Nancy Wilson Says Heart ‘Borrowed’ Famous ‘Barracuda’ Riff
She recently told the Music Experience's Squiggy that the Beatles were a key inspiration in the early days. In a new video presented by Loudwire's Gear Factor, powered by Sweetwater, she recalled her first experience with the group.
"When we heard about the Beatles and then they came to America and we saw them on TV, on The Ed Sullivan Show, it was devastating," she said. "It was wonderful. It was like the culture shift, so we were just possessed to have guitars and possessed to make a band, and sing and play and learn all their songs."
One song in particular fascinated Wilson: "the beginning of ‘I Feel Fine,’ where the guitar string goes ‘dinggggg.' ... That whole part. That was just the call, the call to arms."
But sometimes those influences went too far. Wilson said their 1977 hit "Barracuda" was lifted from a contemporary band, and they weren't too pleased about that.
"We had been touring and opening for a band called Nazareth in Europe," she noted. "Nazareth had a hit with this Joni Mitchell song that they covered called ‘This Flight Tonight’ that kind of had that riff, so we kind of borrowed that and we made it into ‘Barracuda.’"
You can watch the video below.
Wilson recalled that the riff “felt really big. It felt so rock. ... It’s one of the guitar tones where I’m still trying to figure out what we did, cause it’s hard to recreate. It’s very analog.”