Last Wednesday, October 27, Gary Clark Jr. invited his fellow blues guitar hero, Eric Gales, onstage to help him close out his set at the Steven Tanger Center for the Performing Arts in Greensboro, North Carolina.
With the assistance of Gales and his band's rhythm guitarist, King Zapata, Clark closed out his show with an 11-minute rendition of "When My Train Pulls In" that will surely go down as one of 2021's most incendiary onstage displays of six-string magic.
You can check out fan-filmed footage of the performance above.
Gales mainly takes up rhythm duties – with some occasional textural leads thrown in here and there – as Clark runs through the tune, with both blues guitar A-listers letting King Zapata have some time in the spotlight with a bitingly melodic solo after the first chorus.
It's Gales though, who absolutely steals the show. Waiting until Clark finishes the tune, Gales proceeds to blow the assembled masses away with five minutes of high-gain, fretboard-melting glory.
Starting off low-key and even a bit jazzy, Gales works up an unbelievable head of steam, confidently displaying his ample improvisational and technical chops while never straying too far from the song, or into widdly-diddly pretentiousness.
It's truly something to behold, and gets us more than a little excited for Gales' upcoming, Josh Smith and Joe Bonamassa-produced album, Crown.
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Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com and GuitarPlayer.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.