Jeff “Skunk” Baxter
Jimmy Steinfeldt/Courtesy of the artist
Jeff ‘Skunk’ Baxter, the most interesting man in music?
He’s a Rock & Roll Hall of Fame guitarist who took up a side hobby as a ballistic missile defense specialist — and added counterterrorism expert for good measure.
- Skunk Baxter, "My Old School"
- Donna Summer, "Hot Stuff"
- Dolly Parton, "9 to 5"
- Beethoven, "Symphony No. 6, Op. 68, No. I"
- Bach, "Toccata and Fugue in D minor"
- Pink Floyd, "Money"
- Skunk Baxter, "The Rose"
Maybe you’re familiar with the old beer ad campaign for “The Most Interesting Man in the World,” boasting of his deeds, sharing random factoids. If music has an equivalent, you could make a very strong case for my guest, Jeff “Skunk” Baxter. The narration for the ad would read, “He’s a Rock & Roll Hall of Fame guitarist who took up a side hobby as a ballistic missile defense specialist and added counterterrorism expert for good measure.” Like I said, strong case.
Baxter was a member of Steely Dan and The Doobie Brothers before becoming one of the most accomplished session musicians in the industry, playing with hundreds of artists, and as you’ll hear, showing up on some iconic songs. But for all he’s accomplished, he never put out a record with his name on the cover, until now. He joins me to talk about Speed of Heat, an undertaking literally decades in the making and, predictably, a lot of other very interesting things.