Ted Nugent Praises ‘Incredible Genius’ Jeff Beck, Recreates Favorite Riffs
Recently, many rockers – such as Alice Cooper, Jimmy Page, Ozzy Osbourne and Patti Smith – have paid tribute to the inimitable Jeff Beck (who died on Jan. 10 at the age of 78). Now, Ted Nugent has not only shared his admiration for the iconic musician but also recreated some of his most beloved Beck guitar licks.
Yesterday (Jan. 20), the latest episode of “The Nightly Nuge” was posted, and it revolved around Nugent reflecting on the influence and talent of the English guitarist. Speaking to co-host Keith Mark, Nugent affirmed:
There is not a meaningful guitarist in the world that didn't discover the brilliance, the lyricism, the dynamics, the vocabulary, the tonal spread of what Jeff Beck literally created. He was inspired by Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley and certainly The Ventures and Duane Eddy and Lonnie Mack and all those original electric guitar virtuosos. Just an incredible genius [and] an adventurous, creative, wonderful guy.
We did a lot of shows early on with The Yardbirds and Jeff Beck Group and Beck, Bogert & Appice with Carmine Appice and Tim Bogert from Vanilla Fudge. But his musical legacy has so enriched real music lovers' life. And he was a good man; he was a kind man.
Nugent also pointed out similarities between him and Beck regarding their shared love of Chuck Berry, archery and “Detroit muscle and horsepower.” Specifically, he added:
There was a lot of parallels [between us] because the way he expressed himself on the guitar, it referenced that mechanics of horsepower. It represent[ed] the spirit side of the samurai, the martial arts. He was an archer. He made his own long bows out of Osage orange and he made his own arrows. So, there's a lot of parallels there.
When you play with that dynamic lyricism that Jeff Beck had mastered and uncharted tonalities, it was really mesmerizing. And ultimately, as I say about Eddie Van Halen and all of our lost souls, . . . their music will continue to enrich our lives. So, nobody ever forget Jeff Beck! And if you haven't listened to a lot of Jeff Beck, go back to The Yardbirds and go back to the Jeff Beck 'Truth.' The 'Truth' album [Beck’s 1968 debut LP] — unbelievable soulful music.
As he was discussing Beck’s impact, Nugent played a few choice riffs, too. In particular, he pulled out The Yardbirds’ “Over Under Sideways Down” and “Heart Full of Soul” (“recreate[ing] the tone” in the process).
You can watch the full clip below. Also, be sure to let us know your thoughts on the legacy of Jeff Beck!