Stevie Salas

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Stevie Salas
Occupations Guitarist, television, film and record producer, composer
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1985–present
Labels Island Records

Stevie Salas is an American guitarist, television, film and record producer and composer. He has worked with many artists including Mick Jagger, Rod Stewart, and Sass Jordan as a studio musician and producer. He was in Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, providing the guitar playing for George Carlin's comical guitar solo.[1]

Salas has also worked as advisor to contemporary music at the Smithsonian NMAI.

Early career[edit]

In 1987, Salas moved part-time to the United Kingdom and the Netherlands to work on guitar and production sessions. That same year, he co-produced some sessions for Was (Not Was)'s album Out Come the Freaks. In 1988, Salas appeared in and did the guitar film score in the movie Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, playing Rufus' guitar solo. That same year, he joined Rod Stewart as a guitar player on Stewart's world tour. Salas then received a contract with in Island Records as a solo artist getting the biggest contract to that date in Island Records history. In 1989, he moved to New York City and his debut Colorcode with Bill Laswel. He also recorded guitar on Ronald Shannon Jackson's album Red Warrior.

In 1990, Salas released his first solo album Stevie Salas Colorcode, opening for Joe Satriani and his record Flying in a Blue Dream. Despite heavy promotion, Salas' first album did not make a mark in the charts. However, while not popular in the United States, Salas' music began to receive some attention in both Japan and Europe.

1990s to 2010s[edit]

In 1993, he released Stevie Salas Electric Pow Wow, a cover album featuring celebrity guests playing covers of songs that Salas was influenced by growing up, to critical acclaim. Then in 1994, Salas released Back From the Living. He had some success, especially in Japan, where his singles "Start Again" and "Tell Your Story Walkin" were released. During this time, he also produced and co-wrote the album Rats by Sass Jordan.

In 1995, Salas after a major bidding war left PolyGram and ended up forming his own label financed and distributed by a Japanese Major Pony Canyon. In that year, he produced and self-released the album 12 Hits and a Bump with Bernard Fowler under the name Nicklebag. Salas released his fourth solo album Alter Native. In 1998 Salas released The Sometimes Almost Never Was. In 1999, Salas appeared at the Fuji Rock Festival playing the main stage, with plans for that to be his last-ever Colorcode concert

After a period of inactivity, in 2001, Mick Jagger hired him to play guitar on some concert dates. They also played Saturday Night Live. In 2001, Salas released Shapeshifter: The Fall and Rise of Stevie No-Wonder. In 2003, he released The Soulblasters of the Universe, and did his first European Colorcode tour since 1999. In 2006 Salas released Be What It Is. That same year, Salas became a consultant and music director for 19 Entertainment and American Idol working four seasons directly with Daughtry, Jordin Sparks, David Cook, Allison Iraheta, Kris Alan and Adam Lambert.

In 2006, Salas contributed his song "Blind", from the album Colorcode, to the album project Artists for Charity - Guitarists 4 the Kids, produced by Slang Productions to assist World Vision Canada in helping underprivileged kids in need.[2]

In 2007, Salas became the host and executive producer of the Canadian Music TV series Arbor Live for APTN. In mid-2009, Salas co-founded with the internet entrepreneur Laurence Dorazio the company Rockstar Solos, LLC which focuses on iPhone and iPad gaming and entertainment application development. The first application also called Rockstar Solos became available in the iTunes Store in December 2009.[3] The company Rockstar Logic has over 345 thousand downloads to date.

In 2009, Salas received a Native American Lifetime Achievement Award at the Native American Music Awards. From 2010 to 2012, he served as the advisor to contemporary music at National Museum of the American Indian. He co-created both the Up Where We Belong-Natives In Popular Culture exhibit and The Living Earth Festival. In 2012 Salas created and is executive producer of Catch The Dream Bios with Adam Beach for APTN with shows airing 2014.

Salas is currently executive producing Rumble, a Native American music documentary for PBS and Super Channel.

Musical influences[edit]

Salas' musical influences are derived mainly from late 60s and 70s rock and roll music, as well as funk. Artists who have had an impact on Salas as a musician include Van Halen, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, James Brown and Kiss.[4]


Solo albums[edit]

  • 1990 Stevie Salas Colorcode
  • 1991 Stuff EP
  • 1992 Bootleg Like a Mug (Live in Japan)
  • 1993 The Electric Pow Wow
  • 1994 Back From The Living
  • 1995 All That...And Born To Mack (Live in Japan)
  • 1996 Anthology Of Stevie Salas Colorcode 1987–1994
  • 1996 Alter Native
  • 1996 Alter Native EP
  • 1997 Alter Native Gold
  • 1997 Le Bootleg (Live in Paris)
  • 1997 Seoul Power
  • 1998 Viva La Noise
  • 1998 The Sometimes Almost Never Was
  • 1999 Sol Power
  • 2001 Shapeshifter – The Rise And Fall of Stevie No Wonder
  • 2004 The Soulblasters of The Universe
  • 2004 The Soulblasters of The Universe – Cosmic Flutie A Mixtape for the Underdog
  • 2006 Be What It Is
  • 2007 The Sun and the Earth
  • 2009 Set It On Blast
  • 2010 Jam Power


  1. ^ Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989) – Soundtracks
  2. ^ "Slang Productions - Guitarists 4 the Kids". Slang Productions. September 11, 2006. Retrieved March 30, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Rockstar Solos Stevie Salas iPhone iPad applications guitar games". Retrieved 2012-04-03. 
  4. ^ "Stevie Salas Fave 5 Record Reviews". Guitarhoo!. January 7, 2013. Retrieved March 9, 2013. 

External links[edit]