What Non-Classical Musicians Inspire You?

🎼 Let's explore the diverse influences shaping our musical journeys! Share the unconventional artists who ignite your creativity. Every influence adds depth to our musical palette, whether that be rock, R&B, jazz or any other genre. Join the conversation and discover new sources of inspiration beyond the classical realm!

⭐️ Share the non-classical musicians who inspire you, and WHY you find them inspirational! ⬇ 🎶

40replies Oldest first
  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Active threads
  • Popular
  • Well, 

    When I was young (which seems a long time ago) I really enjoyed the music of John Mayall, Hendrix, Genesis, Rick Wakeman (Yes).

    Today, I am listening to quite different music. Few examples:

    - Jessee Cook - Great Canadian Guitar player - Flamenco and South American style

    - Dominique Miller - Jazz guitar player (former guitar player of Sting)

     

    Here is one of his latest video:

    Like 2
  • All the rock and jazz guitarists and non-guitarists that everybody has answered already have been a great inspiration for me, particularly Frank Zappa, Bill Evans, Alex, Lifeson, Steve Vai, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Andy Summers, Thelonious Monk, Brian Eno, Duke Ellington.

    However, I do have a particular fondness for the role of electric guitar in non guitar-focused pop music, especially from the 80s. When I first started playing guitar as a kid in 1982, I found quite an inspiration in listening to groups like Culture Club, Thompson Twins, Duran Duran, A Flock of Seagulls, etc.  These were bands whose sound was not focused on the electric guitar, and yet the guitar in their music always added something catchy, textural, and helped elevate the songs sonically. The role of the guitarist in pop music has always fascinated me, and in the bands I played in, it gave me license to enjoy sitting in the background, and adding to the overall effect of the music, rather than needing to be a feature of it.

     

    Guitarists really do need to shut up more willingly. 😂

    Like 1
  • So many, and for so many reasons.

    Roberto Grela -

    For tango in general, but also because is a master of accent and articulation.

    Kurt Cobain -

    I teach guitar, and a young student of mine wanted to learn some Nirvana songs.  We ended up working on the whole Nevermind album.  Kurt Cobain is a masterclass in using an incredibly small set of simple tools, and creating a compelling universe with them.

    Duke Ellington - 

    Compositions with real heart, and I would put him up there with any of the great 20th composers classical or otherwise.  He recognized that a instrument is not a instrument, but an instrument and its player.

    Anibal Troilo -

    A man who dedicated his whole life to expanding the expressive possibilities of music.

    Hamilton de Holanda -

    Virtuostic yet not afraid to be simple, rooted in tradition both stylistically and harmonically, but completely willing to throw out the rules. 

    Mick Ronson -

    The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars

    Bowie, Beatles, Prince, the list is too long to go on

    Like 1
    • Peter
    • Peter.7
    • 3 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    The big four for nylon string work would probably be Ralph Towner, Baden Powell, Yamandu Costa, and Earl Klugh. Moving in to electric would be Joe Pass, Pat Metheny, Wes Montgomery, Kenny Burrell, Julian Lage, John Scofield, Pat Martino and Eddie Van Halen. For acoustic, Michael Hedges, Andy McKee, Leo Kottke, Trevor Gordon Hall, Antoine DuFour, Kevin Eubanks, Alex DeGrassi, Will Ackerman and Pierre Bensusan. For piano it would be Ahmad Jamal, Bill Evans, Vince Guaraldi, Dave Brubeck, George Winston, Liz Story and Chad Lawson. 

    They all have such unique voices that are instantly recognizable, pushed the boundaries in their respective genres and spoke to me in a way that I am not able to explain. I am pretty sure there are a lot more that I am missing, but these seem to be on the rotating playlist the most. 

    I enjoyed reading everyone's list...some familiar and not so familiar artists to discover! 

    Like
  • Astor Piazzolla, BB King...that's about all.

    Like
    • Isaac
    • Isaac.2
    • 3 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    For me I had far-reaching non-classical musical influences. They were Nobuo Uematsu who composed the early Final Fantasy music; Jason Becker, Ritchie Kotzen, Ritchie Blackmoore, and Greg Howe, who were early pioneers of neoclassical and shred-styles of virtuoso electric guitar; Shawn Lane who applied his amazingly fast style of electric guitar playing to the most interesting compositions and an outside way of looking at music theory combined with technical prowess; and Keith Green whose devotion to Jesus Christ and passion for the gospel message fueled his music and truly inspired me that I can have the same strong motivation for advancing worship and to see God's people served through music.

    Like
  • John Fahey, Robbie Basho, Bert Jansch, Bill Connors, Mdou Moctar,Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Jude Sill, Nina Simone, Alice Coltrane, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Grant Green, Wes Montgomery, among many more others. 

    Like
    • Michel
    • Michel
    • 3 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Paco de Lucia

    Like
  • Larry Coryell 

    why? All from 1965 to 2017

    Like
    • Ravi
    • Ravi.1
    • 3 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Paco de Lucia, Yamandu Costa, Tommy Emmanuel, Vicente Amigo, Django Reinhardt are my inspirations. Amazing guitarists, innovators, that shaped musical styles and influenced others.

    Like
    • bijl
    • bijl
    • 3 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Well there are the great teachers:

    - Barry Harris: mainly indirectly I got exposed to a lot of his teachings through Open Studio. He is one of the main teachers of the bebop language.

    - Ted Greene: his books (especially Chord Chemistry) learned me to see the harmonic possibilities of guitar in improvisation.

    - Wolf Marshall: on of the great transcribers of guitar music. I have studied many of the mentioned players through his scores.

    Like
    • bijl
    • bijl
    • 3 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    - Stephan Diethelm. A music teacher in the area here which organizes concerts in the "Village Vanguard of the Alpes": Musig in Pflegidach. The list of great musicians which played here is big. From Jacob Collier to Fred Hersch, from Snarky Puppy to Joel Ross, from Samara Joy to Mark Guiliana. The concert series is alive over 20 years and the most inspiring setting: a small club (<70 seats), 60 minutes, mostly young extremely talented music with a card blanch.

     

    There is a YouTube channel. Here one of the very many highlights:

    - https://youtu.be/_rT55GTLmZc?si=vvvTb-jlMoC1U6jx

    Like
    • Jlindley
    • Jlindley
    • 2 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    I hope my response is in alignment with what is being asked, if not please forgive me.  I am going to avoid any fingerstyle guitarist in my response.

     

    Growing up a metal head, I have always had a love for the band Carcass.  Their songs are some of the best in metal and they have two albums that I can listen to start to finish and love very song (Heartwork and Surgical Steel) which is very rare for any genre of music for me.  Bill Steer (lead guitarist) is fast and very melodic and plays with amazing and clean tone (something which is somewhat uncommon for metal because a lot use chunky tone to cover up sloppy play).

     

    Keeping with metal, I will also say Joey Jordison.  I am not a huge Slipknot fan, but he is an amazing drummer.  He is fast and precise and playing drums like that seems like one hell of a workout, for me to get the equivalent I feel like I would need to play Recuerdos de la Alhambra while running on a treadmill (bad idea for the day).  His drum cam videos on YouTube are really entertaining in the sense that he makes it look fun and he is really entertaining.

     

    Switching out or metal and into pop, I will say Sia.  Her voice is the best I have ever heard, it is an absolute superpower.  I wish I had the ability to sing, but I don’t so I play guitar instead.  The texture of her voice is so good, she could sing the dictionary and make me feel emotional.

     

    Next, I will go with my wife’s favorite bands Green Day.  They have really been able to withstand the test of time while still evolving their sound.  They have some great ballads and fun punk songs.

     

    A lot of other musicians I feel I could mention because I have very eclectic taste in music, but I will leave it at this for now.  This was a fun question to answer!

    Like
    • Alan Hoff
    • Alan_Hoff
    • 2 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Wow! interesting. Some of my early influences were: Chet Atkins, Django Reinhardt, the Wrecking Crew, Joni Mitchell, Doc Watson, Jerry Garcia, Tony Rice, Norman Blake, Les Paul, Mark Knopfler, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, David Gilmore. 

    Like
    • Alan Hoff 

      Like 1
Like Follow
  • 2 mths agoLast active
  • 40Replies
  • 632Views
  • 28 Following

Home

View all topics