July 20, 2024


Mark Knopfler ra shockieleases ng statement on Dire Straits Hidden Disease

You talk about underrated guys. What about the fucking overrated guys?”


Tracii Guns suggested that Eric Clapton is “overrated” as a guitarist, claiming that, for him, Jeff Beck had always been “the guy” in The Yardbirds.

Eric Clapton is regularly featured in people’s lists of GOATs of electric guitar, and the British blues icon’s opus is more than popular to warrant it. And while most listeners in the past couple of decades — especially the ones that aren’t blues rock die-hards — tend to think of Clapton in terms of his solo work and the eternal radio darling that is “Layla”, Tracii Guns argued in a recent interview with Dee Snider on the Twisted Sister frontman’s “Shout it Out Loudcast” that Clapton’s work with Cream takes the cake (transcribed by Ultimate Guitar):

Cream, for me, cream would be Clapton’s pinnacle. It’s like, dirty guitar sounds, wah-wah pedal, man, fuckin’ going for it. But after that, he didn’t do that. But when he was in the Yardbirds, Jeff Beck, man — he’s got the fuzz pedal, he’s got the wah-wah pedal. He was moving forward, and then this excuse [for Clapton], ‘Well, yeah, but he’s a blues guy.’ Everybody’s a fucking blues guy!”

“I’m not trying to bang on Clapton… But, you know, you talk about underrated guys. What about the fucking overrated guys? You’re gonna put Clapton with Jeff Beck? In what reality?”

Unlike Clapton’s solo works, Tracii seems like he can’t get enough of The Yardbirds themselves, which he calls his second-favorite band:

“I could do without Clapton, you know? I could do without his personality, but the Yardbirds are my second favorite band, because that’s the precursor to Zeppelin. Also, I have everything they ever recorded, demo tapes, everything. Clapton ain’t the guy, man, Beck’s the guy.”

As mentioned in the quote above, Tracii is an avid fan of another Yardbirds alumnus, Jimmy Page. “I always wonder if Jimmy Page has missed the boat of live performance now. But it freaks me out, man, ‘Am I never gonna see Page live?'”, the guitarist mused. Waxing euphoric about the greatness of Zeppelin, Tracii said:

“Basically, what they did was, they took the best of everything that came before them… They took really abstract, bad, heavy rock. And you can go through the whole thing with the Yardbirds. As soon as Page hit the Yardbirds. And he grew up with Jeff Beck, so he took a lot from Jeff Beck, got in this weird pop band, The Yardbirds, and then tried saying, ‘Hey, you guys kind of suck, but let’s do all this weird experimenting.’ And then out came this cake called Led Zeppelin, you know?”

“For Page, it was always about taking the best of things, putting it together, and presenting it in a way that was a sonically superior. Page has a great ear, you know what I mean?”

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