Wednesday, 30 July 2014

R.I.P. Dick Wagner

I was sad to hear that guitar hero Dick Wagner died today aged 71 after battling ill health for a number of years. Everyone who dies after an illness is described as having battled ill health, but in Wagner's case it is no lazy cliché as he fought to overcome a stroke-induced paralysis of his left arm and relearnt how to play guitar. Fans of Kiss, Lou Reed and Alice Cooper will no doubt be aware of his contribution to some of those artists' finer moments. It was my love for Wagner's own band, The Frost, and their Through The Eyes Of Love album that lead me to discover that he had spent much of his career writing and playing on many of the records that I grew up on: Destroyer, School's Out, Peter Gabriel's solo debut and so on. Check out Wagner's official website and prepare to be amazed (yes, he really did play guitar on Aerosmith's Get Your Wings album!) Sometimes he was uncredited, all too often he remained unheralded. By all accounts he was a self-effacing, consummate professional. All I know is that he was a shit-hot guitar player who wrote some killer tunes! R.I.P.

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