There’s nothing I can write that can fully capture the experience that I had when I saw Joe Satriani in concert last Tuesday night at The Tivoli here in Brisbane. You can use every superlative, every cliche and confirm everything that’s ever been written about the pure genius that is Joe Satriani. He sure is a master guitarist.
To see him on stage and to hear his music live was such a wonderful experience. The guy plays the guitar better than anyone I’ve ever seen before. The sounds he produces from the guitar are just amazing and I really wonder how he does it. Some might wonder how you watch someone in concert for near on two hours who doesn’t sing. He doesn’t need to. He makes his guitar sing in every possible key and creates sounds that could never be reproduced by a voice. He was thoroughly entertaining.
Joe was supported by a two piece band out of Houston, Texas called Sit Down, Servant. Gordie Johnson plays a triple neck steel guitar and Moog bass pedals and creates mesmerising sounds like I’ve never heard from a steel guitar before. Gordie is supported by Brannen Temple on drums and he belted out a cool, hard jazz beat. They put us in the perfect mood to be entertained by Joe and his band.
Joe was supported by accomplished musician Mike Keneally who has previously worked with the likes of Frank Zappa, Steve Vai and Dethklok. Playing guitar and keyboards, he didn’t miss a beat, keeping up with Joe for the entire concert. On bass was Bryan Beller who played a good, strong bass beat all night. On drums was Marco Minneman who, I have to say, is one of the best drummers I’ve ever seen. The whole band played so well together you think they’d been together all their careers.
My beautiful girlfriend bought me the concert ticket for my upcoming birthday in December but she went one step further and bought me a Meet and Greet ticket and I got to meet my real life guitar hero in person. The whole time leading up to the concert, I was getting nervous wondering what I’d say and how I’d act. My first sight of him on the night made me feel at ease. The guy is easy going and easy to talk to. (I slipped him a CD of some music I’ve recorded but I won’t sit by the phone waiting for his opinion. Hey, you’ve got to make the most of every opportunity!) He signed one of my guitars and a copy of “Surfing With the Alien”, which I had him dedicate to my girlfriend. She was wrapped.
This has to go down as one of those life experiences you’ll never forget. It just reaffirmed how living a clean and sober lifestyle can open up so many wonderful opportunities you can possibly not afford or not enjoy while supporting a raging drug habit. If you are a guitar fan, you really must make it a once in a lifetime thing to see Joe Satriani in concert. You’ll never forget it.