A few weeks ago, I had the privilege to interview Robert Lowe. He told me that he’s currently working on a track which was written by Andy DiGelsomina – a composer and guitar player from Springfield, Ohio. The ex-Solitude Aeturnus and ex-Candlemass vocalist praised him by saying: »Andy is an amazing guitarist, a solid player. I’m blown away every time he sends me material.« (read the whole interview here). Well, reason enough to start our new series »My 5 favourite guitar players of all time« with Andy. At the end of this article you find a Spotify playlist including every song that our interviewee mentioned. Enjoy reading!
My Top 5:
- Uli Jon Roth
- Ritchie Blackmore
- Tony Iommi
- Edward Van Halen
- Gary Moore
I have a sort of triumvirate when it comes to guitarists. At the forefront are Uli Jon Roth, Ritchie Blackmore, and Tony Iommi. Those are the players who got me playing and writing most. The solos from »Warning« (Black Sabbath – s/t), »Lord of this World« (Black Sabbath – Master of Reality) and »Stargazer« (Rainbow – Rising) inspired me more times than I can count.
Filling out the Top 5 are Edward Van Halen and Gary Moore (though I feel weird leaving Jeff Beck out). Edward Van Halen brought a quirky, nearly avante-garde side to popular music guitar soloing. If you listen to some of the solos of, say, 1984, they are at times fascinatingly angular. Though I wished he would have explored that side of his playing more, it was astonishingly creative of him. Gary Moore to me was the guitarist who embodied passion in his playing; even during his blues era his flame burnt brightest… perhaps that’s why he died so tragically young.
Andy about his favourite guitar:
For me, the champagne of guitars will always be the Fender Stratocaster, most particularly the models from around 1968 to 1979. The Strat to me is redolent of the fantasy-type places its players took me to: Hendrix’s »Voodoo Chile« (Jimi Hendrix Experience – Electric Ladyland), Uli Jon Roth’s »Sails of Charon« (Scorpions – Taken by Force), Ritchie Blackmore’s Arabian-tinged »Stargazer« and »Gates of Babylon« (Rainbow – Long Live Rock’n’Roll). It has been the voice of my favorite guitarists’ most heartbreaking visions, like Uli Roth’s »We’ll Burn the Sky« from Tokyo Tapes and Blackmore’s »Wasted Sunsets« (Deep Purple – Perfect Strangers). Finally, my favorite tones were achieved through the use of the Strat, especially when used with the classic Cry Baby wah as a filter. It’s a tone that resonates deeply within me, one that I never tire of.