Yngwie Malmsteen Claims Most Guitarists Sound The Same

Guitar World recently had Yngwie Malmsteen list the artists who changed the guitar community. Malmsteen also shared his thoughts about guitarists in general during the chat. He commented on Steve Vai’s music and said:

“Steve is a dear friend and completely unique in his own right. That’s one of the most rare things about guitar players, actually – having a completely individual sound. Most guitarists sound kinda similar.”

The artist explained:

“Again, I don’t want to come across as I’m saying anything bad, but it seems to me that most guitar players listen to other guitar players, who in turn were also listening to guitar players when they were learning. That can become a little bit of a trap that people fall into.”

His Influence Doesn’t Come From Other Guitarists

Malmsteen noted that he found his sound by looking somewhere else for inspiration. Classical music and instruments shaped his playing style. He told Guitar World in the ‘80s:

“If guitar players just listen to other guitar players it’s almost impossible to avoid sounding like them. I try to achieve a style that is a lot different from what other guitarists sound like. If you listen to other instruments like violin, flutes, or keyboards you will break away from the clichés of guitar playing.”

The guitarist is into Niccolò Paganini and J.S. Bach’s works:

“Classical is the peak of the development of music, and Bach is the most influential classical composer of all. Beethoven, Chopin, and Liszt all took from Bach. Mozart even took from Bach; he was a little kid when Bach died. Classical is the source of music; it’s like a religion, almost.”

You can check out his new interview here.