Johnny Marr explains his three biggest guitar influences: “Hand In Glove started out as a Chic riff”

Johnny Marr was a recent guest on the Broken Record Podcast. And it found him digging into his past and huge body of work with other artists. But the overarching impression is that Marr’s wonder at his role as a guitarist remains the same as it was when he was a teenager. And at his core he’s been inspired by three key players in the last 40 years. But he’s interpreted that influence in his own unique way.

“They take all of these different elements that only to them make sense,” Marr notes about musicians. “For example, in my case, I didn’t really do a lot of interviews in the early Smiths days but when I was asked about guitar playing. When I had to really nail it down it was Nile Rodgers, Bert Jansch and James Williamson from The Stooges.

“At first people were like, ‘Huh? Come again, Nile Rodgers influenced The Smiths?’ But over time time now people know… Listen to the second verse of The Boy With The Thorn In His Side. Or there’s a famous story about when I wrote Hand In Glove it just started out as a Chic riff.



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