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Thomas Blug - A Profile


Introduction



In about 1995 or 96, I first discovered Thomas Blug in a German guitar mag. After reading an interview with him, plus a review of his "The Beauty Of Simplicity" album, I was immediately curious to hear some of his music. So I ordered his album and was very very impressed.

The album was full of memorable hooklines, great solos and... awesome guitar tones. I knew from the interview that he had that beat-up looking '61 Strat, and suddenly all those rumors about well-worn vintage guitars didnīt seem so mythical anymore.

Whenever he released a new album, I ordered it. With every Thomas Blug-CD, I was impressed with some really great songwriting, great playing and that killer tone. I also saw him conduct workshops and showcases at some tradeshows, but unfortunately I didnīt get make contact.

Recently, after checking out his newest album ( a live-recording, which also is available as a DVD ), I got in touch with him. I also noticed that a lot of people were spreading the word about him on the internet ( I guess it helps to win the „Stratplayer Of The Year Award“ by Fender ), and guitar-freaks from all over the world apparently hear about Thomas by word-of-mouth ( well-deserved, Iīd say ! ).

So here it is, as a belated x-mas gift: an iBreathe special about Thomas Blug !
Oh, and by the way: there are several TB-songs on the playlist of the „iBreathe radio stream“, so you can listen to some tunes there as well ! ( LINK )

Biography



Thomas has released 4 solo albums ( one of them being a live-recording, which also is available as a DVD ), and has been kept very busy as a session-musician. He has recorded guitar tracks for other artists, such as Uwe Ochsenknecht and the No Angels, and also been touring with acts like Tic Tac Toe ( one of the most popular pop/rap acts in Germany during the mid 90s ). He's also recorded jingles and soundtracks. He received the "best german rock-pop guitarist" in 1997, and was called the "Strat king of Europe" by Fender. He is also involved in product research and development with Hughes and Kettner ( which most of you will have heard of ! ).

Thomas has been involved in several other projects which weīll discuss in the interview, so I guess you can tell that heīs a very busy guy.

For more info, check out his website, Guitarplayer.de

On that website, you can also purchase full MP3s of all his solo-releases in the website-shop, so if you do have a credit card, thereīs no excuse anymore to NOT have a Thomas Blug-album !

Selected Discograpy:



Solo releases:
"The Beauty Of Simplicity" 1996
"Electric Gallery" 1998
"21st Century Guitar" 2002
"Guitar From The Heart – Live in Raalte NL" ( CD & DVD ) 2005


with others, as a session-musician:
"In Your Mind" - No Angels ( No. 1 Single Charts Germany )
"To Be Freed" - Hazel OīConnor
"Metamorphosis" - Culture Beat
"We Do Ya" - Black Eyed Blonde
"Pop" Purple Schulz
"O-Ton" - Uwe Ochsenknecht

For more details, check out Guitarplayer.de


Soundfiles
All soundfiles are being used here with the exclusive permission of Mr. Blug

Main theme of "I'll be there" from "Beauty Of Simplicity"
Main theme of "Visions" from "Beauty Of Simplicity"
Solo of "Visions"
Solo of "Longing" from "Electric Gallery"
Clip from "Supersonic" from "21st Century Guitar"
Clip from "Love Crimes" from "Guitar From The Heart ( live )"



The Interview

The Present



Eric Vandenberg: Thomas, what are you currently up to ? Are you working on a new solo-CD, and what other projects are you currently involved in ?

Thomas Blug:
At the moment Iīm quite busy doing clinics worldwide. In the last 2 months I was in Portugal (playing with a Top 40 band), in Prague, Vienna, Birmingham, Moskow and Shanghai... Next week I will do some clinics in Japan. But Iīm constantly writing new songs... Some are instrumental, others might end up with vocals. Therefore Iīm also checking singers, since my own vocals sucks! ;-)

I will also mix a live album of recordings that i have done with my german singing 3 piece Rocktrio "Dreist". After our first Studio CD I felt that this band needs a live CD to capture the spirit that only happens on stage... Itīs quite an intensive energy we share in that band! And it features also some aspects that i canīt express in my work with my instrumental band.

I am also about to plan the next tour for my instrumental band for April/May. I already have the cover-idea for my next Cd with that band very clearly in my head plus a couple of songs for the next album...
Man, i need more time to do all that – but i have to tell myself: slow, bit by bit! take your time...!

EV: Your most recent release was the "Guitar From The Heart" live album. Can you tell us a bit how this came together, and how it was recorded ?

TB:
This record was a dream that I had for a long time. Finally I put together all my best friends (and I think the finest musicians) with whom I've worked with a lot over the years. This is my band now! And I love the guys...!
The good thing about the band is: it always feels like yesterday once we start playing, even if we have not played for a couple of months! We share the same spirit. And this makes every band member secure and happy.

EV: I am interested to hear how the Thomas Blug Band works. I know that the musicians in the band are some extremely busy guys, so I am wondering how you guys prepare for shows and recordings. Do you send them recordings for them to prepare etc.

TB:
The band gets a CD with a selection of songs. We also speak about what would be a great set, or I come up with new ideas that I want to try out. I always put ideas on CD, even if it is not perfectly arranged. But in that way we have already some clear idea of the directions in which we can go.
Before a tour, we take about 2 days of rehearsal to test ideas, new songs or new arrangements. But thereīs always a lot of freedom for every player. So we sometimes go wild on rehearsals, but we always find a way to stay within the concept. We also played gigs with no rehearsal – and it was great! The band is just sooo goood!

EV: Is the band involved in the song-writing process, or do you write the songs all by yourself and then tell them what to play ? How much input does the band have on how a song turns out to be ?

TB:
By now, most of the songs are written by myself. I know the band is quite happy with that. I wrote a couple of songs with Raoul ( Walton ), the bass player. Maybe I will spend some time with Thijs since he played me some ideas that he thought would be great for me. I also feel that Thijs has some ingredients that would make my music different. I will check this out for the next album... And maybe we will use a different writing and recording process. But I always have a clear overall picture, not with all details, but a big picture before I do an album. Only if that spirit is there I start to record an album. Sometimes it takes some time, sometimes even years... You have to know when the time is up to go for the next CD.

EV: Congrats again on winning the "Stratplayer Of The Year 2004" award ! How did that come together ? Was that like a contest, or did you not even know you were considered, and just got a letter saying "Congrats, youīve won" ?
And how did it make you feel ?

TB:
In 2004 Fender announced this competition in music magazines in Europe. At first, I thought "What do I have to do with that ?". But I told a friend of mine about it. He insisted that I have to take part. O.K... So I sent in a song as everybody was asked to do – and 2 weeks later I got a phone call from Fender Europe, telling me that they wanted to invite me over to Arundel/England to take part in the finals for the competition of the 50th birthday of the Stratocaster.

So they sent me a ticket – and when I arrived at the hotel I met all finalists: Pontus Borg from Sweden, Miki Birta from Hungary, Olivier Wursten-Olmos from France, Paul Rose from England and Marcus Deml, the only guy I knew before, from Germany. We had dinner together and a lot to talk about...
The next day we were taken to Arundel Castle festival. Paul Carrack and his band were playing and then we were on. Every guitarist had 5 minutes to play a song in front of the audience and a jury of I think 11 people.... So, what can I say, I gave my best, the English rain stopped (I was told this afterwards) and the audience and the jury liked it!
Playing a Strat since I picked up the electric guitar, this award makes me a bit proud after all these years... ;-)



EV: Youīre working as a sound designer for Hughes & Kettner. Could you elaborate on what is involved in that ? What do you work on, and how do you do that ?

TB:
Before I played the guitar, electronics were my first hobby. I have a bit of experience, but Iīm not a great technician. I understand the logic and magic behind the amps.
In collaboration with Bernd Schneider, the senior R&D technician of H&K, I designed and voiced almost every Hughes & Kettner amp. We talk about a concept first; what we expect, what kind of controls we want.
Sometimes the marketing or sales department inquire for a certain product in a specific price range. Then Bernd and myself discuss how we could realize it. Bernd creates a loose design and shows me his first results. I make my comments and then we go into every detail... Like how do the tubes overdrive, changing EQ behavior, testing different transformers, speakers, tubes and so on. It is like cooking: first a mix of raw potatoes and carrots, then we add some spices and then we put it in the oven with extra cheese tweaking it until it tastes/sounds great!

EV: I know youīre playing a lot of workshops right now. I have seen a couple of your past workshops, i.e. at the Musikmesse. What can a guitar-freak expect when he attends a Thomas Blug workshop... do you play a lot of songs, or give away a lot of exercises, or...

TB:
First I like to play to inspire the listener! I enjoy playing! In between songs, I make comments about what I play. When people ask, I show them how I do specific things. Like what scale I use, and why, rhythmic stuff, phrasing or whatever makes it special. And of course the sound, and how to get it. To me sound is a source of inspiration! It is not only the amp – it is also the way you use the amp in combination with your guitar, and not to forget: your fingers! Well, I like to demonstrate all of this...

EV: What are some of the most common questions you get at those workshops ? And are there certain problems that you see among the young players who attend, like a common problem that you notice about all of them ?

TB:
A typical question from younger players is : "How did you manage to get that fast?" But i am not even that fast! I know so many players that play even faster or more complicated.

But I can show them a couple of exercises that they can use to develop speed. Others notice how much attention I pay to developing the right tone. Then I show them how I use the pick and my fingers and the volume control. I always make my comments about the things they forget about: Intonation and phrasing. I make them aware of things , so they will listen to themselves and other guitar-players in a different way.

EV: Youīre selling your albums as downloadable MP3s on your website (Guitarplayer.de). How did you get into that, and do you think itīs a good idea for independent musicians to set up a store like that ?

TB:
To be honest, i get more money from selling CDs. But i can tell that downloads are getting more and more. When I set up my website I thought of how someone can get my music as simply and conveniently as possible. So i contacted several platforms.

Since I have worked for major companies in the past, I know how they work. Their system is not designed to deal with smaller numbers. For my kind of music it makes more sense to go direct. It is more work for me, but it works! And the platform is there: internet plus live playing.

EV: I remember an old interview with you that I read, where you said that you played at some trade-show, and while the other presenters there were shredding like crazy, you relaxed and played some Gilmour-type stuff, melodic things. How is it today at trade-shows. Is it still the same ?

TB:
Today I see more different styles: Rock, Shredding, Blues, country... And more and more guys play (white) vintage Strats.... ;-)
Thatīs alright!


The Past



EV: How did you get started playing the guitar ?

TB:
I got an acoustic guitar as a x-mas present. I bought myself a pickup and built my first amp for it. Then I figured that a real electric guitar was what made more sense. I was exited about the sound thing with the guitar...And it was cool too!!!

EV: How did things develop after you got your first electric guitar ? Was it a steady development, or did you have to get over a lot of plateaus where you were kinda stuck ? How did you get over those ?

TB:
I started with a German instructional book, playing chords – then i started my first school band. We did covers and our own songs. And there where always problems to work on. Like the chords in the songbook did not really sound like what i heard on the record. So I listened to the records trying to find out what the guitar really played.

Then I started to copy solos, but my limits were big. So I learned scales and took some lessons. And by that time I gave my first lessons myself, which helped me a lot, since I was watching the game from a different perspective. I could learn from other playersī mistakes too!!

Developing means growing. And I was often a bit frustrated because I wasnīt able to play what I had in my mind or what all the great players played on the records.

But a few months later I figured out some tiny detail, and moved to the next level. And it is still like this. Maybe you think "this guy can play it all", well thatīs bullshit! I can play some stuff, but thereīs so much more. And there always will be. The guitar is a never ending story. And that is the good thing about it. I can see myself when Iīm 70, playing something new and thinking "wow, this is how it goes".

There are so many styles that can influence you. Just think of flamenco guitar, jazz, nuances in phrasings you heared from a singer e.t.c.

EV: Who were some of your early influences back then ?

TB:
Richie Blackmore and David Gilmour

EV: And who influenced you later on ? Whom do you listen to if you feel like you need some inspiration ?

TB:
Jimi Hendrix, because i can still feel the moment of freshness. And Jeff Beck, because he is such a unique person and player.

EV: How did you get into being a professional ? I mean, how did you get started in the biz ?

TB:
I was playing in local bands and built up a good reputation.... So I was asked to play with better and more known bands. Then I met a producer through a friend of mine, who needed some guitar-playing in the studio. After the first gigs more people hired me, since I had a good sound, my timing was good and I always had an idea what to play to make the song sound good.
I am not a good music reader, so I had to be better at other things....

Within the years more people knew about me and they knew that I was was always giving my very best! I did my first tour when I was 22 and was asked to do more touring with the Rainbirds.

You know, you always meet new people, and they might end up playing in another band, but they call you when you did a great job – and you need to be easy-to deal-with person, too!

EV: Any good advice on getting started that youīd like to share with our members ?

TB:
I think it is always good to get an overview of how music, productions, sounds, arrangements, business works. When you understand the complete picture, it is easier for you to play what is really needed!
And you can communicate with all people involved to share the same idea. Otherwise there would be a lot of misunderstanding and frustration...

EV: How did the first album come together ? Where the songs on there written over several years, or was it more like "Ok, I wanna do an album soon, so lemme get started on writing ?"

TB:
Well, my first album took maybe 4 years! I wrote a couple of songs, then I started to record them – then I didnīt like the arrangements anymore. So I did some new recordings. In the meantime , I wrote even more songs.
Then, in the studio, I freaked out because my guitar sounded like shit, even though I had some experience from session work. But my sound was not "big enough" for my solo record. We bought some tube tech preamps and EQīs and recorded the guitar again... It was a lot of work! Many steps until I was happy ... Sometimes I can understand people like Eric Johnson! Believe me, I was there too!!

But today I can look back, using my experience and my setup is more defined. I use my SM57 mic, my DTC mic-preamp. And Iīm much more relaxed!

EV: You used to play the guitar for the former German rap outfit Tic Tac Toe. How did you get into that, and how was touring with them ?

TB:
I was asked to audition by Wolf Simon. He was already in, and we were recording "Electric Gallery" at that time.

There were about 4 guitar-players at that audition. I got the job! It was a lot of fun for me, since Wolf was in the band, and also the other guys were really cool.

I played the biggest audiences with that band like Gelsenkirchen Parkstadion, 50.000 people and Hockenheim with about 90.000 people...


The musician



EV: How important is the technical aspect for you ? Do you still practice a lot?

TB:
To be honest, I donīt practice that much anymore. I am so busy with all the things Iīm doing that there is not enough time for practicing. But since Iīm constantly playing and recording, I still learn...
Thatīs my practice...

EV: Do you still try to get into new techniques ( or scales etc. ) consciously, or do a lot of new findings happen when you just sit around with your guitar and play ?

TB:
Once a year I think about scales and techniques and then I try to keep working on it for the rest of the year... But most of the stuff comes to my mind when Iīm playing or when I ride my pushbike.
It all happens in my head when Iīm relaxed!

EV: How do you write songs ? What instrument do you compose on ( do you play any other but the guitar ) ?

TB:
I play a little piano, bass and drums, but this gives me only ideas or bits and pieces. Actually I write best when Iīm riding my bike in the nature! Because I feel free without any distruction and my brain works best. Then I sing my ideas into my cell phone, and once Iīm home I set up my recording gear and make an arrangement.

EV: How much gets added when you actually record them ? I mean... do you create rough drafts of them and then work them out to the detail in the studio, or do you go to the studio with the songs completely prepared ?

TB:
Today I know: donīt start to record without the right melody, the right groove and a good sound! Then I have the option to use any recording in a final version.

The style of production can be very different. From straight forward "classic" recordings like "Electric Gallery” where I used a live band in the studio with only very few overdubs, (Thereīs only one synth line on the whole album!) to "21st Century Guitar" where I used everything that was around... This record is more or less a one man show, since I played all the instruments myself and I did the arrangements and more than 50% of the mixing. For "Electric Gallery" I did a complete MIDI pre-production, so all the musicians knew basically what to play.

EV: How about actual solos... are they improvised, or do you write them in advance ? ( or do it the Gilmour-way... improvising a few and then creating a solo from the best bits of those improvs ? )

TB:
I like to improvise! My best solos are the ones where thereīs not too much brain involved. Then I have parts where I want a certain melody, but I play automatically since I have an overall picture in my head. I also have occasionally recorded three different tracks and cut together the best parts, like Gilmour...

EV: Your music, to me, bears aspects of different kinds of music... blues, rock, fusion etc. Are you interested in playing in different styles ? Do you sometimes sit at home and play some old-school jazz on an ES 335 ? =)

TB:
I do own several guitars, but most of the time I play my Strats. I think all those aspects come from what I hear and what I like - whatīs in my head...


Gear


Thomasī 61 Strat


EV: Your trademark instrument is your 1961 Strat. Thereīs a lot of info about it on the website, but.. lemme ask a few questions on that. Was it your first guitar ?

TB:
No! I had an Aria copy first, then 80īs Fender and Squires....And finally I sold all of those to buy my ī61....

EV: Other than the different pickups, was there something changed about it throughout the years ?

TB:
I have only changed the middle pickup. Now it is reverse wound. I also have a dummy coil that I activate with a push-push-switch on my tone control.
I used a black plastic pickguard when I got that guitar... I thought it looked cooler in those days. Then i switched back to the celluloid one, since it sounds better!! Itīs true!!!

I also worked a bit on the screws of the vibrato to minimize tuning problems...

EV: Does it require a lot of maintenance by a luthier or tech ? Like refretting, or adjusting the truss rod etc. ? I mean, is it a reliable instrument ?

TB:
It always works. It has been refretted a couple of times. No maintenance required! I just got my frets redone – they have been too worn out. It feels a bit too clean at the moment, but in about half a yearīs time it will feel alright again.

EV: Have you compared it to other 61 Strats ? Other than the fact yours has been played so much ( which I am pretty sure makes a good difference ), were they different ?

TB:
Every strat is different! Mine sounds a bit thinner then most others. But I know how to compensate that with my amp settings. I have also played better Strats then mine...unfortunately those were not for sale!

EV: What would happen if, at some point, it wasnīt playable anymore ( god forbid ! ). Would you replace it with another vintage guitar, or would you use any of your current spare instruments as your new main instrument ?

TB:
I have another white "Frankenstein Strat" that was put together from some older and some new parts... Itīs getting better and better. And I find myself using it more and more, especially when I travel to some trade shows.
It looks almost like the real one too!


Thomasī backup Strat


EV: Can you sum up what you think about the current vintage market ( like the prices paid etc. ), or some of the opinions of hardcore vintage freaks like "Forget about new guitars, original old guitars is where itīs at !" ?

TB:
Well the prices are crazy!!! But there is something about vintage instruments, or better: instruments that have been played a lot throughout the years.

Some instruments are magical. But it does not always have to be a mint ī61 strat... thatīs bullshit! You can find magic in a used G&L maybe, or a Squire from the 80īs.

Maybe change little things and you might get a killer sounding instrument!

EV: What about amps... is the amp you use stock ?

TB:
The Triamp is stock, but I changed two tubes to E 83 cc for less gain and a more vintage tone.


Thomasī Triamp


EV: Where you involved in sound-designing that Triamp MK2 ?

TB:
Yes! And I also designed the MK1 10 years ago, together with Bernd Schneider, the senior tech at Hughes&Kettner.

EV: On your website, in the gear-section, there also is a pic of some ANCIENT Marshall heads and a Fender Bassman. Do you use those to record as well ? If yes, how much do you use them, compared to the Hughes & Kettner amps ?

TB:
I use them when needed, but only in the studio. Every amp has itīs own unique quality. My Triamp is on the same level as all these old Marshalls and Fenders and my Vox. Sometimes I use a Plexi, sometimes I prefer the Triamp... Listen to the Stratkings album ( a compilation of songs by Strat players – EV ): thatīs my Triamp – and it sounded better than my Plexi for that song!!


Thomasī vintage amps


EV: Are you more of a "if it works donīt fix it" kinda guy, or do you like to change things around about your rig ( other than the guitar of course ) to keep it interesting ?

TB:
There are times when I like to fiddle around with things, but then I can live with it for years, even knowing that itīs not perfect! I always am aware that there might be something better anyway! ;-)

EV: Are you completely happy with your current sound, or do you sometimes feel as if there is something missing, something you maybe canīt even grasp fully ?

TB:
My sound is ok at the moment, but I have a vision of how it could be: more like the voice of Joe Cocker....

EV: What do you think about all those virtual / modelling amps ? Have you tried those, and do you occasionally use them ?

TB:
Yes, I have been involved in developing the Zentera and the Warp VST modelling for Hughes & Kettner and Steinberg. I still use the Warp on my laptop, when Iīm on the road recording in the hotelroom.


The future

EV: What can we expect from the next Thomas Blug CD ? Will it be similar to the previous ones, or are we in for a drastic change ?

TB:
Since it will be my music, it will still be me! I want to do a record with vocals one day... And I have started to work with singers already.
But I donīt know, maybe it will take more time until Iīm completely happy with the vocal-recordings... so the next one could also be instrumentals only.

EV: Whom would you like to share the stage or studio with one day ?

TB:
Jeff Beck!!

EV: What other kind of projects would you like to get in ? ( i.e. say... an acoustic project, or some band from a different style or whatever )

TB:
I would love to do a movie score again! I have my German singing Rocktrio "Dreist" in 2 versions: "power trio" and unplugged...
We also cut some fantastic live shows – 2006 Iīll record a "Dreist live" CD.

EV: Any final words or good advice for our visitors at ibreathe ?

TB:
Donīt over-do it! Let it grow! Go with the flow...!

EV: I donīt know how much you use the internet, but is there possibly a small chance you could pay us a visit at the iBreathe-forums in the future, and maybe participate in some of the talk there ? Or do you stay away from forums and such ?

TB:
I use the internet, but not too much...so maybe....!?!

Licks, licks, licks

What always intrigued me most about Thomas, other than his chops and control, is his tone and the fact that he is able to get lots of different sounds and "textures". That way, he can get i.e. a "Hendrix-texture", and when playing Hendrix-style licks, they sound way more convincing.

This does not mean you need a cool amp and a vintage guitar. It all comes down to technique, control and tone, and Thomas has plenty of those.

It seems to me as if Thomas has studied the styles of many classic players ( or at least listened to them a lot ), and thereby created his own unique style which is heavily influenced by both classic and modern players.

You will hear licks and playing techniques from all different eras of the electric guitar in his playing. Sure, Thomas does not use, say, sweeping a lot. Still, his playing can blend in with guys like Joe Satriani just as well as it resembles the playing of Hendrix or Beck. So I guess itīs safe to say heīs a very well-rounded player with a huge arsenal of licks, techniques and chops, plus a killer tone.

Itīs not easy to dissect the style of such a well-rounded player in an article, so instead Iīd like to show you three very cool licks. The TABīs are taken from the book "Guitar Masterclass: Play In The Style Of Thomas Blug"



In this book, you will find partial TABs of some of Thomasīs songs... the main melodies and selected parts of some of his best solos, plus comments on the songs, the recordings etc. by Thomas himself.

On the CD that comes with the book, you will get the songs themselves, plus the original backing tracks for those songs, so you can try to play the melodies and licks themselves, or just jam over some really good songs.

Here is the first lick, the ending of Thomasī solo in "Longing". This sections includes the use of the wang bar, plus some very nice fast picking with position shifts...



The next one is the ending of "Have You Ever Been To Strawberry Fields"... in this one, you will find some very neat open string-licks.



Lick No.3 is the intro of "Love Crimes", which to me sounds very much inspired by the clean playing of Jimi Hendrix. In the original recording, you can hear how well-executed this part is, and how great Thomasī Strat sounds.

Once you try to play this part, you might notice that other than just playing the right notes, itīs important to pay close attention to the dynamics, accuracy and expression... something a lot of people seem to forget about. But donīt get discouraged. Keep going for it, and make sure it sounds nice !



The last lick is again from "Love Crimes". This time, itīs part of the solo, starting at about 2:55. This section reminded me a bit of Eric Johnson, with a very nice pentatonic run...



Keep in mind that just a few licks can not possibly sum up the style of a well-rounded, experienced player, and even if I had thrown in a few hundred transcriptions, it would still be impossible to show you the OTHER aspects of Thomasī playing... the tone, the accuracy, the use of dynamics.

A few years ago, a German guitar-mag featured a partial transcription of "Iīll Be There" ( one of my favorite TB-tracks ). So I played through that transcription, and even though I played the right notes at the right time, it still sounded more like me than it sounded like Blug.

So I listened back to the CD and paid closer attention to the dynamics and tone, and even though it never sounded exactly like him, I got a bit closer to the sound of that passage, which, even for experienced players, can be a very interesting experience.

So even though Thomas has some really cool licks and melodies, you shouldnīt forget that his playing is not only about the speed etc.

Conclusion


So thatīs it. It was a lot of fun to pick Thomasī brain about his music, gear and career. I always felt that one day, people would realize this guy, since I always considered him a world-class electric player.

Nowadays, I see his name mentioned on internet message boards a lot, and slowly but surely he seems to be getting the attention he deserves.
So I hope that this introduction to Thomas was interesting to you. If so, check out his website and try to get your hands on one of his albums... itīs definitely worth the effort.

Iīd like to thank Thomas for answering my questions so patiently... it was a blast !

All soundfiles and pictures were used with the exclusive permission of Mr. Blug.

This article can be read online at http://www.iBreatheMusic.com/article/184
Eric started playing the guitar at age 10. He attended GIT and studied with Scott Henderson, Brett Garsed, Dan Gilbert amo. Eric is involved in several bands and recording projects and his instrumental debut - Hidden Creek - plus his instructional book Talking Hands - A Guide To Contemporary Lead Guitar Techniques is available HERE
Visit his website at www.ericvandenberg.net


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