Guitarist Jay Parmar Interview

Circle of Fire' is the title track of Jay Parmar's stunning new album and can be download FREE on The album features Carsten Schulz, Andreas Novak, Pete Newdeck, Tim Wallace, Mike Rotella and guitar legend George Lynch, and will be released on 12 March through Steve Vai's record label, Digital Nations in download format, and CD quality lossless downloads can be purchased at

Guitarist Jay Parmar Interview:

Ø Riffmaster – Hey Jay, I hope all is well with you...

I’m doing great.

Riffmaster – Give all our loyal readers and peeps an update with what’s been going on with you in your world these dayz.

I’ve mainly been working on finishing two new tracks for a limited edition CD version of my latest album ‘Circle of Fire’ that will be available for pre-order really soon. I’ve spoken a lot about how my playing evolves over time, even over short spans of time, and the new tracks really show that. They still retain the vibrancy of the tracks on the album but they are a little different and reflect what has inspired me recently. They sound very cool and I love the way that they have turned out. They have that edge to them that I’m always looking to capture when I lay anything down. Also, I’m putting a band together, which is very exciting. I love being on stage and doing my thing so the band will be a priority over the next few months. Besides that, I’m still writing new songs and material and I may be working with some other musicians in the near future. More details on all of that soon.

Ø Riffmaster – Please tell our readers what your high school years were like, and what the musical soundtrack would be to sum up your senior year in High school.

Well, my high school years started off with me playing trumpet and ended up with me growing my hair long, building a guitar and starting to learn to play! High school was pretty good as that’s where I really discovered rock. One of my friends was really into the whole rock scene as he had an older brother who used to buy LPs by Dokken and Ratt and Iron Maiden and other bands like that. So he kinda got me into the whole rock thing. I was listening to soundtracks like Top Gun and Miami Vice when all of this happened and was veering towards the rock songs anyhow. That all got me switching the trumpet for a guitar and I started my quest searching for great guitar players. I came across Vai, Malmsteen Jake E Lee, Dave Murray and Adrian Smith. Then George Lynch came along and became my biggest inspiration. So, I guess the soundtrack for senior years was Dokken’s ‘Back For The Attack’ and Lynch Mob’s ‘Wicked Sensation’.

Ø Riffmaster – First big question… Why the Guitar ?

The sound, the image, the presence. Everything about guitars and guitar players just appealed to the teenage version of me.

Ø Riffmaster – Ok, Now for your music … What is the name of the current Album you are promoting at the moment? How did the music come about?

Current album is ‘Circle of Fire’. I was lucky enough to work with amazing musicians on the album; Carsten Schultz, Pete Newdeck, Andreas Novak, Tim Wallace, Mike Rotella, and an awesome appearance by George Lynch as well. The new tracks actually feature a very close friend of mine on drums, Mark Laff who used to play with Billy Idol in Generation X and who has worked with a lot of other people back in the day. The music came about from being inspired. I’m just a vehicle to the music being recorded but the inspiration comes from a much higher consciousness and place. That was influenced by various bands, musicians, movies, and other things. I just let the music flow and evolve. When I ‘try’ to write music it inevitably sounds like it has been constructed and some of the essence is lost so I allow the creative process to run it’s course and complete in it’s own time.

Ø Riffmaster – What projects / recordings are you working on at the moment

I’m focused primarily on the new tracks for the ‘Circle of Fire’ CD which I’m producing at the moment. They are called ‘I AM’ and ‘Darkness Falls’. A third track called ’20 Years’ that I finished during the ‘Circle of Fire’ sessions will also be included. All of the songs have me handing vocals, guitars, bass and keys and Mark Laff playing the drums. I’m starting to think about another album as well so when the inspiration for songs comes along I’ll start recording those.

Ø Riffmaster - What musical gear and endorsements to you have and why?

I play ESP guitars mainly. They just work for me. I got into ESPs because of the George Lynch connection so have been playing them for about 10 years now. I’ve recently put together some custom ESPs, namely ‘Spirit Dance’ and my GL56-Snake, which are my ‘go-to’ guitars. I also play Vengeance Guitars, which are uber-cool and I have an endorsement with them. The company wraps the neck in carbon fiber so it is super stable. I’m having a new neck made for my Vengeance at the moment which has some signature inlay going onto the fretboard, and that will be with me really soon. I play Randall amps and have an endorsement with them. They are just the best sounding amps I’ve ever played. So versatile and the sound is so ballsy. I use an RM100M head through a Randall cab loaded with Celestion Vintage 30s. The RM100 is a modular amp, and I run the Brahma, Grail and Mr. Scary modules in it. Sometimes the Super V module in place of the Brahma. My string and cable endorsement is with Elixir Strings and Cables. The strings last so long and sound and feel so good. And the cables sound astonishing. They have such clarity, volume and tone. I have my pedalboard patched with Elixir patch cables as well. Line 6 are another endorser. I use their POD HD a lot for recording. The sound is spectacular! For studio work it makes dialing in and recording good tone so easy and consistent, especially lead tones. In fact I’ve used the HD on the new tracks ‘I AM’ and ‘Darkness Falls’ so you’ll hear them really soon. All of the lead guitar work on ‘Circle of Fire’ was actually done with my PODx3 so the Line 6 gear has been very useful. I’m looking at possibly getting one of their DT50 or DT25 amps as well. And I use the Line 6 G30 wireless unit when I tour. I can’t tell the difference between that and my Elixir cables. Its an awesome digital unit. Pickups, I have an endorsement with Bare Knuckle Pickups. Best sounding pickups I’ve ever used. They have depth of sound that I haven’t heard in any other make. Sonically they just have so much to offer. My pedalboard is quite simple, just a couple of overdrive pedals that I use from time to time - the latest addition has been a Wampler SLOstortion that is just uber-cool. Basically a Soldano SLO in a stomp box, and it is very, very convincing. I just used it a few days ago for a couple of gigs through the clean channel of my Blackstar HT5 head and it sounded awesome! Other then that, there is a delay pedal, a gate, a Korg Tuner and sometimes a Morley Dragon II Wah. I keep the chain very simple. When I use the Randall I have a Yamaha FX550 processor hooked into the MIDI thru on the amp and that provides the delays and automatically switches the effect on and off when I switch channels.

Ø Riffmaster – How many hours a week does it take to put this (your band, writing your music, a job maybe,) all together for the listening and reading masses?

Music is what I do all the time so all my working time is dedicated to putting all of this together. It’s playtime for me though so it never feels like work. Its always a pleasure to do what I do. It feeds my soul and I hope that feeds other people’s too.

Ø Riffmaster – So Jay, what are you listening to allot of these days?

I have some Joe Bonamassa in the CD player on rotation. AC/DC - I just picked up a remaster of 74 Jailbreak which is awesome. Stevie Ray Vaughan. David Mark Pierce’s excellent album ‘Strange Angels’. Brent Enman’s album ‘Wildman’ which is very, very cool. A friend of mine just sent me some incredible unreleased tracks by a band from the early 90s called T-Ride, whom I was really into back in the day. George Lynch’s ‘Kill All Control’, Lynch Mob ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ and ‘Wicked Sensation’ - I’m starting my third decade of listing to Wicked Sensation! Rabbi Shergil, who is an Indian acoustic artist. Very cool eastern vibe. Also checking out Testament’s new album right now - some real old school thrash! I have a stack of CDs that I would like to go through also - everything from James Taylor Quartet to Devine Weeks to Rage Against The Machine.

Ø Riffmaster – Dream Car? Or Recreational Vehicle?

If you’d asked me about that last year I would have jumped in and said the Lamborghini Aventador! But I’m not really too much into the whole materialism thing. So, the VW Golf GTI E30 that I drive right now is my dream ride. The Aventador would be nice substitute though as you’re asking.

Ø Riffmaster – Why?

Raging bull man! Gotta go with the raging bull. I’ve had a thing about Lamborghini’s since I was a kid. I’ve even been to the factory in Sant’Agata in Italy. Very cool place...

Ø Riffmaster – Name some folks you would love to get on the same album or share the stage with… Inquiring minds want to know…

George Lynch, he’s on my album but I’d love to be on stage with him. Oni Logan - stunning voice that I’d like on stage and album. He’s gotta be my favorite singer of all time. Robert Plant. Jeff Beck. The drummer Ya’el, she is sensational! Warren Dimartini. Brian Titchy. Doug Aldrich. David Coverdale - Is Whitesnake looking for a guitar player??? lol! There’s probably another hundred that I can’t remember right now.

Ø Riffmaster – I also don’t want to forget this… Tell us about any other things you may be in involved in or any special interest besides music that is close to your heart …?

Meditation is something that I am really into. It quietens the mind and heightens consciousness which helps with positivity, wellbeing, open heartedness and love and spreading it to the whole planet, which I think is of paramount importance right now. I feel that the time of acquisition, accumulation and competition is coming to a close soon and finding our highest selves will allow us to get back to the real essence of who we really are and the oneness that binds us all. The world we live in is just transatory - it all started in dust and will ultimately return to dust. That which is real is much more then our primary five senses are able to touch, feel, see, hear and smell. Having the most money, biggest house, fastest car, most friends or fans, etc, is all just a passing breeze and doesn’t bring deep fulfillment. The time we have in this existence is more about infecting the world with positivity and love. I’m also getting back into artwork after being inspired by a friend, so I’ve started drawing again . And the creative streak is starting to expand into building stuff again. I’ve been putting guitars together, building effects pedals, have build my studio, and am about to start a rebuild of the amp that I built some years ago.

Ø Riffmaster – Lastly, please give our readers one last parting shot across the bow… What is Jay Parmar going to be doing in 5 years?

Living in LA, Sacred Sound version 2 built and running. Touring. And still infecting the world with that love and positivity.

Ø Riffmaster – I would like to thank you for your time and candor with my loyal readers and keep on fighting the good fight to bring us some quality guitar oriented music.

Thanks for your time and excellent work!