Jake E. Lee does not consider himself to be a guitar shredder
Red Dragon Cartel and former Badlands and Ozzy Osbourne lead guitarist Jake E. Lee was recently interviewed by Guitar World. It was noted that Lee has been placed in the guitar shredder category for most of his musical career but that his performance on Red Dragon Cartel‘s sophomore album Patina is not a “shred” one.
Lee opined: “I never adhered to that whole shredder thing. I know some people put me in that category, but I never considered myself one. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with shredders. It’s not that I don’t want to be there, it’s just that some people, their playing is more of a stream of consciousness — sort of like John Coltrane, where they play a bunch of notes and can say something with it — and I never really thought I was that kind of a player. Although I did used to play faster more often. But for this record in particular, I wanted to make every note count. And Tyler Esposito, who is [bassist] Anthony’s son, he was the recording engineer on the album and he has a really good ear for things. He wouldn’t let me get away with just playing fast because I didn’t have anything else to do. So I’d play something in the studio, and then I’d come into the control room and I could always tell by the way he looked at me — he’d be like, “Really? That’s what you’re going to do for that solo? Play a bunch of notes?” And he would make me go back out until I came up with something worthwhile.”
With respect to Red Dragon Cartel‘s plans to do a full-fledged tour in support of Patina, Lee advised: “I am. I don’t think there’s any firm commitments yet other than I know we’re going to Japan in April, and we’ll probably do an American tour before that. Other than that, nothing else is actually set. We’ll probably be doing bars and clubs, although we were hoping to go out on tour with somebody — ideally we wanted to do something with Zakk Wylde, because I just think that would be really cool to have two Ozzy guitar players together.”
You can read the rest of the interview with Jake E. Lee at Guitar World.