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Lynch was born in Spokane, Washington and raised near Sacramento, California. He is a highly respected modern guitarist often compared with other guitar heroes such as Randy Rhoads, Steve Vai, Andy Timmons, Eddie Van Halen, Joe Satriani, John Petrucci, and Yngwie J. Malmsteen. Lynch is well known for his famous legato technique and common use of the scale he calls the 'Gothic Octave'. Twice Lynch auditioned for the position of Ozzy Osbourne's lead guitarist, once in 1979 – losing to Randy Rhoads – and another time in 1982 to replace Brad Gillis. According to Lynch, he was hired for three days before Ozzy changed his mind and decided to go with Jake E. Lee. Lee, however claims that Lynch "got the gig, but only went on the road for two weeks to watch the show, and never actually played with Ozzy."
Lynch played in a late 1970s band called The Boyz, working the Sunset Strip clubs in Hollywood alongside Van Halen and Quiet Riot. The Boyz also featured future Dokken drummer Mick Brown, bassist Monte Zufelt and vocalists Lisa Furspanker and Greg Sanford. Their sound and Lynch's playing were so similar to Van Halen that one of their demos was circulated as a "pre-Roth Van Halen recording". The Boyz were set to play a showcase for Gene Simmons and his startup label but Van Halen opened the show and Simmons opted not to stay and see The Boyz. Lynch subsequently formed Xciter before joining Dokken.
Lynch came to fame in the 1980s through his work as the lead guitarist in the band Dokken (whom he had been a member of since the late 1970s). Dokken had a string of successful platinum albums such as "Under lock and key" and "Back For the attack", that prominently featured Lynch's inventive lead guitar work and cemented his reputation as a bonafide guitar hero. The instrumental track "Mr Scary" on Back for the attack contributed to his popularity among guitar players. The band earned a grammy nomination for the "best rock instrumental" in 1989...
In spite of the band's popularity, Lynch left Dokken in 1988 due to internal tensions with lead vocalist Don Dokken. Lynch formed his own hard rock band Lynch Mob which differed from Dokken in lyrical complexity, subject matter, song structure, guitar complexity and tuning, and a notably different approach to vocal harmony than Dokken's soaring harmonies. In 1993, Lynch released his first solo album, Sacred Groove.
By 1994, after the record company refused to release a new Dokken album without George Lynch on guitar, he and Don Dokken set aside their differences and Dokken reformed with their classic lineup. Dokken released two albums and a video during this period but Lynch still found time to tour with his own band, appear at guitar clinics for ESP guitars, and attend the annual NAMM Show. By 1997, tensions had again flared over creative differences and Lynch quit the band to pursue other projects. Lynch was replaced by Reb Beach, and eventually others, and Dokken continued without his involvement.
Lynch reformed Lynch Mob, and released an album with a radically new style, influenced by modern souding bands, with an interesting and new approach. The tour attracted a younger audience.Lynch Mob then recorded an album of re-recorded classic lynch songs from Dokken or Lynch Mob albums, updated to a more contemporary (post-2000) approach and sound.
He also formed a project with former Dokken bassist Jeff Pilson called 'Lynch/Pilson'- Wicked Underground. In 2003 Lynch formed the 'The George Lynch Group' in which he has continued to record and regularly tour. The George Lynch Group performed a marathon, 26 shows in 30 days, including a much talked about feature on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. The line-up is: George Lynch - Guitars, Andrew Freeman - Vocals, Vinny Appice (Black Sabbath/Dio) - Drums, Marten Andersson (Lizzy Borden/Starwood/Legacy) - Bass. The 2005's "Furious George" album is a cover album, including classic rock tunes from ZZ top, Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles, Ac/DC or Led Zeppelin. A new, long awaited, all-instrumental album is currently in progress.
Let the Truth Be Known was released under the band name Souls of We in 2008 and features the line-up of: London LeGrand (vocals), Johnny Chow (bass), and Yael (drums) and a myriad of guest contributions. Lynch embarked on a tour in the early fall of 2008 with a reformed Lynch Mob featuring original singer Oni Logan, bassist Marco Mendoza and drummer Scot Coogan.
2009A new Lynch Mob album, titled Smoke and Mirrors, was released in October 2009 with Logan handling lead vocals. Lynch recorded lead and rhythm guitar tracks in 2009 for seven songs that appear on the debut album of rock singer Raven Quinn. George Lynch and Jeff Pilson joined Mick Brown and Don Dokken for two songs during an encore at a Dokken show at The House of Blues in Anaheim on November 29, 2009. Lynch subsequently announced a reunion of Dokken's "glory days" line-up but the announcement was retracted Lynch released a statement on his website claiming that Don did not want the reunion to occur.
The self-published Raven Quinn album was released March 4, 2010.The self-published album was released March 4, 2010. Lynch toured the spring of 2010 with Souls of We and spent the summer and winter touring with Lynch Mob. In the summer of 2010 Souls of We changed their line-up and were forced to discontinue with the name. Lynch appeared on a tribute album Siam Shade Tribute, for Japanese rock band Siam Shade in 2010.
T & N was formed from 3/4 of the classic Dokken line-up: Lynch, Jeff Pilson, and Mick Brown. They announced plans for a studio album to be released in 2012. The trio's original name was Tooth & Nail. Tooth & Nail was shortened to T & N in March 2012. The band released the album Slave to the Empire on October 31, 2012.
Lynch announced plans for a documentary movie: Shadowtrain: Under A Crooked Sky about the destruction of the Native American community in the fall of 2011. A crowd-funding campaign was launched in March 2013 to complete the project. The movie was still a work in progress as of late 2014 . Lynch put together Shadowtrain featuring documentary filmmaker and drummer Vincent Nicastro, Pueblo Native American vocalist Gregg Analla (Tribe of Gypsies, Slaviour, Seventhsign), ex-Lynch Mob bassist Gabe Rosales, and keyboardist Donnie Dickman. Lynch's all-star project with vocalist/bassist Doug Pinnick and drummer Ray Luzier known as KXM released its debut in 2014. Lynch announced another project: The Infidels, with Pancho Tomaselli, Sal Rodriguez, and rapper Sen Dog. Lynch completed an album with Stryper frontman Michael Sweet, Only to Rise, released on January 27, 2015, on Frontiers Records under the name Sweet & Lynch. The recording- line-up features James Lomenzo and Brian Tichy on bass and drums. The duo released a second album Unified, on November 10, 2017. Lynch teamed up with Living Colour vocalist Corey Glover to form the side project Ultraphonix, releasing the album Original Human Music in 2018. In 2019, Lynch reunited with former Dokken bassist Jeff Pilson in the band The End Machine. The band released their self-titled debut in 2019 and released their second album, The End Machine:Phase 2 in 2021. According to a 2021 interview with Pariah Burke, the band is an intentional return to Lynch's classic sound. In 2020 the Dirty Shirley album was released with two singles preceding. Lynch paired with emerging Croatian rock star vocalist Dino Jelusic (Animal Drive). In 2022, Lynch announced his touring backing band, The Electric Freedom, with Andrew Freeman (Last In Line) on lead vocals, Rob De Luca (Spread Eagle, Skid Row, UFO) on bass and Jimmy D’Anda (ex-BulletBoys).
George currently lives near Los Angeles, and aside from embracing body building, created an instructional guitar website named the "Guitar Dojo".
Lynch has been an endorser of ESP guitars since 1986. His famed Skull and Bones guitar affectionately named "Mom" is one of the most famous in modern rock, and was designed and handcrafted by a friend (the neck was given by ESP). Several George Lynch signature guitars have been produced by ESP Japan since then:
- The Kamikaze model, based on his first ESP guitar
- The Tiger model, a replica of a home made strat george realised in 1980
- The Skull and snakes AKA "Hodgi goes to Hades", a design that was later used as the Lynch Mob "Wicked Sensation" album artwork
- The Flame Boy is based on a ESP Forest Design
- The New Super V includes distressed hardware and features and a new "super V" pickup
These guitars are still avalaible from ESP Japan. The Flame Boy and Super V also exists in a less expensive LTD version.
Seymour Duncan created for George Lynch the Screaming Demon guitar pickup(SH-12 sand TB-12), featured on all the ESP Lynch signature guitars series. This pickup is one of their best sellers. They also recently designed the new Super V pickup to be featured in the Super V model. This pickup can be ordered form the Seymour Duncan custom shop.
His immoderate use of Marshall, Soldano, Bogner & Diezel amps and effects units to achieve his famous tone is well known in rock guitar circles. His rig changes on every tour. Lynch currently endorses Randall amplification and participated in the design of a new George Lynch Box for their modular amp system.
While on tour in 2005 he has used the Randall Dragon (non master volume) tube head for the majority of his sound. The design is very similar to the older marshall plexi heads that he used early on in Dokken.
A Morley A/B box called the tripler is also avalaible. It includes a Boost.
Lynch is endorsing the handcrafted Yamaha L-Series Acoustic Guitars and is on a Asian 'Unplugged' except for a Marshall stack, Clinic tour May/June 2006.
Lynch has also designed a new high-nickel content string through the Dean Markley company to be on the market soon but his name will not be on the package.
Breaking the Chains (1983)
Tooth and Nail (1984)
Under Lock and Key (1985)
Back for the Attack (1987)
Beast from the East (1988)
One Live Night (1996)
From Conception: Live 1981 (2007)
Return to the East Live (2016)
The Lost Songs: 1978—1981 (2020)
With Lynch Mob
Wicked Sensation (1990)
Lynch Mob (1992)
Smoke This (1999)
Evil: Live (2003)
REvolution: Live! (2006)
Smoke and Mirrors (2009)
Unplugged: Live from Sugarhill Studios (2013)
Sun Red Sun (2014)
The Brotherhood (2017)
Sacred Groove (1993)
Will Play for Food (2000)
Stone House (2001)
The Lynch That Stole Riffness! (2002)
Furious George (2004)
The Lost Anthology (2005)
Guitar Slinger (2007)
Scorpion Tales (2008)
Orchestral Mayhem (2010)
Kill All Control (2011)
Legacy EP (2012)
Shadow Train (2015)
With Udo Lindenberg - Keule (1982)
With Hear 'n Aid - Stars (1986)
With Tony MacAlpine - Maximum Security (1987)
With Lynch/Pilson - Wicked Underground (2003) & Heavy Hitters (2020)
With Xciter - Xciter (2006)
With Lana Lane - Gemini (2006)
With Souls of We - Let the Truth Be Known (2008)
With George Lynch & The Stahlwerksinfonie Orchestra - Christmas / Sarajevo (2009)
With Raven Quinn - Raven Quinn (2010)
With Willie Basse - Break Away
With T & N - Slave to the Empire (2012)
With KXM - KXM (2014), Scatterbrain (2017) & Circle of Dolls (2019)
With Sweet & Lynch - Only to Rise (2015) & Unified (2017)
With Project Nfidelikah - Project Nfidelikah (2016)
With Ultraphonix - Original Human Music (2018)
With The End Machine - The End Machine (2019) & The End Machine:Phase 2 (2021)
With Dirty Shirley - Dirty Shirley (2020)
::OFFICIAL ARTIST WEBSITE::
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Gear used by George Lynch
George Lynch links
1954-09-28 to ?
instrumental supporting musician
member of band
- Lynch Mob
- The End Machine
- Dirty Shirley
- George Lynch & the Electric Freedom
- Lynch Pilson
- Sweet & Lynch
- Project Nfidelikah