By Steve Newton
When it comes to unheralded guitar geniuses, Danny Gatton is right up there. He’s never achieved the fame of a Clapton, Beck, or Page, but in-the-know guitar freaks realize that he’s worthy of comparison, talent-wise.
I only got to interview Gatton once, back in April of 1993, before he came to Vancouver for a Music West appearance. A year-and-a-half later, at the age of 49, he took his own life, friends and family saying that he had suffered from depression for decades.
When I called him up that spring day, however, he was in good spirits. He’d been out in his garage in Washington, D.C., sorting through a bunch of cassettes–including “20 or 30 Roy Buchanan tapes.”
The reference to Roy Buchanan is memorable because Buchanan is another masterful but troubled Telecaster specialist who never got the worldwide acclaim he deserved. Five years earlier, at the age of 48, he’d died in a Fairfax, Virginia jail cell, either by his own hand or–as suspected by family and friends–police brutality.
After mentioning those Buchanan tapes, Gannon went on to talk a bit about his soon-to-be-released album, Cruisin Deuces.
Have a listen: