During his December tour of Japan, Epi's own Will Jones
a.k.a., Dr. Epiphone caught up with Seiji, lead guitarist and singer of the
international phenomenon Guitar Wolf,
Japan’s powerhouse rock band. Their new CD entitled “Love Rock”
features blistering leads from Seiji’s
Hey Seiji, nice to meet you!
SEIJI: Hi Will!
First of all, I noticed you rode in
on a motorcycle… you know from
your music and seeing your pictures, I couldn’t imagine you coming in
any other way. Very cool!
The main thing I wanted to say is thank
you for playing Epiphone guitars so loyally! I’m told that that’s
all you play, and I think that's just so cool!
SEIJI: It is what I like and not expensive!
I saw a conceptual mock-up of the Guitar
Wolf G-310 a few months ago, and I thought that was really cool! So, I’m
happy to see it here in person with its owner.
SEIJI: I love it!
You said that Epiphones were inexpensive,
what else do you like about them?
SEIJI: I hate high-end guitars. I play rough and
break guitars all the time. I might have to replace guitars a lot. Plus,
I like the weight. I like the Epiphone logo too. It’s cool. In the
beginning, Epiphone was reachable for me, and I got so used to it, I won’t
go anywhere else.
Seiji onstage with his signature
How long have you been doing the Guitar
SEIJI: 15 years.
That’s a lot of rockin’!
How’d you get started in your music and the band?
SEIJI: I thought that I would look really cool
with the guitar so I could get some chicks.
Did it work?
SEIJI: (Laughs) that was my first motivation, but
it turned out that I loved the music.
You still haven’t answered, did
SEIJI: (Laughing) We try, but sometimes most of
the audience is male!
Well, maybe they’ll bring their
EPI: You have
a lot of cool vinyl here at your headquarters. Who would you say are your
top musical influences?
SEIJI: Link Wray, Johnny Thunder, Joan Jett, the
Ramones and Elvis.
Rock on! I am a big Elvis fan too. He
started all this mess you know! Are there any new acts you dig?
SEIJI: There are a lot of indies and underground
bands that I like.
Your tour schedule takes you to the
US next spring. How much of your time is spent on the road, as opposed to
writing and recording?
SEIJI: In the past we have spent about one-third
of the year playing live shows but with this new record, we will spend about
half the time playing live. Some of our songs have been charting number one
on American college radio so we are very anxious to do this new tour.
You will do well there!
SEIJI: We have played the US about fifteen or sixteen
times in the past.
What’s your favorite city in the
Ah, Wakarimasu! (Japanese for: “I
SEIJI: Memphis is very memorable for us. It is
where our first record came out. Sometimes in interviews in America, I tell
people I’m from Memphis. I have very many friends at Sun Studio. The
store there has a Guitar Wolf poster hanging up and Japanese tourists recognize
Ah yes, a lot of good mojo there. So
when you go to Memphis, do you go by Graceland and take the tour?
SEIJI: Yes, Elvis’ plane is great! Motorcycles,
planes and cars... He was so cool.
Seiji with his Signature G-310 and
cool matching motorcycle!
Tell me some of the ideas you had for
this new album, “Love Rock”.
SEIJI: My message is to love rock. Explode with
Yes, I’ve listened to it, and
I’ll say you guys aren’t shy.
Good ballsy Rock and Roll! What gives
you guys ideas for songs?
SEIJI: My motorbike…of course, girls, the
vision of youth, outer space, the power of the universe... you know.
EPI: Sounds like straight
ahead Rock and Roll to me! What advice would you give to guys and girls out
there who love music and want to play guitar or want to start a band? What
word would you give them on how to get started?
SEIJI: Love Rock! You gotta rock, rock, you gotta
Love Rock! To me, our main ingredient is Rock!
I hear you….
SEIJI: The first thing really is looks. You have
to show your presence, represent your existence. The second thing is guts.
The third thing is action. On down to number five or six would be
I totally understand. First you rock,
and then you work on technique! It’s not Rock and Roll unless it’s
SEIJI: Oh yeah!
Well again, I like to thank you for
playing Epiphone so loyally over the years and that you are enjoying your
new Guitar Wolf guitar and I look forward to seeing you guys when you come
to Nashville! Thank you very much!
SEIJI: Thank you, Will.
Now show me your bike!
Seiji with Epiphone's Will Jones,
AKA Dr. Epiphone!
To find out more about Guitar Wolf visit