Hank Marvin

From Academic Kids

Hank B. Marvin (born Brian Rankin, October 28 1941, Newcastle upon Tyne, England) is the lead guitarist of the (mainly) instrumental group The Shadows. The Shadows inspired guitarists like George Harrison, Eric Clapton, Mark Knopfler, and Pete Townshend and are therefore considered to be Britain's most influential band before the era of The Beatles.

As a youngster, he played the banjo and the piano. Hearing one of Buddy Holly's songs made him switch to the guitar, although he occasionally played both instruments in recordings. At the age of 16, he travelled with his friend Bruce Welch to London where he met Cliff Richard at the Two I's Coffee Bar in Soho. This started his career as a professional guitar player.

Hank Marvin was the owner of the first Fender Stratocaster in the UK and this guitar with its tremolo arm contributed to the Shadows' distinctive sound. The guitar was imported from America by Cliff Richard as a gift for Hank. Looking through a Fender catalogue, they were trying to find the guitar played by James Burton, Ricky Nelson's lead guitarist, and assumed that it would be the most expensive, the Strat. Burton however played the Telecaster as the Strat was a relatively new product. The instrument is now (as at 2005) owned by Bruce Welch.

Although neither Hank Marvin nor the Shadows were ever well known in the United States, Marvin is nonetheless listed by Frank Zappa as an early influence on the first Mothers of Invention album, and Afrikaa Bambaataa cited the group's first UK number one single Apache as a big influence.

As well as playing with The Shadows, Hank Marvin has enjoyed a successful solo career as a performer and a recording artist. He has been willing to experiment with styles and material, doing some purely instrumental albums, some with only vocals (e.g. All Alone With Friends), one with only acoustic guitars, and one with a guitar orchestra (The Hank Marvin Guitar Syndicate).

As a songwriter he was responsible for Bachelor Boy, The Day I Met Marie, and other hits mainly for Cliff B. Marvin nl:Hank B. Marvin


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