This year saw the 30th anniversary of the passing of legendary
virtuoso Randy Rhoads. The annual memorial event for the guitarist
was held on March 19th and took place at the Mountain View
Cemetery in San Bernardino, California.
Leja Siv Harju of Rock N Roll Industries magazine was there to
conduct interviews with Randy Rhoads' brother Kelle and sister
Kathy, along with Richard D'Argenzio and longtime family friend
Bobby Kelekian. Check out the footage below. The full
report is available at the Rock N Roll Industries magazine.
Before his tragic death at the age of 25, Randy Rhoads was on a
fast track to being hailed by critics and public alike as the
greatest rock guitar player of all time. Over a short two-year
period, Randy recorded two seminal multi-platinum albums with Ozzy
Osbourne, which are heralded today as among the most noteworthy
recordings in hard rock music history. Through his jaw-dropping
six-string work on songs such as "Crazy Train", "Mr. Crowley" and
"Flying High Again", Randy Rhoads achieved legendary status as a
guitar icon and his artistic legacy continues to grow with each
A brilliant guitar virtuoso, Randy's masterful ability of
bridging rock and classical techniques helped him forge a
groundbreaking style of guitar playing. In 1981, Guitar Player
magazine honored Randy by selecting him as best new talent of the
year. Humble and self-effacing, Randy refused to rest on his
laurels. Instead, being bestowed with this prestigious award
motivated him to strive for greater creative heights. Tragically,
Randy's life ended much too soon when on the morning of March 19,
1982 he was killed in a small private plane that careened into the
garage of a plantation home in Leesburg, Florida.
Randy Rhoads' ascendancy to super-stardom was inevitable.
Tirelessly honing his craft, he was a devoted student of his
instrument, endlessly practicing and perfecting his skills. His
days were spent as a guitar teacher and by night he solidified his
rising reputation as the "next big thing" on the Hollywood club
scene. His big break arrived when he assumed the lead guitar slot
in Ozzy Osbourne's solo band. Soon the entire music world would be
dazzled by his spectacular flights of fiery fretboard sizzle,
swiftly recognizing the merits of this burgeoning guitar
With his dynamic six-string wizardry, Randy Rhoads invented an
exciting and technically advanced style of explosive hard rock
guitar playing that dominated the '80s music scene. Decades later,
his massive influence continues to shape, educate and inspire
first, second and third generation players and music fans that
marvel at his extraordinary musicality and stunning instrumental
prowess. Today, Randy's legendary status as a guitar hero is
assured, joining the pantheon of rock's Mt. Olympus where he stands
proudly alongside such revered guitar heroes as Jimi Hendrix, Eric
Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, and Ritchie Blackmore.
No one-trick pony, Randy was well versed in a multitude of
musical genres seamlessly cross-navigating rock, blues and
classical. In fact, his immense love of classical music continued
to be a driving force in his life. Until his untimely death, he
continued to take classical guitar lessons in an effort to break
new ground as a player.
Today, mythologized and immortalized, Randy Rhoads has become a
veritable pop culture institution. Paying homage to his pioneering
ability, Marshall Amplifiers created a custom amplifier that bears
Randy's name and signature sound. Action figures and sculptures
with Randy's likeness have become highly sought after collector's
items, while Jackson Guitars have sold millions of Randy Rhoads
model guitars, pleasing the late guitarist's loyal legion of
dedicated followers. His image graces innumerable music magazine
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