Born as Geoffrey Arnold Beck in Wallington (UK) on 24 June 1944, Jeff Beck learned to play on a borrowed guitar as a teenager and repeatedly tried to build his own instrument. Upon leaving school he attended Wimbledon College of Art, after which he was briefly employed as a painter and decorator, a groundsman on a golf course and a car paint-sprayer. Beck’s sister Annetta introduced him to Jimmy Page when both were teenagers.
After playing with groups like Screaming Lord Sutch and the Savages, Nightshift and the Tridents, he was recruited to succeed Eric Clapton in the Yardbirds in 1965. After twenty months he was fired for repeatedly not showing up during a US tour. Although he recorded two hit albums (in 1975 and 1976) as a solo act, Beck has not established or maintained the sustained commercial success of many of his contemporaries and bandmates. Beck appears on albums by Rod Stewart, Mick Jagger, Tina Turner, Morrissey, Jon Bon Jovi, Malcolm McLaren, Roger Waters, Donovan, Stevie Wonder, Les Paul, Zucchero, Cyndi Lauper, Brian May, Stanley Clarke, ZZ Top, and Toots and the Maytals.
For Kate Bush, he played guitar on her track You’re The One.
Jeff Beck passed away on 10 January 2023, aged 77.