Elliot Easton

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Elliot Easton
Easton performing with The New Cars, 2006
Easton performing with The New Cars, 2006
Background information
Birth nameElliot Steinberg
Born (1953-12-18) December 18, 1953 (age 69)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
Years active1976–present

Elliot Easton (born Elliot Steinberg,[1] December 18, 1953)[2] is an American guitarist. He played lead guitar and sang backing vocals for The Cars, and his guitar solos are an integral part of the band's music. Easton has also recorded music as a solo artist, and has played in other bands. He is a left-handed guitarist.[2] In 2018, Easton was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Cars.


Easton studied music at the Berklee College of Music.

Easton is a founding member of The Cars and was its lead guitarist.[3] The band was formed in 1976.[4] Its debut album, The Cars (1978), contained the hit single "Just What I Needed". The band went on to release five more albums over the next nine years before breaking up in 1988.[citation needed] Easton was the youngest member of the band.

Easton released one solo album, Change No Change (1985), featuring songs co-written with Jules Shear.[5] One single, "(Wearing Down) Like a Wheel", was released and became a moderate hit on the rock charts.

In the mid-1990s, Easton produced and played on the first two albums by Amy Rigby. He was also the lead guitarist on Jules Shear's 1994 album 'Healing Bones'.[6]

Easton then joined Creedence Clearwater Revisited.[7]

Easton was a member of The New Cars,[8] along with original Cars keyboardist Greg Hawkes, singer/songwriter Todd Rundgren, former Utopia bassist/vocalist Kasim Sulton, and Tubes drummer Prairie Prince.[7] In June 2006, the band released a live album, It's Alive!, that includes three new studio tracks.[9]

Easton was featured and played the solo in the Click Five song "Angel to You (Devil to Me)".[10][11]

In 2010, Easton reunited with the surviving original members of The Cars to record their first album in 24 years, entitled Move Like This. The album was released in 2011,[12] and the band toured in support of it.

Easton next became a founding member of The Empty Hearts supergroup formed in 2014. The band also included The Chesterfield Kings bassist Andy Babiuk, Blondie drummer Clem Burke, The Romantics guitarist and vocalist Wally Palmar, and Faces pianist Ian McLagan.[13]

Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver guitarist Slash has cited Easton as one of his musical influences,[14] praising Easton's concise and melodic solos.

In 2018, Easton was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Cars.[15]

Gibson Guitars Signature Model[edit]

In 2013, the Gibson Guitar Company launched the Elliot Easton "Tikibird" Firebird guitar, which is a modified version of their Firebird model.[16]

Personal life[edit]

Easton has been married twice. As of 2018, he is married to Jill Easton.[17] He has a daughter, Sydney, from his first marriage.[18] He lives in Bell Canyon, California.[19]


Studio albums[edit]

With the Cars[edit]

With Benjamin Orr[edit]

With Elliot Easton's Tiki Gods[edit]

  • Easton Island (2013)


  • "(Wearing Down) Like a Wheel" (1985)
  • "Shayla" (1985)
  • "Tools of Your Labor" (1985)
  • "Monte Carlo Nights" with Elliot Easton's Tiki Gods (1995)


  1. ^ Trakin, Roy (January 1988). "The Cars: The 50,000 Mile Tune Up". Creem (via Rock's Backpages Magazine Archive). Archived from the original on September 6, 2015. Retrieved December 27, 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Elliot Easton | Biography & History | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved May 18, 2016.
  3. ^ Sharp, Ken (April 11, 2018). "Elliot Easton on the Cars in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Their Classic Debut Album and More". www.rockcellarmagazine.com.
  4. ^ "A brief history of the Cars – The Boston Globe". BostonGlobe.com.
  5. ^ "Change No Change – Elliot Easton". AllMusic. Retrieved May 18, 2016.
  6. ^ "Healing Bones – Jules Shear | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved May 18, 2016.
  7. ^ a b "Elliot Easton's New Moves". www.guitarplayer.com. Retrieved May 18, 2016.
  8. ^ White, Dave. "Elliot Easton Interview". About.com. Archived from the original on June 9, 2011. Retrieved July 21, 2010.
  9. ^ "The New Cars: It's Alive Album Review | Pitchfork". m.pitchfork.com. Retrieved May 18, 2016.
  10. ^ Jacobs, Jay S. (September 15, 2005). "The Click Five Interview about 'Welcome to Imrie House'". popentertainment.com. Archived from the original on November 27, 2010. Retrieved February 22, 2020.
  11. ^ Walters, Barry (August 25, 2005). "The Click Five: Greetings From Imrie House". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on April 13, 2009. Retrieved February 22, 2020.
  12. ^ Kachejian, Brian (July 6, 2021). "Why The Band The Cars Were So Unique". ClassicRockHistory.com.
  13. ^ "Meet The Empty Hearts: Members of Blondie, Cars, Romantics, Chesterfield Kings Form New Band". Billboard. Retrieved May 18, 2016.
  14. ^ DwaynesGuitarLessons (December 31, 2014), Slash Talks About His Technique and Style, archived from the original on December 21, 2021, retrieved May 18, 2016
  15. ^ "The Cars". Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Retrieved December 17, 2017.
  16. ^ "Elliot Easton talks guitars, twang and the Tiki Gods' Easton Island". MusicRadar. June 10, 2013. Retrieved May 18, 2016.
  17. ^ "Read the Cars' Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Speeches". Rolling Stone. April 15, 2018.
  18. ^ Easton, Elliot. "Radio Swiss Pop – Music database – Musician". www.radioswisspop.ch.
  19. ^ "Guitarist Elliott Easton, formerly of The Cars, shows off his Gretsch guitar at his home in Bell Canyon". GettyImages.co.uk. Retrieved December 9, 2016.
  20. ^ "Elliot Easton". Billboard. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  21. ^ "Lost Cars Week – Benjamin Orr the Lace". December 2006.

External links[edit]