Friday, November 11, 2011

Nigel Tufnel Day

Yes, the day when everything goes up to 11 - it's November 11, 2011 or, put another way, 11/11/11.

Everything up to 11! Nigel Tufnel, guitarist for the band Spinal Tap is the comic creation of Christopher Guest. The movie This Is Spinal Tap introduced Tufnel and Tap to the world.

A deft satire of so many of the worst qualities in lead guitarists, Tufnel certainly looks as though he was modelled on Jeff Beck but has backstage green-room requirements that, er, riff on Eddie Van Halen's infamous difficulty. Like so many heavy-metal players he is fond of classical music, even mixing Bach and Mozart to make his own "Mach" piece - a beautiful piano instrumental called Lick My Love Pump.

Tufnel is a scene-stealer in This Is Spinal Tap. He has a guitar that still has the price-tag on - to show it's in mint condition. "Don't touch it, don't even look at it!" he warns the film's director, Marty DiBergi. There's another guitar with beautiful sustain; he even attempts to demonstrate. DiBergi points out that he can't hear anything. "You would, if it were playing," Tufnel explains.

"....but these go to eleven..." Classic.

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