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Wolf Marshall >> - Albert Lee, 10-17-99
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Albert Lee Bio

ALBERT LEE has played with Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Emmylou Harris, Ricky Skaggs, Rodney Crowell,  the Everly Brothers, Dave Edmunds and Roseanne Cash, among many others. Albert is also a recording artist in his own right, releasing four critically acclaimed albums, including
two instrumental albums, SPEECHLESS 
and GAGGED BUT NOT BOUND, that received Grammy nominations. His speed, phrasing, feel, and choice of notes have earned him the reputation as the premier country guitarist. Albert has received numerous awards for his playing including
the five time winner of Guitar Player magazine's "Best Country Guitarist" and a member of the Gallery of the Greats.

Albert Lee Discography/Videos

1979  Hiding A&M
1982  Albert Lee Polydor
1986  Country Guitar Man Magnum
1987  Speechless MCA
1988  Gagged but Not Bound MCA
1991  Black Claw & Country Fever Line
1994  In Full Flight Round Tower
1984  Albert Lee Star Licks
1985  Albert Lee DCI
1993  Virtuoso Techniques CPP
1998  Country Legend Music Video


melodylane: So, where is everyone from? I'm from N.D.

Chris: I'm from Sydney!

Jingle: V.A.

Altchord: florida

Steve: Seattle

George: NV

Polly: Reno

Support: What time is it in Sydney?

Chris: It is 10:00 am.

melodylane: Good Morning!

Polly: Good Morning

Chris: Thanks guys

Steve: I'm trying to learn some country licks, I'm forever stuck in blues licks.

AlbertL: hello

Assistant: I would like to introduce Albert Lee everybody

Assistant: I would like to introduce our MC Wolf Marshall

WolfM: Hi all. Welcome

Polly: What's your favorite listening to music when you want to relax?

AlbertL: favorite music is classical

Altchord: what era?

Polly: And how often do you practice?

AlbertL: im ashamed to say i don't practice very often much these days

AlbertL: but i do enjoy my playing more because of it

WolfM: You play a lot though?

AlbertL: i do play at least 250 days a year

Altchord: did you ever have a routine that really helped your playing?

Chris: How old were you when you started playing?

AlbertL: hi chris, i was 12 when i started guitar but i played piano a few years before that

Polly: I'm amazed with your speed every time I see you play

George: Could you give a very brief insight into your chicken pickin' technique? like what fingers do you use?

AlbertL: hi george, i mostly use the flat pick and little finger alternating for the chicken pickin style

Polly: Can you give everyone a rundown of where you will be touring?

Polly: Is there any country that you haven't played in that you'd like to?

AlbertL: polly, i don't know where i would like to go

owen: polly, I have some scant tour dates on

more information at the Albert Lee Tribute site
Albert Lee with the Echolettes

more information at the Albert Lee Tribute site
Albert Lee with Country Fever

more information at the Albert Lee Tribute site
Albert Lee with Country Fever

more information at the Albert Lee Tribute site
Albert Lee with the Emmylou Harris band


Chris: What are some of your favorite artists

Polly: Is there anyone you haven't recorded with that you would like to?

melodylane: What songs have you done with Eric Clapton?

AlbertL: Chris, my favorite artists are all older than me. I was very influenced by the early rock and rollers.

Polly: Who's your favorite female singer?

Altchord: your influences include greats like hank garland and jimmy bryant what are some specific solos you worked on and what did you learn?

AlbertL: hi altchord, i was never able to play many of their solos, but i like to think that i got the overall feel of what they were doing

George: Could you give a very brief insight into your chicken pickin' technique? like what fingers do you use?

WolfM: To the right: a gallery of great influences....

Altchord: that you do albert

Chris: This is cool! I'm loving this!

JB: is stairway to heaven by led zeppelin a good beginner song?

Altchord: the bango rolls floor me,,,,do you have advice for putting that into a tune?

TheRock: Cool Albert. Thanks

Assistant: Albert you have quite a history with Jimmy Page

AlbertL: jb, i guess its a good beginner song

JB: ok

WolfM: You and Page were both Burton fans?

AlbertL: i first met jimmy page in 1961 in london, we used to go to each others houses and listen to records,i had a gibson les paul custom and a supro amp that jimmy loved the sound of so he bought the same rig

WolfM: That was the Stairway to Heaven amp!

Steve: wow! When did that album come out?

Check out No Introduction Necessary 
featuring Albert Lee, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones

i recorded that album as a session player along with jimmy page and big jim sullivan in the late 60s we probably received 20 pounds in session fees

owen: Albert, in the 80s you played some great solos with welshman Shakin Stevens. My favorite had to be 'You Drive Me Crazy'. Was Dave Edmunds the connection there? What are your reflecitons on Shaky?

AlbertL: owen, my connection with shakey was through stuart colman the producer, shakey was a teenage idol at the time

finncaster: hey albert-what records would list as essential listening?

AlbertL: finncaster, the records that really influenced me were ricky nelson records with james burton on guitar ,jimmy bryant, and cliff gallup with gene vincent

Lonnie Donegan CDs
Lonnie Donegan featuring guitarist Denny Wright

Gene Vincent CDs
Gene Vincent featuring
guitarist Cliff Gallop

Buddy Holly CDs
The Crickets featuring
Buddy Holly

Rickey Nelson CDs with James Burton
James Burton

Duane Eddy CDs
Duane Eddy

Hank Garland website
Hank Garland

Scotty Moore CDs
Scotty Moore

Fun Ranch Boogie Part 1

WolfM: Albert thanks for allowing us into your inner sanctum. This cut has your famous echo effect. Can you describe the effect?

AlbertL: its done with an echo unit with a single repeat set at appox. 300 ms

WolfM: Was it tape or digital delay?

AlbertL: you play a strict four notes to the bar and have the first repeat fall in between the second and third notes

WolfM: You all have to check this out ---it's an Albert signature!

AlbertL: any delay unit as long as it has long delay

WolfM: This is from the bridge of Fun Ranch Boogie

WolfM: Albert how did you develop this technique?

AlbertL: i heard it on a couple of records, with grady martin and jesse mac reynolds

WolfM: What other pieces in your repertoire have this effect?

AlbertL: country boy, sisters coming home ( emmylou harris)

AlbertL: and more

finncaster: what key is that in?

Altchord: albert how do you go about finding voicings for the open string rolls?

AlbertL: the bridge section is in the key of A

AlbertL: altchord, by trial and error

Jingle: when you improvise are you concious of the different notes of the chord and target them

AlbertL: hi jingle, i am very concious of the chords and their inversions, and play around them

finncaster: are you using mixolydian 3rds on that?

Jingle: whats a good way to learn how

Polly: Is there any country that you haven't played in that you'd like to?

AlbertL: finncaster, you'd have to ask a real musician the names of the scales i use

finncaster: ;) sounded awesome!

AlbertL: thanx

Altchord: did you practice playing certain licks over and over or just kinda go for it differently each time?

AlbertL: hi altchord, i learned certain solos then i was able to improvize around them

Jingle: do you recommend ear training

Altchord: so a whole solo you'd work with?

AlbertL: hi jingle, definately

AlbertL: hi altchord, no, id just use certain parts of a solo that appealed to me

Jingle: do you stick to one scale in a song usually, or do you change depending on the chord

AlbertL: jingle, the scale that i usually stick to includes 7ths and 9ths, and i will use passing notes to give it a chromatic feel

finncaster: any favorite chords?

AlbertL: finncaster, open chords


Fun Ranch Boogie Part 2

WolfM: Ok everyone, check this out. It is definitive Albert Lee. This a burning lick from Fun Ranch Boogie solo

WolfM: Albert how much is this style influenced by Western Swing?

AlbertL: my style is very influenced by western swing, although i didn't know what it was when i started playing

WolfM: Your beginning phrase has a very signature double stop effect. Can you describe the approach?

AlbertL: its a chicken pickin style, utilizing open strings

WolfM: Do you use pick and fingers for this?

AlbertL: yes

WolfM: How did you come across this technique?

AlbertL: uhhhhh gosh, by accident

WolfM: Is it chord related?

AlbertL: it is based on chord positions

AlbertL: hard to describe without showing

George: very nice albert

WolfM: How about the single-note blowing?

AlbertL: thanx

Twanger: I love those triplets!

WolfM: It's a wonderful excerpt, Albert--thanks for playing it!

George: How long did it take you to develop that kind of speed?

AlbertL: george, it took quite a few years

Altchord: so would maybe working around all those open chords be a way of finding licks? like basic c and g etc?

Chris: Did you find it hard to break into that sort of speed?

AlbertL: altchord, there are a lot of great licks to be found in the basic positions

Twanger: Do you gig with your Rivera mainly?

George: amazing

Guitar Gear

WolfM: Albert let's begin with your gear. What are you using these days?

Polly: What is your all time favorite guitar

AlbertL: hi polly my favorite guitar is my musicman signature model

WolfM: Albert. How was it developed

Polly: Where was this picture taken?

WolfM: It was taken in Albert's practice room

sonic: Is the guitar stock?

WolfM: The other is at the gig

finncaster: seems like you prefer maple necks, what kind of wood do you have on the body of your signature model?

finncaster, ash body, check out the musicman website

ill have to go down and check out your model on 48th street ;)

Click Here for Music Man site

Albert. Is that a B-Bender?

the photo on screen is my music man b bender guitar

WolfM: Albert how does the B bender work?

its a mechanism attached to the strap button that raises the second string a tone

Is the technique similar to steel guitar?

by pulling down on the neck you are able to alter the note

Are certain chords better than others with Bender?

it is not really similar to steel guitar but you can approximate the sound of it

AlbertL: you tailor the chord shapes to utilize the effect

Click Here for HipShot website

my current equipment of course includes my music man guitar, I am still using my old 130 watt music man amps but have been very happy with a fender tone master and a Rivera amp

JohnH: What is it about Musicman amps that you like?

AlbertL: hi john, musicman amps were built like tanks, they're very loud and clean

twanger, musicman 2x10 and 4x10

Twanger: Do you gig with your Rivera mainly?

AlbertL: twanger, im currently working with rivera to find something that will suit me, they make wonderful amps

What are your favorite other guitars in your collection?

The guitar to the right of the screen was given to me by Eric Clapton so that has to be one of my favorites

WolfM: Is that the Delaney and Bonnie Les Paul?

AlbertL: I believe that was the guitar that was used with the Delaney and Bonnie

I also have another Gibson from the same year that was given to me by Don Everly

Twanger: What acoustics are you using?

finncaster: im sorry to keep being so technical because this has been a real thrill to be here-do you lean towards hvy or light strings?

AlbertL: twanger, martin 00028, collings 0m2 and my gibson j200 from don everly

WolfM: That's a beauty!!!

Albert are Fender guitars manufactured in Mexico almost as good as those made here in the US?

finncaster: i have a mexico tele and its great!

AlbertL: hi rock, ive seen some guitars made in mexico that i would be very happy to play

TheRock: Cause i have a Strat (mexican) and I see no different

Twanger: Do you still have your old Tele?

AlbertL: twanger, i dont have my original from the 60s, but i have a 52, 53, and 60

TheRock: Are fender guitars any good

Chris: Yes they are!

AlbertL: rock, fenders are very good, but my musicman is better

Twanger: Do you use compession?

AlbertL: twanger, i use a little compression in my korg a-3

AlbertL: by the way, i am looking for another korg a-3, they seem to have disappeared from the face of the earth

owen: String Gauges. On your video you've told the story of the original Ernie Ball unwound G. What gauges do you currently use?

AlbertL: finncaster, electric gauges 10 13 16 26 36 46, ernie ball of course! 

do you prefer high or low action?

Click Here for Ernie Ball site

finncaster, low action for fast electric playing, and a higher action for acoustic for the better sound

finncaster: hey albert-what kind of picks do you use-heavy or light? and do you keep your nails trimmed down or is that an issue?

AlbertL: large heavy picks, i used to use small jazz picks, in the 60s but i would be afraid of dropping them now

Albert Lee with Music Man guitar in home studio
Albert Lee w/Music Man guitar in home studio

Music Man - Albert Lee model
Music Man Albert Lee model

  HitShot B Bender
HipShot B Bender

B Bender mechanism on Music Man
         B Bender mechanism on Music Man             

      B Bender mechanism on Fender Tele
B Bender mechanism on Fender Tele

     Music Man HD 130 amp head, Korg A3, Korg rack tuner
Music Man HD 130 amp head, Korg A3, Korg rack tuner

Delaney & Bonnie Gibson Les Paul
Delaney & Bonnie Gibson Les Paul

Gibson Everly Brothers acoustic model
Gibson Everly Brothers acoustic model

Fender Tele with B Bender
Fender Tele with B Bender

Korg A3 digital delay/processor
Korg A3 digital delay/processor

Ernie Ball Slinky

Ernie Ball pick

General Q & A

AlbertL: altchord, i never did learn how to read guitar music


do you have a system?

AlbertL: altchord, i read chord symbols and also the nashville #s system

Check out the wheels---as car this has real horn and is great to STEER

i have a 61 ferrari 250 gte and the cadillac turns far more heads

at night, the horns will illuminate

what is that club?

The club is the Agoura Valley Inn

hi cj, thats a club that i jam at when im home in Los Angeles

where in LA?

CJ: yeah, beer and guitars are cool!

agoura, north of Los angeles

It's an opportunity for Albert to cut loose

Just inland from Malibu

and why are you with Eric Clapton?

cj, we were receiving awards from guitar player magazine, eric for best blues and me for best country

You played in band with Eric at the time?

on tour, or on an album?

yes, i played with eric for five years, 79-84

steve, touring and three albums


Albert with Great Guitarists tour


who are those players?

cj, wayne henderson, tal farlow, john cephus, jerry douglas, ledward kaapana, and me

Altchord: effects of time like what? grey hair?

hi curtb, it keeps me young

Steve: works for Les Paul too.

CJ: hey brian may!!!

CurtB: I was thinking of something more like speed and dexterity.

i have the grey hair i am not bald yet, and i weigh the same as i have for the last 30 years

CJ: what album is that?

cj, that is an release of tracks i did in the late 60s i was dreading it appearing but i can live with it now

Steve: why did you dread it appearing?

steve, it was my earliest efforts at singing, ive learned a lot since then

Steve: LOL, I'll be sure to check it out then!

owen: The past few years there's been rereleases of all your old stuff (Heads Hands & Feet etc.), any plans for a new studio album?

owen, soon i hope

thank you, its been a pleasure

thank you Albert!!!

A big hand for big Al

Twanger: It's been a priviledge Albert.

Alber's Caddy 1
Albert's Caddy

Albert's Caddy 2

Agoura Valley Inn- Albert's regular gigging home

GPI awards ceremony

Great Guitarist Tour

Albert w/ Brian May

Black Claw Fever at CDNow

Stevie Ray Vaughan tribute album featuring Albert Lee
Stevie Ray tribute featuring Albert Lee

Legends of Country Guitar featuring Albert Lee
Legends of Guitar featuring Albert Lee


Artist - Albert Lee 
Intellijams Production 
Executive Producer- Dave Storrs
Producer/MC- Wolf Marshall

Software/Media/HTML by Riff Interactive LLC
Media Producer/Engineer- Michael Johnson
Technical Supervisor/Support- Steve Roeder

An Exclusive EMP Event
Special thanks to the EMP staff for making this event possible: Jon Kertzer, Diane Andolsek, Monica Hare, Fred Silber, Andrea Weatherhead, Jody Patton &  Paul Allen.

Special thanks to Owen O'Conner: Albert Lee Tribute Site


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