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Guitar Music

Guitar Music - since the early days of guitar slinging, many players have learned from record collections. Back in the 50s when Pop Music reared it's adolescent head, it was exciting to hear and work out the latest vinyl offering from across the Atlantic Ocean. Today many players learn from Tab only - a great tool but does nothing for vital ear-training. Hmmm ...

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Guitar Music - Masters on CD
Blues players like Eric Clapton sat down and learned from the likes of Muddy Waters, Elmore James, Freddie King... The Beatles picked up on Bob Dylan - The USA went crazy for the Beatles and turned out their own version - the Monkees, Yngvie J. Malmsteen digs Paggini... the list goes on.
Today we have the advantage of new guitar learning techniques such as tablature, online, software, DVDs and the rest. But it's still vital to get that all-important ear training which you get sitting down and working out records, guitar in hand.
It's a great way to learn fast, and player's devote various amounts of time to this method - from zero to infinity.


Beginners Learning Tip This "borrowing" and mix 'n matching from various styles and fave players, is probably part of your learning methods already, but aim to put your own stamp on it from the beginning - this is probably the hardest thing to achieve on any instrument I suppose.
  • Beginners Learning Tip A clear example of this type of approach would  be a player like Eric Johnson He often mentions some of these influences and players in interviews and you can hear them in his playing, but he has his own instantly recognizable signature sound too, and a distinctive approach to the instrument.
  • Beginners Learning Tip For fastest results, structure your lessons

I thoroughly recommend that you take your favorite players and your fave guitar music recordings apart. Here's a few I would recommend and have learned from.


Allan Holdsworth

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A truly amazing display of musicianship from a Guitar God! And not to mention some unbelievable Electric Bass and Drums too. You won't believe the sounds Holdsworth pulls out of that guitar of his. There's a strong possibility that you'll either love or hate this album, it's not easy listening!

Pushed by none other than Eddie Van Halen himself, this CD is a landmark for innovative guitar playing!

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Hard 2 describe ;-).
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Amazing left hand Legato.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Play magic sounding "Intervals of the Gods".
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Roadgames More Info

If you learn some of these "licks" good on ya', they're not easy by any means. Mr Holdsworth plays the guitar almost like a Saxophone, but at times I think the guitar sounds like a demented violin on home-brew! It's cool stuff, I'm in the admiring camp ;-). His album Metal Fatigue is popular with Pro guitarist's too.

I read in a guitar mag interview that he gave once, that he say's he doesn't tap much and he calls it "prodding" ;-).

It takes a few listens sometimes to get into this stuff, but it's a serious learning ground to study from if you happen to adore it. A truly innovative musician.

Our next offering is a bit more easier to get into...

Pink Floyd - David Gilmour

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Dark Side of the Moon

A real landmark this one, if you haven't yet heard it, give it a whirl - it's timeless. Plenty of bluesy based guitar licks from maestro David Gilmour. He uses a subtle (sometimes) phasor or similar time based effect, to add a fantastic atmosphere to his solos.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Great Bluesy and atmospheric source for guitar learning.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Gilmour uses a Stratocaster on it.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Dark Side of the Moon More Info

There's plenty of interesting chord progressions on the album, and the songs themselves are magic. No weak spots in any department - lyrics deserve special mention too I think. If your mesmerized by this album like millions before, try this other Floyd classic too Wish You Were Here

The Floyd have a catalogue spanning from the 60s, and it's best to have a quick listen to some tracks off their many varied releases (you can do this at Amazon ;-), before you go the whole hog and buy a copy. I say this because the early stuff in particular is very different to these two Pink Floyd recommendations.

As well as a great source for guitar inspiration and learning, this album is so well crafted in every department (such as sound and recording techniques), it's well worth picking up and even takin' some of it apart. No nickin' chords ;-).

Joe Satriani

Our next album of guitar mastery is two albums actually. The original Master and once pupil team - the excellent Satriani and Vai.

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Surfing With the Alien

I'm sure you all know about these two guitar masters, and if you don't, well here's 2 mega releases from both of them. I think these 2 guys really helped promote and carry the good oul gee-tar flying flag extremely well. What about the poor man from Decca who told the Beatle's manager 20 odd years before, that "Guitar Music Is Dead Mr. Epstein" or words to that effect...Ah well ;-). Pete Townshend said something similar once too I believe.

  • Study Tips Satriani's legendary left hand legato technique will give you plenty to aim for.
  • Study Tips He's no slouch in the right hand department either - awesome all-round technique if a bit clinical for some player's taste.
  • Study Tips But there are many great tunes and techniques on this revolutionary release, that you can enjoy and pick-up useful tips from.
  • Study Tips Surfing With the Alien More Info

Steve Vai

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Passion & Warfare

Steve Vai's Passion & Warfare is a great and innovative CD from a very talented bloke! I seen him perform live a while back and it was note for note.

  • Study Tips Phenomenal technique and composition skills - where to begin? Have a listen and see what you make of 'im.
  • Study Tips Passion & Warfare More Info

Albert King

And now for something completely different but brilliant as it's old. Another duo actually, this time from either side of the Atlantic - Ladiees aaan' Gentlemen...presenting from the good oul US of A, The King of the Blues himself (one of ;-) ...Mr Albert King!

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King of the Blues

Woah yeh - praise be...There's tons of fantastic blues albums cut and released... this one still shines like a jewel among them. Not a dud song or note around. Brilliant moody music and some serious wailin' from the man. If I could choose one Desert Island blues moment it would be this classic.

  • Study Tips Albert played a Gibson Flying V, strung hi E nearest the floor, and pulled off some amazing but toneful wide bends.
  • Study Tips A cutting style well worth hours of working out and spicing up your playing with.
  • Study Tips King of the Blues More Info
  • Study Tips It's also a cool one for a smoochy moment or two at a party ;-).
  • Study Tips See our Blues Lesson

Vintage Fleetwood Mac

From t'other side of the waters we present to you, the legendary Peter Green and Fleetwood Mac.

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Vintage Fleetwood Mac - Best of...

Tons of fillers and reissues available here too, but for my taste, this IS the very best collection (that's not the cover showing) of VINTAGE Fleetwood Mac. Includes some crucial Green tracks and more. I have this version/collection with a different cover than the USA release, so it took me ages to track it down ;-). Here it is and it's a great british blues example of Les Paul Bluesy magic. I simply adore the track Albatross.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Some classic songs in there, and loads of tasty licks to absorb and work on.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips VINTAGE Fleetwood Mac More Info

Stevie Ray Vaughn

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Texas Flood

What can I say about Stevie Ray Vaughn's playing and sound? Innovative Blues Cool might sum it up - this album is a legend and relatively modern blues cut. SRV released many more brilliant CDs and he also guested on David Bowie's Let's Dance album back in the 80s.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Loads to learn off this one - especially Texas Style.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips For more grungy and tasty Blues guitar try early ZZ Top.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Texas Flood More Info


Elvis Presley Sun Sessions - Scotty Moore

Our next contestant was a few years before, but let's just say he had an influence on little SRV! Still back in time, check out Elvis' early days for some great guitar work and back up from the band.

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The Sun Sessions

Amazing stuff from the King himself. Imagine how exciting the listeners were to hear this!

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Truly awesome schtuff from Scotty on guitar and the boys - still worth a study - ageless.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips The one that started it all... That's Alright Mama 50 years ago as I write.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips The Sun Sessions More Info



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Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

Brilliant recording and songs - guitar sounds to die for and back. Still sounds fresh as the day it was made.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Plenty of chord progressions and psychedelic inspirations on this one. Belongs in every collection and guitar fans studies.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band More Info
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Still fashionable to stick on at partie's, it never let's you down ;-).


Uli Jon Roth

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Virgin Killer

Killer Classical Style Neo Fusion Madness from a master - Uli Jon Roth. This guy was out during the early days and his unique guitar work is astounding. Not for the fainthearted he bombs along with heavy taste! Some cool rock classics too, with the odd "unusual" track thrown in for good luck. Ok some tracks are a bit off the wall, but the guitar work in particular shines throughout.

Side A in particular has some unbelievable guitar solos and songs. If we had innovation badges to hand out, I'd gladly give Uli one of them ;-).

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Try his Electric Sun work for more amazing guitar playing but the songs are a bit "different".
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Virgin Killer More Info


Yngvie Malmsteen

A later but essential classical guitar influenced wonderboy, Yngvie Malmsteen and his powerful Rising Force - he's from Malmo in Sweden.

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The album itself is VERY metal and typical of the time, not sure if it'll be up there with Sgt. Pep and the boys, but the guitar work is awesome. Harmonic Minor scales ripped apart and more. I like the cover too.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips If you want a speed and sweeping inspiration, check this one out.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Trilogy More Info
  • Beginner Yngvie Guitar Music Study Tips He plays a special "scalloped" Strat (speeds things up), and sounds like a mix of Paginini, Hendrix, Blackmore n' more.


Two excellent and my fave band at the mo' ... Coldplay.

          Coldplay Music CD width=65 height=64 A Rush of Blood to the Head                  Coldplay Music CD width=65 height=65 Parachutes

Great simplistic but effective guitar work throughout, I think the band are mood masters. Inspired, I would be thinkin', from a certain Irish band called U2. Brilliant hits on each and ... I just luv 'em.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips A Rush of Blood to the Head More Info
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Parachutes More Info

U2 - The Edge

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The Joshua Tree

Here's the lads themselves, and their guitar and hits extravaganza. Tons of techniques to be learned from this master of the "Less is More" style - The Edge. Fair play To 'em 's'wot I say.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips The Joshua Tree More Info

The Cure - Classic Goth Sounds from Rob...

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Seventeen Seconds

I still get the goosepimples everytime I hear that guitar on the intro track "A Forest". The original of course.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips If your into black and missed this one first time 'round check it out.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Some cool Goth Guitar work n' chords from lead singer Robert Smith.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Seventeen Seconds More Info

Steve Morse

Our next featured wizard Steve Morse, is a special breed of guitar player and one in a million for skill on the oul 6 string. This album he released way back when, is full of great songs and guitar playing. With lots of exceptional guests, including Eric Johnson and Albert Lee, it's never boring. Some simply incredible stuff played by everyone on the CD.

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Stand Up

  • Guitar Music Study Tips Morse blows like no other and you can hear him nowadays with Deep Purple.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Stand Up More Info
  • Guitar Music Study Tips An album well worth sourcing for a guitary and learning collection.

The Hellecasters - John Jorgenson, Will Ray, Jerry Donahue

For some mind numbing Telecaster work try our next offering...

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Return of the Hellecasters

I love the cover and the playing is out of this world.

  • Guitar Music Study Tips You'll be wonderin' how they achieve some of these seemingly impossible sounds.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Return of the Hellecasters More Info

Thin Lizzy

The next hot guitar album is from my fave growing up band Thin Lizzy.

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A crackin' album, and some serious twin lead and riffery a goin' on. Great introduction CD to Lizzy if your curious too. A "modern" successful rock act and huge fans of the Lizzys? It's the madcap but great Darkness. Phil would be happy to hear 'em. Their debut - Permission to Land is also a testament to Queen I reckon too.

Jimi Hendrix

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Electric Ladyland

  • Guitar Music Study Tips One of the original and best - say n'more! A grandaddy of 'em all...
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Electric Ladyland More Info

Eric Johnson

We mentioned the brilliant Eric Johnson before, and if you haven't heard him before, this is a great CD to get into him with. A guitarist's guitarist, he plays a very unique hybrid style, consisting of a mixture of Pop, Jazz, Blues and Country. It's all stamped with his totally unique style and THAT tone!

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Ah Via Musicom

  • Guitar Music Study Tips You can pickup tons of inspirational ideas from this album. Good tunes and songs too and not just for guitar players (I think ;-).
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Ah Via Musicom More Info

Eddie Van Halen

The guitar mastery of Eddie Van Halen is written elsewhere in stone methinks. Out of many possibilities I opted for these 2 to represent the VH camp. An oldie and a bit older again.

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Incredible is the word for it. Guitar work extraordinaire and songs to match. Please don't just clone it ;-).

  • Guitar Music Study Tips It's worth learning a bit of this stuff for a ton of reasons. For a more innocent but just as sizzling - Van Halen is yer man!
  • Guitar Music Study Tips 1984 More Info

Paco De Lucia

And now for something completely different. A bit of Flamenco from the master himself - Paco De Lucia. I love watching this guy play on the video, he's almost possessed when he's playing or something. Just mind-blowing.

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Fuente Y Caudal

  • Guitar Music Study Tips If you want to suss out this type of stuff fast, get a great Flamenco Guitar teacher! Go to sunny Spain - ;-).
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Fuente Y Caudal More Info

Larry Carlton

Larry Carlton's solo on the track "NiteCrawler" (on Collection) is the ultimate "late night" sound for me. Worth the admission price alone, but there loads of stuff you can learn from this guy.

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  • Guitar Music Study Tips Very unusual note selection sometimes - lots of clean and overdrive jazzy chords and soloing - effective and sounds magic.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Collection More Info

Recommended Classic Guitar Players and Sounds

  • Guitar Music Study Tips George Benson - Take That track - unbelievable electric jazz guitar playing - Octaves. sweeps, Arpeggios, Picking ...
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Gary Moore - Albums: Corridors of Power + Still Got the Blues. 2 brilliant albums from a varied back catalogue.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Eric Bell - Album: Vagabonds of the Western World (Thin Lizzy). My fave.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips The Skids - Stuart Adamson: Powerful Riffwork from the "New wave" era.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Dire Straits - Marc Knopfler: Brothers in Arms... a classic mix of Rock/Classical/Jazzy/Bluesy/Pop guitar playing style
  • Guitar Music Study Tips Chet Atkins Read My Licks Unbelievable self-taught player.
  • Guitar Music Study Tips More2Follow...

Well that's it for the moment's Guitary Cds, better do some practice... hope you enjoyed it and picked up a few tips.


<<< Living outside the USA? You can find most of the above CDs online through the Amazon UK Searchbox.





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