Joe Bonamassa has emerged as the modern-day guitar god, be that with his own house-rattling solo projects, band work with Black Country Communion and Rock Candy Funk Party, or via his scorching duo collaborations with Beth Hart.
But who does Bonamassa listen to? Turns out, it’s Milwaukee-born Greg Koch, a sometime touring partner, Fender clinician, and leader on some 12 solo albums. Bonamassa praises Koch as “pound for pound the best guitar player in the world today,” specifically mentioning Koch’s “unrivaled” tone, feel and style. “He is,” Bonamassa has said, “scary good.”
Koch, speaking to Volume Treble Bass, is taking that huge compliment in stride: “That was unbelievably kind of Joe to say but when someone says ‘the best,’ Koch tells T-Bone Mathley. “I think it’s a really nice way of saying favorite. I think Joe is a phenomenon. He’s got it all and has been brilliant in his strategy for world domination. I dig a lot of players — too many to mention but Jack Pearson, Robben Ford, John Scofield, Ronnie Earl are some that I’ve listened to in the recent past.”
Koch has previously worked with a pair of former Ford sidemen in Roscoe Beck and Tom Brechtlein. His current release is From The Attic, featuring Tom Good and Del Bennett.