Justin Hayward discusses his favorite guitarists

It’s impossible to just name one in isolation, but the players that have really ‘turned me on’ over the years have been Hank Marvin and Bruce Welch, Mark Knopfler, James Burton, Roy Buchanan and Derek Trucks. But, after saying that, my idol was always Buddy Holly, and the way he played was truly the greatest influence on me. It’s the music that you love when you are young that is the most enduring, and the way Buddy played had everything I aspired to as a guitarist. I have met Maria Elena Holly a couple of times over the years. What an honour to be in her presence.

Justin Hayward’s talks about the first song he learned on guitar

‘When The saints Go Marching In’.

Every kid with a guitar learnt it in my day, in the ‘hot’ style, and I started playing it in the mid ’50’s as soon as I had my first guitar when I was ten. You only need to know four chords to play it – G, G7, C and D7 – all of which are probably the first chords ‘would be’ guitar players learn anyway.

I got a little group together around that time in my home town of Swindon, and it was our ‘go to’ favorite. It’s a gift of a song for anyone wanting to understand rhythm, strumming and foot tapping music. Also, all the people we played to seemed to know at least the first verse, and they would sing along – it has such joy in it.

The second song I learnt was ‘Oh My Darling Clementine’. After that, I dived into Rock and Roll and Country style songs and I was on my way.