Hello all, we are now in March, 2012... 'RizMum' blog sure is getting slower now, but as promised I will try my best to keep on going... and its been awhile now since my last post (T_T) and to update this took me almost a year, anyhow, this will be my final year so you guys know how it is when the big "E" comes. So guys, see you in my next post and keep on SHREDDING!!!! And as always please feel free to drop a suggestion/ideas via e-mail, Thanks

Friday, 13 August 2010

Link Wray

Name: Frederick Lincoln Wray Jr.
Born/Died: 2nd May, 1929 (Dunn, North Carolina, USA) - 5th November, 2005

Profile: He was an American rock and roll guitarist, songwriter and occasional singer. Wray was noted for pioneering a new sound for electric guitars, as exemplified in his hit 1958 instrumental 'Rumble', which pioneered an overdriven, distorted electric guitar sound, and also for having, 'invented the power chord, the major modus operandi of modern rock guitarist', 'punk' and 'heavy rock'.

History: At age 8, young Wray first heard slide guitar from a traveling carnival worker, an African-American man named 'Hambone', he got interested with the instrument and learned how to play it. In his early years, Wray was a veteran of the Korean war, where he contracted tuberculosis (TB) that ultimately cost him a lung. His doctors told him that he would never sing again. So he concentrated on his heavy guitar work. Despite this, on his rare vocal numbers he displays a strong voice and a range equivalent to Clarence 'Frogman' Henry.

After discharge from the Army, Wray and his brothers Doug and Vernon Wray, with friends Shorty Horton and Dixie Neal, formed "Lucky Wray and the Lazy Pine Wranglers", later known as "Lucky Wray and the Palomino Ranch Hands". They had been playing country music and Western swing for several years when they took a gig as the house band on the daily live TV show Milt Grant's House Party, a Washington, DC version of American Bandstand. The band made their first recordings in 1956 as "Lucky Wray and the Palomino Ranch Hands" for Starday Records.

In 1958, at a live gig of the Milt Grant's House Party, attempting—at the urging of the local crowd—to work up a cover sound-alike for "The Diamonds" hit, 'The Stroll', they came up with an eleven and one half bar blues titled 'Rumble'. The song was an instant hit with the live audience, which demanded four repeats that night. Eventually the song came to the attention of record producer Archie Bleyer, and he wanted the song to be recorded. The song became a huge hit, not only in the US, but also Great Britain, where it has been cited as an influence on "The Kinks", "The Who" and Jimmy Page among others.

In 1960, he performed an instrumental song composed by Jerry Lordan, called 'Apache' which became a hit in the UK for "The Shadows". Wray later recorded one of the better covers of the song 30 years later, somehow finding new life in this mythic, minor-key, guitar/drum dialogue which by then was also associated with everyone from "The Ventures" to the "Incredible Bongo Band". And with the band they had several more hard-rocking instrumental hits in the late 50's and early 60's, including 'Rawhide', 'Ace of Spades', and 'Jack the Ripper'.

After his initial hits, Wray's career had periods of retirement followed by renewed popularity, particularly in Europe. He toured and recorded two albums with retro-rockabilly artist Robert Gordon in the late 70's. The 80's to the 90's saw a large number of reissues as well as new material. Wray's last new recording was in 2000, titled 'Barbed Wire', he even continued to tour up until four months before he died.

In 2003, Link Wray was ranked at #67 in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of all time, but still has not yet been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He is, however, a member of the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.

Influences: Unknown

Axology: Fender Stratocaster and Gibson SG

Signature song(s): Rumble - Link Wray and his Ray Men (1958)

Link(s): (Tribute Page)


motor34 said...

For more info on Link, please see

To sign the petition to help get Link in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, see


RizMum said...

Thanks motor34 for the links (^_^)