Monday, March 30, 2015

The Field Negro guitar education post.

Image result for hendrix imagesThe Field Negro education series continues. Albeit on a lighter note.

So I am looking at this NYDN list of the greatest guitarist of all time....Ok, I see Hendrix. Check. Eddie Van Helen. Check. Jimmy Page. Check. BB King. Check. Some of these names I can't argue with. But as I continue down the list, I don't see the man that I personally consider the greatest of all time. (Sorry Mr. Hendrix.) What is wrong with these people?

Image result for ernest ranglin x imagesAnyway, any list that is supposed to feature the greatest guitarist of all time that doesn't include the nonpareil Ernest Ranglin is not a legitimate list as far as I am concerned. I don't care who else they throw in there.

Oh Field, stop it. You are only lobbying to get Ranglin on the list because you are Jamaican.

Nope, if that was the case I would have insisted on folks like Al Anderson, and  Stephen Cat Coore crashing the party. But I am trying my best to be an honest broker in this debate. I mean all you have to do is listen.

Clapton. Check. Keith Richards. Eh. Randy Rhodes. Eh. Chuck Berry. (Dude almost threw me off a boat from Catalina Island one night. Long story.)Check. 

Oh well, we can't all agree on everything.

One man's great riff is another man's just ordinary.

I just wish that someone would have checked with me first.






47 comments:

Bill said...


No mention of Jazz guitar players?

What about studio legends like Tommy Tedesco?


Should musicians pick the best lawyer of all time?

lilacpr2000 said...

Ranglin's music is so delicious, so sensual, candy for the ears.

But those awards seem to have been for the rocker guitarists...

Of which my favorite is Hendrix.

Anonymous said...

Gotta tell the boat story!

gaz

dinthebeast said...

That list is bogus anyway. It doesn't say anything about "rock only" but that's all it has. What about Andres Segovia, surely one of the greatest guitarists of all time?
Steve Morse? Allan Holdsworth? Robert Fripp? Richard Thompson?
Maybe they're measuring by publicity instead of actual guitar playing.

-Doug in Oakland

Anonymous said...

Huh. I had never heard of this guy, although I have certainly heard of some of the people/groups he played with (Jimmy Cliff, Bob Marley, the Skatelites).

He was probably not included in this list because they are only going with hard rock guitarists, and that does not sound like his style of music.

If you're willing to open up the contest to other styles of music, then of course there are all sorts of other folks you could consider, along with the Henrixes and Jimmy Pages.

Like Spanish classical guitarist Andres Segovia.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZyX71BrsCHY

Or French gypsy jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt. He could play like this, despite only having three working fingers on the frets!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxUJL7Q1fI8

Ace Freely said...

Harry Reid has been an elected representative all his life. The job of Senator pays a decent salary, but Senator Reid must have been a very good investor to have racked up the tens of millions of dollars in personal wealth he has now. Or maybe he was just lucky. Really lucky.

Anyway, the last six months have been pretty rough for Harry Reid. First, the Democrats lost control of the Senate. Then, just six weeks later, he suffers a terrible exercise accident at the hands of a large rubber band.

Now, just a short time after scheduling a fundraiser to kickoff his 2016 reelection campaign, he has reversed course and announced that he is retiring.

Hmmm. Things can sure change in a hurry, but this a Goddamn weird story, don't you think?

When a guy shows up at a Las Vegas emergency room on New Year's Day with severe facial injuries and broken ribs, and gives as an explanation the functional equivalent of "I walked into a doorknob," it isn't hard to guess that he ran afoul of some bad men, maybe even the kind of men who built Las Vegas. Yet the national press has studiously averted its eyes from Reid's condition, and has refused to investigate the cause of his injuries. To my knowledge, every Washington reporter has at least pretended to believe Reid's story, and none, as far as I can tell, has inquired further.

Working out late on New Years Eve, and one of those exercise bands snaps you so hard you lose an eye and break a bunch of your ribs. One would think there would be some sort of recall on these bands, or at least some warning to the public regarding such a dangerous piece of workout equipment.

Instead of having a well-equipped home gym as befits a man of wealth, Harry was using cheap exercise bands.

And then when one allegedly snaps, or tears free of its anchor point, and robs him of the use of his right eye, he says nothing about it? He doesn't warn people? He doesn't start a Senatorial Investigation into the safety of such equipment?

Why doesn't he tell us what brand of exercise band blinded him in one eye?

Is this because this nasty, pugilistic man has just decided to be mellow about the company that took one of his eyes away from him?

Or is this because there is no exercise band manufacturer to complain about, because there was never any exercise band at all?

Could it really be possible that in 2015, mobsters beat the living shit out of a sitting Senator?

So many questions. It might be pretty interesting to know just how the government works, wouldn't it?

Anonymous said...

Hendrix is by far the best of all time. Not far behind is BB King....he is bad, bad, bad.

If Ernest was so great, he would have made the list. The truth is Jamaica guitarists can't hang with American guitaristsd

I know why Chuck almost threw your ass off the boat. You were drunk and all up in his face talking about Ernest being the best guitarist. I wish I were there. I would have helped him throw your contentious ass overboard.

Anonymous said...

BB KING. HE IS THE BEST. NO ONE COMPARES.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, Harry Reid was no guitar god. He does not make the list.

But you know who was a pretty decent guitarist? Republican dirty trickster Lee Atwater.

This is him playing with B.B. King:

http://bit.ly/1ada02P

He was also the guy who helpfully explained how the Republican Party routinely uses racism to win elections.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_8E3ENrKrQ

"You start out in 1954 by saying, 'Nigger, nigger, nigger.' By 1968 you can’t say 'nigger'—that hurts you, backfires. So you say stuff like, uh, forced busing, states’ rights, and all that stuff, and you’re getting so abstract. Now, you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is, blacks get hurt worse than whites.… 'We want to cut this,' is much more abstract than even the busing thing, uh, and a hell of a lot more abstract than 'Nigger, nigger.'”

Anonymous said...

For all the FN Negroes who watchd "killing Jesus", esp Lilac, PX, Field and Yisheng". Here is the link on the fallout of the show. Some of you Negroes are going straight to hell.

http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/oreilly/index.html#/v/4143539134001

Josh said...

Popularity always plays a big part in these lists. I always wonder why Slash is never higher on peoples' lists of the GOAT. Jimi and Jimmy are no-brainers; they're everyone's go-to guys, like Peart and Bonham for rock drummers. But there are fantastic guitarists out there who remain underrated. Kim Thayil from Soundgarden is one that's always overlooked, and I have no idea why besides the popularity angle.

Anonymous said...

Josh, why didn't you recognize BB King? I mean, he has been playing that guitar of his called Lucille for ages and he is still one of the best. Yet, folks like you and Field fail to give him credit.

You and Desert are racists against dark-skinned folks from the deep South.

Anonymous said...

In Chicago, where the "Blues" is tops, BB King is the baddest guitar player there ever was and still is.

Anonymous said...

"In Chicago, where the "Blues" is tops, BB King is the baddest guitar player there ever was and still is."

A lot of blues/rock guitar greats from Chicago.

Lonnie Brooks

Buddy Guy

Personally, I'm partial to Bo Diddley

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOZj9hUgbS8

Anonymous said...

Mr. Field, I admire how much work you put into this blog. You do an especially nice job of providing content that holds the reader's interest and is full of variety. I cannot help but imagine how much better this would be if you put a little more of yourself into that work. The reader doesn't see much of the author in the words you post. Even your responses to commenters are a bit guarded. If I'm right, we're missing the best thing you have to offer here. People come here because of you, not your articles. I hope you realize that.

Shady_Grady said...

Eddie Hazel, Jimmy Nolen, Albert King, Joe Pass, Cornell Dupree, Wes Montgomery, Richard Thompson..the list is endless.

Anonymous said...

Why is Yishen like a guitar?

You can finger her all day long and she'll never complain. Anybody can, really. Though, she won't feel it, hotdog down a hallway syndrome and all that.....

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

BB is a bad boy but not putting him on the top list. Lots of brothas from the continent are over looked as are slingers from other styles as mentioned previous. Some of the best have studied jazz or classical and can infuse it into their playing of pop or rock. I can tell my playing has gotten much better when I started playing/studying jazz. That being said I'll put Stanley Jordan, George Benson, Peter White and brotha Eubanks up against anybody.

Señor Hector said...

No Robert Johnson?

No Les Paul?

No Santana?

What sucks about "greatest lists" is that they typical only list the greatest everyone knows and not the greatest of all time.

Yīshēng said...

Great post, it's nice to be reminded of the beauty of music!!

My vote is going to Paco de Lucia, kinda of a reminder of my Spanish roots.

Bill said...


PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...
I can tell my playing has gotten much better when I started playing/studying jazz.


When you need help with your jazz playing, I've got your answers.

Are you transcribing solos yet?

Anonymous said...

Prince, and all of the Funkadelic guitarists!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Why do blacks insist on having a black rammed into every list of anything in existence?.

White guy

Ed said...

Thanks for the tip, Field. I haven't heard of Ernest Ranglin but I will give him a listen when I get a chance (although it's percussion and horns that knock my socks off).

Lt. Commander Johnson said...

I would agree about Robert Johnson He was playing on a bad guitar, with horrible acoustics, and the audio recordings were crap.

But...he influenced so many future bands, it's silly.

Rolling Stones & Led Zeppelin, Eric Clapton, for an example.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

I think I'll pass Bill. My buddy is a professor of jazz at DePaul University. But thanks for the offer.

Lt. Commander Johnson said...

A professor of Jizz. Holy crap.

Can you blacks find another way to get a professorship?

Maybe about the "Down-Low" propensity of black males?

African "Studies"?
Living in the Ghetto?
Flying while black?

For God's sake.



kid said...

@Shady_Grady You can't have "Maggot Brains" without Eddie Hazel Mike Hampton ain't too shabby either. Of course I not being biased because he's from Cleveland like Robert Lockwood Jr. , Robert Johnson stepson.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

Well Johnson jazz studies has been around for decades. The guy has a Grammy and is good. And oh yeah, he's white. There is that.

Anon@1133, it's not blahs who insist on putting a brotha from Seattle at the top of the best guitarist list, everybody does. Even Rolling Stone magazine.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Field, you mention the business of life and writers block as holding you back. These two things, time as an obstacle and the feeling the words just won't flow are common experiences among writers. Often why a writer allows them to win out points to a deeper issue. Many times, there is a deep-seated fear the one's work will be criticized or found to be mediocre. This is a valid fear, but the most successful writers face it head on, not letting fear or time or anything else keep them from their passion for writing. So, I encourage to step into the deeper waters of your creativity. Let yourself go down into those waters and drown there. And in that moment will rise within you all of your industry, your creativity, your longing for the art and a new artist will rise from those dark waters.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

My man Johnson has racist Tourette's. You might want to plan an intervention Field.

The Purple Cow said...

Yeah, Johnson always struck me as being a kid. He seems incapable of adult debate and even throws insults like a 13 year old.

I suspect he's about 16 or 17 though, he's just a bit immature for his age.

Bill said...


The Field Negro said...
Albeit on a lighter note.


Lighter note on a music post.

Nice...

Bill said...


PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

I think I'll pass Bill. My buddy is a professor of jazz at DePaul University.


Wouldn't that be funny if it was my friend Bob Lark?

Limpbaugh said...

Even my 80 year old mother knows Hendrix was the best. It's interesting to talk to young people about what music was like at the time. They seem to think Hendrix wasn't popular when he was alive. I tell them that even Crosstown traffic was a hit. We didn't know that there would never be another Hendrix though. There were a lot of good guitarists around at the time. Duke Robillard is one of my personal favorites. The credit for his style goes to T Bone Walker. Luther Allison got really hot in his later years. And there are people who were always around during my lifetime, Eric Clapton on guitar and Joe Theismann in football - from Notre Dame to announcer. I don't think guitarists are always the best judges of other guitarists. A lot of them are are impressed by technical complexity more than other musical qualities.

Anonymous said...

Back in Vietnam we used to pop open some warm Crown Beer and play "Cambodian Bowling." There was no shortage of bowling balls in Cambodia.

Anonymous said...

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...
My man Johnson has racist Tourette's. You might want to plan an intervention Field.
---

PilotX asking Field for help against someone PC thinks is a teenager.

Pathetic.

Lt. Commander Johnson said...

Yeah. After I told him my father was a B-17 pilot in WWII.

I am a teenager.

Tubie said...

Where's Slash? Or Yngwie Malmsteen?

Lt. Commander Johnson said...

I need to pop a blackhead on my nose.

I'll be black.

Anonymous said...

What about Joe Maphis? He can play rings around everybody on this list.

Josh said...

"Josh, why didn't you recognize BB King?"

Is it some law that I need to be a BB King fan or something? I go to Robert Johnson for my blues, thank you. A hell hound on my trail, me and the devil, hot tamales -- and they're red hot, yeah, she got 'em for sale. That's more my flavor, and he actually played guitar very well. Though when I think of a guitar player as in greatness, rock--hard rock--is much more my forte.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

Nope, not Bob Lark.

Hey johnson, if your dad flew B-17's it is possible he was protected by Tuskegee Airmen. That would be funny, your dad made it home alive because of blah men and your racist ass is here because of them. Oh the irony!

Anonymous said...

Josh, when it comes to picking the top guitar player like BB King, you are nothing but a racist. Brother Field, take note of the commenter by the name of "Josh".

Josh said...

"Josh, when it comes to picking the top guitar player like BB King, you are nothing but a racist."

Yeah, because Slash (mixed), Kim Thayil (Asian), and Robert Johnson (black) are ALL WHITE!

Holy fucking shit. I didn't mention a single fucking white person on my list for great guitarists I feel are underrated, and still some complete fucking moronic buffoon pulls the fucking race card.

This is why more and more people just laugh at black folks these days. Motherfuckers cry "racist" over every little minor fucking disagreement they run across.

The retard is very strong in this one.

MrCharlie2 said...

I'm laughing, because I had never heard of him, but now I can listen to Ernest all the time. Thanks Field!

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