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The guitarist that Jimmy Page said was one of his heroes

Jimmy Page


The guitarist that Jimmy Page said was one of his heroes

The British guitarist and producer Jimmy Page started his career at a really young age becoming a session musician when he was still a teenager. After many years working with many incredible artists in the studio he finally achieved fame as a member of The Yardbirds and ultimately formed Led Zeppelin, the band that would put his name in Rock and Roll history as one of the most influential guitarists of all time.


After the end of the band in 1980 due to the tragic death of the drummer John Bonham, Page worked on his solo career, played with The Firm, and collaborated with many artists like Robert Plant and The Black Crowes. In interviews he talked about many guitar players that inspired him. But there was one that he said was his hero.

The guitarist that Jimmy Page said was one of his heroes

As any aspiring guitar player, Jimmy Page had his guitar heroes when he was still a kid. One of them was the American musician Link Wray, famous for the instrumental hit “Rumble” released in 1958. The track had an attitude and it was heavier than almost everything that was being done at the time. So Page instantly became a fan of the artist.

He always praised him over the decades and even had the chance to show his love for the track in the 2007 documentary “It Might Get Loud”. There is a famous scene where he shows his record collection. He puts the track on the turntable while he starts to play “air guitar” to it. He ultimately had the chance to pay tribute again to the late Link Wray in 2023 when he inducted him into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Before performing the track live, Page made a speech (Transcribed by Rock and Roll Garage) and said that Wray was his hero. “I’m really proud and honored to induct Link Wray into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. If there was a guitarist to deserve this and if there was a guitarist who changed people’s attitude to what they heard it’s Link Wray. I first heard Link Wray’s music “Rumble” when I was 14 years old. Wasn’t necessarily the sort of music that was being played on the BBC radio. But I heard it through a jukebox.”

Jimmy Page continued:

“The first time I heard it I remember listening to it with such awe because I thought ‘What is this?’. In those days there were many guitar instrumentals. But as a 14-year-old kid who could barely play the guitar, it really had an effect on me. The vigor in it, the strength in it, the power in it and you know something else, it was fearless. It’s just phenomenal.”

“It’s the essence, it’s just a masterpiece. Just sort of melted into the fibers of my body and my consciousness as far as the drama that you can set up with six strings. It’s the sort of stuff that can’t be taught. It’s the sort of stuff that you feel and you can take on board if you’re lucky. I’m really thrilled and honored to be the one to be able to induct Link Wray, my hero, into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,” Jimmy Page said.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony happened in New York City. Page was accompanied on stage by the drummer Anton Fig and bassist Tim Givens. Fig had performed and recorded with Wray in the 70s and they were good friends. He appeared on the albums “Bullshot” and “Live At Paradiso”, besides writing a few songs with him. As Fig told Led Zeppelin News, Jimmy Page wanted them to do the song note for note. In order to be as close as possible to the original recording.

He passed away in 2005 and had other fans like Clapton and Bob Dylan

Link Wray was active touring and recording until his death in 2005. He passed away at the age of 76, victim of a heart failure. He is such an influential artist that even Bob Dylan mentioned him during the song “Sign Language“, which he recorded with Eric Clapton in 1975. “Link Wray was playing on a jukebox/ I was paying for the words I was saying. So misunderstood/he didn’t do me no good,” the song says.

I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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