Over the years each decade has managed to produce musicians who have pushed the boundaries of guitar playing back further and further. One such Musician, Songwriter is Yngwie Malmsteen.
A well known name in the world of neo-classical metal, power metal, heavy metal, and hard rock, Yngwie Malmsteen was born in Stockholm, Sweden, on June 30, 1963. His original name is Lars Johan Yngve Lannerback. But he took his mother’s name as his surname Malmsten and afterwards changed it to Malmsteen and Yngve to Yngwie.
Yngwie originally had no interest in music. However, on September 18, 1970, Yngwie saw a TV special on the death of guitar legend Jimi Hendrix. Seven-year-old Yngwie watched with awe as Hendrix blasted the audience with tears of feedback. It is said that, ‘the day Jimi Hendrix died, the guitar-playing, Neo-Classical king Yngwie was born’. The instrument he played and mastered till date includes Guitar, bass, keyboards, vocals, sitar, and cello.
Yngwie also created his first band ‘Track on Earth’ at the age of 10, consisting of himself and a friend from school on drums. Malmsteen was a teenager when he first encountered the music of the 19th century violin maestro Niccolo Paganini, whom he cites as his biggest classical music influence.
Malmsteen released his first solo album Rising Force in 1984, which featured Barrie Barlow of Jethro Tull on drums.Malmsteen became notable in the mid-1980s for his technical fluency and neo-classical metal compositions. Four of his albums, from 1984 to 1988, Rising Force, Marching Out, Trilogy, and Odyssey, ranked in the top 100 for sales.
Yngwie Malmsteen is also famous for using a glitzy guitar move in his performance called Over-shoulder throw. The move entails literally throwing the electric guitar over the shoulder of the guitarist’s fretting arm (the left on a right-handed player) so that it swivels around the back of the player, coming to rest in its normal position.
A beautiful double neck guitar was handmade as a tribute and present for Yngwie Malmsteen. It is considered among the most unique guitars ever made.
But it got stolen in 2006 and there is a reward of Rs. 20,000 for the person who will find it.
In 2003, Yngwie joined the famous G3 Tour and performed in North America. Many guitar fans saw their ultimate dream combination (Satriani, Vai, and Malmsteen). The show was such a success that the CD and DVD of the show were released on October 20, 2003 naming ‘G3: Rockin’ in the Free World’. It became instant classics and hot sellers throughout the year.
Malmsteen have paved his way through thick and thin into the world of rock. He shuns his school for the sake of practice and now he is considered as one of the most respected Classical style Metal guitarists in the world.