break in Dr. Hook's "Cover Of The Rolling Stone". You know the one, where right after the solo, the singer goes "Aw, that was beautiful man"!!!
As long as were tossing out favorites, my favorite non-Alvin solo may be (it changes day to day) Jimi Hendrix in "All Along the Watchtower". Not the most techinically difficult, but what a wonderfully structured, tasty slice of Jimi's styles.
You're right, Tony. Our necks of the woods are much the same then. I've got a theory, though.... today's up-and-comers are drinking water so far from the original well-spring that it's too diluted to have any real effect on them.
Our music was fused from the original homespun blues and country - those Southern rock and rollers at Sun Studios put together what they'd heard as kids and took it on from there. Alvin's generation listened to that and, in turn, pushed the boundaries further still.
By the 80s and 90s, the music industry had branched out into so many different forms (House, garage, hip-hop, R&B, metal, punk, rap...) plus the all-prevailing pop, that we're now so far from the source that kids listening to what's thrown at them in an ever more commercialised world don't relate to where the music comes from unless they chance across it.
I'm lucky to live near a pub where all sorts of musicians gather and often stay late to jam. After a few pints, I can usually be persuaded to get up and play creaky harmonica with anyone who'll lay down something rocking and bluesy. Believe me, I know my own limitations... but I'm often surprised how younger guys (by which I mean 20s and 30s) enjoy playing along with someone like me whose inate sense of timing and rhythm harks back to a different time. *I* know that I'm struggling to sound like Little Richard's sax section on The Girl Can't Help It, or whatever. I can't help it, either... it's just 'what I do'. But for the 'kids' it's almost a lost art.
I'm lucky enough to have had two jaw-dropping moments in my life. The first was as a 10/11 year old in 1956/7, when an uncle bought me a transistor radio and I heard all those golden rock and rollers for the first time... Bill Haley, Gene Vincent, Elvis, Carl, Little Richard, Jerry Lee and the rest. The BBC never played them and only by pressing an ear to the speaker and hearing them crackle out from Radio Luxembourg could you escape from the drab English 1950s.
The second was in 1963... when I heard The Jaybirds for the first time and discovered that all those wonderful sounds and rhythms had got under Alvin's skin too... and he put them together just as I would have done if I'd had a fraction of his talent.
To be honest, I never listen to music radio now.. so I can hardly comment on what it's like. But.. and I know this is just an old man talking.. I'm willing to bet that there's nothing there to shock the system like Hound Dog did a million years ago. Elvis's performance, the lyric and that second solo of Scotty's... it was not just music... more like an alien invasion.
Mar 28, 2006 - 3:17PM
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Best guitar solos?
Oh, I agree Don. The intro, first break, and outro alone are enough to include in a "top ten of all time" list, but the main solo structure is awsome. If you listen close, you can hear four distinct "sections" during the solo. 1: A "clean" lead part, 2: a slide part, 3: a "wah wah"'d lead, and finally 4: a rhythm/lead style influenced by his r&b days.
I love Dylan's original version of this tune, and Dave Mason(who also played 12 string acoustic on Hendrix' version) did a really good version of it. So did Neil Young on the "Bob Dylan 30th Anniversary Concert Celebration", but Hendrix' version is in a class all by itself.
Cool story man .You got to see TYA when they were The Jaybirds??? That's awsome. And yes, NOTHING, to this day, sounds like Scotty's second break in Hound Dog. I was'nt born until '69, and that solo STILL puts chills on me. I can only imagine what it must've been like hearing that blasting out of a speaker in the 50's for the first time. No wonder parents broke Elvis records and threatened to lock their daughters in their rooms for life
Most all time guitar solos hands down was watchin Alvin do his little attitude stance,Look over his right shoulder not tapin his foot or shakin a leg no wasted motion,when he did this I knew the crap was about to hit the fan!!!BAM!!! he just let it rip,hell yeah!!! the Lee machine ,Thats my all time fav,
Any list without Alvin Lee and Rory Gallagher is pure nonsense.
And, speaking of Dire Straits, "Telegraph Road" has one of the best solos I've heard.
The most important question about a guitar solo is: are there any "real" emotions that you feel when you hear it?
And I really don't belive someone can feel anything else but "Wow, that was fast, how did he play that?!!!" listening to "Paradise City" and Metallica, maybe even Van Halen. As for the Eagles, Big Lebowski said it all, and Ozzy had better songs than the one that's sellected (with Black Sabbath, of course)...
So, replace all that with anythig from Alvin, Rory, Stevie Ray, Lynyrd Skynyrd..., and the list will look much better!
To be as honest as I can,I consider myself a decent guitarist,and in my little circle in da Delta they know 601,however I don't listen to to many other musicians, van ,ozzy, them others how ever there has been several that caught my ear ,1 Alvin Lee,thats it, that is my total inspriation, 2. Dire Straits, 3, Roy Buchancan, 4. Lou reed. and the music today does not have the passion,I don't know what to say,either you have it or not,Alvin Has it,Joe can play a cover and do it very well and could fool the computer age fans that can't feel passion,But Don't try to tell and old man a **** thing about da Blues!!
THOSE LISTS ARE ALWAYS, ALWAYS A JOKE AND I NEVER EVEN GIVE THEM A GLANCE ABOUT #35 YEARS AGO I SAW A LIST OF THE TOP #100 GUITAR PLAYERS OF ALL TIME (RIGHT) YOU GUESSED IT (NO ALVIN)THUS THE END OF PAUL LOOKING AT SUCH LISTS.....BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY PEACE PAUL
Did we ferget,where we have come from,we are the peace love,and flower generation,hippies,anti establisment,and we will always be,we still have the same values,and beliefs that changed the world,and Alvin was right there with us,and was part of us,how many do you see on those lists would you consider a part of us,???? We never wanted to be a part of anyones list or even paid any mind to it except when one of our own got on one we wanted to know why they were sellin out!!RIGHT!!3 dog night!!sold out!! Greg Allman sold out narc ed his whole band, SO we need to Be proud that ALVIN!!!! ain't on anybodys list!!he got outta TYA before they sold out!and they did they have prostituted,themselves, But Alvin is coming out with new work! not worried about any lists!!!
Ronnie, I honestly think you understand Alvin. He once told me that he takes a certain pride in not being on those lists, of being called "underrated" etc. You're right, Alvin Lee doesn't need any lousy lists!
But Greg Allman narced his entire band??? Hmmm, we were considering a move to Richmond Hill Georgia, which is where he lives. Geez, I don't want any narc neighbors!!!
Mar 29, 2006 - 12:15PM
Re: Re: Re: Re: Best guitar solos?
Yup he sure did!! he was busted fer pot and he snitched out his whole band and claimed they was suppling it to him thats when I stopped listening to the allman bros. after Duane died it wasen't any good anyway!!But Toni thats what Makes Alvin my hero! He is truly an artist,outside influences has no effect on his inner vision,And toni Like Alvin I choose to be alone in my music,because I could not take the pain and disappointment that can come with lettin people to close to you,Iam sure Alvin still has pain from this,
And where Alvin is doin his Bass lines and piano lines,because he wants a sound there that could only come from the understandin of the song,its not sometin anyone could play, I do all the insturments on my stuff as well, Ive had others do the lines and end up doing em my self,My best friend Ms.Trudy would ask why I even bothered gettin some others!! And I bet you Alvin has heard the same thing from his Best friend Ms. Evi!!wanna Bet???
Actually, the whole Greg Allman thing is complicated. It was'nt for weed, it was coke and pills from a pharmacy. And it was'nt the whole band, it was their road manager, who did time for it. He wrote a book called (I think)"The Road Goes On Forever", and it goes into detail what exactly went down. Greg could'nt talk about the details at the time (a court order), so even the band thought he sold out, that was the late 70's when they split up. After the true details came to light, the band saw that what LOOKED like had happened, was'nt what had happened at all. I can't remember the details, as it's been a while since I read the book, but he did'nt sell out anyone, although it looked that way. While reading the book, I was thinking the same thing(that he sold out), until it was explained what had happened. If he had sold them out, do you really think they would have got back together again? And still going strong some 25 years after the fact
I like the original line up much better, with Duane, Berry Oakly, and Dickie. But I saw a thing on tv called The Jammy's, and they still kick a$$, but less bluesy and more jazzy, although they always fused the two particurly well
BS!! it was Greg dat snitched and it was a bad deal I can't remember it all now but they did try and smooth it over with Greg,and gettin back together to make money is a no Brainer, and they just another pop band as far as Iam concerned,don't listen to them at all
Yes Ronnie, I was born in '69. I can read though. Were you THERE when everything went down. I seriously doubt it.Neither was I. I just don't believe the first news flash that comes down the pike saying "So and so sold out so and so, so it must be true". What my age is don't matter. Duh! The book is called "Midnight Rider's". You can find it on amazon.com. If he had sold the band down the river, why did'nt any of them do any time?????? The Allman are one of the greatest American bands EVER.
Their road manager, Scott Freeman, wrote the book. It was one of the bands friends, Scooter Herring, who did time. If I'm not mistaking, toward the end of the book, Scooter says he and Greg are still friends. Hmmm, if someone "sold me out", I sure as heck would'nt be friends with them anymore.Not by a long shot. I could be mistaken though, as I was only in my late twenty's when Iread the book.Maybe I had'nt gained enough wisdom being born in "what? '69". Give me a break.
Rob its as simple as money!!do you think anyone is going to take a million dollar loss over sometin like that ofcourse they will cover and smooth out the wrinkles,and don't believe everything you read,and I thought you had more insight than to make a statement what is being there have to do with it!! well a lot Rob!! those were very scary times Pigs would take hippies out and shoot em and claim they found em dead with dope in there pockets!! I was there my brother and cousin and our drummer were shot to death because They had a pound of red and green wrapper,But if you have read about it that was red bud,OK, If you had long hair they would stop you walkin and search you,and lots of times plant stuff on you!!So anything to do with snitchin or narcs was a very serious deal more so than now!! And yes Iwas there Rob and what is writtin ain't always the truth!and Greg Almond SUCKS!!
April of 1972, 3am in da morning Sonny Clark,and Dick Lucas, head Narcs Columbia South Carolina, along with 5 of there buds,kick in my door,where me and rick eason,Charlie Thompson, lived, Search the house for dope found a bong!! Beat us all so bad ,Rick was in the hospital 3 days,Broke my ribs and jaw, busted up all our guitars and records poured lighter fluid on Charlies Hair and burned in off,he had 3rd degree burnes on his head! and we could not do a damed thing about it!!no Lawyer would help there was no civil liberities ,nothin!!In the news paper it said police responded to a hippi party and everyone was trippin on acid, So who ever read this felt we did it to ourselves!! Those were very bad times we were hated and people feared us and would kill us no problem and YES ROB I was there I paid my Dues,and Iam insulted that you would make light of it ,
Well,of course you're entitled to your opinion as to who sucks or not, but there are THOUSANDS of hippies who'd disagree with you. And don't fool yourself for a second that the same shlt aint happening today. Only it's not hippie's being harrassed, framed, and murdered, it's blacks. I'm not black, and I don't like hip-hop or rap, but the SAME thing is happening. And to make a statement that just because I was born in '69 I don't know what went down is REDICOULOUS. You say "don't believe everything you read". Well, I don't. Because I just read YOU saying Greg Allman sucks, and I DON'T believe that. But eh, to each his own I reckon.
You were there when Greg Allman got busted???? I thought that's what we were talking about. What did I make light of Sorry that happened to you and your friends, but I GUARENTEE you were'nt the only ones. You said "the news paper it said police responded to a hippi party and everyone was trippin on acid, So who ever read this felt we did it to ourselves!!"
Well, the newspapers also said Greg turned states evidence against his friend. So wich newspaper articles am I to believe. The one that lied about ya'll, or the one that "told the truth" about Allman. I don't know, seeing as I'm only 36 years old and can't figure stuff out for myself
I have to admit Rob that its really hard to understand the 60s if you weren't there. For all the peace and love and good vibes, there was the opposite - the police, the government and a whole lot of ********** good old boys didn't exactly love the freaks and hairies. Ronnie's story is horrible - and I can cite dozens and dozens of less awful but still shocking examples. I'm not sure why I never heard the Greg Allman story, but I can tell you Rob is right - narcs were everywhere and we were all scared to death of them and if you knew someone was one, you sure as heck didn't forgive him. If they DID forgive him just to make some money I don't have much respect for them, that's for sure. In the mid-sixties, the band Lovin Spoonful broke up because one of them was a snitch and so the others voted him out. We'd cross the street to get to the other side away from him if we even saw him walking down the block. John Sebastian ended up forgiving him when they were inducted in the R&R Hall of Fame. I guess enough years went by, but it wasn't cool. Maybe it's different today and maybe enough time has gone by to try to understand the people that narced on their friends, but I still think they're the lowest of the low. I know I'd like to know more about what happened.
Ronnie, I can't even tell you how sorry I am for your brother and cousin and drummer even now - no wonder you can play the blues with such feeling.
And you are right that blacks have a problem today. I'm probably one of the few white people who wasn't immediately convinced OJ did it because I KNOW L.A. cops are capable of just about anything. But it doesn't change how ugly the 60s could be. I really have to buy this book now.
Yeah, we're all passionate about the music we love, as if we actually even know the peopel(and I'm the world's worst for this), but I meant NO DISRESPECT AT ALL Ronnie. I was being a smart aleck talking about Greg Allman, not about what happened to you brother. And whoever did that to ya'll, it'll come back on them someday. Karma is a powerfull thing. Peace to you Ronnie.
"Does this mean you're NOT going to laon me money to go see Alvin "
I dont' want to dwell on this but I've been looking around the web and there isn't much. I did find this under an Allmans bio "'75 was not a good one for the surviving Allman. Busted and under threat of serious jail time Allman testified against the band's former road manager regarding drug trafficking. John Herring got seventy-five years. For turning on a friend, the other Allman band members disowned Gregg. He compounded his troubles by marrying Cher. That "happy" union lasted only slightly longer than it takes to drive cross-country with Sammy Hagar. Through it all the "Win, Lose or Draw" album went gold. But aside from the live "The Road Goes On Forever" the band was done. Each member busied himself with various projects. But as the '90s dawned, a cleaned-up Allman Brothers Band began touring and even took a shot at recording. Kinda like old times."
Mar 29, 2006 - 2:18PM
Re: Re: Best guitar solos?
Thank you Toni!! it has been so long ago I believe that Greg was the one Busted and it turned states witness to save his but and ratted out everyone else!And time heals wounds but they got back together just for the money
And the "Allman and Woman" album that Greg and Cher put out sucked, in my opinion. I'm gonna have to take a trip to the library tonight and see if I can't find that book again. That's where I got it before.
I saw the Allman Bros band last summer and I thought they rocked. They now have Warren Haynes and Butch Trucks doing the guitar work. Its obviously not the original Allmans but if you want to see a show that has kickin guitar playing and extended jamms I suggest going to see them. Its one of those shows where you think it can t get any more intense then they take it to the next level.
PS. I wish I could be writing this about the Alvin Lee Band on there 2006 North American tour…………
Maybe in the beginning, but they surely don't need the money NOW. They've been one of the most succesful touring bands ever. I give prop's to their guitarist Warren Haynes. At Riverbend here in Cincinnati a few years ago, he played with opening band Government Mule, follow up band The Dead, and headliners The Allmans, playing lead guitar for all three bands at the same show. If you've ever seen just one of those bands live, you'll know that's a Herculean feat by itself.
You mean "Warren Haynes and DEREK Trucks" don't you CJ? Butch Trucks is their drummer, Derek is his nephew, and phenominal. Alot of times, I think his slide playing sounds like a steel guitar. Duane is my alltime favorite slide guitarist, but Derek plays stuff I've never heard ANYONE do. His wife, blues singer Susan Tedeschi is also a killer guitarist in her own right.
Good move Rob - change the subject back to the beginning. Hey, Ronnie, I know this was just a pretty emotional topic - you okay?
Mar 29, 2006 - 4:34PM
Re: Re: Re: Best guitar solos?
Hey Toni, I know you're a big Neil Young fan. Do you have a favorite Neil solo? Mine would be a 4-way toss up between "Powderfinger", "Down By The River", "Cowgirl In The Sand", and "Cortez The Killer"
I never did see any of the Bluenotes shows. I am very impressed. And Rob, I'm not very good at picking bests of anything because I change my mind all the time! But Down by the River is awesome.
Mar 29, 2006 - 7:08PM
Re: Re: Best guitar solos?
I never change my mind Toni..........yes I do........no, I don't.........trust me, I do!!!
Yeah, Brian, that kind of sums up Neils style for me, "atonal yet beautiful".
Hey Toni, I once saw a clip of "Down By The River" being played by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young on some documentary about the 60's. They only played a few seconds of it, but what I heard sounded great. For the longest time, I thought maybe it was on the CSNY Four Way Street album, but it's not. The only version I've heard is off Decade(what a GREAT album).
HEY ROB YOU MENTIONED SLIDE PLAYERS HAVE YOU EVER HEARD A FELLOW FROM ONE OF THE MOST REMOTE PLACES IN THE WORLD PERTH AUST. HIS NAME IS (DAVE HOLE). CERTAINLY NOT A HOUSEHOLD NAME BUT THE MAN CAN PLAY THE SHI. OUT OF THE SLIDE BLUES. HE PLAYS SLIDE OVER THE TOP OF THE NECK ROB WHICH IS DIFFERANT FOR SURE, HE,S ON ALLIGATOR RECORDS IF YOU CAN GET A SAMPLE TO LISTEN TO CHECK HIM OUT HE,S VERY GOOD HE,S AN EXAMPLE OF THE KIND OF PEOPLE DON SPOKE OF FOR SURE I COULD LIST #15-20 GUITAR PICKERS AND BANDS THAT MOST PEOPLE HAVE NEVER HEARD OF OUTSIDE THERE AREAS, WHICH IS WHAT MAKES THE BLUES SO EXCITING PEACE PAUL