Five Reasons Why Susan Tedeschi is a Guitar Legend

Susan Tedeschi plays guitar as she performs with the Tedeschi Trucks Band on opening night of the 30th Anniversary season of Central Park SummerStage, New York, New York, May 18, 2015.
(Image credit: Jack Vartoogian/Getty Image)

As front-woman for the Tedeschi Trucks Band, Susan Tedeschi mines the singular vein of potent blues she became famous for as a solo artist in the late ‘90s. Here are five reasons why she remains a guitar-playing legend…

1. Diversity

Freely mixing the blues with R&B and gospel influences, she has integrated the genre’s diverse strains into a fluid and powerful amalgam of fiery electric guitar work and impassioned vocals.

2. Early Starter

Born and raised in the Boston suburb of Norwell, Tedeschi was influenced by the Mississippi John Hurt and Lightnin’ Hopkins records in her dad’s vinyl collection and the gospel music of the black Baptist churches she attended. She wrote her first songs at 13 before studying at the Berklee College of Music and launching her own band in ’91.

3. Self-Belief

After years of fine-tuning the Susan Tedeschi Band, she burst onto the scene in ‘98 with her major-label debut, Just Won’t Burn. The album earned rave reviews and blazed a trail for a new breed of young female blues artists.

Susan Tedeschi Just Won't Burn cover artwork

(Image credit: Tone Cool)

4. Touring

The success of Just Won’t Burn earned her spots on Lilith Fair and opening slots for the likes of B.B. King and the Allman Brothers Band – where she met the group’s slide guitarist, Derek Trucks. The two married in ’01 and soon began touring as the Soul Stew Revival.

5. Originality

In ’10, the couple formed the Tedeschi Trucks Band, where Tedeschi puts her passionate, Janis Joplin-like vocal style and beefy Telecaster tones in the service of the group’s original compositions.

Buy Just Won't Burn by Susan Tedeschi here (opens in new tab).

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