Magazine article Guitar Player

Checking in with Richie Kotzen

Magazine article Guitar Player

Checking in with Richie Kotzen

Article excerpt

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

EVER WONDER WHAT SHOWS, tones, and gigs influenced Richie Kotzen? So did we, and he gave us a little insight.--MB

What were the most life-changing concerts you saw in your formative years and why?

Stevie Wonder and George Benson. They were two separate concerts but both were in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, at a really cool venue with a circular stage that made for a very interesting perspective. I was 12 years old and really into music. The soul thing was huge where I grew up and those concerts really got me going. They inspired me to play music. I don't know what it was specifically, but it was a certain feeling coming from both artists at the time that made me want to play and be in a band.

What guitar tones did you hear that made a big impact on your sound early on? What about now?

Van Halen's tone was the first big impact, then Stevie Ray Vaughan's. As for modern guys, I like what Jack White is doing with his playing and with his various tones. …

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