Henry Rollins recently weighed in on the idea of rock music passing its prime, saying that the days of guitar heroes are long gone by now.
"Is the day of the guitar band over, or at least on hiatus? It's a good question. It is hard to think of a single contemporary musician who is considered a 'guitar hero,'" Henry kicked off in his latest Village Voice blog post.
Pointing out that music is always moving and evolving, Rollins noted that as an "avid listener," guitar music is just not doing the trick for him anymore. "I don't listen to nearly as much guitar-driven music as I did years ago," he said. "While the sound is still part of my life, I do find well over half of my listening to be on the instrumental and avant side of things, where often a guitar is not the predominant instrument, if it's present at all."
Explaining that great guitar players are still very much out there, Henry dubbed the independent scene the place to be for fresh ideas. "I think there is just more eclecticism in independent music," he explained. "Curious, innovative young artists are searching for other sounds and textures to work with. I am so thankful that they are doing so. It has made modern independent music completely exciting and compelling."
Summing it up on an optimistic note, Rollins wasn't reluctant to add that "the appeal of guitar music will never die. There, I have predicted the future, and it's full of guitars. It is the most mass produced and sold instrument in the world and works just fine electric or acoustic. The guitar allows someone, with little effort, to bang out some rudimentary chords and express themselves.
"The portability and affordability of the guitar will always keep it in play. It is an instrument that is easily enjoyed alone to preserve one's sanity. It's one of humankind's best inventions," Rollins concluded.
Can you think of any modern guitarists that can hold up to the ultimate greats? Let us know in the comments.