It Might Get Loud – A Review

I’m a little behind the game on this one as I caught the DVD instead of the big screen version.  But there ya go. 🙂  I just watched It Might Get Loud featuring Jimmy Page, The Edge, and Jack White in a tete-a-tete on screen about music and where they come from in creating it.

The thing about a movie like this is that it will never please everyone. Some wanted more technical talk, but it’s not a how-to video. Some didn’t like the choice of players presented. If you think Guitar World’s yearly top lists get hate mail, you can only imagine what happens with a film like this. And it’s not a concert film.

I thought the choice of guitarists was inspired. Three generations of players, each whose art is a reaction to the others. And each finding out that they come from common ground. I have a love/hate relationship with Jack White’s music. I understand where he comes from, but some of it just doesn’t grab me yet. I love some of Edge’s work in U2 and other stuff I find simple and repetitive. Jimmy page is one of the main architects of “the riff” and has influenced millions of players. But at the same time, he’s kinda sloppy.

And that’s what I find inspiring. These guys aren’t the greatest technicians on the instrument. Not virtuosos. But masters of what they do, and always a student of the music. They could have gotten super high end players like Clapton or Vai. And that would certainly be an interesting conversation too, but very different from this one.

This isn’t a “how to play guitar” movie. It’s a movie about how an artist finds their voice. From Jimmy Page realizing that Muzak sessions couldn’t be his future. Or Jack White discovering the Flat Duo Jets and Son House and realizing that the deconstruction of music can be as important as its construction.

I think artists need to see this to see that their heroes are just as big a fans of music as they are. And that they live what they do. And that they don’t have all the answers. But they are looking for them.

And for music fans… If you want to see what happens inside a players head as he’s creating and playing, this is a good place to start.

Phil Johnson

PS…. I’d like to give you an idea what my art is like.  Since nobody is making a movie about me, I’ll give you a free album’s worth of downloads.  Deal? Share it with your friends!

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