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Guns N' Roses
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As a tribute to your fans, let's begin with your musical style and technique:

Where do the nickname "Bumblefoot" and the idea of a winged-guitar (anything to do with Hendrix's winged guitar?) come from?

Ron Thal: It was the early 90s, my girlfriend was in veterinary school and I was helping her study - one of the animal diseases was called Bumblefoot.  I wrote a song called Bumblefoot, then put out my first album, "The Adventures Of Bumblefoot"  The design of the winged guitar came from this album cover. (The guitar was built by hand, by the French guitar company Vigier ) "Bumblefoot" became the name of my band, and eventually my nickname...

Will we have the honor to see you live again in France for another round of Bumblefoot concerts (with your buddies from Freak Kitchen Christophe Godin, Your Degroote)? Any update on a new Bumblefoot record?

Thank you, I hope so!  I want to record a new solo album before doing my own touring again.  I haven't begun recording a new album yet, waiting for the right moment of inspiration...

Before you joined GN'R, you worked on several musical projects, do you think you'll still release solo albums, teach guitar classes, etc. or are these activities on hold for now?

I will keep doing everything I've done before GnR, whenever I can, when I'm not on tour...

What is your favorite guitar at the moment?

I always love playing the Vigier fretless...   I also just got a Gibson Flying V, been enjoying it.

Is there any uncommon instrument (or not) you would like to play or add to the tracks you play on?

Haha...maybe a kazoo...?

What kind of advice would you give to young musicians trying to break through?

Be diverse - do everything you can.  Recording engineer, musician, teacher, songwriter...  each skill helps the other, and you may develop new talents and find things you enjoy that you never thought you would.

About the equipment you're using, how do you customize your Les Paul for GN'R, and for what purpose? What do you put on your index finger for tapping?

I didn't do anything special or change anything on the Les Paul, didn't change the pickups or anything, all the original parts (is an '89 re-issue of the '59...)   On my 4th finger of the picking hand, I keep a metal cap ("thimble") on my fingertip and use it for tapping notes on the string that are higher than the fretboard - the metal cap gives the notes more sustain.   You can hear it in the high-pitched notes of "Guitars Suck" (the MP3 is on my myspace right now if you want to hear it -

Hello Mr. Thal, first of all I would like to say what you bring to GN'R is extremely appreciated and your melodies are a real strength for the band. Would you consider talent comes from the instrument, the technique or the heart? Do you think it's more important to like what we create - even if we don't break through - than break through without liking our own songs?

Merci!!  :D   Everything must come from the heart.  You must have passion, and express what you feel.  Anything else will eat away your spirit, and without your spirit, you're nothing.  There are days when you will love what you create, other days you hate it, but as long as you love creating, you're ok.

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