[Second guitarist] Fred Tackett and I are free to float in and out, and
pick our spots. You can get very creative
when you’re not just playing the same riff
over and over all the way through Chuck
Berry-style. Our old arrangement collaborator,
Van Dyke Parks, used to emphasize
that spaces were just as important as notes.
That became our rhythm guitar mantra—find
those little niches that will push and pull that
shuffle along. Once you’ve captured the
groove, it’s easy to fill in the blanks. The lead
instrument can really soar.
We incorporate entry lines and exit lines
into the solo sections, and anything goes in
between. The band is liable to play anything from Dixieland jazz to headbanging
rock and roll during the jams. You have to listen very carefully
during your solo because you never know which bed is going to be made
for you to rock on.
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