They think the banjo can only be happy, but that’s not true. (Bela Fleck)

I don’t like guitar solos that are like, ‘Look at me, look at me!’ I like guitar solos that are little songs within the songs. (Taylor Hawkins)

Then about 12 years ago it dawned on me that folk music – the music of Woody Guthrie and Phil Ochs, early Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Pete Seeger – could be as heavy as anything that comes through a Marshall stack. The combination of three chords and the right lyrical couplet can be as heavy as anything in the Metallica catalogue. (Tom Morello)

Art is making something out of nothing and selling it. (Frank Zappa)

Most rock journalism is people who can’t write, interviewing people who can’t talk, for people who can’t read. (Frank Zappa)

Travelling is hard. I’m no traveller. I hate flying, and I hate hotels. (Ry Cooder)

When I was 14 years old, I had the opportunity to meet Buddy Holly. I asked him how he got that big, powerful sound out of his guitar amp. He said, ‘I blew a speaker and decided not to get it fixed.’ (Robbie Robertson)

When people dress well, they play well. (Wynton Marsalis)

I felt extremely uncomfortable as the focal point, in the spotlight. I really like the behind the scenes role, because all my freedom is there. (Brian Eno)

Bass players are always the intellectual kind, but nobody knows it. (Stanley Clarke) 

Music is the silence between the notes. (Claude Debussy)

It takes a lifetime and a half to master the classical guitar. (Julian Bream)

If you listen to Louis Armstrong from 1929, you will never hear anything better than that really, and you will never hear anything more free than that. (Steve Lacy)

It’s a mystery to me why everybody doesn’t love jazz. I’ve never been able to figure that out. (Walter Becker)

Well mostly in song writing my experience is that there isn’t so much inspiration as hard work. You sit there for hours, days and weeks with a guitar and piano until something good comes. (Björn Ulvaeus)

I’m an intuitive musician. I have no real technical skills. I can only play six chords on the guitar. (Patti Smith)

Jesus died for somebody’s sins but not mine. (Patti Smith)

I don’t care about the rules. In fact, if I don’t break the rules at least 10 times in every song then I’m not doing my job properly. (Jeff Beck)

I believe that singing is the key to long life, a good figure, a stable temperament, increased intelligence, new friends, super self-confidence, heightened sexual attractiveness, and a better sense of humor. (Brian Eno)

The story of American pop music is the story of failure. The blues, country music, it’s not the story of success. People don’t win; they lose. (Ry Cooder)

My singing voice is somewhere between a drunken apology and a plumbing problem. (Colin Firth)

I don’t know anything about music. In my line you don’t have to. (Elvis Presley)

I loved Hendrix. I mean, really, really loved him. As if he were one of the great classical composers. And he was. That’s how I saw him. (Warren Zevon)

Sometimes you have to play a long time to be able to play like yourself. (Miles Davis)

Do not fear mistakes. There are none. (Miles Davis)

I’m mortified to be on the stage, but then again, it’s the only place where I’m happy. (Bob Dylan)

I don’t believe all music is good. I believe some music is bad for people to listen to. I think it makes their taste worse, I think it makes their lives worse, I think it makes them worse people. (Jason Isbell)

I don’t like being watched, and I don’t like being an entertainer. (Ry Cooder)

My idea of heaven is a place where the Tyne meets the Delta, where folk music meets the blues. (Mark Knopfler)

Music comes from a place we don’t know. (Chris Martin)

My music is best understood by children and animals. (Igor Stravinsky)

Ladies and gentleman, I’ve suffered for my music, now it’s your turn. (Neil Innes)

I like beautiful melodies telling me terrible things. (Tom Waits)

Most people die with their music still locked up inside them. (Benjamin Disraeli)

When people ask Don McLean what does American Pie really mean, he likes to reply: «It means I never have to work again.» (BBC)

If I have $100 to make something, I’d spend $99 making it work and $1 making it pretty. (Leo Fender)

I ain’t got much to say. (J.J. Cale)

All my music sounds the same to me. (J.J. Cale)

I’ve stolen licks from just about every person that ever picked up a guitar. We all borrow from one another; it’s called legitimate stealing. (J.J. Cale)

Being a professional musician doesn’t mean you spend 12 hours a day playing music. It means you spend up to 12 hours a day taking care of business, dealing with litigation, with the various characters who’ve stolen your interests, or fending off hostile lawsuits from former members of the band. (Robert Fripp)

I’m unqualified to do anything other than music. (St. Vincent)

Success is having to worry about every damn thing in the world, except money. (Johnny Cash)

Johnny Cash was like Abraham Lincoln to me. (John Prine)

As far as guitar picking, if I make the same mistakes at the same time every day, people will start calling it a style. (John Prine)

I think I’ve finally, after 72 years, gotten used to my voice, and it sounds like a friend now instead of an enemy. (John Prine)

If I were in the Beatles, I’d be a good George Harrison. (Noel Gallagher)

My model for business is The Beatles. They were four guys who kept each other kind of negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. That’s how I see business: great things in business are never done by one person, they’re done by a team of people. (Steve Jobs)

Somebody said to me, «But the Beatles were anti-materialistic.» That’s a huge myth. John and I literally used to sit down and say, «Now, let’s write a swimming pool”. (Paul McCartney)

I always thought the good thing about the guitar was that they didn’t teach it in school. (Jimmy Page)

I’m sure if Shakespeare were alive today, he’d be doing classic guitar solos on YouTube. (Peter Capaldi)

What’s the difference between a classical guitar and a pizza? A pizza can feed a family of four. (Faye Kellerman)

My big fear was that my guitar would go out of tune. (Bob Dylan)

A girl with a guitar never has to apologize for anything. (Grady Hendrix)

I want every girl in the world to pick up a guitar and start screaming. (Courtney Love)

My first wife said, «It’s either that guitar or me,» you know – and I give you three guesses which one went. (Jeff Beck)

David Gilmour can do more with one note than most other guitar players can do with the whole fretboard. (Dave Mustaine)

I really thought I was pretty good before I saw Hendrix, and then I thought: Yeah, not so good. (Brian May)

‘Fox News’ will one day come to an end. Led Zeppelin will not. It’s as simple as that. (Henry Rollins)

When I listen to music these days, and I hear Pro Tools and drums that sound like a machine – it kinda sucks the life out of music. (Dave Grohl)

I never set out to be weird. It was always other people who called me weird. (Frank Zappa)

I’m probably writing music now for the same reason as I started writing songs when I was 14 – to meet women. (Billy Joel)

If everyone played the ukulele, the world would be a better place. (Jake Shimabukuro)

My doctor tells me I should start slowing it down – but there are more old drunks than there are old doctors so let’s all have another round. (Willie Nelson)

You’d be surprised how much it costs to look this cheap! (Dolly Parton)

If we’d know we were going to be the Beatles, we’d have tried harder. (George Harrison)

I’m a painter in sound. (Brian Eno)

If I could sing, I wouldn’t be a guitarist. (Robin Trower)

I don’t know many singers who actually do like the sound of their own voice. (Roger Daltrey)

I hated singing and getting up in front of crowds. (Rod Stewart)

I’m a rock star because I couldn’t be a soccer star. (Rod Stewart)

Who I am as a guitarist is defined by my failure to become Jimi Hendrix. (John Mayer)

Guitar players never listen to lead singers. (Steven Tyler)

I wanted to learn how to play guitar so I could smash it up and burn it. I was only a little kid, so that was my incentive. (Yngwie Malmsteen)

As usual, there is a great woman behind every idiot. (John Lennon)

I can’t stand to see myself on television. (Bob Dylan)

I was never particularly fond of my voice. (David Bowie)

I’m a self-loathing slide player. Some people like the way I play slide – I hate it. (Joe Bonamassa)

Nothing is more beautiful than a guitar, exept, possibly two. (Frédéric Chopin)

I actually wanted to be a drummer, but I didn’t have any drums. (Stevie Ray Vaughan)

Little Richard opens his mouth, and out comes liberation. (Steven Van Zandt)

I totally have no other talent and I would be totally out of work if I did anything else. (Neil Young)

I saw the Beatles play the Cavern in Liverpool when I was 16. They had attitude: Onstage, they were like a four-headed monster. (Lemmy)

The Beatles were from Liverpool. It’s a hard town. The Stones weren’t the hard men. They just dressed up. The Beatles were the hard men. (Lemmy)

And I had not much of a voice. I didn’t play that great guitar either. (Leonard Cohen)

Journalists, especially English journalists, were very cruel to me. They said I only knew three chords when I knew five! (Leonard Cohen)

I don’t read music. I don’t write it. So I wander around on the guitar until something starts to present itself. (James Taylor)

The great thing about rock and roll is that someone like me can be a star. (Elton John)

I just want to be able to play as fast as my brain goes, and my brain doesn’t go all that fast. (Brian May)

I’m only myself when I have a guitar in my hands. (George Harrison)

You couldn’t not like someone who liked the guitar. (Stephen King) 

One day you pick up the guitar and you feel like a great master, and the next day you feel like a fool. It’s because we’re different every day, but the guitar is always the same … beautiful. (Tommy Emmanuel)

I believe every guitar player inherently has something unique about their playing. They just have to identify what makes them different and develop it. (Jimmy Page)

With my songs, the question is always, ‘Can you pull it off live, alone on just an acoustic guitar?’ That’s the litmus test. If I can, then it’s a song I ought to record. If I can’t, it’s probably not good enough. (Shawn Colvin)

You have the sun, you have the moon, you have the air that you breathe – and you have the Rolling Stones! (Keith Richards)

I’d rather be dead than singing ‘Satisfaction’ when I’m forty-five. (Mick Jagger)

I could read music before I could read. (Condoleezza Rice)

Composers shouldn’t think too much – it interferes with their plagiarism. (Howard Dietz)

One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain. (Bob Marley)

I actually learned the guitar with the help of a Pete Seeger instructional record when I was 13 or 14. (David Gilmour)

Guitar is just something I can do. So much of it now is muscle memory, just instinct. (St. Vincent)

My guitar has, like, become part of me, you know. (Dickey Betts)

Duane Allman was the best guitar player I ever heard who didn’t read a note. (Gregg Allman)

Elvis may be the King of Rock and Roll, but I am the Queen. (Little Richard)

I live, breathe, and sleep guitars. (Joe Bonamassa)

Pop music is aspirin and the blues are vitamins. (Peter Tork)

What’s missing from pop music is danger. (Prince)

Secretly, I wanted to look like Jimi Hendrix, but I could never quite pull it off. (Bryan Ferry)

The wise musicians are those who play what they can master. (Duke Ellington)

I’ve had three wives and three guitars. I still play the guitars. (Andrés Segovia)

Anyone who’s 71 years old would look ridiculous singing rock. (Grace Slick)

I have stage fright every single concert I’ve ever done. I have at least four or five minutes of it. It’s absolute living hell. (Brian Wilson)

Audiences like their blues singers to be miserable. (Janis Joplin)

Nothing can affect my voice, it’s so bad. (Bob Dylan)

I think of myself as a jungle musician because of my lack of formal training. (George Harrison)

I’m so nervous. I’ve always been nervous, ever since I was a kid. (Elvis Presley)

The Stratocaster is like the Rolls-Royce. It can never be surpassed. (Dick Dale)

If you tried to give rock and roll another name, you might call it ‘Chuck Berry’. (John Lennon)

If T-Bone Walker had been a woman, I would have asked him to marry me. I’d never heard anything like that before: single-string blues played on an electric guitar. (B. B. King)

He is the king. If it hadn’t been for Link Wray and ‘Rumble’, I would have never picked up a guitar. (Pete Townsend)

Soon as I could play one guitar chord and laid my ear upon that wood, I was gone. My soul was sold. Music was everything from then on. (John Prine)

I´m not a guitar hero. (Jimmy Page)

I have no guitar technique. (Warren Zevon)

If you play acoustic guitar you’re the depressed, sensitive guy. (Elliott Smith)

I don’t think I think when I play. I have a photographic memory for chords, and when I’m playing, the right chords appear in my mind like photographs long before I get to them. (Earl Hines)

My guitar is not a thing. It is an extension of myself. It is who I am. (Joan Jett)

I never wanted to sing. I just wanted to play rhythm guitar – hide in the back and just play. (Kurt Cobain)

Puberty was very vague. I literally locked myself in a room and played guitar. (Johnny Depp)

To stand up on a stage alone with an acoustic guitar requires bravery bordering on heroism. Bordering on insanity. (Richard Thompson)

I think a guitar solo is how my emotion is most freely released, because verbal articulation isn’t my strongest communication strength. My wife thinks that I should do interviews by listening to the questions and playing the answer on guitar. (David Gilmour)

My first love was the sound of guitar. (Boz Scaggs)

If you play more than two chords, you’re showing off. (Woody Guthrie)

One chord is fine. Two chords are pushing it. Three chords and you’re into jazz. (Lou Reed)

I had no aspirations to be a musician, but I picked up a guitar for two seconds and haven’t put it down since. (Slash)

I’ve been imitated so well I’ve heard people copy my mistakes. (Jimi Hendrix)

Sometimes the nicest thing to do with a guitar is just look at it. (Thom Yorke)

When I was growing up, there were two things that were unpopular in my house. One was me, and the other was my guitar. (Bruce Springsteen)

Rock music is not meant to be perfect. (Ozzy Osbourne)

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