Session guitar ace Eddie Martinez breaks down his parts on Robert Palmer, Run-DMC and Steve Winwood hit songs

 L-R: Albert Collins, Jaco Pastorious and Eddie Martinez performing live onstage in 1985
L-R: Albert Collins, Jaco Pastorious and Eddie Martinez performing live onstage in 1985 (Image credit: Ebet Roberts/Redferns)

Vertex Effects' Mason Marangella has followed up his excellent interview with Michael Jackson session man Paul Jackson Jr with another iconic studio name; Eddie Martinez. And luckily for guitarists, we get to see him break down his guitar parts of the huge hits he played on, including songs by Robert Palmer, RUN-DMC and Steve Winwood. 

Those hits include classics like Addicted To Love and Higher Love. Eddie remains a humble musician that players can learn a lot from. And unlike many of his session guitar peers who were based in LA, Martinez was successful in New York. Despite already working as a session player before, it was his work with Robert Palmer that really put him on the map.

"I played on hit records before I worked with Robert but I believe my work with Robert was really the moment for me when I kind of created my identity within the context of his music," Eddie reflects. 

This began with collaborating with late Chic bassist Bernard Edwards on Palmer's hugely successful 1985 solo album Riptide, featuring the hit Addicted To Love. Martinez breaks this down before moving through the hits he played on, including Simply Irresistible with Palmer, Higher Love and the Back In The High Life album with Steve Winwood. Then there was Eddie's influential mid-'80s crossover work with hip-hop icons on Run-DMC on Rock Box and King Of Rock that predated their Walk This Way collaboration with Aerosmith. 

"Part of being a session player is, more than your proficiency on the instrument, it's what you hear and what you can contribute in serving the song," says Eddie. Check out the full video above where he breaks down the parts and gear behind the hits.


Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar in the UK. When I'm not rejigging pedalboards I'm usually thinking about rejigging pedalboards.