KISS’ Tommy Thayer Explains Alex Lifeson’s Influence On Him

KISSTommy Thayer has opened up about the guitarists who have had the most significant impact on his playing, following the deeply personal interviews that have captured the hearts of fans in recent months. In a revealing interview with Guitar World, Thayer paid tribute to his favorite guitar players, including Rush‘s Alex Lifeson.

In the conversation, Thayer’s admiration for Lifeson became apparent as he made clear that the Rush icon has played an essential role in shaping his sound. The KISS guitarist explained that he was particularly moved by Lifeson’s mesmerizing playing after he saw him live and realized that Alex was doing exactly what he wanted to do in life.

Tommy Thayer’s words about Alex Lifeson’s guitar playing read:

“‘Caress of Steel‘ was the first Rush album that I had, and ‘Bastille Day‘ was the song I tried to learn first. Alex Lifeson played beautiful, loud, heavy guitar riffs; all churned into melodic songs with crazy sci-fi lyrics. Alex had the chords – I call them ‘golden chords,’ with these droning, sustaining voicings that made his guitar playing symphonic. His sound was rich.”

He added:

“I saw Rush play at the Paramount Theater in Portland in the mid-’70s; you had me hanging on the edge of the stage, mesmerized by what I was hearing and seeing. Alex was regal with long shiny blond hair and bangs, rocking in front of a wall of Marshalls and Hiwatts. I realized then, ‘That’s what I want to do.'”

The band’s upcoming final tour dates are sure to be bittersweet, but it is evident that the musicians who have inspired Thayer and his bandmates will continue to live on through their music. With a legacy spanning over 50 years, KISS has undoubtedly left an indelible mark on the rock world. The guitarists who have inspired them, particularly Tommy, will continue to be a guiding light for future generations.