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George Lynch (born September 28, 1954) is a Hard rock guitarist best known as a member of the band Dokken.

Pre Dokken

Lynch was born in Spokane, Washingtonmarker and raised in the small town of Auburnmarker, Californiamarker. Guitarist Mark Kendall claims George started two hand tapping before Eddie Van Halen did. 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 looks back on the situation positively though, he has said "I won the consolation prize, Randy got to tour with Ozzy...and I got to teach at his mom's school."


Lynch came to fame in the 1980s through his work as the lead guitarist in the band Dokken (of which he had been a member since 1980). 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.

Lynch Mob and Post-Dokken

In spite of the band's popularity, the group parted ways in March 1989 due to internal tensions with lead vocalist Don Dokken. Lynch formed his own hard rock band Lynch Mob which differed from Dokken in lyrical and guitar complexity, subject matter, song structure, and tuning. Lynch then took time off and his wife had a baby girl named Mariah Lynch. After spending a few years with his family he got back to work. In 1993, Lynch released his first solo album, Sacred Groove.

Reunion with Dokken

By 1994, after Don Dokken, Jeff Pilson and Mick Brown reunited, they decided to try and bring Lynch back into the fold as well for a true reunion of Dokken. Lynch agreed to put all differences aside to give it a go once more. The reunited version of Dokken was signed to the Columbia/Sony label and after extensive writing, released Dysfunctional. Unfortunately the album did not do as well as expected and the band was dropped from the label. Dokken then signed on with CMC International and released an unplugged show the band performed in late 1994 titled One Live Night. By 1996 the band entered the studio and hired producer Kelly Gray. Gray along with Lynch, Pilson and Brown wanted to take Dokken in a new direction to the dismay of vocalist and founder Don Dokken and released Shadowlife which was a complete switch from melodic rock to a more alternative sound. Lynch still found time to appear at guitar clinics for ESP guitars and attend the annual NAMM Show. By 1997, tensions had again flared between Don and Lynch which led to Lynch quitting Dokken.

Reuniting Lynch Mob and after

This prompted Lynch to call his former Lynch Mob members Oni Logan, Anthony Esposito and Mick Brown for a reunion of Lynch Mob. The group entered the studio and demo-ed 3 songs (later released as an EP titled SYZYGY). However Logan decided to leave the band to pursue other projects before a full album could be completed. Mick Brown decided to stay with Dokken.

George himself then decided he wanted to take Lynch Mob in a totally new direction influenced by contemporary bands. The Lynch Mob's radical new look and interesting new musical approach attracted a younger audience. In 1999 they released the album "Smoke This". After touring in support of "Smoke This" Lynch decided to put Lynch Mob on hold for a couple years, but not until he toured with Lynch Mob's original singer Oni Logan, L.A. Guns' bassist Chuck Garric, and Bulletboys' drummer Jimmy D'Anda in late 2001. In early 2002 George began working with a producer/engineer named Sean Fodor on the ill fated Microdot project which featured then unknown vocalist London LeGrand. Only a few songs from that "lost" project have ever seen the light of day. "Bulldog Tyranny" on "The Lost Anthology" and 3 other songs George later released as "The Lynch That Stole Riffness" with Robert Mason taking the helm on vocals. Then in late 2002, George Lynch decided to reform Lynch Mob with original bassist Anthony Esposito and the singer from their 2nd album Robert Mason. Lynch Mob then recorded an album of re-recorded classic Lynch songs from Dokken and 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 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, and Led Zeppelin.

On May 13, 2008, "Let the Truth Be Known" was released under the band name Souls of We . It features London LeGrand (vocals), Johnny Chow (bass), and Yael (drums). Despite this new band and new album, in the early fall of 2008 Lynch embarked on a tour with a reformed Lynch Mob featuring original singer Oni Logan, bassist Marco Mendoza and drummer Tommy Aldridge. A new Lynch Mob album, called "Smoke And Mirrors," was released in October 2009 with Logan handling lead vocals.

George currently lives near Los Angeles, and aside from embracing body building, created an instructional guitar website named the Dojo.


Lynch has been an endorser of ESP guitars since 1986. His famed Skull and Bonesmarker guitar affectionately named "Mom" is one of the most famous in modern rock, and was designed and hand-crafted by a friend (the neck was given by ESP). "Mom" is actually a J Frog guitar but since George was endorsing ESP guitars, an ESP decal was applied to the headstock. 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 released in 1980

- The Skull & Snakes, a design that was later used as the Lynch Mob "Wicked Sensation" album artwork

- The Flame Boy is based on an ESP Forest design

- The New Super V includes distressed hardware and features and a new "Super V" pickup

- Featured in the "Breaking the Chains" music video, he had custom made chain like strings on his tiger guitar.

- The Serpent, an ESP model released and used in the 1990s. An LTD signature series model was released in 2008.

These guitars are still available from ESP Japan. The Flame Boy and Super V also exist in less expensive LTD versions.

Seymour Duncan created for George Lynch the Screaming Demon guitar pickup (SH-12 and TB-12), featured on all the ESP Lynch signature guitar 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 from 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 available. It includes a Boost.

A limited edition Robert Keeley GL Time Machine boost was made available in 2004.

Lynch is endorsing the hand-crafted Yamaha L-Series Acoustic Guitars and is on an 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 with his name on the packaging.In 2008 Zoom released the G2g George Lynch Pedal

Lynch is now signed with Washburn Guitars who have created his own signature model, the Lynch Jumbo acoustic with graphics designed by Stephen Jensen.

Guitar style

George Lynch is often praised for his extremely unorthodox style of guitar playing.

Lynch plays rhythm using a lot of open string chords and hitting all six strings to fill out the sound. Full barre chords are extremely rare, although he does use a lot of root-5 power chords. Tritones are also a preferred part of his playing; he can often be heard sliding the 5th down to a b5, and also happens to slide the root down 1 fret as well. The most interesting thing about the way George plays rhythm is to listen to what is going on with his picking hand. He employs a lot of accents, chirps, bends, etc., to spice things up. When playing clean passages, he relies on arpeggios and usually tries to stick to open string chords, often employing some unusual fingerings.

George Lynch is also known to use a variety of unusual scales. George often mixes major and minor scales in the same solo, often changing back and forth as his ear dictates. He loves to emphasize the major 3rd, and tritone (b5) when soloing, which lends an Arabic sound to his leads without being purely Phrygian mode. He tends to alternate long sustained notes with bursts of speed similar to Allan Holdsworth, applying one of several finger vibrato styles (see below), or occasionally using the whammy bar. He uses a lot of string bends as well as the whammy bar to slide into pitches, ala Jeff Beck.

George has a good balance of legato and alternate picking in his lead work. The very sustained lead tone he uses lends itself to hammer-ons and pull-offs, which he often takes advantage of in slower passages. He often relies on speedy alternate picking during very fast runs.

Among George's stylistic trademarks are several techniques picked from classical string players. For example, there's the "jackoff vibrato" — instead of applying vibrato to a note the way most blues based lead guitarists do, Lynch uses a technique similar to what a classical violinist might do, moving his fretting hand from side to side parallel to the neck, rather than perpendicular to it. George also will place his left hand under the neck with his thumb barring across the top of the neck, and then use his other 4 fingers to hit harmonics. This is an acoustic bass technique.


George has cited Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck and Michael Schenker, along with Eddie Van Halen and Yngwie Malmsteen as being part of his musical influences.



Lynch Mob
  • Wicked Sensation (1990)
  • Lynch Mob (1992)
  • Syzygy (1998)
  • Smoke This (1999)
  • Evil: Live (2003)
  • REvolution (2003)
  • REvolution LIVE! (2005)
  • Smoke and Mirrors (2009)

  • Sacred Groove (1993)
  • Live In Florida (1999)[43459]
  • Will Play for Food (2000)
  • Stone House (2001)
  • The Lynch That Stole Riffness! (2002)
  • Furious George (2004)
  • The Lost Anthology (2005)
  • Scorpion Tales (2007)
  • Guitar Slinger (2007)

  • Wicked Underground (2003)

Tony MacAlpine
  • Maximum Security (1987)


Lana Lane
  • Gemini (2006)

Souls of We
  • Let the Truth Be Known (2008)


External links

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