Wednesday, December 31, 2008

John Pizzarelli 7-String Jazz Guitarist - I Got Rhythm

John Pizzarelli is easily one the greatest living 7-string jazz guitar players. He's got a thing for old jazz standards, and after hearing him sing and play, I can tell he really appreciates the history and gift of jazz music. And his guitar is super sweet. He's playing Moll guitars now, but he used to play a signature Benedetto model. Pretty awesome if you ask me.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Ted Greene Plays Autumn Leaves

Many of you know Ted Greene. He was an extraordinary guitar player, and he simply left this this world too early. One of the reasons that I love him is his use of Telecasters. Ted had a collection of Telecasters, Broadcasters and Nocasters. I've even heard that he worked with Fender to create a vintage reissue of the 1952 Fender Telecaster guitar. Ted Greene wrote four books on guitar. Of these, I've heard the first one I should get is Modern Chord Progressions. Like any other aspiring jazz guitarist, I'm pretty certain that this one book will keep me busy for a lifetime. His other books include: Jazz and Classical Voicings for Guitar, Single Note Soloing, and Chord Chemistry. One of the coolest things about this jazz cat is that his former students and his lifelong love have begun documenting his work, tablature and videos for all of us to experience and learn from. See more at

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Ella Fitzgerald & Joe Pass - Stormy Weather (1975)

Ella Fitzgerald and Joe Pass are my favorite vocalist/guitarist duo in the history of music. This video shows their finesse, elegance, and balance.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Long Live Jerry Reed!

Jerry Reed passed away from this earth on August 31, 2008. I must admit that I will miss his guitar playing. He was a legend, and he had one of those styles that could not be replicated by anyone. As a songwriter, he wrote songs for Elvis Presley. As an actor, he played Cledus Snow, aka the Snowman, in Smokey and the Bandit. Jerry Reed was a super hero to me. I've posted this video of Jerry playing guitar with Chet Atkins. Listen closely, and you'll hear the jazz influence in Jerry's guitar style. He is simply incredible. We'll miss you, Jerry.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Joe Pass on the Archtop Guitar

Joe Pass on Archtop Guitar
Joe Pass is easily one of my guitar heroes. This guy could do it all. He played with Sarah Vaughan, Frank Sinatra, Joe Williams, and Louis Bellson among others. He recorded the first record on the Concord Jazz record label with Johnny Mathis. Walking basslines, melodies, counterpoint - he was the George Van Eps of 6-string guitar! Furthermore, he recorded several albums with the greatest jazz vocalist of all time, Ella Fitzgerald. There is something magical about hearing Joe Pass and Ella Fitzgerald perform together. Their duet of strings and voice is something that no one else can even come close to. If you don't have any other their albums or his albums, grab one today. They are spectacular.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Lenny Breau & Chet Atkins? Holy Crap!

This is a match made in heaven for me. These are two of my favorite guitarists of all time. Now I just need to figure out where to get this album. Lenny Breau and Chet Atkins - who would have known? I guess I'm a little slow.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Wrecking Crew of 1960's Los Angeles

For those of you who do not know, the Wrecking Crew was a group of musicians in LA in the 1960's. These guys could play anything, and they practically did. They were know as "first call" musicians, and they played on every type of film score, television show themes, and advertising jingles. Phil Spector and Brian Wilson used the Wrecking Crew for several classic songs.

Several guitarists, including Glen Campbell, Barney Kessel, Tommy Tedesco, Al Casey, Carol Kaye, Billy Strange, and Don Peake, were members of the Wrecking Crew. Glen Campbell went on to become a famous singer/guitarist. Hal Blaine, the most recorded drummer in history, was also a feature member of the group. There is a documentary about the Wrecking Crew. Check it out here: