Elliot Easton

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Elliot Easton
Easton performing with The New Cars, 2006
Background information
Born (1953-12-18) December 18, 1953 (age 66)
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
  • Musician
  • guitarist
  • singer
  • songwriter
Years active1976–present
Associated acts

Elliot Easton (born Elliot Steinberg, December 18, 1953)[2][3] is an American musician, guitarist, singer and songwriter. He played lead guitar and sang backing vocals for The Cars. His guitar solos are an integral part of the band's hit singles.[4] He studied music at the Berklee College of Music. He is a left-handed guitarist. Upon the collapse of the Cars in 1988, Easton played in bands such as the New Cars and the roots rock group Creedence Clearwater Revisited.[4] He has also played in songs by newer artists such as the power pop band the Click Five, whose guitarist Joe Guese referred to him as "the Boston connection".[5] In 2018, Easton was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Cars.[6]

Solo career[edit]

Easton released one solo album in 1985, Change No Change, featuring songs co-written with Jules Shear.[7] One single "(Wearing Down) Like a Wheel" was released and became a moderate hit on the rock charts. A later band project, Band of Angels, was formed with singer Danny Malone, and recorded one album, Band of Angels, which was not released, but selections from which were included in the 1996 CD release of Change No Change.

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'.[8]

In 1998, Easton's playing was featured on No Cats, an album from bassist Lee Rocker of Stray Cats. He contributed guitar parts for "Rumblin' Bass" and "One Way or Another." According to both Easton and Rocker, the two have known each other since they were young boys growing up in New York.

Easton then joined Creedence Clearwater Revisited.[9]

He has also played with Ric Ocasek as a solo artist. Easton was a member of The New Cars, along with original Cars keyboardist Greg Hawkes, singer/songwriter Todd Rundgren, former Utopia bassist/vocalist Kasim Sulton, and Tubes drummer Prairie Prince.[10] In June 2006, the band released a live album, It's Alive!, that includes three new studio tracks.[11]

He was featured and played the solo in the Click Five song "Angel To You (Devil To Me)".

In 2010, Easton reunited with the surviving original members of The Cars to record their first album in 24 years, entitled Move Like This, which was released on May 10, 2011.

Easton resurfaced in 2013 with his Tiki Gods project. On February, 13th, 2013, Easton's Tiki Gods released the album "Easton Island" as an mp3 download album only. It was made available through the Amazon and iTunes store. A physical CD was released in May 2013. 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.[12] The band's self-titled first album was released 5 August 2014 and produced by The Ramones producer Ed Stasium.

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.[13]

Gretsch Guitars Signature Model[edit]

Gretsch Guitars G6128T Elliot Easton Signature Electric Guitar 2001. The Elliot Easton models were a little different from the standard Duo Jets. They featured a 1 ¾” deep body that’s technically more accurate to the original late 1950s spec. The guitar also features a graphite nut, Sperzel locking tuners, a fixed tunematic style bridge and the B7G Bigsby with tension bar. Another less apparent difference is the scale length. The Easton model has a 25” scale length as opposed to the 24.6” scale length found on nearly all other modern Duo Jets.

The Elliot Easton signature guitar features vintage Duo Jet style with ultra-pro refinements courtesy of Elliot and Gretsch. Its updates include Sperzel locking tuners with small vintage tuning keys, 25" scale length, graphite nut, 2 alnico-magnet Filter'Tron pickups, and a Tune-O-Matic bridge. You also get custom touches like a master volume control with no loss of highs at lower volumes, a pickup selector switch that's closer to the strumming hand, and a tone switch with a distinctive, midrange lead voice. It has the '50s-style narrow headstock, 2-piece maple neck, ebony fingerboard, neoclassical thumbnail position markers, and a semi-hollow mahogany body with an arched maple top. It's a unique hybrid that keeps the vintage Gretsch look and sound with special custom touches and added versatility.

Features •Elliot Easton signature on trussrod cover •Single cutaway semi-hollowbody guitar •13-1/4" wide, 1-3/4" deep mahogany body •Arched maple top •2-piece maple neck •25" scale •2 High Sensitive FilterTron pickups •3-position pickup toggle switch •Neck and bridge pickup volume with master volume •3-position master tone switch with special midrange lead voicing •1-11/16" nut width •12" radius ebony fretboard •22 frets •Tune-O-Matic bridge •Bigsby B7G vibrato tailpiece •Gold-plated hardware •Deluxe Sperzel die-cast locking tuners •Neo classic thumbnail fretboard inlays •Graphite nut •Body, headstock, and fingerboard binding •Gold plexi pickguard •Adjustable truss rod •Includes G6238 deluxe hardshell case

Personal life[edit]

Elliot Easton married twice and is now married to his second wife Jill Easton.[14] He has a daughter Sydney from his first marriage.[15]

He lives in Bell Canyon, California.[16]


Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver guitarist Slash has cited Easton as one of his musical influences.[17]


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. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20101127220350/http://popentertainment.com/clickfive.htm
  2. ^ Trakin, Roy (January 1988). "The Cars: The 50,000 Mile Tune Up". Creem (via Rock's Backpages Magazine Archive). Archived from the original on 2015-09-06. Retrieved 2019-12-27.
  3. ^ "Elliot Easton | Biography & History | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  4. ^ a b White, Dave. "Elliot Easton Interview". About.com. Archived from the original on June 9, 2011. Retrieved July 21, 2010.
  5. ^ 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 July 21, 2010.
  6. ^ "The Cars". Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Retrieved 17 December 2017.
  7. ^ "Change No Change - Elliot aston". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  8. ^ "Healing Bones - Jules Shear | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  9. ^ http://www.guitarplayer.com/miscellaneous/1139/elliot-eastons-new-moves/21696
  10. ^ "Elliot Easton's New Moves". www.guitarplayer.com. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  11. ^ "The New Cars: It's Alive Album Review | Pitchfork". m.pitchfork.com. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  12. ^ "Meet The Empty Hearts: Members of Blondie, Cars, Romantics, Chesterfield Kings Form New Band". Billboard. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  13. ^ "Elliot Easton talks guitars, twang and the Tiki Gods' Easton Island". MusicRadar. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  14. ^ https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/read-the-cars-grateful-rock-and-roll-hall-of-fame-induction-speeches-628937/
  15. ^ http://www.radioswisspop.ch/en/music-database/musician/208048a1e82ea847fe4be0279152d201f1179/biography
  16. ^ Guitarist Elliott Easton, formerly of The Cars, shows off his Gretsch guitar at his home in Bell Canyon. (Photo by Axel Koester/Corbis via Getty Images) Retrieved 2016-12-09.
  17. ^ DwaynesGuitarLessons (2014-12-31), Slash Talks About His Technique and Style, retrieved 2016-05-18
  18. ^ "Elliot Easton". Billboard. Retrieved 2019-09-18.
  19. ^ http://popdose.com/lost-cars-week-benjamin-orr-the-lace/

External links[edit]