eric johnson

Eric Johnson, Steve Vai to join Joe Satriani for a special 2024 edition of G3.

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Ralph Towner, whose first instrument was piano, didn’t start learning classical guitar until he was 22.

Photo by Caterina di Perri

The nylon-string guitarist and composer, who famously founded the historic jazz-and-world-music group, adds a fresh chapter to his extensive, illustrious career with his new solo album, At First Light.

What does it mean to have curiosity as an artist? For some, it can mean becoming transfixed with learning the work of a creative idol, or possessing an innate drive to absorb all there is to know about a niche (or all) of music history. Yet, when musically polyglottal nylon-string guitarist and composer Ralph Towner hears “curiosity,” it reminds him not of the pursuit of knowledge, but rather that of writing great music.

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Eric Johnson and “Virginia.”

Dig the details of the shredder’s iconic guitar and recreate EJ’s wiring.

Hello, and welcome back to Mod Garage! You’ve probably heard about Eric Johnson’s passion for the smallest and oddest details when it comes to guitars and tone. There is a longstanding urban legend that EJ is able to hear what type of battery is used in his stompboxes and how long his guitar cables are. Regardless of whether or not that’s true, it speaks to his reputation that he really cares about his tone, down to the smallest details.

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