Peter Green – In The Skies
Peter Green (born Peter Allen Greenbaum, 29 October 1946) is a British blues rock guitarist and the founder of the band Fleetwood Mac. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998 for his work with the group, Green’s songs such as “Albatross”, “Black Magic Woman”, “Oh Well” and “Man of the World” have been recorded by artists such as Santana, Aerosmith, Status Quo, Black Crowes, Midge Ure, Tom Petty, Judas Priest and Gary Moore, who recorded Blues for Greeny, a covers album of Green’s compositions.
A major figure and bandleader in the “second great epoch” of the British blues movement, Green inspired B. B. King to say, “He has the sweetest tone I ever heard; he was the only one who gave me the cold sweats.” Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page have both lauded his guitar playing. Green’s playing was noted for its idiomatic string bending and vibrato and economy of style. Though he played other guitars, he is best known for deriving a unique tone from his 1959 Gibson Les Paul.
He was ranked 38th in Rolling Stone’s list of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time”. His tone on the Bluesbreakers instrumental “The Supernatural” was rated as one of the 50 greatest of all time by Guitar Player. In June 1996 Green was voted the third-best guitarist of all time in Mojo magazine.
Peter Green Splinter Group
Green formed the Peter Green Splinter Group in the late 1990s, with the assistance of Nigel Watson and Cozy Powell. The Splinter Group released nine albums between 1997 and 2004.
Early in 2004, a tour was cancelled and the recording of a new studio album stopped when Green left the band and moved to Sweden. Shortly afterwards he joined The British Blues All Stars, for a tour scheduled for the next year. However, this tour was cancelled after the death of saxophonist Dick Heckstall-Smith. At the time, Green stated that the medication he was taking to treat his psychological problems was making it hard for him to concentrate and sapped his desire to play guitar.
In February 2009 he began playing and touring again, this time as Peter Green and Friends. In May 2009 he was the subject for the BBC Four documentary “Peter Green: Man of the World”, produced by Henry Hadaway. Green and the band subsequently played a tour of Ireland, Germany and England. They went on to play several dates in Australia during March 2010, including the Byron Bay Bluesfest. The band were supported by singer-songwriter Garron Frith on their UK tour dates during May 2010.
Playing style and song writing
Green has been praised for his swinging shuffle grooves and soulful phrases and favoured the minor mode and its darker blues implications. His distinct tone can be heard on “The Super-Natural”, an instrumental written by Green for John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers’ 1967 album A Hard Road. This song demonstrates Green’s control of harmonic feedback. The sound is characterized by a shivering vibrato, clean cutting tones and a series of ten-second sustained notes. These tones were achieved by Green controlling feedback on a Les Paul guitar. Perhaps the best example of Green’s economy and sense of proportion – alongside an exquisite tone – is found on John Mayall’s recording of the Elmore James classic ‘It Hurts Me Too’.
Green remains ambivalent about his songwriting success and more recently stated to Guitar Player magazine:
“ Oh, I was never really a songwriter. I was very lucky to get those hits. I shouldn’t have been distracted from my fascination with the blues… I have been known to come up with the odd bit, but I’m not all that wild about the big composer credit.
Main article: Peter Green discography
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