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The Best Of Jeff Beck

The Best Of Jeff Beck

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After leaving the Yardbirds, Beck formed the Jeff Beck Group consisting of a just discovered shy singer named Rod Stewart and his friend Ron Wood on bass guitar. On 1975’s Blow By Blow and 1976’s Wired he cemented his reputation as a jazz fusionist; 1993’s Crazy Legs paid homage to Gene Vincent; 1999’s Who Else!

One of the few Yardbirds tracks to feature both Beck and his old mate and soon-to-be-successor, Jimmy Page. Like his Yardbirds bandmate Eric Clapton, the late Jeff Beck had a long, varied career playing the roles of sideman, band member and group leader. Furthermore, in both cases, the two guitarists are far ahead of the singer, with all due respect to Keith Relf, his voice simply wasn't up to the great British vocalists of the time - like Roger Daltrey, Steve Marriott, Paul Rodgers, Robert Plant or a character we'll talk about next, Rod Stewart - but Beck's work is so advanced that these songs are still key when it comes to tracing the evolution of the electric guitar. Propelled by the galvanic rhythm section, Beck slashes his way into "Scatterbrain," where a dizzying keyboard and guitar line leads to more energetic soloing from Beck and band.With only the great Terry Bozzio on drums, a Frank Zappa alumnus and working with the pop band Missing Persons, and keyboard extraordinaire Tony Hymas who handled bass keyboard as well aboard, this astonishing album was a cranium dissolver from the opening title track, where Bozzio describes the guitar, presumably a Strat Jeff has been pretty much devoted to for the last several decades, with details on pickups, the neck, etc. It included two songs that had not yet been released and had been recorded at Sun Studios - Train Kept A-Rollin' and Mister, You're a Better Man Than I - the latter of which would be released in the UK in February of the following year as the B-side of Shapes Of Things.

He not only mimicked a sitar during the familiar riff that rings throughout the song, he also busted out one of the first distortion-heavy solos ever recorded.If, as usual, the death of a rock hero ignites a mad scramble to hear their music, there's certainly no shortage of Jeff Beck material to be consumed. If you think the greatest Jeff Beck album isn't ranked highly enough, vote for it so it receives proper credit.

The album is a nice treat for casual rock fans, but a maddening product for Jeff Beck fans, particularly in that he halts his blossoming jazz fusion style to go back to rocking as hard as he could with the Vanilla Fudge/Cactus rhythm section. Beck sounds terrific as he reconstructs Gallup's parts, but he doesn't add anything to the originals. Over the course of six decades, Jeff Beck has released 17 studio albums and half as many live recordings along with winning eight Grammys and being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice. Jeff Beck recouped after his car crash and the loss of Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood, and redefined what the Jeff Beck Group could be with 1971's 'Rough and Ready'.I have loved Jeff Beck's guitar work since my teens (mid 60's) when he was with the 'Yardbirds', absolutely fantastic.



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