Rik Emmett says Eric Clapton’s guitar playing is fairly narrow

Rik Emmett and Eric Clapton

Photos from Jon Blacker and Clapton's Facebook

The guitarist and vocalist of the Canadian power trio Triumph, Rik Emmett was a crucial part of the band’s sound and was praised over the decades for his vocal performances and also for his guitar playing.

Besides recording nine studio albums with the group, Emmett also has an extensive solo career, with 10 studio records released. Some of the most famous songs released by the trio from Canada are “Lay It On The Line”, “Magic Power” and “Fight The Good Fight”.

In an interview with Jeff Gaudiosi (Transcribed by Ultimate Guitar), he talked about playing the guitar and gave his opinion on Eric Clapton, saying his guitar playing is fairly narrow. Also said that compared to Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page, who were also members of The Yardbirds, Clapton is the narrowest of them all.

Rik Emmett says Eric Clapton’s guitar playing is fairly narrow

“They go, ‘Eric Clapton is God.’ And I go, ‘Well, Clapton actually, he might have ended up being a better R&B singer.’ His guitar playing is a fairly narrow kind of a palette if you think of those three guys that came out of the Yardbirds: Beck, Clapton, Page. Eric was the narrowest of them all. He was the most old-school blues, with a lot of stuff that was, ‘Come on now, that’s an Albert King lick.’ There’s things that he lifted that he kind of stayed with all of his career.”

“Which is not to say that he didn’t write good songs that weren’t like that, I’m not putting him down. But what about Jimmy Page? Well, he expanded a lot more than Clapton did. And then what about Jeff Beck? Well, he expanded the most. He was the most creative of them all, in terms of what he made his hands do on an electric guitar. I had a little bit of the influence of all of them,” Rik Emmett said.

Clapton is eight years older than Emmett and started his career in 1962. He was a member of The Yardbirds from 1963 to 1965 and then Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page occupied the post in the following years.

His career continued to be successful being part of John Mayall and The Bluesbreakers, Cream, Blind Faith and his own band Derek & The Dominos. Since the early 70s the musician has had an extremely successful solo career and released 21 studio albums on his own. He has sold an estimated amount of more than 280 million records worldwide.

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