Ritchie Blackmore – An Early Shredder
If you are a student of shred guitar, it’s extremely important to go back beyond your current favorite players and check out their influences. Learning from your influence’s influences is one of the most important things to do as a musician. It gives you a look into where your favorites have come from and why they sound like they do. You should do this with all your heroes.
One example is Ritchie Blackmore – a huge influence to Yngwie Malmsteen. If you are into studying the guitar playing of Yngwie, you need to go back and check out Ritchie Blackmore –if you haven’t already.
Ritchie Blackmore, best known as the guitarist of Deep Purple and Rainbow was an early shredder. He combined elements of blues, jazz and classical into his rock guitar playing. There is so much more to his playing than just the main riff of “Smoke on The Water”.
For a taste of his playing check out the solo’s to “Highway Star” from Deep Purple and “Gates of Babylon” from Rainbow. Both of these solos will show you what he was doing before the whole shred thing started. One thing that may be interesting to do – As you listen to say, the solo from “Highway Star” look around the web to see what other guitar players were doing during that same period in rock guitar. You will see how Ritchie separated himself from the pack quite a bit with his use of arpeggios and the Harmonic Minor scale.
These days Ritchie is playing renaissance music with his group, Blackmore’s Night. blackmoresnight
I highly recommend to anyone studying guitar shred to search around the web for Ritchie Blackmore and listening to his huge catalogue of music spanning a very long career. He is an amazing guitarist who has influenced directly or indirectly just about every shredder out there!
I would love to hear your thoughts on Ritchie Blackmore!