Ed Roman is a ‘guitar shop to the stars’ kind of guy. He is based in Vegas and appears to have been dealing with rock star types since god started designing dirt. And his rant here proves it.
I stumbled upon his celebrity guitars web site the other day and have been reading through his ‘celebrity guitar’ pages for almost a week. It’s stupid crazy addictive for a muso. Ed’s created a site that despite not being updated in a while and a few old school design elements (I’m always up for a redesign project Mr Roman!), the content is just so bloody good.
Anyway, after I’d gone through all the heroes, there was the celebrity page for Def Leppard guitarist Viv Campbell. This article sums up Def Leppard beautfully as one of the most talented yet clearly irrelevant groups in rock history. Ed’s article goes from talking about Viv into a two page manifesto of what’s wrong with rock today. There’s literally about 3 lines about Viv and Def Leppard in the whole thing.
It’s all about how people could really play in the eighties and everyone’s a three chord poseur now.
In the 80’s, you had to know how to play your guitar or you couldn’t join a rubber band. I mean today a lot of these so called garage bands can barely tune their instruments. So instead of learning how to play their instrument or how to use their gear, they just babble on about 80’s hair head bands and call them spandex sissies.
Then he draws on personal experience to point out the poseurs:
Just the other day a friend of mine from Washington DC moved to LA. He proceeded to try to join a band. The little fascist, elite, snob, douche bag members of the first band that he auditioned for, told him he couldn’t join their band. He was playing a Hamer Californian. They said he was a great player and easily good enough but he would have to cut his hair and play a Les Paul if he wanted to join their faggy little gaggle of idiots band.
And you guessed it, record companies are to blame for everything
Record companies don’t want any more Mick Jaggers or Frank Sinatra’s or Elvis Presley’s or Jim Morrison’s or Jimi Hendrix, They want bands like Hootie and the Blow Fish. They want bands that will never make it past their third album which usually doesn’t even get released.
Um, I’m guessing that was written before Metallica’s Some Kind of Monster movie came out. Maybe they’re the exception to the rule. While I hate virtuoso players, I’m loathed to admit I agree with Ed on his comments. Music is more of a commodity than ever. Hey even Bumblefoot couldn’t join Guns n Roses unless he hung up his beautiful French made Vigier guitars and played a Les Paul. Pretty narrow minded stuff.
Anyway Ed’s got a great web site going and some great experiences and stories to share. He’s also brutally honest when guitars aren’t up to snuff, e.g. Joe Perry and Santana‘s signature models. If you’re a guitarist check it out. It’s a great read.