Saturday, November 8, 2008

Sonny Landreth - Best Slide guitarist in the world

I just got a CD by Sonny Landreth called "Grant Street". This is a live recording, showing him in all his Dumble-amp powered glory!

I just cannot believe how good of a guitarist he is. I have known about him for years - he is not a newcomer on the music scene at all.

Sonny, born in 1951, is from Louisiana. His slide technique is extraordinary, as mentioned in his Wikipedia entry: "Landreth has developed a technique where he also frets notes and plays chords and chord fragments behind the slide while he plays. Landreth plays with the slide on his little finger, so that his other fingers have more room to fret behind the slide. He's also known for his unique right-hand technique, which involves tapping, slapping, and picking strings, using all of the fingers on his right hand."

I have been watching his videos on YouTube, and can't even come close to getting his technique down, although I am trying, mostly in vain!

That is ok, I can just enjoy his music without trying to sound like him. He plays American Standard Stratocasters with special tuning hardware, which allows him to change the tunings with the flick of a switch. He uses many different open-chord tunings. I am awestruck on what he can do in open E, which is one of the most-used open tunings. His amps are all boutique, and he has been using a coveted Dumble amp, along with a Demeter. That would help explain his fantastic tone, although he would probably sound good on my cheap Classic 30, too.
Sonny has appeared on many other artists songs, such as Little Feat, Jimmy Buffett, John Hiatt, Waterline, John Mayall, Bobby Charles and The Goners. He has performed with Bonnie Raitt, Mark Knopfler, Steve Conn, Gov't Mule, Mike Gordon, Bernie Worrell, and Buddy Guy, among others. Landreth was the opening act at Eric Clapton's 2007 Crossroads Guitar Festival in Chicago, Illinois.
There are quite a few videos of Sonny on Youtube. If you are a fan of slide gutiar, and of great guitar playing, you owe it to yourself to check them out.
Luckily, I discovered Sonny at the right time, as he is in town at the Cabooze next weekend. I already have my tickets and am looking forward to seeing him.

1 comment:

Barbara(aka Layla) said...

I love slide guitar so I need to check this guy out.