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Gary Lucas

Gary Lucas

A world-class guitar hero, a Grammy-nominated songwriter and composer, an international recording artist with over 20 acclaimed solo albums to date, and a soundtrack composer for film and television, GARY LUCAS is on the move in 2011. He was just profiled in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the International Herald Tribune to coincide with the May 2011 release of his psychedelic supergroup Gods and Monsters new studio albumThe Ordeal of Civility, produced by Jerry Harrison (Talking Heads) and distributed by Sony/Red, which is receiving rave reviews everywhere–including 4 Stars in the upcoming MOJO.

Last year he made successful performing debuts in China, Cuba, the Canary Islands, Colombia, Brazil and Mexico alongside his usual relentless touring in Europe and North America. He was recently cited as one of the 100 Greatest Living Guitarists" by Classic Rock magazine (UK). His latest album, a collaboration with Indian vocalist Najma Akhtar, made #4 on the World Music Charts Europe and the pair just returned from a European tour that garnered a 4-star review in the Financial Times.

Dubbed "The Thinking Man’s Guitar Hero" by The New Yorker, "The world’s most popular avant-rock guitarist" by The Independent (UK), "Legendary Leftfield guitarist" by The Guardian (UK), "Guitarist of 1000 Ideas" by The New York Times, "a true axe God" by Melody Maker, and "One of the five best guitarists in the world" by the national Czech newspaper Lidove Noviny, the British world music magazine fRoots recently described Gary Lucas as "without question, the most innovative and challenging guitarist playing today." Rolling Stone’s David Fricke wrote: "Gary Lucas is one of the best and most original guitarists in America...a modern guitar miracle." Best-selling author/producer Dan Levitin (This Is Your Brain On Music) recently cited Gary as "the greatest living electric guitarist".

Gary Lucas tours the world relentlessly both solo and with several different ensembles, including his longtime band Gods and Monsters, whose ranks once included the late singer Jeff Buckley. Gary co- wrote two of Jeff Buckley’s most famous hits, "Grace" and "Mojo Pin", which opened Jeff’s double platinum Sony album Grace, which MOJO magazine named the #1 Modern Classic Rock Album.

Gary continues to lead his longtime NYC-based band Gods and Monsters, a psychedelic super-group based around Gary’s guitar playing, singing, and songwriting, featuring Billy Ficca (Television) , Ernie Brooks (Modern Lovers)., Jason Candler (Hungry March Band) and Joe Hendel (Gods and Monsters). They recently played a Live Nation sponsored 20th Anniversary Show in NYC, and have a new live DVD and studio album wrapped, produced by Jerry Harrison (Talking Heads) due out in spring 2011.

Gary Lucas online

25 articles

List of articles in the library

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Captain Beefheart: Dark Carnival

Memoir by Gary Lucas, The Wire, February 2011

THE FIRST TIME I ever encountered the name "Captain Beefheart" was in summer 1968, when I saw it emblazoned in red magic marker, hand-lettered on ...

Leonard Bernstein, Gary Lucas: Leonard Bernstein: Lenny's song and dance in Vienna

Report and Interview by Gary Lucas, Zoo World, 25 October 1973

  LEONARD BERNSTEIN'S Mass, the piece commissioned to open the Kennedy Arts Center in Washington, was premiered this summer in Europe. A company of 200 took ...

Syd Barrett's Stars

Memoir by Gary Lucas, Rock's Backpages, July 2023

THE NEW Syd Barrett doc Have You Got It Yet?, now playing at the Quad Cinema here in NYC, is quite good but very sad ...

Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band: Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller) (Warner Bros. BSK 3256)

Review by Gary Lucas, Feature, January 1979

THIS ALBUM is certified Grade A 100% Beefheart. After three years without a domestic record contract, Don Van Vliet, one of the seminal figures of ...

Bob Neuwirth: An Appreciation

Memoir by Gary Lucas, Culture Catch, 23 May 2022

I FIRST RAN into Bob Neuwirth on a change of planes in Chicago, on the way from NYC to play the Winnipeg Folk Festival, must have ...

Wire: Pink Flag (Harvest ST-11757)

Review by Gary Lucas, Crawdaddy!, May 1978

"If you are a 'romantic,' you have not lived if you have not been present at a battle... The likelihood that you will get your ...

Depp for Men: Scene and Not Heard

Comment by Gary Lucas, Culture Catch, 5 May 2022

"AS A punishment of myself and as a lesson to others," wrote Ivan Turgenev after witnessing a public execution in Paris, "I should now like ...

Captain Beefheart, Frank Zappa: Don Van Vliet and Frank Zappa: Two Peas In A Misshapen Pod

Retrospective by Gary Lucas, Please Kill Me!, 14 January 2021

Guitarist Gary Lucas found himself smack dab in the middle of two of America's musical geniuses, Don 'n' Frank. Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa were ...

Malcolm McLaren: Jewish manager as professional troublemaker

Retrospective by Gary Lucas, Please Kill Me!, 13 October 2020

A new doorstopper-sized (900+ pages) biography of Malcolm McLaren by Paul Gorman got musician Gary Lucas thinking about one part of the former Sex Pistol/Bow ...

Brian Jones, The Rolling Stones: Rolling Stone: Life and Death of Brian Jones

Film/DVD/TV Review by Gary Lucas, Please Kill Me!, 7 September 2020

The acclaimed guitarist Gary Lucas (Captain Beefheart, Jeff Buckley, Gods and Monsters, Lou Reed, et al.) has long held a special flame for Brian Jones, ...

Janis Joplin, Iggy Pop, Frank Zappa: Cancel Culture: Starring Iggy, Janis, Zappa & Others

Memoir by Gary Lucas, Please Kill Me!, 25 October 2021

Long before it became a conversation-stopping mantra of the extremist right wing, "cancel culture" visited rock 'n' roll on numerous occasions. Guitarist, deejay, scenemaker and ...

Vivian Stanshall: Beyond The Bonzo Dog Band

Memoir by Gary Lucas, Please Kill Me!, 26 May 2021

Vivian Stanshall was the strikingly eccentric ringleader of the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, often described as the UK's version of the Mothers of Invention. ...

Gary Lucas, Arthur Russell: Vin Diesel, Arthur Russell and me

Memoir by Gary Lucas, Please Kill Me!, 30 March 2021

Mixmaster Arthur Russell meets wannabe rapper Mark Sinclair (aka Vin Diesel). What could possibly go wrong? That's what Gary Lucas thought when he brought these ...

Family: New Haven Arena

Live Review by Gary Lucas, Yale Daily News, 2 October 1972

The Last Concert — Family Rocks Arena ...

Roger Daltrey, John Entwistle: John Entwistle: Rigor Mortis Sets In (MCA-321); Roger Daltrey: Daltrey (MCA-328)

Review by Gary Lucas, Zoo World, 17 August 1973

TWO INTERESTING corollaries to the albums under discussion are the interviews with Daltrey and Entwistle that appear in the appendix of Gary Herman's otherwise boring ...

Family: University of Rochester, Rochester NY

Live Review by Gary Lucas, Cogito, Spring 1970

Take Up Thy Stethoscope and Walk ...

King Crimson: Lark's Tongue In Aspic (Atlantic SD 7263)

Review by Gary Lucas, Zoo World, 5 July 1973

ONE THING you gotta say about Robert Fripp, the auteur behind King Crimson, is that he's ambitious. After perfecting his mellotron-dominated "death of the universe" ...

Led Zeppelin: Led Zeppelin (Atlantic)

Review by Gary Lucas, Cogito, Spring 1969

IT MUST be said — Jimmy Page is the most successful ex-Yardbird of the three lead guitarists, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck being the previous ...

The Kinks: Preservation Act I (RCA LPL1-5002)

Review by Gary Lucas, Zoo World, 28 February 1974

MUCH HAS been written concerning Ray Davies fragile state of mind with all its eccentric manifestations and how it seems to correlate to his songs, ...

Jeff Beck: Truth (Epic)

Review by Gary Lucas, Cogito, 23 August 1968

THE YARDBIRDS have the dubious distinction of being the group that every major English guitarist has left. Perhaps their best asset was the one who ...

Beck, Bogert and Appice: Beck, Bogert & Appice: Jeff Beck, Tim Bogert, Carmine Appice (Epic KE 32140)

Review by Gary Lucas, Zoo World, 7 June 1973

JEFF BECK'S erratic career has been marked by equal touches of brilliance and downright stupidity. Nowhere is the guitarist's penchant for self-destructive behavior more in ...

Humble Pie, The Kinks, Pink Floyd, Renaissance, The Small Faces: The Record Rapper: All the way to the West, by God, Virginia (Like, how obscure is West Virginia, Santa Claus?)

Overview by Gary Lucas, Cogito, February 1970

DUE TO the recent rash release of a rasher of ratified British records, no less, this is more of the same (see last issue if ...

Peter Green: The End Of The Game (R.I.P.)

Memoir by Gary Lucas, Please Kill Me!, 3 August 2020

Peter Green, inheritor of Eric Clapton's spot in John Mayall's Bluesbreakers and co-founder of Fleetwood Mac, was, said B.B. King, "the only guitarist who gives ...

Mike Oldfield: Tubular Bells (Virgin Records 2001)

Review by Gary Lucas, Zoo World, 25 October 1973

Mike Oldfield's Saga Of The Tubular Bells ...

Captain Beefheart: Low Yo Yo-Ing It In Blunderland

Review and Interview by Gary Lucas, Zoo World, 10 May 1973

"I don't want to kill my china pig/No I don't/A man's gotta live/A man's gotta eat/A man's gotta have shoes/To walk out on the street..." ...

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