Hidden Heroes: Name Underrecognized Guitarists


JeffS65
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JeffS65
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01/27/2021 2:01 pm

I thought this might be interesting.

We all hear the names of the great guitar heroes like Beck, Page, Clapton, Van Halen and so on. However, we all know there are great guitar players who are not household names. I thought it would be fun to see whom everyone thinks is a great guitar player but completely underrecognized or just not given their props by the world at large.

My list of at least a few.

Rock:

Neil Geraldo (Pat Benatar)

Gary Richrath (REO Speedwagon)

Country:

Danny Gatton

Albert Lee

Other:

Laurence Juber (fingerstyle)

That's my starter and if people join the thread it might also be fun to ask/find out why we think that player is so skilled.


# 1
William MG
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William MG
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01/27/2021 3:04 pm

Fun topic Jeff.

I just got into this band a few years ago - Big Wreck, and asked myself - why haven't I been listening to these guys all along? To me, one of the greatest little known talents. Before covid my son and I saw them at a small theater here in town.

Ian Thornley is the lead vocalist and guitarist. Lee Anderton interviewed him a few years ago because Rob Chapman told Lee "you have to hear this guy".

Ian is incredibly smooth. When my son and I saw them play they took 1 song and made it a 13 minute jam session. It was wonderful.

Big Wreck

Ian Thornley


This year the diet is definitely gonna stick!

# 2
ChristopherSchlegel
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ChristopherSchlegel
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01/27/2021 4:14 pm
Originally Posted by: JeffS65However, we all know there are great guitar players who are not household names. I thought it would be fun to see whom everyone thinks is a great guitar player but completely underrecognized or just not given their props by the world at large.[/quote]

Fun topic! I think the primary reason a guitarist is known outside guitar circles is because they are known for the songs they are associated with instead of solely for their guitar skill. Recognition by the world outside of musicians is usually earned by playing recognizable songs that have vocals that people can relate to and care about. Or least playing an instrumental version of a recognizable song that started with a lyric vocal. With that in mind it's easy to see why, for example, Jeff Beck is not as widely recognized as Jimmy Page or Eric Clapton.

So, instrumental music in general is where you might look for players that are under-recognized by the general public. But most guitar players I know are aware of & admire these players.

This tune shows the incredible range of Guthrie Govan.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9D0WuVE8dQU

Here's 2 for 1! Martin Taylor & Julian Lage duet on a beautiful standard.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tKsuQbOg9oM

Pasquale Grasso is my favorite new chord melody guy expanding on the Joe Pass style.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FyoXuQ9812U

Chet Atkins, Tommy Emmanuel, Doyle Dykes & Ted Greene are pretty well known for instrumental guitarists. Looking for performance by those guys I found Richard Smith. His fingerstyle versions of Joplin's ragtime pieces are the closest I've ever heard to capturing the essence of the originals.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFeWbbaSJQc

[quote=JeffS65]

Country:

Danny Gatton

Albert Lee

Nice choices! I see your Telecaster masters & I raise you with Scotty Anderson. Check out how he plays diad harmony lines with himself at about :58. Holy moly.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1an45rMwg7A

Matteo Mancuso is a recent find! Here he's playing a little blues thing. Check out that right hand technique: no pick!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8OsuhTDufw

And with his trio playing an amazingly funky & complex instrumental.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ST9--HWOTA8

Finally, Eliot Fisk, the guy that transcribed all 24 Paganini violin caprices. This is a performance of no. 24.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbeAbllBpGo

Good stuff!


Christopher Schlegel
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# 3
Tinpan
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Tinpan
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01/27/2021 4:49 pm

Can't argue with any of that. All amazing. How about Shawn Lane. Not only fastest guitar you'll ever see but a world class pianist too. Some guys just hog all the talent. :-)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=avcyYNbs2VA


# 4
Carl King
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Carl King
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01/28/2021 6:33 am

I vote for my friend Jake Willson.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BFYw7I1vUF0

https://www.youtube.com/user/jakeynez

-Carl.


Carl King[br]GuitarTricks Video Director / Producer

# 5
AustinUK___9teen70eight
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AustinUK___9teen70eight
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01/28/2021 11:34 am

for me it's John Squire

Stone Roses

Seahorses

the man has made so many anthems & beautiful riffs.

Also he inspired a lot of UK up coming bands which became the Britpop/indie scene of the 90s

✌


# 6
matonanjin2
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matonanjin2
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01/28/2021 4:29 pm
Originally Posted by: William MG

Fun topic Jeff.

I just got into this band a few years ago - Big Wreck, and asked myself - why haven't I been listening to these guys all along?

^^^ My thoughts exactly. Not specifically about "Big Wreck", but generally so many names that I have learned about since (trying to) learning guitar. If I should ever just say "the heck with it" I will remain grateful for all the guitarists that I have found out about as a result of studying guitar and forums like this.

If not for learning my sphere would not have expanded, probably, beyond Santana and Clapton!

One name that has been criminally under exposed is Roy Buchanon. Maybe this is a bit of self-contradiction since there was, as I understand it, actually a documentary called (something like) "The Greatest Guitarist You Have Never Heard of". Do a Youtube search with his name and "The Mesiah Will Come".

A couple more guitarists that my wife and I are listening to a lot of late are Chris Cain and Michael Burkes.

Not a specific name but group are all the old blues guys. Any of those old delta guys, and especially the ones that migrated to Chicago, have become study subjects of mine. Again using Mr. Santana and Mr. Clapton as refence points, I just knew them as rock guys. But because of studying guitar I have learned that they are really blues guys.

Years ago my son took me to a Santana concert in Chicago. On stage Carlos made some reference to it being great to be in Chicago, "the home of Buddy Guy". That now makes sense.


[u]Guitars:[/u] 2014 PRS Santana, 2013 PRS Paul's, 2009 PRS Hollowbody, 1972 Gibson ES-325, 2012 Fender Strat American Standard, 2012 Yamaha Pacifica, Martin M-36, Martin 000-15M, Seagull S6 Classic[br][u]Amps:[/u] Fender Blues Junior III, Boss Eband JS-10, Line 6 POD 500X, Quilter Microblock 45

# 7
Tinpan
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Tinpan
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01/28/2021 6:21 pm

Ah yes...Roy Buchanan was amazing. Doesn't even look like he's trying and that tone and unique approach just blows you away. Best use of a Telecaster I've ever seen.


# 8
matonanjin2
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matonanjin2
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01/28/2021 10:38 pm
Originally Posted by: Tinpan

Ah yes...Roy Buchanan was amazing. Doesn't even look like he's trying and that tone and unique approach just blows you away. Best use of a Telecaster I've ever seen.

Yep. Just effortless. And when one knows his history what a tragic story.


[u]Guitars:[/u] 2014 PRS Santana, 2013 PRS Paul's, 2009 PRS Hollowbody, 1972 Gibson ES-325, 2012 Fender Strat American Standard, 2012 Yamaha Pacifica, Martin M-36, Martin 000-15M, Seagull S6 Classic[br][u]Amps:[/u] Fender Blues Junior III, Boss Eband JS-10, Line 6 POD 500X, Quilter Microblock 45

# 9
Tinpan
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Tinpan
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01/28/2021 11:21 pm

Yeah he was troubled alright! Blues road. I think the Stones wanted him but he said naaaaa.


# 10
dsk6
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dsk6
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01/29/2021 2:43 am

Jake Green from Jake Green Band...dude flies under the radar...but he can play!


# 11
mjgodin
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mjgodin
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01/29/2021 1:56 pm

I'm suprised you didn't mention Soren Madsen Chris?

Well I'll put him in. Here's a beautiful rendition of "Can't Help Falling in Love".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-m8bE_kRBQ

A couple of other Fingerstyle Guitarists I think worthy of mention are Sungha Jung

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ccqn-fp4qQ4https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ccqn-fp4qQ4

Gabriella Quevedo. You never heard Pink Floyd's 'Comfortably Numb" played like this.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yi8nF6GaEfI

Bluegrass is not everyones tea and never was mine either until recently, but it's making a surge due to these two performers. Billy Strings and Molly Tuttle. Here they are together. Billy shines around the 2:40 mark.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovC1jULtcMMhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovC1jULtcMM

Even some Metal Shredders are in awe of Billy. He stated in an interview he likes his guitars action set higher than normal with heavy gauge strings. His fingertips must be made of metal. He does it all on acoustic.

And what can be said of Molly. What an incredible talent. She's started out pure Bluegrass, but is branching out into more contemporary areas with her own originals. Hopefully the whole world will know about her soon. Check out her clawhammer technique when she was younger.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xed8z2ue-sEhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xed8z2ue-sE

and this more recent one of her picking technique.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awFeDMNiKX4https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awFeDMNiKX4

Moe


# 12
Susan_Montgomery
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Susan_Montgomery
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01/29/2021 2:34 pm

Great list!

I have to add one of my favorites who I have seen play in person a couple times...

Eilen Jewell, the "Queen of the Minor Key"

She uses a blend of blues, country, folk, early rock,etc.

Her use of the minor keys is amazing and she's an incredible songwriter.

Here is one of my favorites by her but there are so many. Great live performances on Youtube also.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipQK7G1CbX0


“Often, what seems like an impossible climb is just a staircase without the steps drawn in.” Robert Brault, American Operatic Tenor

# 13
matonanjin2
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matonanjin2
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02/02/2021 6:08 pm
Originally Posted by: Tinpan

Ah yes...Roy Buchanan was amazing. Doesn't even look like he's trying and that tone and unique approach just blows you away. Best use of a Telecaster I've ever seen.

Coincidentally, I had my audio player set on random and it just played Roy Buchanon's "When a Guitar Plays the Blues". And, yes, that Tele just screams!!


[u]Guitars:[/u] 2014 PRS Santana, 2013 PRS Paul's, 2009 PRS Hollowbody, 1972 Gibson ES-325, 2012 Fender Strat American Standard, 2012 Yamaha Pacifica, Martin M-36, Martin 000-15M, Seagull S6 Classic[br][u]Amps:[/u] Fender Blues Junior III, Boss Eband JS-10, Line 6 POD 500X, Quilter Microblock 45

# 14
snojones
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snojones
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02/02/2021 8:45 pm

The one that comes to my mind is Terry Kantz of Chicago, back when they were a hot Rock/ jazz band. That man was amazing. When he died that band just truned into smaltzy fluff. Too bad because they really had a powerful, unique rock sound when Terry was leading the charge on guitar, vocals, and writting. The man could play rythum and lead and sing all at the same time. I have not heard another band that had the kind of big band sound where horns and guitar punched back and forth like that.


Captcha is a total pain in the........

# 15