Guitar Moderne Top Records of 2021

Despite plague, lockdown, transportation issues, and touring revenue loss, a surprising number of artists managed to release new material last year. Current modern guitar legends, Eivind Aarset, Stian Westerhus, and Nels Cline all make appearances. Legends in the making Ádám Mészáros, Tim Motzer, Nick Milevoi, and Eyal Maoz’s chime in as well. On a sad note, rumor has it that the Rare Noise label is folding. They are going out with a bang though, contributing three records to this year’s list. I hope I am misinformed.

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The Andy Summers Interview

A few years ago, I was contacted by Andy Summers’ publicist regarding interviewing him about his then new record, Metal Dog, a masterpiece of modern guitar mayhem. Now he has a new book of hilarious short stories, Fretted and Moaning, and a new record, Harmonics of the Night, so it seemed like a perfect time to chat again. We spoke in general terms about gear but he was kind enough to also send me a more specific list, available below.

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Benn Jordan’s Rig

Hands down, the best part of Summer NAMM was running into Benn Jordan. A candidate for The World’s Most Interesting Man, He plays guitar upside down, has a great YouTube  channel, performs in front of thousands as Flashbulb, and is a Mixed Marshal Artist. He recently posted this video describing his laptop-free setup for performing his music, a mixture of jazz, metal, electronica, and beats.

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The Marc Ribot Interview

I have wanted to talk to Marc for a long time. As we discuss, we were playing the Bleecker Street scene at roughly the same time when we were both working sidemen in the New York of the Seventies. Both his book, Unstrung, and his new Ceramic Dog record, Hope, are terrific, and highly intertwined. We talk about that and a lot of other deep musical and highly humorous stuff.

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