Dean Parks Breaks Down His Most Iconic Guitar Parts |

Dean Parks Breaks Down His Most Iconic Guitar Parts


We sat down with Dean Parks: the mastermind behind iconic guitar riffs that have shaped generations. In this interview, Dean takes us on a journey through his illustrious career, sharing captivating anecdotes and behind-the-scenes stories from his time recording with some of the biggest names in the industry: Steely Dan, Stevie Wonder, Eric Clapton, Babyface and Toni Braxton to name a few.
James Tyler 335-style Prototype
Custom-Built Dragge Acoustic
Custom-Built Classical Guitar (Made by Earl Prince)
Dr.Z Carmen Ghia (Clean Amp)
Guytron GT100 F/V (Dirty Amp)
Table of Contents
00:00 Dean Plays “Josie” by Steely Dan
01:04 Recording “Josie” with Steely Dan
08:05 The Story Behind “Haitian Divorce” by Steely Dan
15:02 Recording “Deacon Blues” with Steely Dan
17:48 Dean Plays “Deacon Blues” by Steel Dan
18:42 Dean’s Experience Recording Guitar on “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number”
21:14 Dean Plays “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number”
22:24 Steely Dan’s “First-Call” Guitarist
23:30 Recording Guitar on “Change the World” by Eric Clapton
27:04 Dean Plays “Change the World” by Eric Clapton
29:12 The Story Behind “Unbreak My Heart” by Toni Braxton
32:10 Dean Plays “Unbreak My Heart” by Toni Braxton
33:26 Dean’s Preferred Pick for Nylon Guitar
35:55 Recording the Dreamworks Intro Guitar Part
36:44 Recording on Songs in the Key of Life by Stevie Wonder
38:48 Dean plays “As” by Stevie Wonder
39:46 Recording Guitar on “Inner Visions” by Stevie Wonder
41:13 Dean Explains Iconic Photos from his Career
45:05 Thanks for Watching!
Dean Plays “Josie” by Steely Dan
thank you oh Dean that is uh if you're a guitar
player that's uh one one of the songs you've ever heard
well if people haven't already realized we are here with the incomparable Dean
parks and amazing session musician that played with the likes of Steely Dan
among many other amazing musicians which we'll cover today from Stevie Wonder to
Toni Braxton to Eric Clapton and Babyface and well beyond that is just a
smidgen of the total amount of just amazing artists that you played with thank you so much Dean for green to let
us interview you today my pleasure and as we just heard from 1977 the song
Recording “Josie” with Steely Dan
Josie from Steely Dan I want to waste no time getting into the details
uh that session you obviously played on several songs on Asia this being one of
the the big hits uh on that album what can you tell us about the session what
can you tell us about the gear working with Donald Fagan and Walter Becker well
uh working with them was an enigma always because uh they weren't sure what
they wanted either they were listening to their ideas that they did on a demo I
did the Rhythm track uh chart for this so I heard their demo and basically
every uh important musical element was there in the demo was just a Donald singing live I assume while he's playing
uh word Lister and Walter on pick bass
and uh but that intro was on there he played it on his word let's turn he gave
me a little sheet of the voicings so that I would have the voicings he had and then I did
Rhythm charts that everybody could navigate and uh
so the equipment so I think back when there was no chorus unit the first thing that happened in
the music business where there was a chorus unit was the JC 120 I think it
was the Roland yep Jazz Chorus yep they had one there and I plugged into it and
they wanted me to play the part through that and they mic both speakers so they'd have stereo
chorusing so I've simulated that with a little course unit there
but they also didn't want me to play both parts so I
I did that on the tracking
and on an overdub as soon as we got a track I did the foreign
when you hear some little flaming in there it's because there are two parts but it's not a doubled part yes one part
is the lower part one part is the upper part so do you think that was deliberate or that just kind of was the they had
that in their mind they didn't there was no negotiating about it or they weren't endowed about what they wanted to do
they knew they wanted to do that so I I haven't checked the panning on the on the the original to see whether they pan
I don't think they did I think they took a stereo of everything just laid it on top of it so I'm I'm not sure why they
wanted it separate but maybe they tried panning things and decided it sounded
better in front when you did that session were they in the room and kind of kind of just saying what they wanted
or yeah yeah they were in and out of the room and mostly in the booth uh Donald had done a couple of scratch vocals
maybe uh with us while we played so we know the context but most of it we were just doing the track read the chart
which was two lines uh and it was kind of common
in those days the top line is any voicings the keyboard would happen and this part
foreign I had Victor Feldman do that on her
roads as well so we're doubling that little part so we could read that part if there's
any other stray Rhythm Parts in a different kind of a session the slash marks The rhythms and the chord changes
would be in the middle between the two stabs and the lower staff would be the base part so then everybody's looking at
the same thing but you have a separate part to zero in on uh if you're a bass player or a guitar player or keyboard
player and uh and then if you make changes it's the same everybody's looking at the same piece of paper so it
makes it a quick way to to to work through and that wouldn't have been with the click track any of this stuff no
predated it had to make the beat yeah that's the getting one that's steady all the way through was part of the part of
the game yeah and that wouldn't have been a particularly easy thing because when Jim Keltner comes in I mean that timing had to be pretty perfect when he
starts coming yeah we just listen to what he's doing and the you know the the fill in the middle yeah yeah
boom well the only person Within is Chuck Rainey so the downbeat Chuck was right next to him
as close as this I'm sure watching his foot made sure that he hit the downbeat
yeah boy that must have been something and so were all those guys always just done live or were yeah four piece okay
Victor Feldman on Rhodes me on guitar and Keltner and Chuck Rainey gosh talk
about like Heavy Hitters man it was just like I mean this crazy career is between all these oh yeah I know completely well
we were all thrilled to be playing with each other for one thing because as many players as there are
when you're in a particular combination well that's unique you know yeah never done another session with those three
guys yeah same room right I never played with Keltner and Chuck Rainey at the same time yeah except for that tune so
wow so we were Stars struck by each other or at least I was I was a big
Keltner fan oh man yeah yeah and maybe I I think I suggested him for that session
yeah well I mean it worked out I mean there's everything about that song is this absolute perfection it's a
beautiful thing and on that did you play the solo on that too is that water that's Walter on the solo and I think
that the little [Music] the report thing I think that's Larry Carlton okay doing that yeah that's it's
it's incredible and and so you wrote out the charts for that yeah yeah that's yeah it's just it's just such a great
song I mean well thank you for your contribution you're welcome my pleasure it's great to still be playing it so and
use the 335 on that one do you remember anything specific about like the year or was it just contemporary 68 okay 68. it
had a uh the coloring was kind of not dark like this kind of a kind of a
lighter brown and the yellow okay Sunburst nice had a thick neck we all loved Larry Carlton's guitar was just a
magic guitar yeah a little bit chunkier neck than we would have chosen yeah so we were all
kind of looking for guitars with chunky necks or at least I was to try to get that sustain that he
had on his yeah which is so unusual for 335 you know because those can be clinkers yeah yeah and at 68 having a
thick neck is unusual too because usually they were kind of known to have these Slimmer necks when it started to get into the late 60s yeah they are
they're narrow necks yeah they're not the dot neck size but sometimes you get some like deeper yeah yeah yeah well I
mean his is his is the iconic 335 to have it I suppose you're gonna go very well he's pretty good guitar player yeah
yeah a few more lessons he might make it you know um I want to stick with uh the Steely
The Story Behind “Haitian Divorce” by Steely Dan
Dan thing and I and I'm gonna depart just momentarily from Asia we'll come back to it okay for Deacon Blues in a
moment but I want to talk to you about one of the other my one of my favorite Steely Dan songs you played on which was
Haitian Divorce oh yeah and so we're gonna kind of go backwards a little bit in time and that's on Royal Scam right
that's got talk box on it it's got some interesting stuff you played on that song I want to know about the session
the gear what can you tell me about it so that was a studio ABC Dunhill I don't
know if people still call that I think it probably was and I was working a session in studio
a maybe in this they were recording in Studio D or whatever
and I just went in to visit them and they just finished the track so it was Bernard Purdy and Larry Carlton and
Michael Omartian Chuck Rainey I believe and uh they said hey come on in listen
to what we did and so I'm just visiting their session and Larry said you want to play on the
next one and you can use my guitar say I said okay that's good and so that was Haitian
Divorce was that one that's his 335 it was his 335 doing the let me uh turn off
my course unit here uh yeah
I just seen Bob Marley play on TV and realize that the classic reggae part was
the second part of a full strum he he played like this but he just did this silently yeah
and he fretted until he hit and then at the very last
minute he would release the Fret
yeah it was my first time to try that and so I did that and they and then they called me back to do a the solo uh a
different session I came back with my my guitar okay do you remember what ampy used or was this whatever it had to be
my Fender Princeton Reverb okay that was I came in the booth
they were listening back through Magnaplaners in those days which is an electrostatic speaker that was as tall
as uh shower curtain okay it's about this wide yep and uh if you played them too loud
they would break and you'd have to buy a new one for right eight thousand or whatever it was but it sounded great and
uh so we set up uh and I was in the room and my amp was in another room with a long cable and it's uh
and I got overdrive sound with Walter asked me he said this is going to be a
talk box thing you want to do it we have it here if you want to do it or if you want I'll do it later and we'll just do
the and I said yeah you do it I'll just do the guitar part so I did it with a
let's see if I can go to a different uh amp here yeah
foreign like that yeah might have been on this pickup though
so you could tell how that would be a good trigger for the for the voice box yeah yeah yeah so so the voice box thing
was almost like he like re-amped it or something like that I guess so yeah yeah so that would have been a pretty
Advanced for that time Roger Nichols it wasn't there's so many ways to take it Roger Nichols could figure that out
without a problem right because it would have to be a what would you do you'd play it through
the direct box yeah in Reverse or something like that so so on those parts though I mean you had to overdub that
because I mean like who's playing drums on that one that's that's Bernard Purdy I think yeah so I mean like that had to
be perfect because when when it's doing sort of that descending thing like you have to be right on with the drums on
that like yeah there's no click on that but he's you know listen to that drum track it's just Exquisite oh my gosh
there's you know even when he's not playing the beat there's cues about you know he does time keeping thing he
knows how to yeah that drum is drumming is like it's amazing playing yeah so they when we did
the track uh they wanted to do more takes and Bernard said no you got it I
gotta make a call we went down to the end of this end of the hall and with the pay phone and made a call wow and and I
guess sure enough it sounds fine yeah I know it sounds great I guess he could get away with it
you know he he could yeah he did he was he wasn't uh it wasn't a matter of
discussion that was the take he wanted to be out there so he and I think uh that whole album
Maybe had a kind of a rollicking energy to it he was the drummer on most of the
stuff if not all and uh I'm sure he had that attitude like let's you know he's
kind of Falls forward with the time yep and everybody reacts to it and it's kind
of exciting right yeah it's not so pristine that everything from then on has to be perfect yeah because it's got
a little slosh built into it yeah and I think it makes everybody loosen up yeah
I mean it was extremely easy to play too as far as over this overdue party it was
not even a it wasn't in one single take but it was like yeah okay I I didn't remember that
line so we had to stop every time that line came and I went through my little part of that and then we'd go on from
there right but it wasn't it wasn't a labor to get the feel oh the feel on that is incredible I mean that's like on
such a that's one of my favorite tunes of theirs too is that the lyric and everything yeah and for the for the so for the more the
sound that was more like a lead tone type thing do you remember what you see did you use the Princeton also I want to use something different yeah that's a
Princeton okay and did you just crank it up more for the game and it's just like speaker Distortion yeah there's no uh
there's no good pedals then for that really and were you training the Reverb off typically on that right okay okay I
would never record with Reverb okay did you know that you were sitting on like you you know what you were sitting on
when you were recording this yeah we all we always knew from the first time we were recording with them which was Pretzel Logic that was well into their
successful career yeah they're already done do it again and yeah reeling in the years and they were a hit
band we knew it was going to get Air Play yeah and it was going to be heard so we had Faith yeah that it was
going to be you know so everybody's doing their best yes put forward yeah well I mean they really created like a
whole genre I mean and challenged I think people who are used to you know the typical pop changes you know it
moved people forward I think all of that yeah yeah yeah it's amazing
Recording “Deacon Blues” with Steely Dan
well I want to talk to you uh going forward again to Aja and talk about one
of my all-time favorite songs you played on which was Deacon Blues right and uh
and so again this was recorded at which studio is Aja at or was it we did the
tracks on Josie um at producers Workshop okay and that was
right by the mastering lab but Jason did the same building okay not a common place to do tracking but Bill Schneid
was the tracking engineer and he wanted to work there he was okay that was a place that uh you know there was a very brilliant team
of uh audio Engineers that were involved in the Sheffield direct-to-disc projects
and everything and those were all done out of there so it's a room that they had all put together uh you know he
wanted to do it there so that's where we did the tracking on Josie on Deacon Blues I
can't remember it wasn't I didn't do another thing there with them uh and I
have a feeling that I might have been back at Dunhill or one of those other Studios
okay and I think they just asked me to come in for an overdub okay on acoustic
guitar I don't I wasn't there for the tracking I don't think okay I could have been okay do you remember how
much was kind of set in stone by the time that you were doing the acoustic overdub um well it was at least a four piece Rhythm
Section um and uh there's nothing written for me as
an acoustic okay it's just the changes okay and whatever they had been looking at to do their parts
so I just worked the part so it would not be you know it's uh I I
didn't even remember that song had an acoustic guitar yet before I saw my
credit on there and I listened to it oh yeah it's seems like it's even maybe they did two
tracks of it yeah because it's just it's strumming but it's not strumming where other people are not playing so it just
makes it a a glue kind of thing yeah yeah do you remember what acoustic guitar you might have used on that uh
that was probably a (Martin) D18 okay because that's the one that I had gotten that
was the uh the replacement to a guitar that had
been stolen which was the D28 s model being the one that's Peg heads tuning pegs
you know like a classical type headstock and joins at the 12th okay kind of a bigger it didn't have as much boom I
thought it was a better recording guitar because you could mic it up close and yeah low strings didn't have the D28
yeah over writing g-string resonant yeah g note resonant yeah yeah would you
Dean Plays “Deacon Blues” by Steel Dan
object to playing a little bit of your acoustic part well I'll have to listen to it and uh all right and and we'll
take what we can get we'll take it all right so we got our acoustic guitar set up now ready for a little Deacon Blues
you've written out the chart uh I will let you do the rest it's just chord changes and my
approximation of what I just heard because I haven't seen this thing for but almost 40 years right
so forth yeah so they asked me to do this on several Tunes just to
Dean’s Experience Recording Guitar on “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number”
um maybe it's because Rikki Don't Lose That Number right because I
did that but the rest of it you know
I've played Rhythm through the whole thing it kind of melds with the piano so you've got the piano Michael Omartian and
Saint pianist here and his voicings are so open and
you know he's not a stabber he's kind of a flowing yeah thing and it just seems
to fit with the acoustic guitar I had no idea that you palyed on Rikki Don't Lose That Number
well since we're on that topic really quickly can you tell us anything about that
session uh well that was on the first set of sessions we did we did one week with them that's the first time they
used Studio players really uh in personal logic and uh uh so Michael Omartian was the keyboard
player and Jim Gordon was the drummer uh Chuck Rainey was the bass player he was
kind of new in town he'd been a New York guy so I think that's probably the first time I met Chuck Rainey
and I played with the others before Rick Derringer was there also uh and uh so we
went through a bunch of their songs but uh this one was they always considered an acoustic song and uh I did it in a
booth live with everybody else and then uh we got the track on it
um and the the solo you know yeah
that solo I'm I thought the Rick Derringer did it after the session he
was overdubbing some stuff but you know maybe that was outtakes maybe they didn't use it because I've seen it
attributed to skunks yeah I didn't do that part but I did the uh you know the
[Music] crawling things in the chorus uh on an electric guitar electric guitar
later do you remember what guitar you used yeah it was a Les Paul black Les Paul 69. oh wow and you remember what
amp uh had to be my a happy little Princeton amp same one
yeah yeah I probably was the same one though we would so much sometime we
would all have more than one yeah wow and then and then he of course had
the overdub with the the acoustic yeah the tracking was with the Acoustics
Dean Plays “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number”
can you just play for me one more time do you guys love that part
thank you
it's such a great song you know it's like yeah another good one and how much
of that was written out um most well this was written now and
then the rest was chord changes yeah and did you do the chart for that one or no Michael Omartian did that okay same
configuration you know two steps with a rhythm changes in the middle that's incredible that's that's incredible I
love that song oh my gosh I mean a one one final thing I'll say about Steely
Steely Dan’s “First-Call” Guitarist
Steely Dan before we move on is is you know you really had to be super special then
because there there seemed to be a revolving door of guitar players that worked there and and you know you are a
kind of a Mainstay on those albums in in Larry Carlton and otherwise it's pretty variable who might be playing on it and
so they must have really you know Donald and Walter must have really love what you're bringing to the table I guess I was out
of the blue I was not close with the any of those guys you know either of those guys so you were still their first time yeah but I became closer with Walter
later when he started producing in the 90s yeah he uh hired me on anything and we uh I invited him to dinner and we
became good friends and uh yeah got to really know him yeah well such a such a big loss for for music too yeah
completely and well yeah thank you for your contribution on that it is some of the
the you know my favorite songs you know these are the songs I'm going to play for my my one-year-old son and hope that
he appreciates Steely Dan as much as I do yeah um but since we're on an acoustic right
Recording Guitar on “Change the World” by Eric Clapton
now I want to fast forward decades in your career and go to uh one of my
favorite songs from the mid 90s which was change the world which was Eric Clapton of course Kenny Babyface
Edmonds yeah um and mega hit I think it was featured on a John Travolta movie Phenomenon
that's right and that was a part of the soundtrack there and you played acoustic guitar I think everybody presumed it was
Eric Clapton yeah indeed this was the guitar that was used on change the world correct yeah that's right and what's the
model of this it's a draggy I mean he made it for me I uh I had just had a
Santa Cruz guitar with a mahogany neck spurce top Brazilian rosewood ebony okay
and uh but I talked to Peter Draggy he was at a
session of James Newton Howard session and I told him about that I really thought a guitar I just
been to Hawaii with working on Walter Becker's album and met a guy named Keola Beamer who had guitars that were all a
huge chunky neck because he's a big guy and but I heard it on the radio and it was a
tremendous sounding guitar just great sustain so I had I didn't have Peter build the
guitar he came back in a year and he built the guitar out of the same materials as what I liked on the the D28
Santa Cruz but with a big neck thinking he'd make it overly big so that
we could hone it down to size yeah but it sounded so good
right it's uh got 
thank you
it's kind of got a lot in there and I was afraid to take it on sessions for a while because it was such a big neck I
thought yeah this is going to mess me up but yeah it plays so good what parts did
you play versus what Clapton did yeah well I was uh so Babyface was there producing and he
had all of us Rhythm players come at different times to start it with me uh and a drum machine and he came up with a
little yeah this demo has almost the same part I said across from Babyface
working out the details of what he wanted and what voice things he wanted here and there and then I did the take
and doubled it I think and then I um maybe J.R. (Robinson) was next on drums okay and
then maybe Nathan East was an excellent base and then Michael Thompson on electric guitar put in the big pads and
stuff like that yeah yeah beautiful production but it was done at
the same Studio at virtually the same time but not really overdose
uh that was record plant okay in L.A yeah wow and uh and so he had most of
this I guess he was showing you what he did and then did you just turn it yeah I just learned it you know uh I guess he
had written out a chord sheet on it I don't think I wrote it out it seems like
Dean Plays “Change the World” by Eric Clapton
he had something but just something
thank you
one time later yeah
yeah Eric wasn't there it's just us building the track and um
uh then he did all the solo Parts all the lines that you hear yeah or Eric
yeah so he just he just did the solo and that was that was kind of his his contribution yeah I think so I'm you
know you know Babyface played the thing really well as well yeah and who knows
if they didn't double things but I don't know yeah I don't know but he played it left-handed yeah upside down and
left-handed yeah but he just had a such a string of hits during that era you know in the mid
The Story Behind “Unbreak My Heart” by Toni Braxton
90s it was just everybody's Madonna break my heart where's another one right right so maybe this is a logical segue
into Toni Braxton you know he was also part of laface at that time and uh yeah
Unbreak My Heart was you know just a mega hit I think that was her second album I think maybe
um and you didn't you used acoustic but it was a nylon string so yeah should we
should we transition we can talk about that song yeah all right let's do it so we've uh we've changed guitars we have
now a uh a nylon string guitar and this is what you used for the Tony Braxton
yeah what's what it tell us just a little bit about the guitar um well this is um made by a Fort Worth
Texas guitar maker Earl Prince and after I'd been in
town in La for a couple of years I went back to him he was we loved his guitar
making he made steel string Acoustics Steven Bruton had one maybe T-Bone had one I'm not sure
but uh great maker but I wanted a nylon string um
the studio players in Dallas they were there was one Lee Robinson there was a
great classical recording guitarist and he had two guitars he had
a Ramirez [Music] and then he had some little flamenco guitar that was extremely easy to play
so I borrowed both of those guitars from Lee and took them to Earl Prince and
said can you make me all the materials of the Ramirez but the
size of the little flamenco guitar you can feel how easy it is to play compared
to the regular nylon acoustic right not such a thick yeah yeah it gets wide
enough for you to make your you know it's basically the dimension of that flamenco guitar and then made it
really easy to play you know yeah it like an electric sort of yeah so and he made one and that's
what I use just my main acoustic on nylon ever since so it was that this
guitar and track already existed uh on on break my heart and so it's an overdot
with me and David Foster okay it's David Foster was co-producer and that Babyface was there but I think it was just me and
David Foster in all written out already or [Music] um no it was a foster rhythm part which
is looked a lot like this right just uh Chords chords chords and
symbols you know and then I could hear what it was and he and I he thought
would be kind of a nice pulse for it yeah it's a track about that yeah so it was
Dean Plays “Unbreak My Heart” by Toni Braxton
like so on and so forth so we did a track I think maybe doubled it yeah and then
there was the solo part and uh the way we did that is uh I
started the solo I played a solo all the way through and then using that as the the start and
maybe the opening line is the original pass and uh he David would suggest a
line or alteration to a line and then I would come up with another thing so it was not a long solo but it it's
definitely constructed like a composition but it's made up of improvisation
um which is uh often the way I work when I'm doing tracks at home as well as I start improvising then I think oh if it
had gone there okay well I've got the same setup and you can do it right and
you build build you compose a solo out of your uh best ideas you know I noticed
Dean’s Preferred Pick for Nylon Guitar
that you're using a pick when you're playing this is that was that typical of how you would uh Tedesco always used to
pick I think that Tommy Mottola in New York who is a
or is it Tony Mottola sorry he was a famous Studio player that did a lot of
the nylon string romantic stuff and I think they all used picks as well I
didn't have so I've got Nails here acrylic nails but not here right so I
can do flesh if I want to do flesh yeah or I can do this
as opposed to a thumbnail right and the regular hybrid
it's very strong so you can work all day
on an acoustic steel string and it doesn't shred you know it it lasts
but uh 
you know I can chime in with this if I want a slightly softer sound
but if it's uh
mostly with the pick and the pick I found that does that the best with the least amount of
Little Ghost Notes yeah uh or
um artifact is this little one millimeter
Clayton huh I think it's Delrin I'm not sure this is the material
but it's thinner is more pick noise and thicker is more of a different kind of
pick noise yeah but one millimeter 1.00 is the way it is seems to be the one
that's most like fingers right you're right here first [Music]
all right 
Recording the Dreamworks Intro Guitar Part
wow and this guitar sounds incredible is there anything else that this was used on that uh you know well that little um
you know the little logo the DreamWorks logo with the kid fishing yeah yeah
something like that work
wow all right well then heard by everyone then yeah that's right
well that's probably more people heard that than any other thing probably I mean you know the how ubiquitous all
over the world yeah wow so we've got to talk about Toni Braxton
we've talked about Steely Dan we talked about Babyface and Eric Clapton I wanna I know her chronology today is all over
Recording on Songs in the Key of Life by Stevie Wonder
the place I want to go backwards to talk about arguably one of the best records ever made is Stevie Wonder songs on your
wife and you played on as now you probably didn't use a nylon acoustic I
did not um you remember what you wanted a steel string acoustic so my steel string acoustic had been stolen a couple of
months before I hadn't found a replacement yet so I had taken my old Martin D 38D12.
the 12 string 12 string Martin which are already been reinforced with a fretboard
this thick just so it wouldn't work because it was having warping problems
and I strung it as a six and then here Stevie Wonder wants me to play
apart and I just horse through it I think it was in B minor two should we uh
should we go to the steel strength okay and hear it on the hearing on the real deal sure all right we have our steel
string acoustic back and uh we're gonna play through a little bit of as but
before we do I want to just ask what was how did you get the call for this session what were kind of the specifics
we know about the guitar was a 12 string converted to a sixth string uh but tell
us about the the story uh yeah I've got to call through the Motown contractor Ben Barrett and uh
Stevie Wonder session at I believe it was at midnight or 11pm
at Crystal and uh okay so I got there and uh no Stevie
but it was getting the mix up I heard that thing as it was all done I mean it sounded like
for the whole thing the Herbie Hancock solo and everything was on I don't know why exactly he wanted to add acoustic
but that was the deal and I basically waited a couple hours and then Stevie
showed up about 1am and they had a good chart for it uh and
uh did no instruction as to if he wanted strumming or picking I think I probably ended up doing
Dean plays “As” by Stevie Wonder
whatever and uh okay so we're doing the take and
at about 5 45 five minutes and 45 seconds he came on
the talk back without stopping the tape said oh take it solo take a solo so there I'm on this big baseball bat of
a guitar thing
soloing with Herbie Hancock and I think so that was that was a fun moment but he
did no other takes or anything this is fine that's it and you can barely hear it there there's a similar situation on
Recording Guitar on “Inner Visions” by Stevie Wonder
intervisions on the song visions that he'd wanted an acoustic on that on that album and I brought a steel string
acoustic and a nylon because I didn't know what he wanted and um
so I did a take through on the steel string and uh and I he says there anything else I said
well I have a nylon string you might want to see how it sounds on that okay and he played the steel string while I
was doing the nylon string and end up with both on Wow both and first takes
that's wow I wish I could go back and tune it up a little bit uh but he likes
first takes is what I learned from the Stevie Wonder yeah so Titan actually playing like on as how much time do you
think you actually like spent physically recording uh however long the track is I think the track is about seven six
minutes or something that's that is it and the first take solo yeah that's it wow that's incredible I mean
the solo was on the same track yeah yeah you didn't stop it he just transitioned out of the rhythm part and it started
just going for a solo yeah wow that's incredible and then despite it didn't anybody like listen the opposite of a
Steely Dan record for instance was anybody like looking at the guitar like what is this no no one gave us
slightest bit of curiosity about it or anything that's incredible
Dean Explains Iconic Photos from his Career
man well Dean I am so appreciative of you going through just a fraction of
your incredible career as a session guitarist before we finish today though I have a couple of questions for you
okay one thing that I've been doing with these interviews is taking a few pictures from back in history of some of
these sessions you warned me about this and and I want to just explain maybe what was going on or anything that you
remember about the photo so I'm going to bring out my phone here and I'm going to show you a couple of of shots and I want
you to just tell me what's going on in these particular photos so the first of
which I believe it's the the oldest of of the photos is looks like a photo of
you here you got a chart your hair is long right hear me do you remember roughly when this was that's the guitar
I played on uh Josie okay number one and 
you know it could have been with the Crusaders because I remember a camera hopping around there one time uh uh
Crusaders about the time we were recording uh the BB King record maybe so you could be sitting right next to Joe
Sample yeah yeah throw a samples piano would have been over here yeah and the
drums would have been over here and the base would have been here which I think was Pops Popwell maybe oh maybe
maybe James Jamerson played a little bit on that album you can check and see okay so
it was interesting yeah and it could have been Paul Jackson also okay or
sometimes there was two guitars do you know what studio this would have been at oh don't know no
all right and then next one is you in the late great Walter Becker you guys
okay well that's a that is definitely me sitting in on one of their live shows
that's this is probably the sound check you think this is 90s yeah definitely it's when they were touring
again but early in their touring well it's by the time John Herrington was the other guitar player okay so it's uh you
know one of the years where he was the guy trying to amp like you have here yeah that's where I saw the gaitron is for John Herrington yeah he sounds so
good yeah so and this is Walter's guitar he lit me too for me to sit in they brought out an
amp and yeah yeah and uh and so this has been nice and for
the the previous picture what do you think that that one was with the Crusaders you think that was 70s yeah yeah yeah definitely 70s I would check
probably the same time I did uh [Music] um Josie Josie so that's 79 yeah he's late
probably late and then here's the last one I'll turn it this way just because of the and it looks like Jay grade oh
yeah and you're a bearded Dean parks there I am and uh you remember uh
anything about this yes this was uh our one live
concert of a surf band that Jay Grayden start Drake and the surftones ah and we
all wrote surf songs for this thing and this was uh at a club in Malibu I
believe and what guitar are you holding there I think that is a Gretch Duo Jet
maybe does that make sense like a fender or something like that it was surf music it had to be something he may have even
brought a surfing of a showman or something okay but uh I don't know what
it would have been so this is a live gig it's somewhere yeah it's a live gig and it's a disco had already had his stroke
but he had played on all the surf records so Jay asked him and he was in the audience oh nice watching us and is
this would this have been 90s you think yeah probably so all right I'm I'm guessing 90s yeah
awesome well Dean thank you so much again for your time and just walking us
Thanks for Watching!
through it it's been such an honor to be here with you and just getting to hear you play the guitar and being this close
to it uh thank you again oh thank you for doing this my pleasure yeah