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Artist/Show : Country
George Cole
George Cole

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George Cole

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San Francisco, Calif.

George Cole (born October 10, 1960 in San Francisco, California) is the producer, composer, lyricist, vocalist, and lead guitarist for the Jazz band George Cole and Vive Le Jazz. He was also a guitarist for the pop rock band Beatnik Beatch and Big Blue Hearts. He played on Chris Isaak's platinum selling Forever Blue album. He was the guitar instructor of Billie Joe Armstrong for ten years and also taught Mike Dirnt before they started the punk rock band Green Day.

George Cole was born on October 10, 1954. He was born at San Francisco General Hospital. He grew up in Richmond, California. He attended Kennedy High School. He performed in the band "Young Country" in the late 1970s and The Upstarts in the early 1980s. His favorite band as a child was The Benny Goodman Quartet.

George Cole has taught guitar lessons to promising musicians for twenty-five years. He began teaching guitar lessons in California in the 1980s. Among his many students, he taught and mentored Billie Joe Armstrong for ten years and the bassist Mike Dirnt of the punk rock band Green Day. "Cole and Billie Joe would frequently spend afternoons jamming together, free-form style with the teacher winging off as many odd notes as his pupil. He helped them have their first recording session at a studio at RDR studios in San Francisco in 1986. Armstrong received his first electric guitar, a Fernandes Stratocaster copy that he named "Blue", that his mother bought from Cole. Cole bought the guitar new from David Margen of the band Santana. Cole gave Armstrong a Bill Lawrence Humbucking pickup and told him to install the pickup in the bridge position. Armstrong then switched back to a Seymour Duncan JB pickup that he still uses today. "Armstrong fetishized his teacher's guitar, partly because the blue instrument had a sound quality and Van Halen - worthy fluidity he couldn't get from his little red Hohner. He prized it mostly, however, because of his relationship with Cole, another father figure after the death of Andy."

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