Interview By Ali Blackdiamond
As part of our Tribute To Ritchie Blackmore week, we have invited well known names in the world of rock and metal to share their thoughts about Ritchie.
The next in the series is guitar virtuoso GUS G, creator of Greek metallers FIREWIND, guitarist in Ozzy Osbourne’s band and also more recently a solo artist, having just released his debut album “I Am The Fire.
Gus brought me up to date with what’s going on in his world at the moment:
“It’s about three weeks since my debut album came out. It’s been the best reviewed album of my career so far. I’m pretty amazed at that actually, so I guess that’s a good sign.
I’m just getting ready to go on my first European tour, it’s actually starting May 1st. It’s a co-headlining tour with Marty Friedman, so I’m very excited about it. We’re looking at America and Japan as well. Hopefully the rest of the year will take us to other places, maybe next year as well.”
We went on to discuss Ritchie Blackmore and Gus expressed, “If you’re into rock guitar, you cannot not like a guy like Ritchie Blackmore and not have picked up on any of his riffs. I think he’s done pretty well for himself hasn’t he? (laughs)
I’m a big fan of his obviously, I love his DEEP PURPLE stuff, what an illustrious career. Even with BLACKMORE’S NIGHT, it’s not the kinda stuff I listen to to be honest, I like his rock stuff, his electric stuff more. But yeah, he’s one of the originators of hard rock and heavy guitar, you know he’s one of the truly great ones.
People like Tony Iommi, Jimmy Page and Ritchie Blackmore, those are the guys who set the bar for the rest to follow, so to speak of.
Gus went on to talk about Ritchie‘s guitar playing:
“The cool thing with Ritchie is his playing, his riffs are so iconic and classic like Smoke On The Water and Highway Star, so many hits with DEEP PURPLE. When it came to his soloing, his playing was very free form and he’s the kinda player who never plays the same thing twice. That was very inspiring, to try and pick up his solos note for note. I like the way he mixes the blues with classical, i guess he was going that direction kinda like where Yngwie Malmsteen was going before Yngwie.”
You can listen to the whole interview on the player below: