Who Coined The Term Shred?
There is much historical debate on who coined the term "shred" as it relates to guitar. One explanation states that it was coined in the early 1980s by a guitar magazine writer (who prefers to stay anonymous) because "fretboard gymnastics" was too awkward. Another case is made for the fact that many guitar players "shredded" their hands, bandmates, clothing, and amplifier grills with the pointy ends of the pointy Japanese guitars that were so popular during the 80s shred craze. A third explanation is the term "woodshedding" (considerable practice), which is required to pay scales as fast as the style demands, morphed into "woodshredding" then just "shredding" then just "shred."
However, I tend to think that the wearing of tight spandex in the 1980's cut off blood circulation to the brain making people temporarily loopy, which in turn led to them making up words. Like shred. This theory may also explain why someone might think “Here I am” rhymes with “Rock you like a hurricane.”
Photo by Nicola Gypsicola