PAUL GILBERT’s Reflects On Upcoming Christmas Album ‘TWAS: “Writing Christmas Songs in July Gave Me a Rebellious Spirit”

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Paul Gilbert is one of those instantly recognizable guitar players of our generation. He picked up his first guitar when he was 5 years old. By the time he was 15, he was featured in Guitar Player magazine. After graduating from the Guitar Institute of Technology (GIT) in Los Angeles, Paul immediately joined the faculty as a guitar teacher. While teaching, he formed the band Racer X and Grammy-nominated group Mr. Big. He has made Guitar World‘s “50 Fastest Guitarists of All Time”, and his guitar shredding is legendary. However his upcoming album couldn’t be more far apart from hard rock and heavy metal.

Gilbert’s 17th solo album, this seasonal offering titled ‘TWAS features a dozen recordings, two of which are new, original compositions. The global release date for digital and CD is this Friday November 26, and the LP will follow on December 10, via The Players Club / Mascot Label Group. 10 of the songs presented here are classics. Paul was inspired by the Christmas recordings of Nat King Cole, Loretta Lynn, Stevie Wonder, Barbra Streisand, Johnny Mathis, Ella Fitzgerald, and The Ventures. And of course, inspiration came from his guitar heroes, Eddie Van Halen, Alex Lifeson, Johnny Winter, Robin Trower, Frank Marino, Pat Travers, Jimi Hendrix, and Jimmy Page, to name a few.
Pre-order available HERE.

Gilbert formed a band of Portland, Oregon’s finest jazz and blues musicians for these sessions. The players are Dan Balmer (guitar), Clay Giberson (keyboards), Timmer Blakely (bass), and Jimi Bott (drums). He reflects, “All brought supreme musical goodness to these arrangements and performances. They certainly steered me to make wiser musical choices than I would have made on my own. And as you will hear, my metal guitar instincts still breathe fire when they get the chance.” The album was recorded in Jimi Bott’s studio, who also engineered and mixed the recordings. The approach was to record two songs every day, for six days, delivering the collected body of work. Paul shares, “All songs were recorded live, although I think Jimi snuck some cowbell overdubs in. If anything should be added to a live track, I believe cowbell is the right choice.”

Expert interviewer Rodrigo Altaf spoke to Paul in a very animated and insightful interview, finding out a myriad of details about the recording process of the album, the tuning of his guitars, his inspiration for the original compositions included in the record, how he managed to record the 12 songs in mere 6 days playing live at the studio, and much more. For more interviews and other daily content, make sure to follow Sonic Perspectives on Facebook, Flipboard and Twitter and  subscribe to our YouTube channel to be notified about new interviews and contents we publish on a daily basis.

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