Sat June 29, 2013
marc on the blues

Buddy And Rory Are One Name Artists To Guitar Aficionados

When Eric Clapton says someone is “The World’s Greatest Guitarist” you can disagree, but you sure ought to take notice. Clapton has said exactly that about Buddy Guy.

Buddy Guy is a major pioneer of Chicago Blues guitar and also has had a great influence on many of the world’s top guitarists from other genre including Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Guy played in Muddy Water’s band in the 1960s, has recorded many tracks with Junior Wells and has worked with Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter, Sonny Boy Williamson, Koko Taylor…please, stop me before I reference again! The list is pretty much endless. If you are or were anyone in Blues in the last 50 years you probably played with Buddy Guy.

Coming up on his 77th birthday on July, 30th, Buddy Guy still plays regularly, especially at his eponymous club on South Wabash Avenue in Chicago. He also continues to garner many awards, including 6 Grammys and being chosen as a Kennedy Center Honoree.


“Rory [Gallagher] was the one to measure yourself against. To be able to play like that with such intensity was awesome and really the only other guitarist that had that ability was Hendrix.” - Peter Frampton

William Rory Gallagher may have been a multi-instrumentalist, but it was guitar that made him a legend.

Born in Irish County Donegal and raised in County Cork, Rory came to music through inheritance. His father sang and played the accordion in a traditional Irish band and his mother Monica sang and acted in a theatre in the town of Ballyshannon. Gallagher and his brother Dònal were encouraged by their parents to develop their musical talents and Rory was already a very good ukulele player when he was given a guitar at age 9.

With his acoustic guitar Gallagher would compete in talent contests. After winning one when he was 12 he used the prize money to buy an electric guitar.

Rory Gallagher heard American Rock and Roll and Blues artists on the radio and TV and fell in love with both styles. He played in standard Rock cover bands but his rising love of the Blues led him to write more original music and lean towards leading his own bands, which he did until his death in 1995 from liver problems.

Rory Gallagher played and sang with an intensity and sincerity that gave his music a power and magnetism that has kept him popular almost 20 years after his death and has sold over 30 million albums.

Tune in this week to hear Buddy Guy and Rory Gallagher on the Nine O’clock Blues.


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