|Born on: 27.01.1957
Janick Robert Gers (born January 27, 1957 in Hartlepool, England) is one of three guitarists in the heavy metal band Iron Maiden.
Gers was the lead guitarist of the band White Spirit before joining Gillan, a group formed by former Deep Purple vocalist Ian Gillan. After Gillan disbanded, he played in the group Gogmagog (with former Iron Maiden singer/front man Paul Di'Anno and drummer Clive Burr - an odd coincidence considering who he ended up playing with later) and with various artists including Fish of Marillion. In 1990, he played guitar on the first solo album of Iron Maiden vocalist Bruce Dickinson, Tattooed Millionaire. During the recording of the album he was asked to join Iron Maiden in place of departing Adrian Smith. He has remained with the band ever since, even after Smith rejoined the band in 1999.
His solos are fast and furious, but Gers is a skilled composer. His main influence is Ritchie Blackmore of Deep Purple, from whom he has emulated certain onstage poses and soloing attacks, and Irish blues guitar legend Rory Gallagher. He is noted for having an enormous stage presence, as evidenced on the Rock in Rio DVD.
Gers is a long time proponent of the Fender Stratocaster. His stratocasters are typically black or white with rosewood fingerboards, Seymour Duncan JB Jr. (currently) or Hot Rails (early 1990's) pickups, and lots of road wear. Janick's most favoured guitar over the years has been a black Fender Stratocaster, equipped with the aforementioned JB Jr. pickups. This guitar was apparently a gift from Ian Gillan. Janick uses 4 Fender Stratocasters and only one Gibson; a Chet Atkins semi-acoustic for songs like "Dance of Death". Gers, like his bandmates Dave Murray and Adrian Smith, currently uses the Marshall JMP-1 preamp through a Marshall 9200 (discontinued) poweramp. Janick uses Ernie Ball Regular Slinky Nickel-wound guitar strings, but for some reason takes out the 13 gauge string.
Gers is a Newcastle United fan.