Must Have Guitar Albums- Part 1

In this segment of must have guitar albums its Greg Howe’s Extraction and Eric Johnson’s Ah Via Musicom
Must Have Guitar Albums- Part 1
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Eric Johnson- Ah Via Musicom

Among the guitar players known for their fluidity and guitar tone a name that towers above the rest is Eric Johnson. Blessed with a style and technique that makes jaws drop, Eric Johnson has gone onto become a musician’s musician. When you listen to an Eric Johnson song the first thing that comes to mind is the flurry of notes on the guitar that blend aesthetically. The use of pentatonics has been popular with guitar players, and only few guitar players in rock genres have creatively showcased pentatonic scales in compositional structure. Eric Johnson has used

pentatonic scales creatively and melodically on his albums.

Eric Johnson is known in guitar circles for the violin-like tone he gets from his guitar, and is rightly know as the ‘Pope of Tone’ among guitar players. Ah Via Musicom is an album every guitar player should have. This album is one of the finest guitar albums in the guitar music domain. Not many guitar players can boast of a great voice, but listen to Eric Johnson sing and your will realize his mellow voice gels perfectly with his guitar tone. Ah Via Musicom is an album that showcases Eric Johnson’s varied influences. When you listen to the instrumental ballad Trademark you realize runs can be melodically used on the guitar.

Eric Johnson has an excellent left had technique and right hand technique which he imbibes in the scheme of melodic shred. It’s least surprising why the shred community is in awe of Eric Johnson. This guitar player has give shred guitar a new melodic direction. The only way to analyze what’s been said and written in a shred context is by actually listening to Eric Johnson play the guitar, its only then that everything falls in perspective for a guitar player. If you haven’t listened to a Eric Johnson record, Ah Via Musicom is a great album to start your journey with this incredible guitar player.

Greg Howe- Extraction

Greg Howe is a guitar player that has made waves in the Jazz Fusion genre. One of the most respected session guitarists, Greg Howe is known for his amalgamation of funky textural rhythm


and jaw dropping legato technique. Since the 80s, Greg Howe has appealed to both neo classical guitarists and guitarists in the jazz fusion genre. Extraction is an album that explores various guitar moods of Greg Howe in typically a jazz fusion meets shred context. If you are the kind of guitar player that loves a good example of chops, every song on Extraction will be of your liking.

Greg Howe is in a league of his own and his use of legato gives unique identity to his music. While Allan Holdsworth is widely recognized as the ‘Guru’ of legato in the guitar kingdom, Greg Howe’s use of legato is daringly different and does not fall under the shadow of Allan Holdsworth. Greg Howe’s outside playing on Extraction is supreme, and Victor Wooten on bass and Dennis Chambers on drums strengthen the foundation of this album in a way that only they are capable. The opening track Extraction kicks off to a tempo that leads the way. While every track in the album is a gem, you just cannot get enough “Crack it Way Open” and “Ease Up” 

Greg Howe blazes right from the word go. His phrasing gives colloquial meaning to funk elements in jazz fusion. The funky rhythm parts accompanied by the free-flow fluidity of Greg Howe make Extraction a unique album in the jazz fusion genre. When it comes to finesse in outside playing Greg Howe is a cut above the rest, and Extraction showcases every guitar emotion of this guitar player theatrically. This is an album that gets you hooked instantly to the groove. You got to have this one, you won’t be disappointed.



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