I love all sorts of genres of music, but as of the last few years, my go-to genre has been reggae, and one of my favorite reggae bands is Rebelution. This is a band out of Isla Vista, CA and was formed in 2004 by a group of guys who went to UC Santa Barbara. Their lead guitarist is Eric Rachmany, and he’s an incredible guitar player. While he may not play screaming licks or do any shredding, he’s solid in every way, and so expressive. To me, guitar playing isn’t about the tricks or complexity of what you play, it’s about your expressiveness and ability to get your message out.
Eric’s playing, especially on his acoustic guitar speaks to me. He doesn’t do anything sophisticated, but his approach to the acoustic is simply amazing. Check out this video of my favorite Rebelution song, “Feeling Alright.”
As far as playing electric, who couldn’t like a guy who plays a Les Paul? 🙂 But even with electric, Eric is such a solid guitarist, and incredibly expressive. Check out “Sky Is the Limit,” and especially pay attention to his lead at around 2:50
At least to me, Eric doesn’t play what doesn’t belong. His leads and fills just “fit.” I first noticed this when I saw Rebelution play this past summer. I was transfixed by his guitar playing and gave me a real appreciation of just how good this guy is.
Personally, from a music-writing perspective, I’ve started exploring writing music with a reggae feel or straight-up reggae. And while most who are unfamiliar with reggae may think that it’s mostly just an “um-chuck” type of deal, Eric Rachmany has shown me there is so much you can add, and I’ve incorporated similar embellishments to my own rhythm lines.