Mike Mushok

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Mike Mushok
Birth name Michael Mushok
Born (1969-04-10) April 10, 1969 (age 47)
Ludlow, Massachusetts, United States
Occupation(s) Guitarist, musician, songwriter
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1995–present
Associated acts Staind, Newsted, Saint Asonia
Notable instruments
PRS Mike Mushok signature baritone guitar
Ibanez MMM1 Mike Mushok signature baritone guitar

Michael "Mike" Mushok (born April 10, 1969) is an American musician best known as the lead guitarist for the alternative metal band Staind. In addition to Staind, Mushok has also been a member of the bands Newsted and Saint Asonia

Life and career[edit]

Mike Mushok was born in Ludlow, Massachusetts on April 10, 1969.

In 1995, Mushok joined Staind with Aaron Lewis, Johnny April, and Jon Wysocki in Springfield, Massachusetts. That same year, they self-released their debut album Tormented. Soon after that, the band received a concert slot through Aaron Lewis' cousin Justin Cantor with Limp Bizkit. Shortly before the performance, Limp Bizkit frontman Fred Durst confronted the band about their album's graphic cover art, and accused them of being satan worshippers. But, Durst ended up being impressed by Staind's performance.

Following that, Staind released the albums Dysfunction in 1999,[1] Break the Cycle in 2001,[2] 14 Shades of Grey in 2003, Chapter V in 2005, The Singles: 1996-2006 in 2006, The Illusion of Progress in 2008, and their self-titled album in 2011 before going on hiatus in 2012. In 2014, Staind began to tour again briefly before going on a second hiatus. As of right now, the band's future is unknown.

In 2013, Mushok joined the heavy metal band Newsted, fronted by former Metallica bassist Jason Newsted.

After Newsted disbanded in 2014, Mike joined Saint Asonia in 2015, and is still with them today.

Playing style and influences[edit]

Mike Mushok has a distinctive playing style. He is known for using baritone guitars and experimenting with tunings, but also uses standard guitars, which are most of the time tuned to D# standard. Mushok incorporates several different techniques into his playing, including single-note lead lines, power chords, and octave chords. In addition to guitar, Mushok also has performed spoken-word vocals on the Staind album Tormented. He cites Tony MacAlpine (his guitar teacher), Eddie Van Halen, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Johnson, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Dimebag Darrell among his guitar influences.



Mike is well known for using baritone guitars made by PRS and Ibanez tuned down to Drop G# with the second string tuned up a half-step to F# to emulate a seven-string tuning (G#D#G#C#F#A#) as well as Double Drop G# (G#C#G#C#F#A#) on some songs, and has had signature guitars made for him by both companies. His signature PRS baritone guitar was released in 2009 and was available in silverburst and brown sunburst finishes, while his signature Ibanez baritone guitar had been released in 2003-2007 and had a neck-thru design. He also used a custom seven-string guitar tuned to (F#C#G#C#F#A#D#) on the Staind self-titled album as well as the debut Saint Asonia album.


Throughout his career, Mushok has used Marshall, Rivera, and Diezel amplifiers, as well as Marshall speaker cabinets.


Mushok does not use effects very often, but has used a phaser on the song "Fade" by Staind, and also has used a Boss OC-3 Super Octave pedal, a Boss NS-2 Noise Suppressor pedal, and a wah-wah pedal (although it is unknown what kind of wah he uses).

Personal life[edit]

Mushok is married and has two children.