Zack De La Rocha’s Musical Idols From His Childhood

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Rage Against the Machine vocalist and lyricist Zack de la Rocha‘s musical journey started during high school. After meeting his future RATM bandmate Tim Commerford in elementary school, they joined a band named Juvenile Expression as guitar players. The following years of Rocha’s career were filled with numerous other groups until he settled with Rage Against the Machine.

The beginnings of his career lie within the musicians that inspired Zack de la Rocha to be an artist in the first place. The rocker previously credited many punk rock bands like Sex Pistols, The Clash, and Bad Religion. However, The frontman once named two essential musicians that were the foundations of his interest in music during his childhood.

Jimi Hendrix And Charlie Parker Inspired Zack De La Rocha

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In a 1997 interview in Japan, Rage Against the Machine lead singer Zack de la Rocha looked back on the time he first started feeling attracted to music. Rocha stressed that his love for music started at an early age, particularly when he first began listening to Jimi Hendrix.

Hendrix inspired the singer as a rock star, but he wasn’t the only one who left a mark on Rocha. The rocker was also interested in jazz music which explains the fusion sounds in Rage Against the Machine. The singer stated that he listened to Charlie Parker as a kid. As a result o both of these musicians, he started making music, first by playing the guitar.

During the interview, Zack de la Rocha said:

“I was drawn to music really early in my life. I think initially, I was listening to Jimi Hendrix. I was listening to a little bit of jazz, Charlie Parker, at a very young age. I was drawn to it. I started playing guitar at first. It was the first instrument I played.”

While many consider Jimi Hendrix as one the greatest guitar players in the history of rock music, Charlie Parker was an influential soloist and leading figure in the jazz community. Both artists were notable names in music history, and their genius inspired Zack de la Rocha to embark on his musical journey, later forming Rage Against the Machine in 1991 and carving his name on to rock scene.