John 5 once chipped a tooth trying to play like Jimi Hendrix

“My mom was so mad at me!”

John 5 (left) playing his Tele on stage. Jimi Hendrix (right) photographed in black and white playing guitar with his teeth.

Images: Steve Jennings (left) and Tom Copi (right) / Getty

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We all like to borrow inspiration from our favourite guitarists now and then, and John 5 was certainly prepared to go all out and do so when he was younger. The Mötley Crüe guitarist once tried to play guitar with his teeth like Jimi Hendrix, and things didn’t exactly go to plan.

John 5, who currently wields his instantly recognisable Ghost Telecaster, decided to imitate Hendrix’s approach as a kid. But not when playing any Hendrix or other rock classic, no. He decided to go for it when playing the Star-Spangled Banner.

Speaking to Howard Stern recently, he remembered the incident (via Guitar World): “Everything I heard, I learned,” he begins. “I just learned every AC/DC riff, anything I heard on the radio.”

He goes to recall watching Hendrix play, adding: “He was playing with his teeth. And I was like, ‘Well, I know how to [perform the Star Spangled Banner]!’ And so I did this [plays] – and I chipped my tooth and my mom was so mad at me…”

You can watch John 5 play with his teeth below (minus any tooth-related injury this time):

John 5’s Ghost Telecaster, which he can be seen playing in the clip above, launched in May last year. It hosts a top-bound alder body and one-piece maple neck, finished entirely in an Arctic White gloss, with striking red accents on the nut, pickups, binding, and more.

It also features a mirrored pickguard/control plate, and is equipped with a pair of DiMarzio D Activator humbuckers that are designed to “replicate the sound of active pickups in a passive format”. The guitar is inspired by Buckethead, hence why it’s also fitted with a kill switch.

To find out more about the guitar, head to Fender.

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