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A largely British movement, glam rock and glitter were highly popular in the early 1970s – so popular that one artist, Marc Bolan, was given his own TV series. Inspired by early rock’n’roll and bubblegum pop, glam rock was fun, catchy and melodic, played with crunchy, distorted guitars, with the musicians dressing up ...

Source: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Music, general editor Paul Du Noyer
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Alternative-rock guitarist Peter Buck (b. 1956) was born in Berkeley, California. After dropping out of college, he moved to Athens, Georgia, where he met singer Michael Stipe while working in a record shop. The pair discovered that they had similar tastes in music: punk rock, Patti Smith and Television.  Together with Mike Mills (bass) and ...

Source: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
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Davey Graham (b. 1940) (originally Davy Graham) is a guitarist who is credited with sparking the folk-rock revolution in the UK in the Sixties. He inspired many of the famous fingerstyle guitarists, such as Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, Martin Carthy, Paul Simon and even Jimmy Page, who heavily based his solo ‘White Summer’ on Graham’s ‘She ...

Source: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
350 Words Read More

One of the founding fathers of rock’n’roll, Charles Edward (Chuck) Berry was born in 1926 in St Louis, Missouri, to a middle-class family. His interest in the blues began in high school, where he gave his first public performance. In 1944, he was convicted of armed robbery and sentenced to three years in an Intermediate Reformatory ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
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A pioneering guitarist and the principal creative force behind The Who, Pete Townshend was born in Chiswick, London in 1941. The Townshends were a musical family – Pete’s grandfather was a musician, his father a dance-band saxophonist and his mother a singer. Consequently, a career in music seemed natural for Pete, and his parents encouraged him. ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
773 Words Read More

Lita Rossana Ford (b. 1958) was born in London. After her family settled in Los Angeles in the 1960s, she took up guitar at the age of 11, inspired by Deep Purple’s Ritchie Blackmore. When she was 16, she met novelty-music producer Kim Fowley, who helped recruit her, along with Joan Jett, Sandy West, ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
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For over 30 years, guitarist Alex Lifeson has quietly served as the cohesive key to success for progressive rockers Rush – arguably the most enduring and successful hard-rock band of all time. A guitarist always more interested in finding the right chord voicing or textural effect to make a chorus work than in shredding the frets off his axe du ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
426 Words Read More

Clad head-to-toe in studded black leather and featuring a thundering rhythm section, a dynamic twin-guitar assault and one of the purest rock vocalists in music history, it simply doesn’t get any more ‘metal’ than Judas Priest. And the man behind many of the band’s greatest riffs and solos is guitarist Glenn Tipton (b. 1947). Born in Blackheath, England ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
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Producer-performer Lenny Kravitz (b. 1964) has explored multiple genres during his 25-year career as a music star, but has often been thought of as married to retro styles. Born in New York, Kravitz was raised in Los Angeles. His parents, a television producer and an actress, were well connected in show business. Kravitz decided to pursue rock’n’roll ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
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In his short life, California guitarist-mandolinist Clarence White (1944–73) conceived innovations that would inspire country and rock guitarists from both a stylistic and technical perspective long after his death. He brought bluegrass picking to the forefront of rock, turning acoustic guitar into a solo instrument. He developed a device for electric guitar that let traditional guitarists sound like pedal-steel ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
393 Words Read More

Freddie (sometimes spelled Freddy) King (1934–76) revitalized the Chicago blues scene in the 1960s. His aggressive playing and piercing solos helped to set up the blues-rock movement, and he was a major influence on 1960s British guitarists like Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Mick Taylor. King’s mother taught him to play guitar as a child in Gilmer, Texas ...

Source: Rock Guitar Heroes, consultant editor Rusty Cutchin
426 Words Read More

Although he did not coin the term ‘rock’n’roll’ – which was an African-American slang term for sex – New York disk jockey Alan Freed did popularize it when he attached it to a teen-oriented form of music that evolved from a fusion of rockabilly, R&B and, to a lesser extent, gospel and boogie-woogie. In its early forms, ...

Source: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Music, general editor Paul Du Noyer
949 Words Read More

A slapped upright bass, twanging lead guitar and acoustic rhythm guitar; a blues structure with country and blues inflections; a strong beat and moderate-to-fast tempo; a wild, yelping, often stuttering vocal style, together with plenty of echo on the recordings are the main ingredients of rockabilly. The rockabilly style was an eclectic hybrid of R&B, hillbilly ...

Source: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Music, general editor Paul Du Noyer
966 Words Read More

During the mid-1960s, America’s military action in Vietnam was escalating out of control; students around the world were becoming more politically involved, civil rights and feminism were hot issues and the burgeoning youth movement was turning onto the effects of mind-bending drugs. Accordingly, certain strains of popular music melded attitude, experimentation and a social conscience, and ...

Source: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Music, general editor Paul Du Noyer
1244 Words Read More

Hard rock is a cross between rock’n’roll and blues, but played louder – everything on ‘11’ or ‘one louder’, as guitarist Nigel Tufnell in spoof rock band Spinal Tap would say. The electric guitar is the prominent instrument in hard rock, and most hard rock songs are based on a guitar ‘riff’. The classic example of a hard rock ...

Source: The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Music, general editor Paul Du Noyer
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