While RR’s playing style begins and ends with the gospel, his pitch-bending dynamics and machinegun picking pace have garnered comparisons to Jimi Hendrix, Joe Satriani and Duane Allman. Ask him and he’ll tell you Stevie Ray Vaughn and Anita Baker were bigger influences, but once he starts playing, you’ll forget to ask. His fingers skitter across 13 strings like lightning bolts, while a foot pedal gives each note such a vocal quality you’ll swear Aretha Franklin was trapped in the amp. This is not the steel guitar of Hawaiian luaus or an Arkansas honky-tonk. No, these riffs are searing, unadulterated joy — too hot for heaven and too sweet for hell.
Read the full preview at The Japan Times Online.