A man, a guitar, a mask and a KFC bucket on his head. Must be some kind of joke, right? For those familiar with the mystery man Buckethead, you the answer is definitely no. This is no joke or gimmick by any stretch of the imagination.
I first learned of Buckethead maybe 15 years ago or so. One of roommates in SF saw him at the Hotel Utah, a small watering hole that had enough room for a stage. She told me what she saw and how amazing the guy was. She was so serious I really believed her and thought nothing of the bucket or the mask. I forget when I actually first heard him play but do remember I was blown away.
Buckethead is a bonafide shredder and one of those people that make running up and down the neck look effortless. Fortunately, unlike a lot of the wankers out there masturbating on their guitars, he's got a lot of melody and soul in his playing. His album “Colma” is wonderfully quiet and meditative and has relatively few passages of him playing fast.
Don't worry though, if that's your thing he's got something like 70 recordings out there, not to mention an equal or more amount of collaborations with the cats in the San Francisco underground rap scene to having been the guitarist for Guns n Roses for a while.
This guy is really amazing. Watch any of the live performances on YouTube and you might agree with me that he's obviously got more interests in playing with sounds and experimentation and not standing around playing a thousand notes a minute all day just to impress.
He's another example of people who come from distant parts of the universe to visit for a short time on earth and freak us out with their unique ways of communication.