Listeners Respond: The Electric Guitar Turns 75

Monday, August 13, 2012

To celebrate the 75th birthday of the electric guitar on Friday, we spoke with Rudy Pensa, a guitar expert and the owner of Rudy’s Music in Manhattan. Rudy and Todd Zwillich, who was guest-hosting on Friday, worked their way through the history of the electric guitar.

But there were a few important parts of that history that we didn’t mention. And Roger, a listener from Long Island, commented on our website and reminded us that Muddy Waters was the man who electrified the Chicago blues in the 1940s, and was a major inspiration for the generation of blues musicians that followed him.

We also asked listeners for their favorite guitar licks. A few suggested Steely Dan, including Julie from Great Neck, New York, who sang "Reelin' in the Years" for us over the phone.

Another listener, Erin from Franklin Square, New York, suggested "Sweet Child o' Mine" by Guns N Roses.

Patti suggested "Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers," written by Stevie Wonder and performed by Jeff Beck. She said she liked its "beautiful, haunting guitar intro."

And Casey from Vancouver called in to suggest that U2’s guitarist, The Edge, had created a few good riffs. He recommended the one that starts off "Where the Streets Have No Name."

Lastly, in a plug for surf guitar, Guy from Portland suggested "Surf Rider" by Nokie Edwards of The Ventures.

Check out the playlist we created from your answers to "What song do you think best showcases the abilities of the electric guitar?" 

Produced by:

John Light

Comments [2]

john folchi from White plains, NY

My favorite electric guitar riff is the one ending Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb" from the Wall album. For an ambient sound, Robin Guthrie from Scotland is my favorite musician.

Aug. 14 2012 10:27 AM
Larry Fisher from Brooklyn, N.Y.

Brian May's guitar is such a special sound. His dad made him that guitar and I believe he still plays it... Such a great part of the sound of Queen.

Aug. 13 2012 08:32 AM

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