2003: Don’t Walk Away

Ten years ago, magazine racks had an entire shelf of monthly guitar magazines and special issues for me to buy and consume.  Today, the only major US publications are Guitar World and Guitar Player and that saddens me.  It’s not much of a surprise with the continued movement toward digital content, but there’s something about flipping through the pages of a new source of information and lessons that always got me excited.

In 2003, one of the many publications released a special 80s-themed issue (it’s as if they had me in mind!) which contained a list of the 50 essential shred guitar albums.  Thus, I made it my mission to buy as many of those CDs as I could find!  I already owned most the list but there were a few I hadn’t heard yet – including the self-titled debut by Danger Danger.  Once again, I was back in the car headed for Vintage Vinyl where I snagged copies of that and Yngwie Malmsteen’s Marching Out.

Danger Danger came along at the end of the mainstream reign of hair metal.  Despite having cut their teeth in New York like Winger, the band were lumped in with the Sunset Strip scene with Poison and Mötley Crüe.  They also had a pretty good knack for doubling up on words: the band name is Danger Danger and two of their singles were called “Naughty Naughty” and “Bang Bang.”  Maybe that wasn’t a big help to them.  None of that mattered to me though, because I had yet another melodic rock band to add to my collection.

Out of the album’s 11 tracks, I was most taken with the mid-tempo ballad “Don’t Walk Away,” especially its guitar solo.  One night, I sat down and transcribed its eight bars of E Major deliciousness, something I hadn’t done in quite a while.  I also brought the song to my guitar lesson the following week so I could learn what was happening in the other layers of the song, which had a Def-Leppard-Hysteria-like quality to it.  Even after all these years, I’ll still play the song all the way through on either acoustic or electric guitar because it lends itself so well to the melodic style I dig so much.

Click the play button to hear why I’m so into it.

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