Q&A with guitarist/singer Brad “Guitar” Wilson, has a soulful contemporary sound, tapping into all his sources of inspiration

"It is about having your health. Feeling good and your body working well enough to make music. Music is very physical, takes a lot to play and instrument and sing. Life can be a struggle and people use drugs, liquor and bad relationships to cope. That stuff just breaks you down and you can't go on. Your music and voice is not as good if you do not take care of yourself."

Brad "Guitar" Wilson: The Joy of Music

International guitarist, singer, songwriter Brad “Guitar” Wilson has a soulful contemporary sound, tapping into all his sources of inspiration. His performances have made him a stand-out hit at countless shows. Considered more than a talented guitarist by his audience, Brad is an exciting entertainer. As a charismatic guitarist, vocalist and songwriter, Brad has become known as a modern hot guitar player, who can entertain the house with the best of them. His show features his songwriting and great renditions of dance cover songs. Brad’s live show is presented with spirit and class. Brad completed his first European tour of the Netherlands in 2019 and will return in May and October 2022.                                                   (Brad "Guitar" Wilson / Photo by Elfi Kluck)

He has toured numerous times with the legendary group, Chicago. As a special guest, he has been on stage at sold-out arena shows throughout California, including four shows scheduled this year, entertaining several thousand people at each concert. Brad has opened for Buddy Guy, Cheap Trick, .38 Special, Marshall Tucker Band, Tommy Castro, and many others. He has established an identity as a guitar-star entertainer, performing at huge concerts at the West Coast’s largest casinos and festivals. 'Brad "Guitar" Wilson' (2022), titled his new self-produced album, where dozen tracks are split evenly between Wilson tunes and renditions of some significant blues classics. While the economical production features only guitar, bass, drums and occasionally keyboards, this bare-bones approach allows the focus to be squarely on Wilson’s tasty guitar and its killer tones. Tracks two through five are all covers.

 

Interview by Michael Limnios                 Brad Wilson, 2016 Interview @ blues.gr

How has the Blues and Rock Counterculture influenced your views of the world and the journeys you’ve taken?

I have always been inspired by the guitar sound. The Blues guitar stars of BB King, Muddy Waters, Albert King, John Lee Hooker and Freddie King invented a way of playing that was so expressive. The Blues Rock guitar stars of Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton and Gary Moore electrified me to play guitar and I have spent my life on a journey of guitar music. It made my views more open and free. It taught me "You cannot dislike someone you do not know or ever met."

How do you think that you have grown as an artist since you first started making music?

I am a better songwriter. My lead guitar work is more melodic, and I am a better entertainer. Countless shows has done this for me.

What has remained the same about your music-making process?

The joy of playing music, having fun at the shows and sharing music with the audience and musicians.

"I have learned that music has lost a lot of importance in people's lives. So much of today is about short term and disposable. Not many people care about musicians or music. It is becoming an art form that is fading away. It is not possible for anyone from the record companies to radio shows to promoters to bands to earn enough money to live on." (Brad "Guitar" Wilson / Photo by Elfi Kluck)

Do you have any interesting stories about the making of the new album Brad “Guitar” Wilson (2022)?

Only sadness. Losing people close to me from cancer, covid shutting down the music industry and the temporary halt of life as I had known. There was the hope I would survive and not get killed by covid and the brave engineers who opened their studios to record. The loss of performing live concerts was terrible. March 2020 until I finished in mid-2021. Organized for marketing and in 2022 I released a Spring album I'm Feeling Blue and a June album Brad "Guitar" Wilson.

Why do you think that SRV, Muddy, BB, Hooker and Cream's music continues to generate such a devoted following?

Well, I think the marketing of their music from record companies combined with FM radio and now Internet radio shows is at the heart of the matter. These are high quality artists that have exceptional skills at music and a very original sound, style and songs. However, marketing their music by major record companies that own their master recordings is a big part of the story.

What are some of the most important lessons you have learned from your experience in the music paths?

I have learned that music has lost a lot of importance in people's lives. So much of today is about short term and disposable. Not many people care about musicians or music. It is becoming an art form that is fading away. It is not possible for anyone from the record companies to radio shows to promoters to bands to earn enough money to live on. The only musicians that make money are the ones producing music for corporations that use it in TV, movies and commercials. The USA government does little to protect copywrites, or help content owners get money from streaming services. Everyone just file shares the music and thinks the music is free including web sites that openly sell the music and keep everything. No one cares.                            (Brad "Guitar" Wilson / Photo by Elfi Kluck)

"Well, I think the marketing of their music from record companies combined with FM radio and now Internet radio shows is at the heart of the matter. These are high quality artists that have exceptional skills at music and a very original sound, style and songs. However, marketing their music by major record companies that own their master recordings is a big part of the story."

Are there any specific memories or highlights of your career that you would like to tell us about?!

It has been a joy to meet and play music with artists I think are amazing. I jammed with Jeff Beck in Las Vegas, talked with the members of Chicago, Heart and Buddy Guy and so many other people in the industry that inspire me. Touring Europe and the USA and seeing locations that make life a dream come true.

What do you think is key to a music life well lived?

It is about having your health. Feeling good and your body working well enough to make music. Music is very physical, takes a lot to play and instrument and sing. Life can be a struggle and people use drugs, liquor and bad relationships to cope. That stuff just breaks you down and you can't go on. Your music and voice is not as good if you do not take care of yourself.

If you had a question you would like to ask another musician what would it be?

If you can do something else, you like as much then get out of music. If this is all you know then give it all you got.

Brad "Guitar" Wilson - Home

(Brad "Guitar" Wilson / Photo by Elfi Kluck)

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