Zakk Wylde Thinks Jimi Hendrix Probably Didn’t Know The Guitar Technique He Was Using
Ozzy Osbourne’s lead guitarist Zakk Wylde talked about some iconic musicians and how they were inspired to create their iconic songs. He stated that it’s a matter of embracing their inspirations and added that Jimi Hendrix is among these musicians who don’t make music based on a technique but based on whatever comes to their mind.
Every musician has a different way of writing, composing, and imagining songs. While some musicians work in a more organized and technical way, others compose based on, as William Wordsworth put it, the ‘spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings.’ According to Zakk Wylde, the latter is more important, and that is how many rock bands achieved fame.
He stated that Cream, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, and Deep Purple were inspired by the blues, and they composed rock and roll because they embraced the blues genre. They consumed it so well that it reflected onto their rock and roll work later on.
Zakk Wylde claimed as follows:
“All the great British blues bands whether it’s Cream, Zeppelin, Sabbath, Deep Purple. They were all moved by American blues. Huge riffs and stuff like that, they just grabbed hold of that, and they completely, fully embraced it.
It wasn’t a matter of just eating it, tasting it, and spitting it out. They completely swallowed it, and it became them. It’s in their DNA, and it’s in their blood. They just fully embraced it. It’s not fake what’s coming out. You embrace it so much that that is when you love it. So, I think it’s just a matter of that.”
He gave examples from an author, Stephen King, and stated that he doesn’t need to experience to be inspired because of his broad imagination. He resembled this to the imagination in the music world when creating songs and stated that if you have that image, you can make many amazing things even if you lack technicality.
Here is how he continued:
“Like Stephen King doesn’t have to experience all these insane stories, these horror stories that he writes. He has an amazing imagination, and that’s what he embraces, that what’s he’s into. So, all things like with The Beatles or whatever, you don’t have to be the most accomplished musician on the planet. It’s if you have an amazing imagination, and you’re a creative person, you’re gonna create. So, here you are taking a bunch of musicians that really are not technically that amazing, creating all these amazing songs, chord progressions, and melodies because their imagination was just that huge.
You can learn all the scales you want, and you can learn all the chords you want. The biggest teacher is you getting in that boat and going out on the ocean and seeing where you can go, and it’s like, ‘Where are you headed?’ ‘I have no idea.’ Without any compass of anything, just go and see where it’ll lead you.”
Finally, he talked about how Jimi Hendrix wouldn’t care about the technicalities and wasn’t even familiar with the technical vocabulary of the music world. If he liked something, he started to work on it. Hence this made him very successful. It is known that Hendrix has inspired many other musicians mainly because he seemed like a natural-born guitar player as he didn’t follow techniques while playing.
He talked about Jimi by stating:
“Jimi Hendrix, when he’s playing diminished stuff, I guarantee you, you’re like ‘Jimi, oh that’s like a diminished thing.’ He would probably go like, ‘Zach, I have no idea that’s like that, I just like that sound.’ He just likes the sound, it’s just like, ‘I didn’t realize that’s the name of that. I really like the flavor of that.‘ But once again, it’s your imagination. Where it can take you.”
You can watch the entire interview below.