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Recommended Listening - Classic

 

 

A selection of some of my all time favourite albums including some of the greatest guitar tracks ever recorded in my opinion. If I missed out your favourites, please let me know by using the contact form. I may have overlooked a few that I would be happy to add to the list.

 

If there are any of these albums you have not heard, do yourself a favour and check them out by clicking on the album cover pic.  Are you in for a treat!

 

*** Please Allow Cookies for full functionality - Don't worry there's no Pop Ups or nasty ads. ***

 

Chrome Users please disable Ads Removal or any other Pop Up blockers or you won't be able to see the album covers and access the album previews and reviews etc. Links are currently for USA onl. UK links coming soon.

 

All the links are USA at the moment - I will add UK links soon

 

 

Jimi Hendrix - Are you Experienced

 

This was the debut album of the now legendary Jimi Hendrix. It is without doubt a masterpiece and arguably his greatest work. The two other contenders being Axis Bold as Love and Electric Ladyland.

 

I first heard this album as a schoolboy, when it was released in May 1967 and it changed my life.

 

Jimi was unquestionably a musical genius and influenced the way guitars are played today more than any other guitarist before or since. he almost single handedly converted the guitars role in a band from that of a backing instrument to the lead instrument and this is the album that started the biggest revolution in music history.

 

There was just one other serious contender for the title of 'Guitar God' around this time and he wouldn't emerge until six months later on Cream's album Disraeli Gears. That of course was Eric Clapton.Wiki

 

Pink Floyd - The Dark Side of the Moon

 

What can I say about this album that you have not heard before? Simply one of the finest albums ever recorded.

 

If you don't have this in your collection then you must fall into one of these categories.

(a) You don't like those horrible degenerate guitar bands.

 

(b) You were stranded on a desert island 30 years ago and don't know who Pink Floyd are? Which one is Pink?

 

You are in serious need of guidance, in which case you must be congratulated because you have come to the right place.Wiki

 

David Gilmour - David Gilmour

 

David Jon Gilmour CBE. The tone from Heaven

Simply the most tasteful guitarist that ever graced the stage. The undisputed king of tone, feel and note selection

The David Gilmour albums and DVDs listed here are packed with some of the most tasteful guitar solos ever played.

Check out the solos from the title track 'On an Island' from the 'Remember That Night' DVD recorded live at The Royal Albert Hall, May 2006. Is that not the best guitar tone you ever heard?

Check out the DVD of this concert (below)
Wiki

 

Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin

 

One of the Holy Trinity of true 'Super Groups' of the 70's. The other two of course being Pink Floyd and Yes. The music of the 'Big Three' would dominate the decade and influence all to follow.

 

Jimmy Page's inivative, sometimes qwirky, often raunchy, gritty & frequently beautifully haunting melodic milestones, have been a huge inspiration to just about every guitarist on the planet.

 

If you don't own at least four Zeppelin albums your a wierdo & don't deserve to own a guitar, so it is hereby confiscated. If you send it to me, I will ensure it gets a good home

 

Robin Trower - Bridge of Sighs

 

Robin's 2nd album after leaving Procul Harem and definately his best.

 

Obviously heavily influenced by Jimi Hendrix as are most rock guitarists, but certainly in no way does he attempt to copy Jimi. Robin is far more subtle in the way he expresses this influence than say Stevie Ray Vaughan for example, and in retrospect, I would say that his style is in fact unique.

 

Robin's style is of course easily recognisable, being built around sumptuously drenched  Univybe and Delay effects.

 

He is a virtuoso in his own right, which is apparent when listening to this incredible album.

Another must have for your collection.

 

Gray Moore - Still Got The Blues

 

Guitar Legend Gary Moore puts away his leather pants, dons Peter Green's (Fleetwood Mac) now infamous and exquisitely sweet Les Paul and plays the blues - and then some.

 

If you like Rock and or Blues Guitar and don't have a copy of this, you need a jolly good thrashing.

 

What is wrong with you boy? Go stand in the corner.Seriously, do it now and no turning around.Wiki

 

Al Di Meola, John McLaughlin, Paco De Lucia - Friday Night in San Francisco

Three guitar legends get together on the 8th December 1980 to give a spontaneous acoustic pefomance at the Warlield Theatre, San Francisco. I presume that was a Friday night?

 

The result is an outstanding display of dynamic, yet sensitive virtuosity.

 

This is an all time classic guitar album and I urge you to add it to your collection if you don't have a copy already. Most of you probably do have a copy, as according to Paco, 6 million copies have been sold around the world so far.

 

Reurn To Forever - Romantic Warrior

 

Released in 1976 and way ahead of its time, Romantic Warrior is a masterpiece. The band Return To Forever was a true supergroup, featuring four of the finest virtuosos of the era. Return to Forever was put together by Chick Corea the ex Miles Davis pianist.

 

Romantic Warrior featured a young Al Di Meola, discovered by Chic and making his debut. At the time of recording, Al was just 19 years old and relatively unknown. Within months of the records release, Al had gained the reputation of being the most fluent guitarist in the World. Lenny White on drums and Stanley Clark on bass completes the line up.

 

Romantic Warrior is an instrumental album which needs no vocals at all, as each instrument plays a vital part in telling the story. The chemistry these guys had together is frightening. The incredibly tight, precise, multiple timing changes are simply stunning. This album is absolutely essential for all serious guitarists or anyone with an interest in music theory.  Click the pic and buy it NOW! That's an order lol.

 

King Crimson - Discipline

 

The centre of the Universe isn't in Wimbourne, Dorset Bob. It is in the middle of that Celtic knot on the fornt cover of this, King Crimson 'tour de force.'

 

This album has it all and in no short measure.Blistering and intricate licks from Mr Fripp, tasteful fills from Adrian Belew, with his unique, trademark effects, not to mention his supurlative vocals. All of the tracks have interweaving rhythmic patterns, timing and key changes in abundance.

 

Discipline also features the superb Bill Bruford on drums and the outstanding Tony Levin on stick bass.

 

A far cry from 'In the Court of the Crimson King' the first classic from this band, this reincarnation of Frippatronics was indeed the bands finest hour.Wiki

 

Yes - 90125

 

Trevor Rabin was in my opinion, a breath of fresh air injected into what was at the time a stale and listless band, after the depature of guitar maestro Steve Howe.

 

Most prog fans will argue that the album isn't up to the standards set by earlier Yes classics like 'Yes Songs', 'Close to the Edge' and 'Tales from Topographic Oceans'. The album admittedly has more of a rock feel due to Rabin's influence than was the norm for the band. 

 

In my view however, it added another and badly needed dimension to the bands repertoire. This album can't seriously be compared to albums featuring Howe, as the two guitarists styles were totally different. The band in all fairness, had an impossible task in finding a replacement for the unique and massively talented Steve Howe.

 

It is nonetheless a classic in it's own rights and I think Trevor's musicianship and beautiful guitar work is outstanding.

 

This is certainly one of my favourite Yes albums and they were one of my three favourite bands back in the 70's.Wiki

 

Jean Luc Ponty - Cosmic Messenger

 

The superb Cosmic Messenger has a more rocky and funkier feel than it's predecessors, 'Enigmatic Oceans', which featured an inspired Alan Holdsworth and is probably the best fusion album of all time and Aurora, with Darryl Stuermer (Genesis) who appears on both of these forerunners. 

 

Cosmic Messenger is a superb mix of swirling, arpeggiated and synthesised electric violin so characteristic of Ponty. Add to this Alan Zavod's spacey keyboards, Ralphe Armstrong's lovely growly fretless bass, Casey Scheurell's interesting and punchy rhythms and Peter Maunu's soaring, melodic bluesy guitar solos and you have a heady mixture of musicianship to savour.

 

This dreamy, hypnotic album which is a live recording by the way, is for sitting back, dimming the lights, relaxing and drifting away to. So JLP isn't a guitarist but he has worked with some of the best in the business as you will hear on his albumsWiki

 

Cream - Disraeli Gears

 

This was actually Creams second album. Their first, 'Fresh Cream' was a bit of a false start and being mostly a collection of blues standards, was out of step with the times.

 

By the time Cream recorded Disraeli Gears, Clapton had been exposed to Hendrix, Jimi's use of guitar effects, especially the wah wah and LSD. Hendrix and LSD at the same time is akin to a religious experience and how that made a difference to Eric's style.. The result was psychedelic blues. mmm.

 

The band split two years later and Eric of course went on to become mega famous. Of his later renditions, I personally prefer his collaboration with the extremely gifted Steve Windwood and believe they brought out the best in each other.

 

Blind Faith  FTWWiki

 

Jeff Beck - There and back

 

Jeff got a bit of a slagging off for this album by David Fricke (Rolling Stone) David reckons it's cliche'd, terminally predictable and that Jeff who had previously ran ahead of the pack with albums like Wired and Blow by Blow, now seemd content to follow.

 

I beg to differ Mr Fricke. Having seen Jeff perform this album live at the Manchester Apollo circa 1980, I can tell you that I like many others who attended that night, were utterly gobsmacked by the material, Jeff's guitar prowess and stage presence. Last but certainly not least, by Simon Phillip's stunning performance on drums the likes of which I have never seen before or since. The band had a synergy and level of energy that I have seldom witnessed in a live performance. It will live on in my memory as one of the best concerts I have ever had the pleasure of attending.

 

If you want to hear a guitar played with feeling and impeccable, intuative note selection. Or a guy do stuff with a guitar that defies comprehension? Check out Jeff Beck, the grand master of guitar tricks.  He's not Dave Gilmours favourite guitarist for nothing.Wiki

 

Steve Hillage - Open

 

I just can't figure out which one of this icon of gorgeous guitar grooves albums is my favourite. I love each and every one of them. If I was forced to choose one at gunpoint it would probably still take me an hour to arrive at any conclusion and I would say 'Green.' Then I would promptly change my mind and say 'Open.' 

 

I once witnessed former Gong guitarist Steve Hillage bring a concert at Manchester's Free Trade Hall  to an abrupt halt. He had noticed a security guy manhandle a fan and refused to continue with the gig until the security staff were removed.

 

If Steve's smooth and dreamy love and peace guitar solos don't flick your switch, you need to get yourself hardwired to the 'Cosmic Vibe' Man. Here are another four of his classic albums.

Wiki

 

The Tubes - The Completion Backwards Principle - Featuring Steve Lukather

Fantastic album featuring none other than Steve Lukather.

 

This powerful and dynamic band took the world by storm but all too briefly. They did produce a number of good albums but nowhere near enough.

 

This is my personal fav tubes album because I am energised every time I hear it and as for Steve Lukather's solo on 'Talk to Ya Later.'

 

What can you say? The guy is a genius and one of the most tasteful guitarists ever.

 

Sniff'n'The Tears - The games Up

 

A tasteful and well produced funky, melodic rock album. Very easy to listen to and be warned, the tunes are very catchy.

 

The songs seem to embed themselves into your brain and you will find yourself humming them over and over again.

 

Simple but very effective, chunky funky rhythm guitar, sweet mellow, bluesy solos. Paul Roberts has one of those voices that you instantly take to the moment you hear it.

 

A good solid album by a band that just didn't get the acclaim it deserved and so sadly never realised it's true potential. Oh and the constantly changing line-up probably didn't help.

 

Joe Walsh - Barnstorm

I first saw Joe Walsh with the James Gang back in the dim and distant past at the Free Trade Hall in Manchester. I remember he played an ice blue, pre-CBS Strat that night and boy did it sound sweet.

 

Not a technical guitarist by any stretch of the imagination, Joe's playing however has that magical melodic quality that is hard to define, yet all great guitarists have it.

 

In simple terms, it's just great to listen to.Wiki

 

Steve Lukather - Ever Changing Times

The work of Steve Lukather over the years almost defies description. To say he is prolific is something of an understatement. In addition to his numerous solo recordings and those with his band Toto, he has completed over 1,000 collaborations with just about every major recording artist of the 80's If you have a CD from that era, the chances are that Steve is playing guitar on it somewhere.

 

The style of Steve Lukather is unmistakable. His fluently smooth effortless and incredibly melodic solos are right up there with the best ever recorded.Wiki

Van Halen - Van Halen

 

First off, Eddie did not invent tapping but he certainly popularised it with the track Eruption. Eddie did indeed spend hours and hours locked away in his bedroom as a kid, practicing guitar. In fact, he says he still does.

 

The results of this dedication to his instrument has of course brought fame & fortune to Eddie, but more meaningful to him I will wager, is the Legacy he will leave behind.Wiki

 

If you are unfamiliar with any of the albums below?

Click on the cover to access the Preview and Review.

 

                

Jimi Hendrix - Axis Bold as love
Jimi Hendrix - Electric Ladyland
Jimi Hendrix - New Rising Sun
Jimi Hendrix - Valleys of Neptune
Jimi Hendrix - The Cry of Love
Jimi Hendrix - Band of Gypsies
Jimi Hendrix - Live at Filmore East
Jimi Hendrix - Live at Woodstock
Pink Floyd - The Wall  
Pink Floyd - The Division Bell
Pink Floyd - Animals
Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here
David Gilmour - About Face
David Gilmour - On an Island
David Gilmour - London 1984
David Gilmour - Remember That Night
Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin II
Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin III
Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin IV
Led Zeppelin - Houses of The Holy
Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti
Led Zeppelin - Prescence
Led Zeppelin - In Through The Outdoor
Led Zeppelin - Coda
King Crimson - In The Court of The Crimson King
King Crimson - Red
King Crimson - Thrak
King Crimson - Beat
Yes - Yes Songs  
Yes - Close To The Edge
Yes - Tales from Topographic Oceans
Yes - Going For The One
Jean Luc Ponty - Enigmatic Oceans  
Jean Luc Ponty - Aurora
Jean Luc Ponty - Imaginary Voyage
Jean Luc Ponty - Civilized Evil
Cream - Wheels of Fire
Eric Clapton - Complete Clapton
Blind Faith - Blind Faith
Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood - Clapton and Winwood live
Jeff
Jeff beck - Blow By Blow
Jeff Beck - Jeff
Jeff Beck - Emotion and Commotion
Steve Hillage - Green
Steve Hillage - L
Steve Hillage - Fish Rising
Steve Hillage - Motivation Radio
Joe Walsh - But Seriously Folks
Joe Walsh - The Player You Smoke The Drinker You Get
Joe Walsh - So What
Joe
Steve Lukather - Lukather
Steve Lukather - Candyman
Steve Lukather - Santamental
Steve Lukather - Luke
Van Halen - Van Halen II
Van halen - Fair Warning
Van Halen - Women and Children First
Van Halen - 1984
Frank Gambale
Alan Holdsworth
John McLaughlin
Al Di Meola