Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Happy Birthday, Randy Rhoads

Many years ago, back when I wanted to be a musician, I was hugely influenced by the phenomenally talented guitar virtuoso, Randy Rhoads. He would have been 55 today if he hadn't been tragically killed in a small plane crash back in March of 1982. While his influence on me was initially musical, I have to think that somehow he has influenced me artistically as well, if nothing else, just because he had such a huge impact on me when I was younger.

There has been a great deal written about Randy and his talents, his incredible tone, his fluidity, dedication and so fourth, so I don't think I can really add anything that hasn't already been said, and even if I could, nothing I could say would speak as well about him as his own playing. So here are three examples of his talent, all of them live versions recorded from the soundboard for top quality. And now without further ado, I propose a birthday toast to Mr Rhoads: happy birthday, and thank you for the inspiration. Cheers!

I know this is pretty late in the day—in fact  it is already too late on the East Coast—but, I have been putting this off all day, because I've been fighting the urge to go off about the shabby treatment of Randy's recorded legacy by the shit-weasels, Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne. However, I don't want to sully something honoring Mr. Rhoads, so I'll  leave most of that for another post at another time, but I will say that I hope both Osbournes get exactly and precisely what they deserve. And in case you're wondering, it's a long story, but briefly, in an effort to screw the original drummer and bass player out of their royalties, the Osbournes re-recorded the bass and drum parts for the first two albums with different musicians and erased the original work, then re-released the albums. While Randy's amazing work was left intact, it is now diminished, tied to musicians he never worked with, and that he had never met, all for the greed of two very pathetic individuals.

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