Artist of the Week – Zakk Wylde

Nobody rocks the Gibson Les Paul like Zakk Wylde. As Ozzy Osbourne’s lead guitarist, his driving stage show, furious soloing and fast picking style earned him legions of fans. Currently, Zakk rocks the stage as the frontman for Black Label Society.

How Zakk Started to Learn Guitar

Zakk was a huge  Black Sabbath fan. He loved the stuff Tony Iommi and Randy Rhoads were doing on guitar so he decided to start playing. Zakk took lessons from a guy named Leroy Wright at the age of 15. When Zakk saw Wright play it blew him away. He thought it was the coolest thing on the planet. He was so intrigued by the whole thing that he decided that playing guitar is the thing he wants to do with his life. And to this day he has still got the same hard-on. All Zakk does is listening to great players thinking that he always can get better. Zakk says can never get tired of that.

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Zakk’s Practice Routine

Usually, when Zakk picks up his guitar he just starts going through scales, everything that is diatonic. Zakk usually also goes through a batch of pentatonic patterns before he starts playing. When it comes to playing, Zakk points out that he might start playing anything he wants. If there’s something he wants to learn, he just learns it.

“If there’s something I want to learn, I’ll just learn it.”

As far as technique goes, you are always practicing and maintaining your technique and trying to do different things.  In case of Zakk, he learned along the way how solos have to fit the songs.  He also learned much about writing music. In his opinion, all great musicians write their own music.  Whether it is Randy Rhoads playing Over the Mountain or Eddie Van Halen’s Eruption, or Bach or Mozart, according to Zakk they are the real musicians because they wrote their own music.

Florian Lettner
CEO & Co-Founder