Roger McGuinn

The Byrds

As the frontman of the Byrds, Roger McGuinn and his trademark 12-string Rickenbacker guitar pioneered folk-rock through his vision of merging the poetic folk music of Bob Dylan with the miraculous electric pop sounds of the British Invasion.

Roger lent his considerable songwriting talents to the Byrds success, writing or co-writing such standards as Eight Miles High, So You Want to Be a Rick & Roll Star, Mr. Spaceman, Ballad of Easy Rider and many other Byrds classics.

He started performing on the folk circuit while still in his teens and played on session for other artists like Hoyt Axton, Judy Collins, and Tom & Jerry (soon to be known as Simon & Garfunkel).

Soon he was playing solo dates in the Los Angeles area where he met David Crosby and Gene Clark and with the addition of Chris Hillman and Michael Clarke, the Byrds were born.

His jangly guitar work on records like Mr. Tambourine Man quickly became the very definition of the folk-rock sound; but the Byrds broke up following the release of their 1968 seminal country-rock breakthrough Sweetheart of the Rodeo.

After several Byrds reincarnations throughout the 1970’s, Roger set out as a solo act. In 1991, the same year the Byrds were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he issued his first new solo project in over a decade, the all-star Back to Rio, which was met with great public and critical acclaim.

The autobiographical one man show, Live from Mars, was released in 1996 and Treasures From The Folk Den with bonus duets with Pete Seeger, Joan Baez, Judy Collins, Odetta, Jean Ritchie, Josh White Jr. and Frank and Mary Hamilton was nominated in 2002 for the Best Traditional Folk Album Grammy.

Roger remains to this day true to his folk roots and one of America’s greatest living troubadours.

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