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The Guitar Scene When You Started Playing

1973 maybe. Old beat up cheap nylon string classical style guitar I found lying neglected at our relatives house in Los Angeles. First thing I remember trying to learn was the riff to Zeppelins Heartbreaker and also the lick in the chorus to Ricky Nelsons "waitin in school", i think that was by James Burton.

Back then, learning was a LOT different than it is now. It was almost like a secret society. Guys learned things from each other and traded secrets and things, there were no girls playing lead guitar at all, anywhere. I tried to steal licks off records off course, taping them onto cassette and listening over and over. Guitar teachers wouldnt teach "rock".... they'd ridicule it.

The first lead guitar player that played simple but sounded cool to me, was Ace Frehley. I stole a ton of licks off that guy.


Started in 1980 first noodling on the bass to the "Taxman" riff in the wake of the Lennon tragedy. The rock guitar arms race exploded shortly thereafter.


1987 for me, Iron Maiden was my favourite band. Also really liked all metal music in that era, hair metal, thrash etc.
Was secretly relieved when Grunge took over and I could actually play some of that music! lol


1991 for me. Nevermind was in full swing, but I was busy learning Metallica, GNR, Pantera, etc. I listened to a mix of classic rock, hair metal, darker metal, and grunge, etc.


1985, yep the Eddie Van Halen bit. At 18 my buddies and I decided to check out Hollywood, and there was an ad on the radio, "Racer X at the Troubadour". "Hey guys, lets check that out, seems like it would be cool" We were devastated for about 2 weeks until we got back to see another band "ohhhh, they weren't typical..."

Steve Foley

I started playing around '63. If you could play the songs off the first few Ventures albums and the intro to "Johnny Be Good", you were hot!
Pretty much the same here. I think I was '66 or '67.

"House of the Rising Sun", "You Really Got Me", "Gloria", and "I'm Not Your Stepping Stone" were the biggies for the wanna be players at that time. I was eleven, and just playing what my best friend's older brother showed us. I don't even think I had any idea why I wanted to do it, at that time. As best as I can recall, the thought that girl's might go crazy over me hadn't even occurred to me, nor did I even care..... yet..... but BOY, was I glad in a couple of years that I'd taken the time..... I was a STAR after that first Jr. High Talent Show :love:

Dr. Tweedbucket

Deluxe model available !!!11

EVH just came out but that wasn't why I started playing, it was more my brother in his band playing the Stones, Deep Purple and Grand Funk railroad :dunno ... watching him play is was impressed me.... I thought Crap! THat's what I need to be doing! :waiting


Tone is Paramount
Gold Supporting Member
1961 .. My first band a Ventures cover band.. Then the Yardbirds, Bluesbreakers, Rolling Stones, Cream... Sam the Sham and Paul Revere to keep the crowd happy..


1989 - 13th birthday.
My dad bought me a cheap Norma guitar and an amp which was the size of a refrigerator and shocked you when you touched it.
Quickly got a Squier Strat.
Before we could even play, had a bass player with an actual bass or even knew a drummer, my buddy and I started a band. He ran a Kay guitar through a Radio Shack 4-band mixer and got this awesome distortion sound.
At the time Guns N Roses' Appetite was it. So raunchy for a 13-year-old.
But we were also much more grounded in classic players too like Page and Hendrix. I don't think kids are aware of the power of the Black Dog.
Mötley Crüe, Poison > Metallica > Pantera then the Beatles and Dylan in college.


Senior Member
I grew up in the South Bay section of L.A. in the 60s and 70s. There was a lot of great players who went on to stardom. David Pack from Ambrosia lived up the street and we'd ride our bikes and listen thru the garage door. When I hit Highschool, Ambrosia played my Junior Prom, playing spot on Beatles tunes! They then got signed and did quite well. Much harder edge early on. We also had Blues Image play my senior prom "Ride Captain Ride". Another great band. Larry Carlton went to the junior college I started at. His legend was already set in stone at that time. So you had some badass players to live up to. It made you practice harder and a lot more self conscious! I remember looking in the LA Times Calendar section and there was so many classic concerts Pink Floyd[front row LA Sports Arena] Humble Pie at Long Beach Arena, REO, Frampton Comes Alive Tour and Skynrd together!that it was tough to pick which ones to go to...and I was 14! Not to mention going to see Robben Ford at the Golden Bear opening for Alan Holdsworth and most tickets were 8-10.00!My GAS started with the Recycler and Music Emporium Catalogs.....In the words of Dylan: "take a look around, youll never see these times again"!
Yea, I grew up in the same era LA rock scene. I started playing late sixties and didn't start playing seriously until early seventies...played backyard parties and went to the clubs in LA where I'd see guys that were a lot older playing at a level I wanted to get to...so I practiced for hours and hours every day. My best friend was with me, he's a drummer/vocalist. We learned how to play by jamming together for 4-5 hours every day, for years...so, between my personal practice and playing with my buddy on drums we got pretty good. We played backyard parties with just guitar and drums and my buddy sang lead from the kit. We did half copy material and half our own songs...in 1977 we got a bass player and started playing local clubs and clubs in LA ....got a manager, did just about every club and arena out there....played and hung out with a lot of bands and guys who are now considered legends...recorded our songs in a number of the best highest regarded studios ...I got noticed and offered a lot of gigs for both studio recording and joining other bands etc....it was a most incredible energetic inspirational positive fun time to be a rock musician!


I started around 87, but went quickly from Clapton to Muddy and B.B. to Buddy Guy and Robert Johnson. Discovered that Stevie was making it much easier to find those guys.

Then after a few years moved into Roy Buchanan and Danny Gatton and went down the Country/Rockabilly rabbithole.

So I guess I'm against the grain a bit, in that the 'music of the time' had no influence on me, really.


I started playing in the early 60's.
Heard Keef. Satisfaction
I was HOOKED!!!
I lived in the Mids in England at the time and there were two distinct groups. Beatles and Stones.
I was decidedly in the Stones camp.
I moved back to the states in 67. Just in time for Hendrix to Blow Up the world.


1996. Third Eye Blind, Collective Soul, Goo Goo Dolls, Gin Blossoms, Fuel, etc. With quite a bit of pop punk sprinkled in. I still love that alternative scene today! Sweet nostalgia...
I thought this was ' when you started gigging'...

1987- 12 Years old...

Van Halen was the king and shred guitar was exploding via Yngwie.
I started in the late 70's, right before Eddie VH hit.

It was all keyboards, ELO, Boston, Supertramp, Fleetwood Mac, Eagles etc. There was a greater emphasis on songwriting and by todays standards VERY advanced chord progressions and voicings/substitutions.

And anyone who did play guitar played a Les Paul - they were the undisputed workhorse.

Heavy guitar stuff like Black Sabbath was old and stale, and Led Zep and Aerosmith were old hat as well.

Ed and VH came on the scene and literally blew the lid off of things. I haven't seen such an abrupt shock of a change since.

And the early Eddie "wannabee's" sounded like an absolute JOKE! and they were everywhere.


Started playing around '94, grunge was the thing but I had no interest in it at the time. I was to enamored with Zep, Hendrix, Dylan, Neil Young, Cream, and blues. I did come to love grunge music later though it really had zero influence on my playing. By the time I started gigging in late 90's/early 2000 Nu-metal was huge and I hated it, still do. By that time I had found weird indie rock from the years before and Primus, were the big influences on me then.

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