Exclusive Interview with Joe Satriani

You are going to be performing at the State Theatre in Portland Maine on Thursday, October 3rd. I am sure our readers on Maine Music News (www.mainemusicnews.com) will really enjoy your responses.

MMN – You have had the opportunity to tour the world many times, but we have to know – is there something about Maine that sticks out for you? Do you get a chance to get out and walk around the Old Port in Portland and take in the local color?

JS – I am very excited about my first visit to Portland, and Maine. I hope to have time to visit Bob Ludwig at Gateway Mastering, and have a big lobster dinner!

MMN – You are currently out touring on your latest album, Unstoppable Momentum. Please share a little bit about this new album. There are dedicated Joe Satriani fans out there – what would you like those fans to know about this album?

JS – It’s a new start in a lot of ways, a re-energized musical journey with a new band of stellar players. I’m always looking to push myself in new directions, to become a better storyteller, player and musician. This record propels me to that creative place.

MMN – I noticed that there was not a G3 tour in 2013, and I assume that was because you have been out touring on your new album. Are there any plans for an early 2014 G3 tour?

JS – We did three G3 tours in 2012! That was more than we’ve ever done in a one year period.

MMN – Are there plans underway for another G3 record in the future?

JS – I’m thinking about it, and making a short list of possible invities…

MMN – You’ve worked with many great musicians. Who is still on your bucket list and what would you like to see as collaboration work?

JS – Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, Billy Gibbons, Brian May… the list goes on…

MMN – Your 1987 release, Surfing with the Alien, really helped to establish you as a force to be reckoned with on guitar. In making that record, did you have any idea the attention it would get? Why do you think after all these years that record is still a favorite among Satriani fans?

JS – That was the perfect record of mine to be embraced by the fans because it so completely represented what I really liked about the electric guitar. It was a celebration of my musical roots, and it relied heavily on strong melodies, solid song structure and unique guitar tones.

MMN – How old were you when you started playing guitar and why the guitar?

JS – At 14 years of age I switched from drums to guitar the day Hendrix died, I never looked back.

MMN – Who inspired you then and is there anybody who continues to inspire you today?

JS – I still enjoy players from all corners of the musical landscape from Keith Richards to Allen Holdsworth, Van Halen to Jack White.

MMN – With all the guitar companies to choose from why did you land on Ibanez?

JS – They make the best guitars!

MMN – Has your signature model sold well?

JS – Extremely well, thank you!

MMN – What CD is in your CD player right now?

JS – The new record from Queens of the Stone Age. Awesome record.

MMN – Of the numerous bands you have played with, Mick Jagger, Deep Purple, Chickenfoot etc., which bunch of guys have been the most fun to tour with and why?

JS – They’ve all been equally fun and crazy to be out on the road with. Chickenfoot is special however because the music we play is our own.

MMN – Can you share a story from the road, crazy, funny or otherwise that our readers may not have heard yet?

JS – Playing in Kuala Lumpor, Malaysia, a few years back we headlined a stadium show but didn’t get on stage until 4 AM! Half way into our second song, “Satch Boogie”, the Malaysian army showed up with automatic weapons drawn, stormed the stage and demanded we stop or be imprisoned for disturbing the peace. I had a funny feeling that something wasn’t right that night so I had packed my backpack and left it by the side of the stage for a quick get-away. Good thing I did because as soon as I had those machine guns pointed at me I put down my guitar, picked up my bag and got the hell out of there! Haven’t been back since…

Joe, thank you very much for your time, we greatly appreciate it, and we are looking forward to photographing and reviewing your show in Portland on October 3rd.

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