Of Note Article in San Diego Reader By Dave Good




Published January 29, 2004 .

Guitarist Alan Iglesias says, "I have a ritual...I Super Glue my fingers together. People tease me and say I'm only doing it because Stevie Ray Vaughan did it, but that's not true." Iglesias insists that in order to play like Vaughan did, you've got to glue your fingers. "If you don't, the skin pulls away from the fingernail and your fingers bleed. And it hurts." So, night after night, Iglesias pours Super Glue into the little spaces between nail and fingertip. "When you're done, you've got this big tool you can file down."

That Iglesias resembles Vaughan is a job requirement. He heads up an SRV tribute band called Crossfire in which he nails Vaughan's style of guitar playing with uncanny accuracy. Sings like him, too. And, trickery or not, it works. Listen to Crossfire at the bar with your back turned and it's hard to believe it's not Double Trouble live at the El Mocambo. "Here's the key," says Iglesias. "I don't try to sound like Vaughan. I try to feel what he was feeling when he played and sang. That almost transcends the playing." In other words, he channels Vaughan? "I try to," he admits.

Iglesias's stage outfits are accurate to the nth degree. He's banged up his Stratocaster in all the right places, even got himself a black bandito hat just like Vaughan's. "Putting the hat on is special for me. It came from the same place that Stevie got his. I don't even want to tell you how much it cost me."

Audiences for original music are slim, but bands that look and play like someone else are in high demand. "People have said that they come to the gig to tell me what I'm doing wrong. Then, after a set, they tell me, sometimes with tears in their eyes, 'You're the real deal. We came all the way from [wherever] to rip you apart and to tell you that you can't do this thing. Nobody,' they say, 'can play like Stevie Ray Vaughan, except you.' "

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