Johnny ‘Guitar’ Watson - guitarist, vocalist
A working bluesman since his teenage years in the early 1950s, Johnny Guitar Watson scored numerous chart successes in the 1970s with a unique guitar-based sound that mixed the feel and instrumental technique of the blues with the bass-heavy sound of funk. Watson also excelled as a vocalist. His singing was by turns sexy, humorous, and political; his guitar playing exploited the full range of the instrument's powers. He was also a prolific songwriter. When Watson died in 1996 at the age of 61, he was receiving the most modern form of musical homage: rappers and hip-hop musicians quoting or sampling his recordings.