Music Quotes

Marty Friedman (Shrapnel Records)

If you’re a guitar player, and a lot of times guitar players think that they have to be able to play everything that exists. They have to know how to play everything. They think that they have to know how to play like this guy. They have to know how to play like this guy. They have to learn all of these different things, and that’s totally not true. All you have to do is be able to play your own music really, really, really, really well. Like for example, I could never, ever play like Jeff Beck. If I practiced every day for years, I could never, ever play like that, or Eddie Van Halen, or anybody. I could never, ever do it.

Guthrie Govan (The Aristocrats)

Sometimes a young player will become blinded by the technique aspect and it will distract them from the bigger picture, which is of course you’re meant to write music and play music with other people, and play music to other people.

Nuno Bettencourt

I think the main thing is, for any guitar player, don’t just be a guitar player. Don’t be obsessed with guitar only. Be obsessed with the guitar, but also be obsessed with music and rhythm playing. You know, solos are just a small portion of the song. You will make your own history and be yourself amongst how you can play in a song. That will separate you from everybody else.

Phil Collen (Def Leppard)

I always say two things are very important to guitar players – you’ve got to be listening to the rest of the band, and the song is king. Everything else pales in comparison. You’ve got to make the singer sound great. And then the rhythm and melody follows. Be mindful of the song.  (City Pages)

Zakk Wylde

Whatever it is you love, do it… you have to have passion for what you do. (Guitar Messenger)

Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi)

“But I think if I can give any advice, it’s to really work hard on the craft of songwriting because it is the foundation of our business. Without a good song, we can all be the best musicians, but if you haven’t got a good song to play, no one is going to come see you play, no one is going to buy your records, and you have no career. It’s a very important part of what builds a person’s style, a band’s voice, and a particular instrumentalist’s voice. That’s the best advice I can give. If you’re not good at songwriting, find a good songwriter to learn from. And even if you are a good songwriter already, write with as many different people as you can because you learn something new every time you sit down with a new guy.” (Vintage Guitar)

John Mayer

“I can’t stress enough how important it is to write bad songs. There’s a lot of people who don’t want to finish songs because they don’t think they’re any good. Well, they’re not good enough. Write it! I want you to write me the worst songs you could possibly write me because you won’t write bad songs. You’re thinking they’re bad so you don’t have to finish it. That’s what I really think it is. Well it’s all right. Well, how do you know? It’s not done!”

Kirk Hammett from Metallica

When you’re first starting out, there’s always the temptation to hide behind distortion because it lets you get away with murder. But, when it comes to rhythm work, you’ve gotta back off that gain control a bit, especially if you’re playing with another guitarist. Actually, over the years, James and I have found that besides giving our tone more definition and cut, backing off the gain makes us play our riffs better because we can’t get away with being sloppy. (Guitar World)

Jack White

They need to quit playing video games, throw away their Auto-Tune program and cut three strings off their guitar. (NME)

Slash

I do know how to take a basic scale and change the notes around to suit my needs. I also know how to play major, minor and pentatonic scales all the way up the neck, but that’s about as complicated as I get.  (Guitar World)

Charles Darwin

If I had my life to live over again, I would have made a rule to read some poetry and listen to some music at least once every week.

Aldous Huxley

After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.

Albert Einstein

If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.

Maya Angelou

Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.

Victor Hugo

Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent

Friedrich Nietzsche

And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.

Bob Marley

One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.

John Denver

Music does bring people together. It allows us to experience the same emotions. People everywhere are the same in heart and spirit.  No matter what language we speak, what color we are, the form of our politics or the expression of our love and our faith, music proves: We are the same.

Gustav Mahler

If a composer could say what he had to say in words he would not bother trying to say it in music.