"There is no doubt that rock and roll would not be what it is without the contribution of Link Wray."
Terry Stewart - past President & CEO, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
"If I could travel back in time to see one band, it would be Link Wray and the Ray Men."
Neil Young - Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee
"He was a huge influence. When I saw him, it was one of the greatest shows I ever saw in my life. "
Dan Auerbach - THE BLACK KEYS
"I was at the Student Union...I heard this music...I left school emotionally at that moment. The moment I heard RUMBLE."
Iggy Pop - Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee
"The first time I heard RUMBLE…that was something that had so much profound attitude. It really does."
Jimmy Page - Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee
"He's the king. If it hadn't been for Link Wray and RUMBLE, I'd have never picked up a guitar."
Pete Townshend - Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee
"Link Wray...he was the beginning of Grunge. Way before anybody you know."
Neil Young - Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee
"I would love to see Link Wray recognized (by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)"
Steven Van Zandt - Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee
"Wray's voice is vital, driving and somehow retains the Brando / Dean ambience."
Jon Landau - (Rolling Stone magazine), Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominating Committee Chairman
"With RUMBLE, the guitar arrived as an instrument of pure menace."
Colin Escot - rock historian
"I learned alot about intensity and commitment and colors of sound from Link. He was one of a kind."
Anton Fig - THE DAVID LETTERMAN SHOW
"He's the man who invented punk rock, heavy metal and every other form of sonic nastiness that we currently hold dear."
Danny Frost - NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS
"The musical equivalent of football's forearm shiver. Short. Nasty. Potentially lethal."
Rock Critic Dave Marsh on RUMBLE
"Wray created the overdriven rock guitar sound taken up by Townshend, Hendrix and others."
David Frickie - rock critic, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominating Committee member
"(Link Wray's) album is so unique, so much a part of a genre all his own..."
Lenny Kaye - (Cavalier magazine), Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominating Committee member
"Every time a modern rocker slashes out a power chord...every time a 60's collector gives the "My Generation" or "Led Zeppelin II" LPs a spin, it all comes back to the fact that Wray showed the way..."
Cub Koda - Brownsville Station, rock historian
LINK WRAY. Father of the POWER CHORD. Creator of Distortion. Punk, heavy metal, grunge, garage, real rock guitar…it all started here.
LINK WRAY was the first to use intentional distortion in a rock and roll recording.
LINK WRAY is credited with inventing the POWER CHORD, the “modus operandi” in rock and roll.
LINK WRAY and the Ray Men's groundbreaking song RUMBLE was banned from radio airplay for fear it would incite teenage gang violence. All the more remarkable when you realize the song HAS NO WORDS. You can't get more "rock and roll" than that!
LINK WRAY was the first Native American rock star with RUMBLE selling over a million copies in 1958.
LINK WRAY is in the top 50 of the 100 GREATEST GUITARISTS selected by Rolling Stone magazine.
LINK WRAY has influenced the likes of Jimmy Page, Neil Young, Iggy Pop, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Pete Townshend, Dan Auerbach and countless thousands of other musicians the world over.
LINK WRAY has been inducted into the Native American Music Hall of Fame, Rockabilly Hall of Fame, Washington (DC) Area Music Association, Southern Legends Hall of Fame and many more. In October 2014, Link will be inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame.
LINK WRAY has been featured in the Smithsonian Institute’s National Museum of the Native American Indian "Up Where We Belong" exhibits in both Washington DC and New York City.
LINK WRAY's music crossed over to the hip hop community in 2011, when Death Grips released the song Spread Eagle Across the Block, which heavily sampled RUMBLE.
LINK WRAY’s music has been featured in such television and film as Pulp Fiction, Independence Day, Desperado, The Sopranos, Blow and countless others.
LINK WRAY is honored at his hometown of Dunn, NC with the annual "Link Wray Music Festival," an event held in May of each year on the weekend of his birth.
LINK WRAY DAY has been declared by Governor’s Proclamation in the states of Maryland and North Carolina.
LINK WRAY's seminal instrumental RUMBLE, having met the criteria of being "culturally, historically or aesthetically important and/or inform or reflect life in the United States" was selected in 2008 to be in the National Recording Registry, housed in the Library of Congress. Less than 40 rock and roll songs have received this honor.
LINK WRAY received a long overdue, well-deserved nomination to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013. However, THIRTY ONE YEARS after first becoming eligible, Link Wray has yet to be inducted. The foundation of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame remains incomplete.
THANK YOU for visiting this website. It was created to give Link Wray and his brothers Vernon and Doug some long overdue recognition.
There are those that blaze the trail and there are those that reap the rewards.
Link Wray was a trailblazer.
photo © Rick Gould