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No Contest

I heard a story about a well-known jazz guitarist this week. The jazzer in question had dropped by his local blues night, where he was invited to take the stage. Without any intention of showing off, he accepted the invite and got up and played a couple of blues numbers with one of the bands on the bill. He and the band’s guitarist took a solo or two each, knocking the ball back and forth in fair trade. The audience loved it. Afterwards, however, he heard that the guitarist who had traded licks with him on stage had left in

a foul mood shortly after that well-received set. Apparently he didn’t appreciate sharing ‘his’ big number with another player. When I heard the story I compared it to more positive experiences I’ve had in similar circumstances. The generosity that players such as Innes Sibun, guitarist with Sari Schorr’s Engine Room Band, shows to guests on his stage stands in complete contrast to the previous story. Innes in full flight is a joy to watch playing the blues but he’ll happily invite other guitarists up to sit in with him. There’s no striving for dominance but big grins all round and good times for both band and audience. Taking the sportsmanlike approach is so much more impressive than stalking off in a huff. Still, it doesn’t hurt to be in gig-fit shape, if only so you can express yourself freely when you do take the stage. With that in mind, we’ve got some really chunky lessons in this month’s issue. First up, we look back on the life and music of the much-missed Walter Becker of Steely Dan, who died in September, culminating in a lesson in the stellar guitar licks of Dan guitarists on albums from the band’s back catalogue. We also welcome back Blues Headlines maestro Richard Barrett from touring – he tackles 60s blues on page 147. Finally, the excellent Chris Corcoran delves into the bopping style of 40s jazz master Arv Garrison in his engrossing column Jump Blues Bootcamp on page 143. Enjoy the issue and best of luck getting more music under your fingers.

Editor’s Highlights

David Crosby From the Byrds to CSN and solo work, Crosby is one of the great songwriters of our time. He joins us to talk about old guitars and new inspirations p66

Jamie Dickson Editor

Santana & Isley We join two giants of American guitar to talk about Hendrix, LSD, a new collaborative project and the art of playing from the heart p80

Cherry On Top A private collection of vintage Gibson semis all clad in factory finish cherry red, including some models you’d never expect to see. Stunning! p72

November 2017  Guitarist