Ry Cooder

Ryland "Ry" Peter Cooder (b. 1947) is a guitarist, singer and composer from the United States. He is known mostly for his slide guitar work, his passion for American roots music, and for his collaborations with The Rolling Stones, the Buena Vista Social Club and many other musicians from countries all around the world. Born in Los Angeles, California on 15th March 1947, Cooder first attracted attention in the 1960s, playing with Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band, after having worked with Taj Mahal in The Rising Sons. ...show more

Ryland "Ry" Peter Cooder (b. 1947) is a guitarist, singer and composer from the United States. He is known mostly for his slide guitar work, his passion for American roots music, and for his collaborations with The Rolling Stones, the Buena Vista Social Club and many other musicians from countries all around the world. Born in Los Angeles, California on 15th March 1947, Cooder first attracted attention in the 1960s, playing with Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band, after having worked with Taj Mahal in The Rising Sons.

He was a session guitarist on various recording sessions with The Rolling Stones in 1968 and 1969; Cooder's contributions most notably appear on the Stones' Beggars Banquet where he shares a prominent credit with pianist, Nicky Hopkins on the back cover. He continued to appear on the succeeding albums, Let It Bleed, and Sticky Fingers, on which he contributed the haunting slide guitar solo to "Sister Morphine". Cooder is reputed to have taught Keith Richards to play in open-G tuning, now a Richards hallmark, as well as to have written the open-G signature riff of "Honky Tonk Women". He was briefly considered to fill the departed Brian Jones' place in the Rolling Stones, but reportedly Cooder and Keith Richards did not get along very well.

For some time after the sessions, Cooder accused Keith Richards of "ripping him off" musically, but now refuses to talk about his experiences with the Stones. Cooder played slide guitar for the 1970 film Performance, which contained Mick Jagger's first solo single, "Memo From Turner" on which Cooder played guitar. Throughout the 1970s Cooder released a series of Warner Brothers albums that showcased his guitar work, to some degree. In this respect, Cooder's guitar work on these records is not unlike the guitar playing of Robbie Robertson on The Band's albums: Both virtuosos emphasized song over solo. ...show less