Kirk Hammett Wah Pedal

Kirk Hammett: The Greatest Guitar Solos That Changed His Life

Metallica lead guitarist Kirk Hammett reveals the first time he ever heard a wah pedal in a list of the five guitar solos that ultimately changed his life.

Kirk Hammett recently spoke with Guitar Player and ran down the five guitar solos that most inspired his playing.

Among one of the songs he chose was Warrior by Thin Lizzy, and this is what Kirk Hammett had to say about his first experience hearing a wah pedal.

Warriors – Thin Lizzy

“This solo was the first time I’d ever heard a wah pedal. I remember that when that sound came out of the speakers, it startled me. The one guy that I’ve always thought did not get enough credit was Brian Robertson, and his style and feel is something that I aspire to.”


This song originally featured on Thin Lizzy’s 1976 Jailbreak LP. Two years later, it was included on Live and Dangerous, a live double album recorded in London in 1976 and Toronto in 1977. That was the last Thin Lizzy record before 1983’s Life to feature guitarist Brian Robertson, who had a prominent part on the tune.

Scorpions – Sails Of Charon

“To me, Uli Jon Roth was one of the first guitarists to use that neo-classical guitar style, and this solo was totally unique at the time, simultaneously melodic and dynamic, with a climax so incredibly ripping. How can so many notes be so perfectly in place?”

Scorpions - Sails Of Charon - Musikladen TV (16.01.1978)Scorpions - Sails Of Charon - Musikladen TV (16.01.1978)

“The Sails of Charon” was the fifth track on the fifth Scorpions studio album Taken By Force, the album was released on December 4th, 1977.  This was the first Scorpions album to feature drummer Herman Rarebell and the final studio album to feature guitarist Uli Jon Roth. Roth left the band in 1978, and was eventually replaced by Matthias Jabs.

Machine Gun – Band of Gypsys – (Hendrix)

“A sonic, mystical, multi-dimensional journey into some otherworldly soundscape that triggers my imagination every time I hear it. I feel captivated by the mere mention of this song!”

Machine Gun (Live)Machine Gun (Live)

January 1st, 1970, Jimi Hendrix stepped onto the stage at the legendary Fillmore East in New York City with a new band and a totally new sound. Band Of Gypsys featured the passion and exuberance of a band eager to prove to the audience that they were an entirely different project from the Jimi Hendrix Experience.

Mother Mary – UFO

“Hearing Michael Schenker for the first time changed how I wanted my own solos to sound in terms of phrasing, technique and being something that was memorable and catchy.”

Mother Mary (2007 Remaster)Mother Mary (2007 Remaster)

“Mother Mary” is as near as UFO would ever get to recording a hymn. Co-written by vocalist Phil Mogg, lead guitarist Michael Schenker and drummer Andrew Maynard Parker, the Mary in question is that Mary. released in July 1975, Mother Mary was the sixth track on UFO’s fourth studio album Force It. The controversial cover was designed by Hipgnosis, as were almost all other UFO albums of the 70’s.

Let Me Love You Baby – Jeff Beck Group

“Why? It was the first guitar solo I figured out by myself!”

Jeff Beck Group - Let Me Love YouJeff Beck Group - Let Me Love You

Released in August 1968, Let Me Love You was the second track on the Jeff Beck debut album Truth. The album introduced to a wider audience to the raw talents of Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood. Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page also wrote a few songs that appeared on the album.


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