Randy Rhoads was born this week (Dec. 6) in 1956. He would have been 55 years old if not tragically taken from us 29 years ago.
These quotes were in a 1984 issue of Hit Parader Magazine on the 2nd anniversary of his death. I thought it was interesting looking back to see the complete reverence his contemporaries had for him, just two years since he died. His legacy has, does, and will continue to grow. R.I.P. Randy!
Edward Van Halen (Van Halen)
I have an immense amount of respect for what he did. Some people say I may have had an infIuence on his playing, but I never was able to ask him that. If it’s true, I’m very honored, because I thought he was very, very good. He was also very dedicated to his playing. I think that showed in his work.
Brad Gillis (Night Ranger)
It was every guitarist’s dream to replace Randy Rhoads, and I’ll never forget the thrill of having that opportunity. I always considered Randy to be the best guitarist around. I followed his career for a long time even when he was playing around L.A. with Quiet Riot, and I was always amazed by what he could do. I used to get really annoyed after watching him, because he was doing things that I hadn’t even thought of trying. He was in a class by himself.
Carlos Cavazo (Quiet Riot)
Of course I had known Randy a long time. I was playing in some other L.A. area bands when he was playing the club scene with Quiet Riot. He was a big influence on everyone who saw him. ,He had so much talent and so much charisma – it was just unbelievable! He was one of the few guitarist I’ve ever seen who could literally mesmerize you on-stage. You’d find yourself watching him and just forgetting about everyone and everything else.
Angus Young (AC/DC)
I’ve heard him play on the radio and he sounded very good. I admire anyone who can play the guitar with a style that is easily identifiable, and that’s what he was able to do. Everybody says there’s nothing new that can be done with a guitar, but when people like Randy come along, they realize they’re wrong.
“Fast” Eddie Clarke (Fastway)
I was lucky enough to see Randy perform many times while I was in Motorhead. We toured the country with Ozzy when Randy was still alive, and I used to go out and watch him quite often. It’s a shame that his talent wasn’t fully appreciated until after his death. But that’s the way it is in rock and roll, sometimes. He was very special – he had “star quality” written all over him. If you’re able to go on stage with someone like Ozzy and hold your own, you know youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re special.
Adrian Smith (Iron Maiden)
To me, Randy Rhoads had a classic “American” guitar sound. There’s a difference between the way a British guitarist plays and the way an American plays. They’re both equally good, it’s just that people like Blackmore and Page have had the biggest impact on English guitarists while perhaps Eddie Van Halen has had the biggest impact on the guys in the States. Randy Rhoads seemed to pick up on some of Van Halen’s ideas and expand them. He was absolutely terrific, and his work with Osbourne is astounding at times.
Neal Schon (Journey)
He was very interesting. I make it a habit to watch other guitarists and listen to their work. I’m not that big on Ozzy’s music, so I don’t often put his albums on at home, but I recognize Rhoads as a very talented guitarist.
Paul Stanley (Kiss)
I’ve seen just about everybody who’s come down the pike over the last ten years, and quite honestly, most of ‘em weren’t worth remembering. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see Rhoads that many times, but he was a very impressive guitarist. He obviously had studied the instrument, and he had a natural feel that separated him from most other players. To me, that’s the key – if you have a feel, a quality that nobody can teach you, that’s when you’re special.
Tony Iommi (Black Sabbath)
Obviously, I’ve always had a bit of interest in the guitarists Ozzy has worked with. After having worked with somebody for so long, you can’t dismiss their musical activities very easily. Ozzy once told me that one of the things which first attracted him to Randy was that he was the exact opposite of me. He looked different, and his style was very unique. I favor certain chord structures, while Randy had his own way of expressing himself. I admire what he did, though I wish Ozzy had given him a little more freedom to express himself on his albums.
Rik Emmett (Triumph)
I’m a big guitar fan. I love listening to everything from jazz to heavy metal, and one of the guys who really caught my ear was Randy. he just stood out head and shoulders above other young guitarists. I don’t know exactly what he did that was so special, but he was able to mix together a number of styles and influences, and emerge with a special sound. Most guitarists are clones of other famous musicians. Randy had a bit of that element in him, but because of his talent, he was able to rise above that.
K. K. Downing (Judas Priest)
I listened to his playing on Osbourne’s albums. He had the potential to become one of the best guitarists ever. Considering he was so young, it’s amazing to consider what he accomplished.
Phil Collin (Def Leppard)
When I was getting into the guitar, there were people like Ritchie Blackmore who were so good that when you saw them on-stage they inspired you to go out and buy a guitar. That’s what I imagine Randy Rhoads was like for a lot of younger kids. He had such presence on-stage, and he was so talented, that when you saw him you naturally had to be totally impressed by his talent.
I know I have many limitations as a guitarist. That’s why I admire somebody like Rhoads so much. He was the type of player that a guitarist like me would like to be. I keep dreaming someday … someday …
Here’s a great article from KPCC, making a trip to Randy’s gravesite: www.scpr.org
Tomorrow (Dec. 8 ) will mark seven years since Pantera and Damageplan guitarist Dimebag Darrell was killed onstage. Revolvermagazine.com will be posting remembrances of him over the next few days. Today, Anthrax bassist Frank Bello looks back fondly on his time with Dimebag.
Dimebag recorded solos for Anthrax’s ‘Stomp 442, Volume 8′, and ‘We’ve Come for You All’ albums. Anthrax’s latest album ‘Worship Music,’ also features the song “In the End,” paying tribute to Dimebag and Ronnie James Dio. The 100th issue of Revolver, available here and on newsstands on December 13, features a free pull-out poster of Dimebag.
“We were so close to him. He was one of us. Dimebag was the sixth member of Anthrax, because he played on the last few records. I thought paying tribute to him in song was a great idea.
“I lost a brother 13 years ago. He was murdered. And then to have Dimebag go in such a bad, traumatic way—he’s one of our brothers. Dimebag was like a brother to me.
“We had a lot of good times. That Anthrax-Pantera tour [in 1997], that was a scary tour. The shows were great. But on that tour, I brought a parasite home with me from Mexico in my stomach. So I couldn’t hold anything in my stomach including liquor. Now imagine being on a Pantera tour without drinking liquor. At one point, it was so bad because everything I put in my body, it was like a funnel–it came right out of my body. So I would have to run from these guys and hide. Because Dime’s chasing me with this Black Tooth [Grin, Dime’s signature drink, which was a shot of Crown Royal or Seagrams 7 with a splash of Coke]. He’d be yelling, ‘Let’s go, let’s go, let’s go!’ So I’m shooting this thing with a beer right after it.
“Dude, I swear to God, as soon as it went in my system, I was right on the bowl. So I laugh at that now, because I remember Dime laughing at me. As soon as I shot the Black Tooth, he’d go, ‘You’ve gotta go now, right?’ And he’d laugh. It was a great time. Of course it was painful for me, but it was a great thing for Dimebag. Those are the things you remember. It’s a time in your life I’ll never forget. I love them and I miss them. Only the good die young.”