Nita Strauss Recalls Her Life-Changing Experience With Steve Vai

Nita Strauss recently talked about her admiration for Steve Vai in an interview with Guitar Autopsy. She further recalled the time she first met the guitarist, and he recognized her as his fangirl.

Alice Cooper band’s long-time guitarist Nita Strauss is known to have a big crush on Steve Vai, and she doesn’t cease to mention him as her inspiration for playing the guitar. Not only his music but also the musical drama ‘Crossroads,’ released in 1986 starring Vai, inspired and influenced the 13-year-old Nita.

She started playing the guitar as soon as she saw the movie, and thanks to it, she is now on the long-term touring team for Alice Cooper. Strauss improved herself so much since watching Vai in the movie that she became the first female signature artist for Ibanez and is often featured in the greatest guitarists lists created by famous magazines.

In her recent interview, she mentioned Vai once again and talked about her love for the guitarist. She further recalled the time she first met Vai at an Ibanez camp. Although she didn’t expect him to recognize her, to her surprise, he did. While getting acquainted with everyone else one by one, he shook hands with her, then moved on but returned to ask her if she was Nita Strauss.

It was a moment of joy and excitement for Strauss as Steve Vai had actually recognized her. Vai held her hand and told her he knows her name because she often talks about him during her interviews and says the ‘nicest things’ about him. It seems like this became a moment that Strauss will cherish for the rest of her life.

Here is how Strauss told the story:

“When I met Steve Vai many years later, I met him with my big group from the Ibanez camp, and we went to, I guess it must have been a G3 or something together, and I met Steve after the show, and it was a big group of people. Was going around introducing themselves, and I put my hand and said, ‘Hiya, I’m Nita.’ And he said ‘Hi, I’m Steve.’ Moved on to the next person and I had no expectation that he would know who I was or anything.

Then he comes back, and he goes, ‘Wait for a second, is your name Nita Strauss?’ And I (Screams). But out loud, I said ‘Yes.’ He took my hand in his two hands, and he said, ‘You say the nicest things about me on your interviews.‘ Because every time I can, I just gush about ‘Crossroads’ and how amazing and life-changing it was for so many of us. So yes, I was totally busted fangirling out over Steve Vai by Steve Vai.”

You can watch the interview below.