Songs from the Vault – Guitars (Part Two)

I hope you enjoyed the first installment of this guitar-themed edition of SFTV.  There are so many tunes to pick from that it’s impossible to squeeze them into even a couple of posts.  Nevertheless, I hope that you’ll enjoy my selections.

First up, is the Jeff Healey Band with See the Light, from the band’s 1988 album of the same name.  Healey, who regrettably passed away in 2008, at the age of 41, lost his sight as an infant.  This obviously didn’t hold Healey back: Healey had a rich life and career, even appearing with his band in the great cult movie Road House featuring the late, great Patrick Swayze.  The track in question features some awesome blues-rock playing, aided with a wah-wah pedal.

Robben Ford is one of those guitarist’s guitarists.  For many years Ford was a hired gun and played with the likes of Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, and even Kiss!  Ford always plays with great taste and he’s got a great, jazz-inflected blues sound.  The tune I’ve picked is The Miller’s Son from Ford’s 1995 album Handful of Blues.  It’s got a simple but effective hook but what I love most about this tune is Ford’s raw and earthy guitar tone.  The album track isn’t available online but there’re a few live versions, like the one below, which I hope you enjoy…

I’d never heard of Buckethead until I went to guitar tech in the early 90s.  My flat mate was a big fan.  Buckethead has technique in buckets (sorry!) and is prodigious having released over 300 albums.  If you wondered why he’s called Buckethead, this is what his Wikipedia entry says:

The Buckethead persona came to be when Carroll saw the 1988 horror movie Halloween 4 and was inspired by the film. He went right out after seeing it and bought a Michael Myers-like white mask. The bucket idea came later that night while eating Kentucky Fried Chicken:

I was eating it, and I put the mask on and then the bucket on my head. I went to the mirror. I just said, ‘Buckethead. That’s Buckethead right there.’ It was just one of those things. After that, I wanted to be that thing all the time.

— Buckethead, 1996, Guitar Player Magazine 

So there you have it, and in case you needed to know any more about the risks associated with fast food!

While I’m not a massive fan (I have one album which I like, Enter the Chicken), I do have great respect for anyone can use nunchaku, do the robot and then play a cool guitar solo, in that order.  I’ve done all three but not all at once!  Anyway, check out the rather surreal video below…

We’ve reached the end of our guitar-themed journey down memory lane.  I struggled to think of a final tune.  Eric Clapton (my first guitar hero), Jimmy Page, Jimi Hendrix, etc. could have featured but I’m going to go with David Gilmour and one of Pink Floyd’s greatest tunes.  Comfortably Numb features on Floyd’s classic 1979 album The Wall.  Gilmour takes two solos on the track.  In my opinion the second, later solo is one of the great moments in electric guitar history.  The solo is, in a way, quite simple, with Gilmour largely playing blues phrases.  But simple things are often the hardest things to achieve, which Gilmour does here, creating an epic solo for an epic tune…

There must be something in the fact that the video above has been viewed over 100 million times, and almost streamed 100 million times on Spotify!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this guitar-themed edition of Songs from the Vault.  I certainly enjoyed writing it and listening to these tunes and others that didn’t make the cut this time.  Until the next time…