Tom Morello Says He Was The DJ Of RATM, Not Guitarist

Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello admitted he didn’t really identify himself as the guitarist of the band, but rather something else.

In a new interview with Rolling Stone, the rocker explained his role in RATM and what influenced him to pick his current role. He said:

“I self-identified as the DJ in Rage Against the Machine. And so, I began practicing Jam Master Jay’s scratch licks, and Crystal Method’s and Prodigy’s textures. I would sit in my living room, just listen out the window, and try to approximate anything I heard — whether it was a helicopter, a dog barking, a lawnmower going by… If you do that, you might not sound like a helicopter, or a dog, or a lawnmower, but it just framed my playing in an entirely different way.”

Morello’s Journey With A ‘Hallowed Instrument’

The rocker started his guitar journey at 17 years old and began with ’emulating’ legendary names like Eddie Van Halen. In his words, it took him a lot of time to realize that he didn’t have a unique sound. This is when he stopped looking at the instrument as a ‘hallowed instrument.’

Last year, Morello talked about how he approached breaking away from traditional guitar playing in an interview with Total Guitar: