Guitar: Steve Vai - one of the best contemporary guitarists

Aktualizacja: 30 lip 2019

Posted 10/11/2015

I'm not going to write here about the biographical facts about Stevie Vai, cause they are available from eg. Wikipedia or the artist's website http://www.vai.com/. , I just want to point out a few facts and write my very general opinion about this virtuoso of the electric guitar. His music is far from traditional rock improvisations and more predicatable blues solos. IMO his style can be described as an instrumental rock as e.g. music by such guitar virtuosos as: Paul Gilbert, Joe Satriani , Yngwie Malmsteen or M. A. Batio (one of the fastest guitar players) etc. etc.. IMO he moves forward contemporary rock music borders. I think the reason is that he is not only very hard working, brilliant and experimenting "with notes" musician, but he also has good academic background (higher music education - Steve Vai attended Berklee College of Music). He spoke about auditioning for Frank Zappa at age 20 (Wiki)). He also transcribed some of the songs composed by Frank Zappa, to which he eventually joined as a guitarist. I think as a person playing guitar and having so called absolute pitch - I remembered still sound of eg. G - I can say it's hearable. Morover I have a bit of musical knowledge taken from the music school, to which (The Music School) I was sent to the exams (which I successfully passed) by a great music teacher in elementary school Mr. Dańczyk (Ph.D.), what makes my music analysis easier.

Rather few rock guitarist reads and writes "notes" - Steve can do it. I reccomend to watch and LISTEN to this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6CfEaSmdtGU  or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jY8wyKuLY2k or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9IrWyZ0KZuk.  Very valuable are also interviews on YT with him, showing that he's very intelligent and modest person, being contradiction to the typical celebrities. He also designs gears, equipments - for example overdrives/fuzz "Jemini' firmed & produced by Ibanez (for me like Les Paul), His guitar Ibanez Jem has signature "Steve Vai" and was also designed by him. This model of guitar has some special features and IMO it reflects the idiosyncrasy of Steve Vai. One of his latest albums is "The story of light" and 1 composition: Gravity Storm is available on YT, beside artist's music CDs. Search pls also for "Crossroads", who likes Paganini music. I hope he will be at last in Katowice superb building of National Orchestra in Katowice (NOSPR): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G8okWyzMLRk (he 1 time already was in Katowice famous UFO-like architecture sports hall - there is no equal to it a sports hall in the World as I know! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkOOTmkbVW8). LIVE concert: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CuX1qwGtLzA More in hard rock style (live): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_7iRZzlSzI . One of Vai's friend is the other virtuoso of electric guitar - Joe Satriani. I've noticed that Steve Vai prefers so called lydian scale, using not only very popular among many rock and blues guitarists pentatonic scale (both major/dur <=> minor/mol). Lydian scale is one of the musical modal scales like e.g. dorian, phrygian, dur/major, harmonic mol/minor or normal (aeolian) mol/minor scale, etc.

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