Besides being a guitar player, I'm a big fan of the guitar. I love that damn instrument.

โ€” Steve Vai

The most vibrant Steve Vai quotes to discover and learn by heart

It's always funny to me when people use the phrase 'Best guitar player in the world'. There are too many variables such as technique, uniqueness, emotional investment in the notes, etc. But If I had to pick one, it would be Tommy Emmanuel. Watching him perform can be a study in artistic and virtuosic human achievement.

42

All musicians practice ear training constantly, whether or not they are cognizant of it. If, when listening to a piece of music, a musician is envisioning how to play it or is trying to play along, that musician is using his or her 'ear' - the understanding and recognition of musical elements - for guidance.

31

If you're feeling emotional when you're creating something, it'll sound that way.

27

I have a deep love for life and my fellow human beings.

I try to understand everything that everybody does, even if it seems wrong to me.

22

You can never deny the immense talent, rock credibility and iconic historical contribution that Van Halen made.

19

Reps once took chances on art, History's most treasured musicians were believed in and cultivated to reach their potential. Today, it would be difficult for those musicians to get deals.

16

Play slow and perfect - thatโ€™s the way to becoming a virtuoso.

14

I didn't have any aspirations of becoming famous or successful;

in fact I was scared to death of all that. I remember somebody once said that if a rock musician goes on tour, he goes insane. I was very impressionable and I carried this useless weight of fear around with me about going on tour, all because of this thing somebody said.

14

I think every artist subconsciously wants to evolve themselves.

Sometimes they get stuck in ruts because of pop culture, peer pressure, stuff like that. But what excites me most is exploring my own musical insights and expanding upon them.

13

I've always considered transcribing to be an invaluable tool in the development of one's musical ear and, over the years, I have spent countless glorious hours transcribing different kinds of music, either guitar-oriented or not.

12

The classical guitar has a dynamic to it unlike a regular acoustic guitar or an electric guitar. You know, there's times when you should play and there's times when you gotta hold back. It's an extremely dynamic instrument.

11

I could never overstate the importance of a musician's need to develop his or her ear. Actually, I believe that developing a good 'inner ear' - the art of being able to decipher musical components solely through listening - is the most important element in becoming a good musician.

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About Steve Vai

Quotes 88 sayings
Nationality American
Profession Musician
Birthday October 16

The older I get, the more I just like plugging directly into my amp.

I'm tired of trying to impress myself with weird sounds. It's about the notes more.

11

When I was young, I wasn't a misfit or anything.

I had friends in all the different social groups. But I had issues - just personal issues, insecurities and other things that had happened in my life.

8

I don't think I approach my songs differently from other artists.

You get a big picture of it, and you imagine the song and hear and feel it, and that big picture is like a snapshot, and it comes to you as fast as it takes to click a camera.

8

If you want to be a virtuoso then you have to set your sights above me.

You have to go beyond what I'm doing. And that's for you to figure out. Because if you can do that, then I'm going to be trying to go beyond you.

7

I've been approached many times to write all sorts of books about my past and my personal life. I get interest from people who want to do reality shows, and somebody just offered me a huge amount of money to write my spiritual memoirs. I'm just not interested.

7

A lot of those little things that I really like doing are just moments of cool articulation, just little moments of phrasing that probably go over everybody's head.

7

It is only the most elite of elite musicians whose unconventional approach becomes convention.

5

We have the insight and the tools to identify and bring to fruition the dormant talent that our artists possess. Favored Nations will be branded as the home base for inspired musical talent.

5

The cool thing about playing is that the more you do it, the better you get.

4

You know, there's times when you should play and there's times when you gotta hold back.

3

I loved the guitar, and I had all of this music in my head.

My passion for the guitar and the ideas for what I could create musically were equal. So that's where I was.

3

My main calling in life is to seek and achieve spiritual balance, and to express that through my instrument. Everything else is here today, gone later today.

3

What I look for in music is artistry, sincerity, and simplicity, and Tom Waits has all of that. I want to make a connection to the creator.

3

Most of my records are very dense, composition-heavy, and there's bits of different kinds of music like an acoustic ballad, instrumental trio pieces, and vocal tracks.

3

I think the thing that I got most from working with Frank Zappa is that I was able to see someone who completely independent. The most beautiful thing about Frank was that he was completely in the moment and present and eternally creative.

3

I dedicated all the time I had to it.

The 10 hour workout was just what I put in the magazine at the time, but for me it was every waking moment.

3

My past is very interesting, and I treasure it, but to write about it, it's just not on my radar.

2

... you watch Jimi Hendrix literally reinvent the instrument. He was playing from somewhere else. He was really a kind of hybrid, and I can't even begin to imagine where he came from

2

I designed a guitar for Ibanez and then they started manufacturing it - it's called the Jem - it's 26 years old and I still play it. As a kid I liked Les Pauls and Strats, but they had limitations for the kind of playing I wanted to do.

1

I have an independent record label called Favored Nations on which I released an album by an artist called Johnny A, who plays an arch top Gibson through a Marshall, but the tone is all in his fingers.

1

When you get down to it, the way that the music affects you individually is the most important thing, and when you let things like the location of a band get in the way or have an effect on your overview, you're cheating yourself out of a really good time.

1

I've never really heard anybody imitating anything of mine the way they do with Edward Van Halen's stuff.

1

I awake, I meditate, get the kids off to school, go to the gym, go to the Favored Nations office, and usually at around 1 pm I'm home and do music the rest of the day.

1

I'm always pursuing knowledge; I'm a seeker of spiritual equilibrium - and music is a big part of that.

1

The blues scale was the first thing I learned.

It's just a pentatonic scale with a flat seventh and a few notes that sound cool when you bend them. And because people have amalgamated the blues into this rock-blues scale, if you're using it, you better sound like a real authentic blues player.

0

When I was a teenager in the '70s, I was really into those great bands like Led Zeppelin and Queen and Jethro Tull, Deep Purple, Alice Cooper.

0

I saw this trend happening with the proliferation of guitar clinics and schools.

And I was approached to do a camp in the past, but I wanted to have a good enough idea because most of them are just about jamming and learning. I decided I wanted a theme for each camp.

0

Critisism is just reflection of the person that speaking

0

I can tell you this: I'm an extremely passionate individual.

I try to be careful how I display it because you never know how people are going to take it.

0

Along with its enchanting and exquisite melodies, West Side Story has attitude and a tremendous amount of frenetic energy. It's emotional, theatrical and technical. It's everything.

0

I loved the idea of recording. The idea of sound-on-sound-recording captured me as a young kid, and once I realized what it was I had an epiphany. Before I was even playing the guitar, I would create these lists of how I would record things and overdub them, like Led Zeppelin song, 'I could put this guitar on this track...' and so on.

0

Ray and I do not draw salaries, Any profits will be re-invested into marketing the music we believe in.

0

Baby don't wake me, let me take you on an endless journey.

We touch and the softest kiss explodes with lust. It's real and you can't deny the heat you feel. And if I die before I wake, baby that's all right.

0

I don't believe in 'greatest'. I believe in favorites.

0

I was always one of those guys who was a seeker after truth. I want to know what's going on.

0

In the physical universe, there are objects that include suns, planets, all life, and all matter in all dimensions. And then there is the space where all these things exist. That space is the vital element. For virtually every kid since 1968 who picked up a guitar to find his voice on the instrument, Jimmy Page has been the space that enables all our notes to be played.

0

Criticism can be devastating. When push comes to shove, we are all very sensitive.

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