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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 11:55 pm 
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can any one help I wanna play like steve some of you here must be able to play some of his stuff
where do I start what do I do........?


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:08 am 
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I don't try to sound like Steve. But I would practice until you can't possibly practice anymore, then practice some more.

I would also try getting the Naked Tracks Set, and just jam out, don't try to be Steve, but just jam what your feeling, go with the flow, let your mind wonder. Then add some of those Vaiisms to your playing, the articulations, circular vibratos, type things. I'll admit it, I stole some stuff from my favorite guitarists :)

There is also a 10 Hour Workout written by Steve in a past Guitar World, It has some great insights on what he did to become what he is. Also the Guitar Center Masterclass on Steve's youtube channel has some insight into it.

As far as learning the songs, What I have to do is take 1 measure at a time, play it slowly, untill I can do it perfectly, (usually a very long process) Then move on to the next measure. I still strugle with most songs. I would start with Die to Live, It's been the easiest (by no means easy, for me anyways) but the easiest of the Vai tracks.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 31, 2012 4:38 pm 
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check out some lick library dvd's,i think they're pretty good.I've had a crack at the Steve Vai quick licks and it was a good place to start to get used to the lydian sound,i've got a copy of Steve Vai vol 3 but havn't tried it yet but i'm sure its worth it as i own quite a lot of these dvd's and each ones been great.All the contributors are really good players and teachers. heres a link to some Steve Vai material I think its worth looking at,and i dont even get a commission for this.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2012 3:52 am 
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Steve said on the hour long lesson for berklee (the world record one) that to play like him, you would have to think like him. He said he dosent recommend that :D actually, if you go on youtube and type in STEVE VAI HOUR LONG LESSON, some guy videotaped it and put it up. Its an hour long, around the fourth video down. It may help you.


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 7:50 am 
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The point of playing Lead guitar (for me anyway) is to express YOURSELF, obviously you need techniques and ability etc to be able do that, i understand also why so many people try and copy Steve's songs note for note, ive done it myself, but ultimately if your just playing something 'parrot fashion' then you shouldnt be playing it at all! You should always try and put your own stamp on it, personally i'm bored to death with people covering steve's stuff verbatim, i mean whats the point? other than to say "hey look what i can do! can i have a pat on the back please?!!" but i suppose we all go thru that... and i guess thats the best way to learn to sound more like steve if thats your objective.


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 8:28 am 
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I don't see a problem copying him. I mean, in my town, unless your a cover band you don't get paid regular weekly gigs. Just saying. Most musicians are whores that way in a since. But when you create your own music, its a different brain system in use. And the techniques one can learn by trying to emulate vai, or any other guitarist, will eventually create someones own unique voice. There is no such thing as original anymore. Just mashups of everyone else's style in one's own unique style.


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 9:18 am 
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KInda glad I looked at this question. It made me think of a decent answer.

Here`s what`s so hard about "playing like Steve Vai": He doesn`t have one "signature" technique or sound, per se. If you sweep pick you`ll be compared to Yngwie (ask me how I know). If you use a lot of legato, you`ll be compared to Satriani (again, ask me how I know). If you run fast alternating picked runs you`re likely to be compared to Paul Gilbert. Tapping? Do I even need to use an example?

So to sound like Steve Vai, you`ve got to write like him. His MUSIC is quite identifiable.

I guess though, there are some characteristics of his playing that can remind listeners of him. For instance, once I got comfortable letting go of some of my technique for the sake of being musical I developed a style of using some very technical and fast passages to move from one melodic motiff to another. I was compared to Vai most often at that point.

Of course these days the most common description I get is "somewhere between Joe Satriani, Jeff Beck, and Steve Vai". Can`t say I`m at all offended by that :-)


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 10:18 am 
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phoenix2874 wrote:
KInda glad I looked at this question. It made me think of a decent answer.

Here`s what`s so hard about "playing like Steve Vai": He doesn`t have one "signature" technique or sound, per se. If you sweep pick you`ll be compared to Yngwie (ask me how I know). If you use a lot of legato, you`ll be compared to Satriani (again, ask me how I know). If you run fast alternating picked runs you`re likely to be compared to Paul Gilbert. Tapping? Do I even need to use an example?

So to sound like Steve Vai, you`ve got to write like him. His MUSIC is quite identifiable.

I guess though, there are some characteristics of his playing that can remind listeners of him. For instance, once I got comfortable letting go of some of my technique for the sake of being musical I developed a style of using some very technical and fast passages to move from one melodic motiff to another. I was compared to Vai most often at that point.

Of course these days the most common description I get is "somewhere between Joe Satriani, Jeff Beck, and Steve Vai". Can`t say I`m at all offended by that :-)


Have you got any links so we can hear you? :D


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 11:37 am 
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Guitaruss wrote:
Have you got any links so we can hear you? :D


Man, I had some stuff linked here a while back. I had my old website with about 12 tunes on there and some candid live videos. My computer that it was hosted on crashed and I just haven`t gotten around to getting it in for retrieval. Guess I should...been like 3 years LOL. Hasn`t been a priority because I`ve been working on all new material that`s a bit more relevant to current times in my life. I do more live playing now than recording, but soon enough. Getting a new band together for my solo project so we`ll see how the next few months go...


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 2:14 pm 
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some interesting replies,...


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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 2:16 pm 
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Guitaruss wrote:
The point of playing Lead guitar (for me anyway) is to express YOURSELF, obviously you need techniques and ability etc to be able do that, i understand also why so many people try and copy Steve's songs note for note, ive done it myself, but ultimately if your just playing something 'parrot fashion' then you shouldnt be playing it at all! You should always try and put your own stamp on it, personally i'm bored to death with people covering steve's stuff verbatim, i mean whats the point? other than to say "hey look what i can do! can i have a pat on the back please?!!" but i suppose we all go thru that... and i guess thats the best way to learn to sound more like steve if thats your objective.


hi guitaruss,...I agree totally with what you have written here,..have a nice day ,..its the first day of winter here where I am ,..bit cold ,..


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 9:29 am 
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Location: Glasgow, UK
Probably still warmer than summer in scotland aaron!


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:44 pm 
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Scotland sounds and looks like a lovely place


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 6:49 pm 
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buy a fan and make lots of faces


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2012 9:11 am 
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The last thing I would want is to sound like Steve Vai. Yes, he's an incredible and gifted player, although he's the sole creator and has bronzed his OWN style. There is no need to copy, copy, copy without realizing your own capability at some point during the dedication you put into the guitar. What's the point anyhow! Assuming the goal is to master the guitar while YOU play it and not Steve! That's like you, getting ready after all your preparation to play your first gig, then all of a sudden, Steve crashes through the door wearing his funky space outfit and steals your axe, plays YOUR show and gets ALL the attention!

You'll be amazed at what oozes out after a period of time while developing your skill set , let alone how you develop your ear.

This argument also stands for all those cover bands who'll never throw in the towel for an ounce of originality!


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