Muddy started playing guitar when he was just 13 years old. Hearing Paul McCartney singing "She´s A Woman"was then, the defining moment of his life.
He wanted to be a musician from then on in. It´s been a long road since, starting with some basic classical guitar lessons, then purcasing his first electric guitar (an Ibanez Les Paul copy) His first band comprised of school mates. His first recordings were with the Red House Blues band in the late 70s...
Muddy started playing professionally around -1979 - 1980 in his hometown of Helsinki; playing in different bands, & also doing sessions. Having formed his own first band Havana Blacks, soon after to be followed by Gringos Locos, who recorded three albums, one of them, Punch Drunk, was produced by the legendary Tom Dowd. All this was part of the learning curve leading him to join Wishbone Ash in 2004.
The first album featuring him was the 2005 "Clan Destiny". He then started honing his song writing skills for the following three albums, "Power Of Eternity", "Elegant Stealth" and the critically acclaimed "Blue Horizon"
Muddy became the band´s main song writer, as well as sharing the lead guitar duties.
During his stay in Wishbone Ash, in his free time Muddy also worked in other projects. Playing gigs locally with Hipkiss, featuring Patsy Gamble on sax and vocals, contributing guitar to Jenny Darren´s "Ladykiller" album, and song writing with Gregg Sutton.
Setting out on a new career journey in the spring of 2017, Muddy started on his solo venture, working on his first album, which was released on the 14th of July 2017.
Since then, he has been working with Hipkiss, which released it's first album in 2018, touring with Martin Engeliens Go Music band, as well as with Ben Granfelt in Guitars, Guitars And more Guitars, Melanie Denard , and with Greig Taylor
Through the years I have used quite a lot of different gear. I 've experimented with different amps, both vintage and modern. Gone from Gibson guitars to 80 s Floyd Rose equipped ones, to Fender Strats and then back again to Gibson It’s all in the wrist though (as they say) and give a good guitar player anything with strings attached (well almost) and they will make it sing. My first electric guitar was an Ibanez Les Paul copy, and that sort of set my on a path of Les Pauls and various other Gibson. The scale feels comfortable, slightly easier to play than a Fender. I’ve had many different Les Pauls, Sgs, Les Paul Juniors, Firebirds and flying Vs, but if I’d have to choose only one, it would be the Les Paul. It’s the looks, sound and versatility. Sometime back in the 80 s everybody got into Kramers and Jacksons with a Floyd Rose tremolo system, so did I, but I always had a Les Paul on the side. In the late 90 s, I got into playing Fender Strats quite a bit (that didn't last long though) By the time I joined Wishbone Ash I was back with Gibsons, using a Custom Shop reissue 57 Les Paul junior. Untill the airline smashed it!? ......but that’s another story. I have always used strings gauged 10-46. As for amplifiers... it’s mostly a Fender or a Marshall, all tubes. If it’s a small venue, a good clean sound, and you can get all the overdrive you need from today’s pedals. Things have changed quite a lot from the 70s in that respect. If it’s a reasonably sized venue, you can turn the amp up a little, and get that lovely ,natural overdrive. Just boost the solos with a overdrive pedal. As for my pedalboard, it’s fairly simple: delay, wah, leslie pedal plus two different overdrives, Bogner Blue and a Analog Man Prince Of Tone. Using these and the volume and tone controls on the guitar you can get quite a few different tones.￼
Muddy Manninen January 2018