Sonny Landreth's Album Premiere

The slide phenom returns to his roots on Bound by the Blues.

On his 12th album, Bound by the Blues, Sonny Landreth pays homage to the emotions and sounds he first heard in his native Mississippi. Featuring Landreth’s soaring slide and nuanced singing, the album’s 10 songs reveal the durability and flexibility of the genre, while honoring his own creative vision.

Bound by the Blues is also a radical departure from the Louisiana slide-wizard’s previous two albums: 2012’s classical/jazz inspired Elemental Journey and 2008’s guest-studded From the Reach.

The Landreth-penned title track offers intense guitar solos while evoking the spirit of Landreth’s musical heroes, including Muddy Waters, Jimi Hendrix, and Buffy Sainte-Marie. “Singing about the unifying power of the blues and paying tribute to the great artists who’ve helped shape the music in that song means a lot to me,” he says.

Photo by Robley Dupleix.

In the instrumental “Firebird Blues,” Landreth pays his respects to the late slide-slinger Johnny Winter—an important influence and friend. “The news of Johnny’s death came just as we were about to make this album and it hit me really hard,” Landreth reflects. “I decided to record a slow instrumental as a tribute by keeping it raw and in the moment—like Johnny’s playing always was.” To that end, Landreth used his vintage Gibson Firebird, a model long associated with Winter. Drummer Brian Brignac played on cardboard boxes to give the track a funky, primitive feel, while bassist David Ranson plucked a ukulele bass.

Making a personal statement was at the forefront of Landreth’s mind while making this album. “Developing a style and an approach that is your own musically is not something to be taken for granted," he says. “I’m at a point in life where I want to make the most of every moment I can, and that changes your perspective, your priorities, and how you relate to everyone else. And at the end of the day, I think that’s the essence of what I wanted to express with Bound by the Blues.”

Look for our in-depth interview with Landreth in the August 2015 edition of Premier Guitar.

It’s all in the details.



  • Understand the inherent challenges in rhythm guitar playing.
  • Develop new strumming patterns.
  • Cultivate practice strategies to keep yourself motivated.
{u'media': u'[rebelmouse-document-pdf 15103 site_id=20368559 original_filename="RhythmGuitar-Dec19.pdf"]', u'file_original_url': u'', u'type': u'pdf', u'id': 15103, u'media_html': u'RhythmGuitar-Dec19.pdf'}

Last updated on May 12, 2022

Rhythm guitar is arguably the most important aspect of guitar playing, and it’s also one of the most challenging skills to develop. The discouragement many players feel when working on rhythms forces too many of them to oversimplify the nuances, and this can reduce a performance from exceptional to fine. In this lesson, we’ll investigate why rhythm guitar can be so puzzling and look at a few ways to keep yourself motivated enough to persevere and improve.

Read More Show less

Megadeth founder teams up with Gibson for his first acoustic guitar in the Dave Mustaine Collection.

Read More Show less

The Atlas Compressor offers up an extensive library of compression options and allows for transformation into a bass specific compression machine.

Read More Show less